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Thread: computer crash, then hd crash, now a new computer

  1. #1
    Join Date
    Nov 1999
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    Flower Mound, Texas, United States.
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    Default computer crash, then hd crash, now a new computer

    Starting about 4 days ago now, everything seemed to be normal ... then for some reason which i will never fully understand, my machine crashed to the point of windows98se reinstall,..... everything windows is back to factory condition ok so far so good, everything is there now, then a program refuses to reinstall so me and my dad determined that the registry was still damamged and a full reformat was due, and the process of full computer labotomee begins.. i have a second HD on my old machine, which stored almost everything msts, fs2004/2002, and simcity4......

    when i started to transfer the files all at once, it got about half way through, then turned into a $200 paperweight loosing ALL info on the drive, msts and all. This included all of my modern Texas Western equipment, custom logos and passenger car window templates, a few misc repainted trains i never uploaded as well as the experimental new light code colors i posted a few weeks ago, my codes for mars lights, ditchlights, and some much angered loss of UP 3985 looped sounds totally redone for a future 3985 project....... alas, thank goodness 95% of my stuff is in the f/l here or i'd be SOL.....

    well, the loss of msts and some of those files was the straw the broke the camel's back. i was now throuoghly convinced of two things, NEVER buy Western digital hard drives , and my system is just not cutting it anymore.... so i lue of this, out of nothing more really than being fed up with a pathetic machine, i set out to seek something a little better. after looking at an ad in the paper, i found a good computer within my budget that is very good, not top of the line everything, but leaps over what i had..... the old game drive that inadvertanatly fried itself was salvagable with a reformat, though everything on it was lost.

    this now allowed to me transfer everything off the main drive on the old computer, and make basically, save registry files, a backup of the c drive to put on my new machine.... then i go off to best buy to look at new machines ..... i have never had problems with HP computers, so i bought (after careful reasearch and comparisions for computers within my budget) a new machine ...

    with a 17" flatscreen CRT monitor, HP 3600 series printer, and the things that really matter, with a 2.1 ghz AMD athalon xp 3000 processor, 160 gig hard drive, 512 mb ddr ram, cdrw, dvd rom, tons of funs ports :D and a on board 64mb graphics card.....

    i paid for the base computer which totalled to $1052 including tax. then my dad, being more generous than he ever had to, bought another 512mb stick of ram, radeon 9600 xt graphics card, and a new joystick to complment it.... bringing to total ram to 1 gig and a much better graphics card..... aside from those few things, i bought this machine from which i am typing this with my own hard earned cash, so it means s more to me because of that.....

    now with a new machine that will play the game better i am looking foward to seeing msts in action on this thing ..... though getting this computer to where i want it, will take a few weeks, especially downloading all that msts stuff again :P.....

    that being said, all msts projects are currently suspended until my new machine is back up to where the old one was; save the lost files on the old machine's game drive, which was minor thank goodness. once everything is back to as normal as i can get it, i will hopefully be able to start working on msts stuff again .... that's all for now :)
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    Hauling America one pixel at a time
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    Bill Hemb; train sim repainter
    http://img53.imageshack.us/img53/3793/tmdlogotsfww6.jpg

    Bill Hemb - Texas Western Railway CEO and CMO of the Trainsim Motive Division

  2. #2
    Join Date
    Nov 1999
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    5,102

    Default RE: computer crash, then hd crash, now a new computer

    Welcome to the school of hard knocks.

    Always, have multiple backups of anything important. Store backups off site. Why? so you don't lose anything important in case of a fire, thief, natural diaster, hacker attack, or fishing expedition by Big Brother

    In my case, I have stuff on my system that dates back to the Apple computer, ascii files that were transferred to an Amiga using a custom program I wrote to capture the ascii data sent through the serial cable to the Amiga. Those files were later transferred to the PC due to the ability of the Amiga to write to PC formatted floppies. I have clipart save in a similar manner.

    On my system, I use two drives in which the most important, Windows XP and all of the programs and patches, has a ghost copy made weekly to the second drive. The spanned ghost files are also copied to two portable hard drives that are rotated to an off site location. Likewise, the data stored on the d drive, all of my clipart, documents, TSModeler projects Forum downloads, etc... some 30+ gig, are stored on the two portable drives. In addition, once a month, I will burn the ghost backup to DVD and store them at work. Also, important data and updates are burned to Cds and DVD to be stored elsewhere.

    The portable drives have now become too small. Rather then buy new ones, which would mean that I had two useless drives, I took them apart, thus voiding the expired warranty. They all contain stock 3.5" hard drives. One got the spare 80G drive with the out of date operating system until I reformatted it, and the other got a brand new 120G drive on sale for $69 after rebate, I had to use the drive tools to configure to NTSF format. Both drives mounted without problems and run just fine in the old Buslink cases.

    If your old portable hard drive is getting too small and is either USB2 or firewire, consider replacing the drive inside rather then buying a new one.

    Don't blame the manfacturer of the hard drive. When you consider that they may be running 24-7 for years at a time, something has to wear out espically if they get overheated. When they start acting up, that is time for replacing.

    Still, in spite of all of my backups, I somehow lost some LTV files for the rolling stock. To get them back, I had to uninstall and reinstall from the ABACUS CD.

