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Computer Mayhem

by Josiah T.

The following is a piece of writing submitted by Josiah T. on September 23, 2007
"This post was copied from an old blog, that's why it says it was written in under two minutes. Stay tunned for part two!"

Computer Mayhem Part I

"Hey, pass me that nut driver!" I yell at nobody in particular - before remembering that today, I'm at the shop alone. With four computers to build, a computer with spyware, a computer that's not booting properly, and another computer that won't boot properly.

All within five measly little hours. Welcome to a day in the life of a computer technician. That's me.

I find the nut driver myself, and screw in the little feet that are supposed to hold the motherboard in place. One of them doesn't want to screw. I put the nut driver aside for a moment, and set up the computer needing spyware removal.

I set it up at one of the three stations on our counter. After plugging it in and turning it on, I wait for it to load windows. And wait. And wait. And wait. Finally, I go back to the computer that I'm building. I force the nut into place, and dig the mother board box out from the bottom of the box with all the other components.

I find the mother board, and place it on the nuts. The nuts are created so that another screw can be driven in top. I screw the mother board in, and get ready to find the CPU. My eye falls across the computer I just set up - finally fully started.

I go back to that computer. Clicking on the start menu, I see something that catches my eye - a little icon next to the clock that says "Norton Internet Security Suite." Great. Just great. Five seconds later, the start menu pops up. I run MSCONFIG and see what's running in the start up. "Contra-Virus Pro" catches my eye, as well as "Win Anti-Spyware Pro." Rolling my eyes, I disable them, and reboot the computer.

While the computer is rebooting, I go back to the one I'm building. After finding the CPU and placing it on the mother board, I put the memory, the video card, and the modem in their respective positions. I plug the cables from the power buttons and LED lights onto the mother board, and put the CD and Floppy drives in. I plug the power onto the mother board, and stand the whole machine up.

Taking it to a second station, I plug it in. It turns on, and I attempt to go to the BIOS to set the boot sequence. I get the following message: "Error: Keyboard not detected. Press F1 to continue."

The following is a piece of writing submitted by Josiah T. on September 25, 2007
"This is a follow up to "Computer Mayhem Part I." You probably want to read that first....."

Computer Mayhem Part II

I feel like running at the computer with a hammer, screaming. Instead I take a look behind it. That would do it, I say to myself. The key board isn't connected. I shut the computer off, and plug the keyboard back in. I enter the BIOS and set the proper boot sequence. Now I should be able to just let the sequence run its sequence. However, I know from past experience that "shoulds" don't always apply in the world of computers.

leaving the new one to do it's thing, I go back to the computer that has spyware. I find two of the anti-spyware programs that we use, SpyBot Search and Destroy, and Ad-Aware, and install them on the computer. I know that this won't solve the entire issue, but it might help me figure out what else is on the computer. I set SpyBot running, and go to the computer that won't boot.

Just for kicks, I plug it in and turn it on. The computer is dead - I get absolutely nothing. Looking at the note on it, I see that the people who own the computer have recently had a power surge in a lightning storm. Going for the simplest problem first, I open it up and remove the modem from the mother board. Not even bothering to put the side back on, I stand it upright and plug it back in. Still nothing.

At this point, I'm fed up and tired with the computer. I go to work on somthing else. Remembering the computer that I built, I check on that. It's asking for a Product Key code. Scrounging around in the box, I find the package that has the Windows CD that goes with the computer. I type in the code that I find on the back, and let the computer finish.

By now, It's well after 3:00, and the computer with spyware has finished one of it's scans. SpyBot has picked up over 200 different errors, which I tell it to fix. After a minute or so, I set Ad-Aware scanning. Ad-Aware takes much longer to scan than SpyBot does, so I go back to the computer that won't boot.

Grabbing a power supply off the shelf, I take the computer down, and start un-screwing the power supply off the back. I notice that the computer is a Dell. Rolling my eyes, I continue unscrewing. Dell computer's are not very friendly to technicians who aren't from Dell. Part's can usually only be gotten directly through Dell, so they charge mega bucks for things like mother boards and power supplies.

I finish taking the power supply out, and discover that my fear is right. The power supplies that we have won't go in it.

At this point, I have a headache, and I still have 1:30 hours to go.....

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