Monday, January 28, 2013

Catching Up, and Amazing Grace

I'm a week-and-a-half behind schedule regarding my daily posting.

However, unlike falling behind on bill payments, nobody's going to be phoning us several times a day to post something!

I've been a tad busy with all things domestic, electronic, and culinary, some of which I will share with you in  future posts.

In the meantime, I've repaired and tweaked a $25 Gateway laptop (aka Grace) I bought at the Salvation Army thrift store.  I couldn't get any version of Linux to recognize the wired or wireless network cards even with 3rd party drivers (and the snarky, elitist fucks on the Linux forums were of no help, as per usual), so I said "Fuck it!" and installed Windows XP.  Downloaded the drivers from Gateway's website and everything worked, so I grabbed all the open-source apps I use on my main design machine (for compatibility and financial purposes) and went to town.

The problem is that the battery is dead (common with used laptops of any vintage), and the lower case is cracked where the battery sits, so the battery wouldn't charge properly anyway.  A short trip to eBay and five bucks later, I found and bought a replacement lower case.  With my experience taking apart Nadia on a regular basis, it should be a quick and easy fix.

The only other issue is, because of its vintage, Grace has no USB2.0 or Bluetooth capabilities.  I had a spare Bluetooth dongle and mouse left over from Nadia, and so made do with that for the time being.  However, come payday I'll be splurging for a combination USB2.0/Firewire/Bluetooth card for the machine ($13 on eBay) and possibly a new battery and port replicator.

After that, I'll have a whole new mobile blogging/design machine, and I'll be back in action!