Saturday, 27 February 2016

Digital providence

This afternoon, we went to Newport to call on Martin, whose mother Jane died during the week. We've known them both since I was first ordained and working in Caerphilly, forty six years ago, so there was much to reflect upon together after her long life.

On the way there, we called at Maplins, and bought a hard drive USB dock to send to Kath to use to retrieve stray file data from the hard drive of her defunct laptop, which hadn't been backed up lately. It seems she has insufficient OneDrive capacity for all her files, much of which are music or graphics and photos, so just to be sure nothing's lost, the drive needs time spent on scrupulous inspection.

For the most part, however, she was operating normally once the configuration of her new Acer was complete. The only missing piece in the restoration equation however, was Corel Draw. It had worked perfectly, installed on her old machine under Windows 7, and had been working since upgrade to Windows 10 but wouldn't install from scratch on the new machine, even though installing a 32bit program on a 64bit machine should not be a problem.

Yesterday afternoon in the office, I'd spent ages going through the diagnostic process and attempting a 32bit install in the manner which Windows 10 provides. This had worked last week for installing MS Office 2000. Corel Draw, however, has built in redundancy. Anto had similar problems with a costly multiple CD replicating device. It ran on an XP machine but not Windows 7. The company refused to provide new drivers for old hardware, so he kept running his XP machine until earlier this week, when Kath configured an unused Windows 7 PC to avoid reliability issues from an even older piece of kit. The XP machine will now be used only for CD printing. It runs Corel Draw, but oh so slowly!

Then serendipity threw up a surprise for Kath. Working out in the gym, she was chatting to someone about her computer woes, and mentioning her helpful geek of a father, when she was offered a Core i3 Acer laptop for her Dad to see if he could fix, by someone who'd decided to move over to a Mac rather than pay to repair a machine whose Windows 7 operating system had failed. The hardware seems to be working and if it is merely a software matter, I may be able to restore it to full use. Kath can install Corel Draw on it, and keep it on hand for whenever she needs to do some designing.

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