some problem with your computer just sort of fixes itself, and you don't know what was actually wrong or what made the problem go away?

Case in point. On my main XP box, I could not get a proper connection to one of the networked printers in my home. Every time I tried to connect to this specific printer hosted on another PC, it came up as a LanManager connection - which works like crap. I delete the printer, try to set it up as a local port (which other printers came us as all by themselves) and Windoze tells me the port already exists, despite my having deleted it, repeatedly, thoroughly.

I set up a connection to that printer on another XP box, and it worked just fine as local port. So I went back and tried one more time on the main box, and IT WORKED!

Just plain FM!

You ever have one of those days?

(Disclaimer: this is not a tech support request - just an example of a hair pulling episode that resolved itself magically.)

My cat took an interest in the keyboard after I left the room for a moment. It thoroughly messed up my Internet Explorer settings and took a while to fix.

Everyone is using my PC in my room and i just hate that, nothing is my personal, they all are using it like its not mine, i am looking for some security settings also.

Don't you just hate it when...
people smear their signature spam all over.

When buying 1TB of ram is just that little bit too expensive.

When your bank shows up amongst the worst banks in the latest consumer satisfaction survey.

The bottom seven of this year's Forrester Research US bank rankings, first to last, are Bank of America, Chase, Capital One, TD/Commerce, Fifth Third, Citibank, and in last place, HSBC.

When buying 1TB of ram is just that little bit too expensive.

Oh, poo. So it might cost you about $20K.

Consider what it would have cost to buy a full 4 GB of RAM to fill out the address space of the 386 in 1986 - about $750,000. And that's if you could actually, physically interface it.

Source: Memory Prices 1957-2010

commented: And something similar for MIPS/$ as well :) +0

I just hate when someone in the office downloads huge amount of files because the connection starts to slow down.

I just hate when someone in the office downloads huge amount of files because the connection starts to slow down.

His wife won't let him download that stuff at home, though.

Don't you just hate it when nobody asks a question in hours on an irc help chat room for myself to answer. (PHP Freaks irc #help)

Ghost in the machine or one for the books?

It started a couple of weeks ago. My desktop PC wouldn’t boot properly and got into a recurring loop trying to start. Uh-huh. I’ll try and get into the BIOS. Nearly wore my finger out repeatedly hitting the DELETE key. Eventually almost made it but then: “The main BIOS is corrupted - do not restart, reset – this may take several minutes”, blahblah. When it restarted by itself, the “problem” was still there.
The PC is a fairly respectable one although nearly four years old. The motherboard is one of those Tawainese wonders. “UEFI, Dual BIOS, Ultra Durable”, etc. So, in theory if the main BIOS goes bad, the backup BIOS kicks in. Wow, I think to myself. That’s amazing. But what if the untouchable backup BIOS is also corrupted ?

Every now and then I managed to get into the UEFI after soaking my RSI finger in painkillers. Changed a few settings such as boot order, IDE to AHCI...nothing dramatic. No dice. Back in UEFI and my settings hadn’t been saved.

Of course, I’d considered other potential moves such as trying to stop the DVD-ROM from being the first bootable drive. I even pulled it out of the machine so it wasn’t even there. Nope. Maybe the PSU was wonky, the CPU’s stuffed, faulty RAM chip, rogue graphics card, CMOS battery, virus/malware issue? Couldn’t pin-point anything amiss (but admittedly, I didn’t replace the CMOS battery).

I live on a tropical Indonesian island called Bali. Maybe some of you have been there and those who haven’t might have the idea that it’s “The Morning of the Earth”, “Paradise”, “Island of the Gods”. Might even expect to see swaying palms everywhere, pristine beaches, stunningly beautiful women and girls walking around bare-breasted everywhere, etc. Well, it was like that once, but not quite like that these days. Even relatively mundane things we might consider easy to do (“no-brainers”) can be time consuming. But I digress.

So, after torturing myself for days on end, I decided to call in a local computer technician. He arrived yesterday. “What’s the problem?). I explained it to him and added that I was paranoid to restart the computer because my finger was nearly dead. Now note that neither of us done anything yet. I restarted the PC and it was totally normal! I couldn’t believe it and the technician was bemused, probably thinking this old computer fart doesn’t know what day it is.

We then did cold starts, restarts multiple times, entered the UEFI over and over again and everything came up normal (even this morning – NO problem).

I jokingly suggested to the Balinese techie that maybe the PC’s been attacked by “leyaks”. (A “leyak” is a kind of shape-shifting human witch-like being that steals children and eats them, and other gory stuff. Some Balinese still believe this. Balinese religion is a composite system of animism, modified Hinduism with lashes of Buddhism thrown in. There’s also an underlying concept of the Seen and Unseen (“Sikala” and “Niskala”), which have to be kept in balance. So a bad spirit needs as much attention as a good one (for “balance”).

My Indonesian wife of 15 years threw in a comment from the other room that our house has a ghost in it. Not very helpful. The Balinese tech considered this (“maybe possible”). Ha.

I’ve built tens of PCs over the years, trained as a system analyst on IBM mainframes at the University of Melbourne and I’ve never encountered something like this before. I have a copy of the original BIOS for the motherboard from the manufacturer, all ready to go on a bootable FAT32 flash disk, just in case. Right now, I’ll hold off and see what happens next…

Any thoughts?

Flat/low battery on the motherboard? Replacing it would be one of my first steps.

it was like that once, but not quite like that these days

I visited Bali in 1993 and 1995 and fell in love with the beauty and spirituality of the place. Went back in 2012 and couldn't believe how badly destroyed the southern half of the island was by Disney tourist junk. They even had a shopping mall with US fast-food outlets and bungee jumping from a crane. What a tragedy.