My laptop was getting more obnoxious by the week. Progressively getting slower, taking longer to boot up, taking longer for pretty much everything except aggravating my temper. All the symptoms of having picked up a virus, trojan or other malware from a website. But my battery of free security programs found nothing. I caved in and bought Spysweeper. It found nothing, either, and just made things even slower.
I started noticing it felt hotter than it used to under my right wrist. Well, okay, I thought, it is over five years old, after all. More’n likely getting ready to blow the power supply or something. Before it could do that, though, it started just shutting itself off. I gather they’re made that way, to automatically shut down when the internal temperature gets too high.
Of course, by now I was primed to use the imminent demise of the machine as an excuse to get a new one. Even started checking the BestBuy ads. But, the damn thing wouldn’t die; just kept after my goat. Last weekend the combination of aggravations got so exasperating I asked Becky if it would upset her if I got out the .38 and shot it. She said it would. So, I tabled the notion of hastening its demise.
Today it shut itself off before I could print a letter I needed to get out. So I turned it over to have a look at the fans. A busted fan could certainly cause overheating. Couldn’t tell antyhing from looking, except they looked kind of dusty. I grabbed a can of Dust-Off and shot a blast at each fan. The first thing was a major cloud of dust flying out the vent. The second thing was one of the fans didn’t spin. It occurs to me laptops maybe consume and store dust as well as desktops, despite what seems to be a more enclosed structure and less room. And it occurs to me I may need to replace a fan. Fans are what I’ve had to replace the most on all my computers.
Okay, okay, I’ll get to the end. At home after supper and between Olympic events I removed as many panels as I was comfortable removing and used about half a can of Dust-Off blowing through strategic locations. In the process, I dislodged a major dust-kitty that I had to slowly work out with tweezers, from behind one of the fans. Yup, it was actually keeping the fan from running. Got it all back together and the difference is incredible.
Sounds way better, runs way cooler, runs way faster, hasn’t shut off. Keeping fingers crossed, of course, but it’s looking (and sounding) like I’ll have to spill a cup of coffee into the keyboard if I’m gonna get me a new laptop in the near future.
Stinkin’ dirt, anyway.
Having finally beat back the invading ants, we were looking forward to a peaceful Sunday. Got up, had a relaxed breakfast, some coffee, read the paper, watch the talking heads on “This Week” with George Ste… whatever. I hadn’t noticed Becky had got out of her chair, as I was dozing, until I heard the screeching from the bathroom. So I rushed to the door and the floor’s covered with things about the size of ants but long straight-back wings, Becky standing in the middle of them, stomping like mad, and screeching. I joined the “dance” but realized I needed a bathroom myself, and went back to the “master” bathroom and there they were all over the floor, walls, shower. So I commenced to dancing some more, partly to stomp bugs and partly ’cause I needed to pee. I wasn’t making much headway just stomping; didn’t help with the critters on the walls. So I ran out to my desk and grabbed my latest Playboy, noticing as I ran through the kitchen they’re all over the floor in there, too.
Well, at this point, the screeching has mostly stopped and I have various scenarios playing through my head, none of which involved spending the day inside the house. Nevertheless, I proceeded to make good, though unusual, use of Playboy. We finally got enough of them squashed that Becky felt like trying a dash through the shower, so I joined her and we got cleaned up and dressed.
Becky’s figuring to bug-bomb the place, and I’m wondering how the hell I’m going to get a brief done that I was planning to spend the day working on.Â By this point, though, most of the bugs are dead ones and I’m thinking it looks like time for a vacuum cleaner. Instead, I hit the computer and did some searching on pests hoping to find a picture that would show me these were not termites. I quickly found a good authority and my hopes were promptly dashed, for the most part. The good news was there ain’t much use trying to bug-bomb the damn things. For the short term, the only thing worthwhile, according to this authority, was (and here I thought myself a genius of some sort) vacuuming.
While I did some additional searching for pest control candidates to call tomorrow, Becky cleaned up with the vacuum.Â At that point, it’s almost mid-afternoon and a decision is made to go out for burgers. If the place was swarming again on return, it would be bug-bombed. If not, we just hold the fort and call reinforcements tomorrow.
When we got back, there were a few stragglers, but not enough to let loose the bombs. So, I got to do a little work on the brief, and Becky did some other cleaning stuff. Normal people, of course, were outside mowing their lawns, washing their cars, etc., as it was just a perfectly gorgious day, outside.
We’d rate today: