New computers – disappointments

Crazy busy, this time of year, isn’t it?  That’s why I haven’t gotten back to this until now.

(Mind you, last Sunday, at church, the kids put on this play, the point of which was that the “busy” parts of Christmas often aren’t the most important aspects.  The tagline to the play was that you should be busy about the right things, not the wrong ones.  And we’ve mostly been busy with the twins.

For example, #2 Daughter was heavily involved in the local Atom hockey tournament, since #3 Grandson was in one of the teams.  So, we pulled extra babysitting time while she had to be running things, and he *didn’t* have to be there.

The famous Coquitlam Atom Boom Boom Puck Jam Hockey tournament was won, Tuesday, by the Coquitlam Chiefs C1 team in an exciting finish.  Tied after regulation time [with full 15 minute periods, rather than the normal Atom 12, with the third period shortened if anything in the game goes overtime], and still tied after five minutes of 4 on 4 sudden death overtime, the final was won in the second-to-last shot of a shoot-out.

Because of conflicting appointments, Grandpa (of #6, right wing forward) had to travel an hour and a half, taking the Skytrain and bus out to the rink, but is still chuffed  :-)

But the disappointments, of which I speak, had to do with computers.  Part of the pain of buying new stuff, is that things you thought you could rely on, well, it turns out you can’t, anymore.

One of them is NOD32.  Eset does make a good product, although it tends to be fairly greedy for cycles, while operating, and a bit arrogant in terms of what it tells you.  So, when a family member was in trouble over an infection (always embarrassing when your own family doesn’t take precautions, isn’t it?) I had no hesitation in applying NOD32 to try and clean it up.  Well, the machine is older, and slow.  And, hasn’t been updated in a while, so I was trying to fix that, too.  NOD32, even after finishing it’s scan, was interfering with the update process.  So much so, that it got to the point where we thought the machine was unrecoverable.

We did get it back in operation.  (And, first thing, removed NOD32.)  But it’s disappointing when a trusted tool bites you.

(Speaking of the which, I’ve spoken before about MSE, and even mentioned some of the performance degradation it can cause in older machines.  I must say, that, in some recent experiences, I’m more and more impressed with it as a means of rescuing computers that have been infected.)

More closely related to the new computers, one of my favourite places to get computer equipment, over the years, has been a western Canadian drugstore chain called London Drugs, similar (for those of you in the States) to Walgreens, although sometimes London Drugs is closer in scale to Target.  For twenty years I have been sending people to them for good advice, knowledgable staff, and decent prices.

Well, one of the computers I bought, this time around, is a Mac.  I’m not familiar with Macs, so I was relying on their advice.  Actually, the advice that I got from one staffer was quite good.  But, when I went to actually buy the machine, I got it home and found that what I had brought home was not what I’d ordered.  Which reminded me that the last time I needed to get a printer cartridge, again, they gave me the wrong one.  (There is also that fact that, in relying on their advice over what I needed, they sold me some completely unnecessary software, when the function I wanted is already built in to the Mac.)
Overall, I think they still are a reasonably decent place to get stuff, but, obviously, they may be victims of their own success.  Getting a bit careless, perhaps.  So, equally obviously, I can’t just rely on them any more, and will have to be careful about who I send there, as well.
Like I  said, a bit of a disappointment …