Dead Drives and ranting

Here’s a picture for you:


This is a Western Digital Raptor 150GB, 10K RPM drive, about 2 years old.  It was not a cheap piece of kit when it was bought, but it was also nice and fast and one allows for this when one is building a new machine.

It’s pictured here and not in my machine because it flat-out died yesterday.  No, not any namby-pampy data corruption thing, a nice and definitive hardware failure.  Splut.  It makes some fascinating sounds when it’s powered up now, by the way.

I took this as a sign that I deserved an upgrade, and I wound up with a Western Digital VelociRaptor  300GB drive, another 10K RPM unit, because I will give Western Digital the benefit of the doubt on the failure of this one.

Anyway, it didn’t want to play nice, but I made it format, and got Vista installed, and then went to do a restore, because, well, I have been running an automatic backup every Sunday night, and don’t I feel awfully smug about that considering I started running said automatic backup only about a month and a half ago.

Vista’s restore is, well, it’s a little annoying to navigate but it let me restore my documents folders and all should have been well.

Except, see:

There’s a file called prefs.js.  It’s part of Thunderbird and Firefox; it stores things like your mail account settings.

Vista backup thinks that it’s an “Internet file” and doesn’t back it up.

As a result, I had all of my documents, yes, thank you ever so much Vista backup, and all of my mail and bookmarks… but without the prefs.js files, Thunderbird had no idea where to FIND the mail on the drive.

I had to create all my email accounts over from scratch, and then go into the newly created prefs.js, and hand-tweak it, and THEN I got all my email back, at least I think I do.  I’m just a little worried now about what else Vista backup might not consider worth saving.

I’m not quite paranoid enough to assume that prefs.js is automatically ignored as punishment for not using Microsoft Approved Mail Clients.  Not quite.

PS.  The irony involved in having a drive failure happen on Saturday morning when I run a backup on Sunday nights is not lost on me, thank you.  I DID lose about a week’s worth of email, but because I spent most of the last week sick as a dog, I didn’t lose too much else; I wasn’t DOING anything to lose!

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