One thing after another

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A week ago I finally went ahead and ordered all the parts for Yggdrasil Mark II, my new computer. Yggdrasil Mark I is starting to flake out on me, so it’s kind of important that I get my new computer up and operating as soon as possible. I was hoping that all the parts would arrive on Wednesday (I only teach Mondays, Tuesdays, and Thursdays this term), but for some reason UPS decided to deliver only three of the five boxes of stuff that day, one of the boxes being the one with my case in it. That meant Thursday was quite arduous, as I had to leave here to teach before it arrived, and I had a meeting in Bowling Green to go to after teaching, so it was quite late by the time I got back here and was finally able to start putting things together.

Unfortunately, the good luck I had getting Yggdrasil Mark I up and running right away did not seem to come to me this go-around. After I got Yggdrasil Mark II put together, the system wouldn’t even power up. I suppose this is what I get for trusting the power supply that came with the case (power supplies that come with cases are invariably second-rate, and from the looks of this one was even last-generation), so I wound up having to wait until yesterday to go out and get a better power supply from a local computer store. As if that weren’t bad enough, after I got the new power supply home and started installing it, the power cord plug on my hard drive literally broke off, rendering the whole thing useless. I had to turn right back around and head out to Best Buy to get a replacement hard drive, half the size of the one I originally bought. (I only hope I can return the old hard drive because it was not put together well.)

At long last I was finally able to get Yggdrasil Mark II powered up, but it would automatically shut itself off after only a minute or two. After a bit of research and testing, I discovered that the problem was with the heatsink; I was using the heatsink assembly that came with the (Intel) processor, and it wouldn’t plug all the way into my motherboard, so it wasn’t making a good connection with the processor to help dissipate its heat. I spent most of the night last night just trying to get it to fit as best as I could — the tip of my right thumb is still numb — but in the end I only lengthened how long the system would stay up for a bit. I was able to get my OS installed, but trying to install anything else, or do anything processor-intensive at all, results in the system shutting itself off.

Now I’m forced to wait until tomorrow to go out and find a better heatsink; either that, or I’ll order one online and have it shipped here Tuesday, since I’m kind of already booked up for tomorrow and probably won’t have too much time to work on the new computer. I should have known that I’d have a harder time getting a computer assembled now than I had last time (Yggdrasil Mark I came together perfectly the first time, much to my surprise), and between the frustration of finding part after part that doesn’t work, and the cost of buying new parts to replace the broken ones, this really doesn’t seem like it was worth the effort to me. The next time I need a new computer, I’ll probably go down to the local computer store and have the people there assemble it for me; as it is, I’ll probably need their help just to get Yggdrasil Mark II up and running now if the next heatsink I buy doesn’t solve my problems.

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