I got home from running errands late this evening, and after some straitening up around the house, I expected to put together a new server and get linux or something installed on it. I start putting things into the chassis, and I thought it’d be cool to listen to some music on my desktop as I work. I press the handy-dandy power button and the system boots up. During the post & boot process, there some random white flicker on the screen but I didn’t thing too much about it. Weird, noise. Well, the PC starts to load gnome, and it locks up. The minimal noise on the screen becomes large flashing techno-color cursors littering both my monitors. Wow! That’s not good. Things look like they’ve locked up, so I performed a trick I learned from the windows environment and pressed the good ole reset button. Let’s just say, the next few boots didn’t prove any better. I tried some different kernels and they all had the same issue. I decided to give Slackware a go, it loaded into the command line interface just fine, but when I gave it the startx command, things died all the same. I started up memtest, and that locked up after all the characters turned into some crazy Japanese. Well, to be honest, it probably wasn’t Japanese, but let’s just say it was not the characters that were meant to be on the screen. If there was any indicator about what was going on, I did end up with something like a frowny face in the top left corner of the screen. Now I’m expecting to see something like a hardware failure. Since the computer hasn’t been dusted recently (I think the time measurement is somewhere between years and never) I gave is a blowdown compressed air. After plugging everything back in, it had the audacity to fail memtest again. I pull the box back out and begin pulling components out for inspection. RAM….. looks good? Video card…. hmm…. looks like those to capacitors have blown their tops. Well, crap. My video card might have just shit the bed. So, now I’m with out my main desktop. Not that I really do much with it any more. It’s just the only PC that I trust to burn CD/DVDs and get actual, substantial, non-internet work done. Looks like I get to call up XFX and see if they support 2-3 year old video cards and if they don’t, talk to the wife about budgeting a new one.

In happier news, when unpacking some boxes while looking for Ubuntu install disks, I found my ThinkOutside bluetooth keyboard. I attempted to pair it with my Android cell phone, but that was a disappointing fail. I then decided to give it a go with my Dell mine and I was happily rewarded with a successful pairing. I find that the bluetooth keyboard has a little bit more comfortable key spacing than the default mini keyboard, but the number keys on the ThinkOutside are shared with the top row of letters and only accessible through FN keys (blue for numbers and green for symbols). All-in-all, I perceive that I type faster with the bluetooth keyboard than the default Dell keyboard. Of course, that might just be because I never did get used to the Dell’s keyboard arrangement. Who would ever think it was okay to put the ‘/” key down between the space bar and the left arrow key?