So I’ve mentioned how I’ve been working on my old Dell Latitude L400 trying to get it back to running Windows 98 so I could use it during downtime at work and not have it run as slow as molasses in January only I can’t find where I packed away the CD-ROM drive which makes getting the OS onto it difficult. I ended up yanking the hard drive out, hooking it up to an adapter, and plugging it into my desktop machine so I could format the hard drive and copy the Windows 98 files over. What I didn’t think to do while I had it hooked up was copy over the network drivers for either the built-in NIC or the D-Link wireless PCMCIA card I had in it.
So I run the installation and it installs just fine, but of course it doesn’t have the needed network drivers. So I think, no big deal, I’ll just use my Sandisk USB flash drive to copy the files over except that Windows 98SE doesn’t have the drivers for that either. OK, not a problem. I have a working floppy I’ll just put the drivers for the USB flash drive on a floppy, except my desktop no longer has a floppy. So I have to go upstairs and use Anne’s. Annoying, but not a big deal. I do that and I come back downstairs and hook up the floppy drive and put in the disk and the system refuses to read it. Pop the disk out and back in a couple of times until the floppy drive decides it doesn’t want to take the floppy anymore. What the hell? So I set the laptop down on the edge of my desk so I can dig around in my boxes for another floppy drive, these things are pretty old so perhaps this one just picked that particular moment to die.
You already know what happened next, don’t you.
Yes, I somehow managed to knock the laptop off of my desk whereupon in landed in just the right way to not only break the D-Link wireless card I had in it, but also smashed the display rendering the entire laptop into a very attractive, but otherwise useless, paperweight. It was like the perfect storm of bad things happening all at once. Needless to say I was quite upset as I don’t have the funds to replace it anytime soon. The sting is lessened somewhat by the fact that I got this one for nothing as it was being tossed out by one of the companies I used to work for and they were kind enough to let me take it home after removing the HD so it could be destroyed. In fact all of the laptops I’ve owned were castaways from someone else and this was probably the newest one of the lot. All the others having long since died or been given to friends and family who needed one, this means I’m now without a laptop.
There’s nothing quite like an event like this to make you feel like a total idiot. I’m a Tech Support Professional, this sort of thing isn’t supposed to happen to me. I’m supposed to be better than that. On the plus side at least it happened to me at home and not while at work with someone else’s laptop. It’s probably going to be awhile before I can replace it unless I break down and finally take a chance on eBay or something and even then it’s going to be awhile before I can afford to do that. Grrrr. Damned annoying.
Oh, and to top it off, I heard back about the possible job back at Ford Motor Company. They decided to promote one of the first levels to the open second level position so it looks like I won’t be going back to work at Ford after all.