HomeBackWoods techReviving the Dead | Part III

There was a delay in getting part III of this mind numbing series out due to certain unforeseen circumstances which I’m not going to tell you about. Some things just shouldn’t be mentioned online.

Sounds good doesn’t it?

Due to the above mentioned delay I have decided to sum up what happened after evicting all the illegitimate life forms from the inside of my wife’s computer with a few short blasts from the old air compressor. Wisely, I had turned off the inline tool oiler before doing this as I knew from previous experience that air tool lubricating oil does not make one’s PC run faster despite what some might believe.

The final chore was to remove the cooling fan from the processor’s heat sink and deal with whatever was growing underneath. And “growing”, I found, was the proper word for it.

There, lying on top of the processor’s heat sink, was a living sheet combined of a layer of coagulated dust and dirt with a microcosm of living microorganisms living within. I donned my latex gloves and carefully removed this layer from the heat sink like an archeologist removing the ages long debris from a fabulous new find. Then, remembering my high school biology, placed this in small, sterilized jar as I didn’t have a spare Petri dish lying around, and sent it off to one of the more famous biological laboratories just in case there was some new fabulous form of life or perhaps a cure for swine flu lying within.

A couple of quick spurts of air to clear out the vanes of heat sink and I was done.

Back upstairs I went about the back wrenching process of lying on the floor, reconnecting all the myriads of wires and cables into the back of computer and then shoving it into the bottom recesses of the computer desk where it lived. Standing well back and poking at the power button button with the pointy end of an old pool cue, I switched it on. After the smoke cleared I was ready to reload my lady’s computer with fresh install of Windows.

The reloading of her computer is a terribly boring tale when compared to actual cleaning of the thing so I’ve decided not to bore my readers with  the telling of it. Load CD/DVD and wait awhile, load other CD/DVD and wait awhile longer, begin download of 3542 updates and go have lunch while waiting about sums it up nicely.

It had been a long time since I had reloaded a custom built job but since my wife tends to be a very logical and wise creature, she had saved everything from the initial building of her machine all packaged and boxed up the way it should be—but rarely is. This made the process so much easier. The only thing left in the old Device Manager that had an exclamation mark attached to it was some sort of vague, unfathomable communication device.

I just told Windows to go online and fix the damn thing and surprisingly enough, it did.

Now, after hooking in the external drive and letting my favorite girl put everything back where it belonged (never try to put your wife’s desktop, virtual or otherwise, back in order especially when it’s one of those organized messes that only she can understand), the old machine is happily running along like nothing ever happened with the small exception that it’s a hell of a lot cooler now and faster since all the OS garbage that had been accumulating over the past 6 years had now been vanquished.

Considering that security updates for Windows XP-anything cease once and for all in 2014 it looks like I won’t have to wait another 6 years before this happens again. With any luck we’ll both have shiny new machines within the next two years anyway.

Hmmm, now that I think of it, my old PC hasn’t been cleaned since I first bought it about 5 years ago. Oh well,  once more unto the breech my friends?


Reviving the Dead | Part III — 3 Comments

  1. Reloading a PC from scratch can be an arduous but worthwhile task. But like you, I mostly find it to be more tedious than anything, just waiting and waiting.

    Following a fresh install, one of the first things I always install & run is the free CCleaner to clear out any of the clutter that accumulated during the load (there’ll be more than you’d expect) and rid the system of orphaned Registry entries (yup, there’ll already be some of these). It’s a very reliable & safe utility that’ll give your Windows a squeaky-clean feel and keep it performing like new.

    Also, even the most cautious surfer can sometimes get bit by web bugs so it’s a great idea to preemptively install the free Malwarebytes. When you’ve been hit with a trojan, spyware, or some other really deep-rooted Internet nasty, this tool is indispensable!
    .-= Rob O.´s last blog ..Tax-Free Insanity =-.

    • Rob O. – Sorry for the delayed reply, life is and all that. Anyway…

      This just proves, once again, that great minds think alike. I’ve been using good old CCleaner since Windows 95b (I believe that’s around the time the first CCleaner hit the streets as “Crap Cleaner”) and although I use “Avast! Home” (free version) as my main anti-virus/anti-malware program I keep the on-demand version of Malwarebytes waiting in the wings when I want to perform a manual scan.

      BTW, in case you’re interested, I’ve been running Windows 7 RC on my 6 year old HP desktop PC for about a month now and I’ve been very pleased (single core AMD 3200+, 1 GB memory and an old AGP type GeForce XFX 6200 video card). Tweaked the UI a bit, much the same as I did in XP, and it’s running along as well as XP did if not better in many ways. And CCleaner is hooked to my Recycle Bin as usual. Sure has been a long trip from OS to OS when I think back on it.

      • Yup, great minds…

        I loaded up Win7 RC on a gimpy old PC with an iffy mobo and played with it for a bit and, like you, I was really impressed at how well it ekes out solid performance even on very crummy hardware. I like it much better than Vista, which just felt like so much fluff with so little substance – and came with a tremendous performance hit.
        .-= Rob O.´s last blog ..Living On the Edge =-.