23 June 2006

Did you ever have a day when nothing works?

Well, today is one of those days.
A few days ago I bought an "as is" laptop off eBay, for 75 bucks. The problem was that it didn't have any RAM or HDD, and the screen was dim. And no battery/adapter either.
Not a problem, I had a spare laptop HDD and I bought some RAM from NewEgg. And I can use one of my lead acid 12v batteries with it.

Well, to make a long story short, after I cleaned the CD ROM drive and opened the screen, I almost got it to work. I tried to install PCBSD on it, but it died at 3% during the installation. I tried to install Ubuntu 6.06, it died at 9% when loading the kernel..
Then it just died. Didn't start up at all, the power LED was blinking... The battery was fully charged, so that wasn't the problem. It didn't even attempt to start, because I was monitoring the current drawn from the battery, and it never exceeded 0.4A. I opened the whole thing, removed everything from it, hoping it might have been the HDD or the CD ROM or something that was defective. Well, despite for my best effort, I couldn't get it to work. I guess I'll try to see if I can sell some parts on eBay.

The EL client, for some reason, won't play the music. That's really annoying as well, especially because we are so close to the update, so I don't know what to do. I don't want to postpone the update too much, so I guess we'll just release it as it is, and then when the music works, put the new client in the archive with the music..
I really hope to have the update Monday, hopefully everything will be fixed by then..


Blogger Donny said...

I have one of those days every once in a while. You have problems with old laptops too? Man seems like every time someone hands me one saying hey can you fix this? Or here you want this old laptop so and so doesn't work maybe you can fix it, it always ends up being something un-fixable. I think it's because most of them were built so proprietary, never got linux to work on one either, came close but always had unknown errors. Then on top of that last week I was adding some new code to my project to read XML files to be used as config files and probably most other file storage since it makes things easy to change and modify, I accidently didn't initialize a variable and kept getting problems where it would run for a bit then crash, but sure enough after some reading I found it and fixed it. I do have to say I really like libXML2 it seems to have a good API though not too hard to use once you read through the code samples and data structures. Right now I'm working on a Skybox and probably adding some better texturing to my ugly brute forced terrain, and possibly fixing some bugs that have turned their nose up while playing with things. But hey not every day can be a good one right?

25/6/06 09:04  
Blogger Radu said...

Well, it seems that I was able to 'fix' it :)
The problem was that I undepowered it, it required 18V and I was powering it only with 12.
And since it did work for a while with 12V, I assumed now it is defective.

I don't have a proper 18V 4A source, so I had to improvize by using a 12V 7A battery in series with a 6V 10A battery. Yeah, you ar enot supposed to do that, you can ruin the batteries and stuff, but I had to try it. And it seems to work just fine.

The sound problem seems also to be fixed, I will have to try and see if it works. Now if only the weather would be nicer :)

25/6/06 13:54  
Blogger Donny said...

Yeah music will add a nice touch to the game after playing it the few times I have played I thought it was missing some nice background music :). Weather would also be a nice ambient touch to the game. I think I might have to get an updated copy and play sometime, maybe once I finish the skybox on my project, it seems like it takes me forever to implement stuff but I guess it's because I spend a few hours here and there working on it and also doing other things.

It's good that you got the laptop working I never thought of power issues I guess mainly because the laptops I had have all had their powercords just not a working battery, because of them degrading over time, and then in order to replace them you have to shell out a bundle which I don't feel like doing just to get some crappy laptop working hehe. Supposed to rain all week here in good ol Hermitage, Pa maybe I will get some time to get more done with my project instead of doing yard work. Just have to decide if I should use Xpath or iterate through each node recursively (it looks kind of ugly but it's how I've already started implementing things).

25/6/06 14:19  
Blogger Radu said...

Yeah, I know what you mean aboutt he weather enxt week, I live near Scranton, PA so we have pretty much the same weather.
It looks as if it's going to be like in 2003, when it rained the whole summer :/

25/6/06 15:00  
Blogger Brendan said...

Yeah music will add a nice touch to the game after playing it the few times I have played I thought it was missing some nice background music :).

Haven't we had music working for over two years, as an optional download? I believe radu's just talking about a temporary breakage caused by merging a recent patch into CVS.

It's raining there too? I find that weird, since it's been at that here in NS too... Must be getting the west coast's weather or something.

26/6/06 08:37  

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