Sometimes being the resident computer geek in the family is a bad thing. In a couple of previous posts I bitched about my mother-in-law’s computer, and all that I had to do to get it working again. In this post I would like to bitch about my mother’s computer and all I had to do to get it working again, but even I am sick of hearing about it at this point. Suffice to say that it took me about six hours to get her computer working, involving completely removind her old hard disk and CD Rom, replacing them with other (used) components, followed by countless hours of trying to find both drivers for some of the components as well as trying to troubleshoot the error messages that I was getting after I installed the new OS. I plan to make all of the .dll files, as well as the drivers, that I found public here in the next couple of weeks, since they just took so damn long to find. I could understand that the drivers for a particular modem might be hard to find, while I can’t understand why when a lot of people experience the same missing .dlls when installing windows 98. It took me a couple of hours to find all of the .dlls, and one of them came prepacked with a trojan! I downloaded all of the files with my new system, scanned for viruses, then saved them to a floppy which I used to transfer the files to the system I was trying to rebuild. As I said, I plan to post all of these files on this website, since I found at least a dozen posts from windrivers.com that were needing exactly the same files, and the only one I found had a trojan on it. I did take the liberty of saving the file as a stand alone, which should make it show up as an actual .dll when you see the file. Again that is all in the future. Near future, hopefully.

• In semi-related news, I am trying to help out my neighbor as much as possible around the house. Her husband is currently in Iraq (not on vacation), and she rents from my boss. –(this is totally aside, but, this may also be why I am not gaining as much wealth as I hoped to. I want to help people when they need help. If my personal knowledge can save them from calling a ‘professional’ to fix it, that will likely save them hundreds of dollars.)– I had to fix a shower in her master bathroom, it took about an hour longer than it should have, but that was directly related to what they had done as a ‘quick fix’ for the problem. No details will follow; It is fixed and I asked only that she pay for the parts.

On my way out the door I was apologizing about not getting over there sooner, mentioning that I had been working on my Mother’s PC. It seems I should have just kept my mouth shut.

You know how they have a ‘poster child’ for damn near everything these days? I found the ‘poster child’ for pc’s. The subtitle should read, “This could happen to you.”

Okay, so in defense of this person, they do have McAfee Antivirus installed, but (and a big but), they don’t have a current subscription to it. Meaning, in a nutshell, it scans the pc for viruses that were out in 1999 and no further. That is sort of like wearing a condom today to make sure you didn’t get a disease from that hooker next year, it doesn’t make a damn bit of sense and no one, in their right mind, would believe that they were protected.

I was not able to actually run her pc in the current state. I had to use ‘selective startup’ to get to a point where I could download a program to get rid of most of the bots. Thankfully, none of the spyware was that bad, the bad ones coming from porn sites, of which there were none on her pc. I did only a quick look at her pc. I ran only “adaware” and “hijack this” on it. She still has tons of stuff in her system tray (when you hit control-alt-delete) that I don’t recognize, but don’t want to fuck with…I think I have just realized why the techs always want to blank your pc: They don’t know either. They can set it back to factory standards, but they don’t know how to clear the latest malware. Maybe I am as good as them?

I dunno. I have made every PC that I have ever faced work again. Sometimes it takes minutes, sometimes it takes hours. Well, even that is not true, since my mother’s old PC is sitting by my feet (boot sector virus), and I can’t seem to make that one work. If only I could find a website that gives me the flash bios for her motherboard…

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