The portent of doom implied by my hard drive failure scare from several weeks ago turned into an ugly reality this past Saturday morning: I woke up to a locked-up operating system. When I tried to reboot, the resulting sound coming from beneath the laptop’s keyboard was loud, whirring and not very confidence-inducing. By then I had more or less made peace with the fact that the hard drive was dead, and another long walk to Tekserve confirmed it.
The PowerBook is still under AppleCare extended warranty protection, and it will be back within the week (I hope). I feel very fortunate, though; immediately after the first signs of trouble, I quit my procrastination and scheduled full backups of the hard drive on alternating nights to two different external FireWire drives — aided in no small part by the sheer awesomeness of Shirt Pocket Software’s invaluable SuperDuper! product. As a result, I lost less than a day’s worth of work; not perfect, but it could have been loads worse.
SuperDuper! made it exceedingly easy for me to create a complete, bootable mirror of my hard drive, which actually allows me to continue to use the same system — with all of my files, preferences and software tweaks intact — with another Macintosh. I pulled my old Aluminum 15-inch PowerBook G4 out of retirement and booted it from one of the backup FireWire drives. This allows me to continue to be productive — in theory. It’s a trooper, but this old PowerBook is painfully slow, and the whole setup is just a shade too far to the dangerous side of fragility for me to be willing to do much work on it. All of which is to say that, until my PowerBook returns from Tekserve, I’m doing only a minimal amount of extracurricular computing, surfing, blogging, etc. I hope to be back on my feet again next week.