Swing and a Miss. And a Hit.

15 06 2008

Times are frustrating.

My summer distance ed course, CIS 1000, requests assignments completely based around Windows software which I know I’ve mentioned. I can get away with using my Mac versions of most Office suite software like Word and Excel, but no such alternative exists for Access. So I was like, ok whatever, I’ll just partition my drive with a Windows XP section and use Access on that. Hard drive partitioning has traditionally been, well, not for the technophobic – but Leopard comes with Boot Camp: a simple wizard to walk even the most timid user through the process, step by step.

My luck being what it is, though, I actually got a kernel panic after completing the first step, which is telling Boot Camp I wanted 10 gigs of my little Seagate drive to be partitioned off, just for Windows XP. A kernel panic is a scary thing the first time you see one, because you’re suddenly hit with this screen that says SOMETHING JUST WENT SERIOUSLY WRONG AND YOU MIGHT BE ROYALLY SCREWED in several languages. Fortunately, thanks to my experiences with Azureus, (the popular bittorrent client that throws hissy fits when asked to play with Leopard on Core Duo machines like mine) I’d seen this screen before and knew what to search for. Turns out this problem isn’t too uncommon, although I’d never heard of it before today. So be warned: multi-OS-geeks, Windows switchers, etc…getting your pretty new Mac to dual boot with Windows is not all sunshine and rainbows.

Now, according to what I’ve read, the kernel panic occurring in the middle of the partition process has a nasty after-effect: it takes whatever space you set aside, (10g in my case) and renders it unusable. That is, until you use the Disk Utility combined with your re-install discs to repair the damage. Too bad I was never given re-install discs when I acquired the new Leopard-ladden hard drive from my local Apple retailer. But it’s cool, because I can just borrow somebody else’s re-install discs, right? Nope! Versions of Leopard that shipped with Core 2 Duo Macbooks and the like aren’t actually compatible with slightly older hardware. Does Apple carry any disc, any disc at all, that would remedy my problems? Apparently not.

In conclusion, (of this topic anyhow) Steve Jobs: you owe me 10 gigabytes. At least.

The “hit” in this entry’s title refers to the fact that Office 2007 is actually available for a free 60-day trial, which is of course substantial time to use it for my school needs. So yeah, pretty solid.

Things otherwise are pretty good I suppose, although I haven’t found another job yet. Doing so isn’t exactly easy, unless you’re willing to lie through your teeth and tell potential employers that yes, you were going to school in another city but, heck, you decided to give that up and spend some quality time at home and work at T-Ho’s. (That’s Hortons, for the uninitiated.) But, to be fair, I haven’t been working as hard at regaining employment as I could, partly due to pessimism about the prospects and partly to do with the fact that I’ve got plenty to keep me busy. Last night the gang celebrated Peter’s 20th birthday at Dundas’s Thirsty Cactus, and ended the night in classic fashion by pummeling one another’s avatars on Peter’s new Wii. A couple nights before that I attended the monthly swing night at The Pepperjack Cafe, (which we call “Pepperjack’s”, a name I like better because I imagine a saucy owner named Jack who is fond of my group of friends, but pretends not to be.) Our lessons have been at a standstill for a while, so social dancing now basically degrades to me loafing awkwardly around trying to remember something besides step, step, triple-step. Nonetheless, I’m still enjoying it, and super-excited to resume regular lessons this week.

And tomorrow the gang and the whole Rockwell clan are heading to the Toronto Zoo of all places. I’ve never been. Can’t wait to see some polar bears or whatever.

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