Oh No! Main Computer on the Fritz

Doncha just hate it when you go to start your computer up and nothing much happens?

It sort of begins to start up. A few of the lights flash a bit. The Windows 7 start-up whirl even begins to whirl. Then it all just stops. And this on the Saturday morning first start up of the computer after a week away at site working.

What could have happened while I was away? Has it missed me? Was there a power spike? Or even worse, a bad power brown-out?

I am pretty sure it is going to be a power supply problem. The fact that now nothing at all comes on sort of points to a power supply, and partial or complete power supply problems are the cause of about three half of all non-software related problems with desktop computers.

So now I am having to ‘work’ with my standby Toshiba A11 notebook computer connected up to my main screen. It is not a good look. In fact the screen looks downright crappy because the Toshiba is driving my main 1920x1200 DELL U2410 screen at 1440x900, so there is a lot of pixel averaging going on—which makes for a very soft and furry looking display; and everything is over-sized and odd looking.

It is funny how these things work out. I have been thinking for a few months now that my main computer is over two years old and it is probably time for an upgrade. I would like to convert over to 64-bit Windows 7 now that almost everything (but not quite everything) works with 64-bit Windows.

Interestingly Microsoft recommend that the 32-bit version of Office 2010 be used on 64-bit Windows for integration and reliability reasons. The company I work with is currently developing a new standard 64-bit based Windows 7 image to deploy company wide on 20,000+ computers and Microsoft have strongly recommended that 32-bit Office 2010 be deployed and not 64-bit Office. So, based on this I guess I will install 32-bit Office on my new 64-bit Windows 7 PC—if I end up upgrading.

I would also like to move to either a full SSD hard disk or a hybrid SSD hard disk. From the benchmarking data I have seen the performance difference between full SSD and hybrid SSD hard disks is very minor; way down in the range of five to eight percent. In fact hybrids actually out perform the lower-end lower-cost SSDs.

Apart from all this, right now in Australia computer prices are at all time lows. Partially due to the high dollar and partially due to heavy discounting as retailers struggle to get people to keep buying stuff.

So depending on whether it is just the power supply or something more sinister, when I next post to the site using my ‘main’ computer it could be a new 64-bit Windows 7 unit.