Monday, February 05, 2007


The new computer turned up from Hacker and I started work on setting it up at 8am Saturday morning. Aside from a two-hour break this is how I spent my time until 7am Sunday morning... my first all-nighter since my University days.

In fact, it turned into a 21-hour marathon attempt to get Windows installed which ultimately failed. The cause may be faulty memory, a faulty CPU, a faulty hard disk, a faulty motherboard, or quite possibly, a combination of the above. I won't bore you with the details but trust me when I tell you those 21 hours were used in various diagnostic and installation attempts which tantalisingly sometimes almost got me up and running but would quickly push me back to a constantly looping rebooting Windows or a hard drive that refused to successfully format.

The blog I could write about what I've been through could run to pages, but this is a Korean blog and I make it a rule to keep it on topic. There is a link though, which is this. I bought a copy of Korean Windows XP - yes, it really is genuine Microsoft CD - but my belief that I could cope with running Windows in a language I basically don't understand was very much premised on the idea that I could get it up and running in the first place. When that didn't happen I was faced with a barrage of error messages which I couldn't understand, and my wife couldn't really translate into something I could understand. I'm a former software developer, but she isn't an IT person by background even though she's a bit of a geek herself truth be told, and somewhere between this there was a small, yet crucial gulf of understanding which rendered my fifteen years experience of building PCs useless. I suspect that had I been able to understand Korean error messages, it may have been a shorter day.

I don't want to have to go back to Hacker and buy an English copy of XP to get to the bottom of things, particularly when I think there's a hardware fault somewhere, so I'll persevere now, but I wanted to state for the record what an incredibly bad idea the Korean XP experience turned out to be.

Oh, and every so often a Korean gamer keels over and dies from exhaustion after playing World of Warcraft or similar online world for too many hours at a stretch, and after my recent illness (I found myself back at the doctors for a third time this week) I think I very nearly became one of those statistics at 08:30 this morning when my alarm woke me up. Suffice to say, I was really rather ill.

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