Zombie drive   Leave a comment

But for goodness’ sake don’t throw Thunderbolts at it!

On Friday the 2nd of December I was going to return the laptop’s dead drive under warranty. Before I did, I had to nuke all the data on it, as I use it for work. This was surprisingly fiddly – I’d failed to get anything to work the previous night – but the first thing I tried on Friday morning did the job, and I was left with a disk completely full of zeroes.

That achieved, I ran the manufacturer’s diagnostic one last time, just to make sure (and because it was easier than manually filling in the warranty form). And the drive passed with no errors.

How incredibly tiresome.

Presumably nuking it got the drive to realise which sectors were duff so it would work around them, or something; as it’d failed a couple of different diagnostics, caused plenty of crashes, corrupted an OS and had read errors whilst making backup images, I couldn’t have been imagining it. Whatever happened, you can’t warranty a drive that doesn’t cause an error.

I had to go to the town centre regardless, for a loaf of bread. Greggs permitting anyway. And it didn’t look promising when I went in, but they did have a wholemeal loaf (alas, no granary, as it is bestest, but wholemeal is second) lurking on a tray. Hurrah!

So I had a good lunch, as always when I’ve a nice fresh loaf to make it from. I ate a quarter of the loaf (twice what I often have); one slice with spicy sausage and Guinness brown sauce, the other with dark chocolate spread. Both were great.

Fresh loaves are brilliant. The hard crust that the knife struggles to dig in to, before it cracks, sawing its way through; granary loaves often splintering into tasty, crispy shards. And when you eat it you’ve the dark, crunchy, bitter crust around the soft, airy, moist – almost gooey – middle. It’s lovely. And if you manage to get a loaf when it’s still warm! *Sigh*

You don’t get all that with your pre-packaged, pre-sliced non-bread do you? No, you do not. They’re not even comparable.

I’d love a bread machine so that I could have fresh, warm bread every single day, but one person on their own just won’t eat enough to make it worthwhile. Not even if I am that person.

In the evening I finally got around to starting to watch Frozen Planet. It’s an incredibly pretty programme, isn’t it? Well worth the bandwidth for the high-definition version (especially when you’re only a metre from a 32″ TV). But it doesn’t seem – and I’ve noticed this with other documentaries – to go into as much detail as I’d like, or as I remember old documentaries going into. Maybe it’s just that I now know so many more things than I did when I was a kid watching them that of course I won’t learn as much, but the pretty-picture to information-content ratio seems rather high. I’m sure I remember older documentaries being redder in tooth and claw, too (although the Summer episode redressed this); I blame the vegans. The Freeze Frame behind-the-scenes section is really interesting, though, and you cannot deny that Sir David Attenborough is a trooper – I’m not sure I could get up to what he does, and he’s nearly three times my age!. He’s also happily modest; he may be the public face of the programme (and almost the patron living-god of nature documentaries), but he comes across as “just” the narrator; the voice-over describing dozens of other people’s hard work; and not at all brash and self-important.

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