Monday, January 19, 2009

laptop glut

Full geek post alert!

On Sunday I was given three laptops and led to believe on might work.  Two HP Omnibook Xe3's and a Toshiba Satellite pro.  This added to my own laptop and the Dell XPS M1210 which I fitted a new hard drive to around September and have had use of ever since pending payment (hoping to keep the iMac G4 they also gave me to repair in lieu of payment since my sister WILL pay cash to have that fixed).

Anyway, one of the HP's was completely dead.  Neither had power supplies (but I had a generic that enabled me to test them).  Swapping hard drives has confirmed both HP's have dead drives.  The Tosh seems to have a dead hard drive also, and the supplied recovery disc is only one of a two disc set and gave Win 98!  Insertion of an XP disc an attempts to repair gave rise to an error code 4 on a file - so flat Xp install fails too.  Three Linux distro installs also fail (damn small, Ubuntu, and Suse).

These laptops were given me for renovation or use as able - great shame there is not one working hard drive between them.  Have yet to track down where the Satellites hard drive is also - it was mildly overwhelming (making me doubt my true geek status).  Best part of the gift, (I hope!) was some sodim which if I am REALLY LUCKY will fit the iMac!

They were a gift from another member of the Quaker meeting I belong to and I am hoping the Meeting will give me a small fighting fund to try buying a hard drive and getting the Tosh functional - but I can tell it is going to be a struggle - that fact the BIOS screen does not come easily or consistently makes me worry it is not just HD trouble - there was a CMOS checksum error at one point, and errors seem to throw from the optical drive also.

But... It keeps me busy!  Must not grumble... it is weird that these were given me saying they were going in the skip otherwise, yet still I shall feel bad about having to dispose of any of them to garbage.  I am hoping to save two out of three and even if it is only the Tosh I should not feel bad.