    BTY, you may still be able to recover the lost data on the corrupted hard drive. A company called On Track offers a service for data recovery. They will use the same tools as Big Brother does when attempting to recover data from drives that they take in their fishing expeditions. This includes drives damaged by hard crashes, fire, water, and accidental erasure. However, it will cost you more then what you paid for the new computer with no gaurintee that they can recover it all.

    SRV Ron


  3. #3
    Join Date
    Apr 2003
    Location
    Warrensburg, MO, USA.
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    1,857

    Default RE: computer crash, then hd crash, now a new computer

    Only thing I see as a potential problem with your new system is the Radeon 9600 video card. Radeon cards have had problems displaying train-sim objects in the past. I don't know if that problem has been corrected or not, but be on the lookout for flying building parts as you run routes.

    The machine that I had with a Radeon card would regularly destroy buildings in downtown Springfield, Ill. on the GM&O. If you have the route you might try running through there southbound just to check out your video card....

    Congrats on the new machine, sympathies to your dead hard drive. It happens. I have learned to simply plan for a two-year-or-less life on hard drives (my computer runs 24/7/365). Hard drives tend to last longer if you don't turn the computer off/on frequently from what I understand. I'm going on two years on both of my current hard drives and will be replacing them with a new computer about the end August!

    JBD


  4. #4
    Join Date
    Nov 1999
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    VT, USA.
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    Default RE: computer crash, then hd crash, now a new computer

    The one I'm on now I shut off, but often times I've left on, but it needs a reboot everyday probably. The other one upstairs is only for storage.

    It's been through a reformat once but thank god I backuped everythign I downloaded


  5. #5
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    Default RE: computer crash, then hd crash, now a new computer

    >Only thing I see as a potential problem with your new system
    >is the Radeon 9600 video card. Radeon cards have had
    >problems displaying train-sim objects in the past. I don't
    >know if that problem has been corrected or not, but be on
    >the lookout for flying building parts as you run routes.
    >
    >The machine that I had with a Radeon card would regularly
    >destroy buildings in downtown Springfield, Ill. on the GM&O.
    >If you have the route you might try running through there
    >southbound just to check out your video card....

    My previous card was a Radeon 9700 Pro. My current card is a Radeon x800 Pro. I've never seen the symptoms you describe.

  6. #6
    Join Date
    Apr 2003
    Location
    Warrensburg, MO, USA.
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    Default RE: computer crash, then hd crash, now a new computer

    They must have fixed it in subsequent releases. The card I had was a Radeon 9500 and even with updated drivers it still did it. The Radeon line seems to be a little easier on the pocket book hence my choice of the 9500 (got it on an "academic" pricing in the university store here).

    Perhaps I'll consider picking up one of the newer cards when I upgrade the desktop later this month!

    JBD


  7. #7
    Join Date
    Jul 2004
    Location
    New Hampshire, USA
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    484

    Default RE: computer crash, then hd crash, now a new computer

    >Only thing I see as a potential problem with your new system
    >is the Radeon 9600 video card. Radeon cards have had
    >problems displaying train-sim objects in the past.

    Hmmm, I have a radeon 9600 xt and it has been great. Definately have no problems running train sim. It was probably just the way you had it configured. The 9600 xt is probably one of the best bangs for your buck out there.

  8. #8
    Join Date
    Aug 2002
    Location
    California, USA
    Posts
    71

    Default RE: computer crash, then hd crash, now a new computer

    Try running the new 4.8 catalysts. They seem to work pretty damn well
    http://www.station-drivers.com/telec.../ati%204.8.exe

  9. #9
    Join Date
    Nov 1999
    Location
    Oklahoma.
    Posts
    237

    Default RE: computer crash, then hd crash, now a new computer

    Bill,
    I would not get rid of the MSTS drive just yet. Some of your lost info MAY still be retreivable. Managed on my last WD drive failure, a 60gig JB that managed to s**t all over itself, (was copying several files, approx 200 mb, turned into a 8 gig file plus destroyed some of WD's hard formatted data) did manage to retreive some more files that winders 98 explorer would not transfer by messing around with DOS to copy them. For some unknown reason, at least to me, you CAN copy files that winders explorer would not transfer, by using the DOS copy. So... possibly NOT ALL is lost. Maybe you can recover several more files that you think are lost. Also there is recovery software, $50 - $100 - $150+ that may or may not recover some data for you also. Never did have too awfully much luck with the one I tried years ago. Believe it was called Rescue.
    One word of advice, when trying to DOS copy and the drive starts clicking, just leave it alone. (the drive is scrap anyway, right?) It is trying to read, the drive is playing with its internal settings trying to read the data, messing with its timing and other things. The drive WILL let you know if it does not work. Can't remember how may clicks, think 16, may be the retry count, you'll get into the swing of listening and the timing......
    There is some WD diag software to try and help you diagnose the problem. It does not, I believe, try to write to your hosed drive, it just tries to figure out what is wrong by reading certain things on the drive and checking the drives status, etc. But it usually just tells you, Error XXXX = send drive back to WD. And yours IS out of warranty...


  10. #10
    Join Date
    Nov 1999
    Location
    Flower Mound, Texas, United States.
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    Default RE: computer crash, then hd crash, now a new computer

    i never got rid of the drive, it is still on the old machine and usefull, but all the data that was on it before the crash is LONG gone, i had to reformat the drive in order for the drive to work again..... oh well, still working on the new machine, it'll still be a week or two before i am back doing anything msts again.....lots to install and test before i am soley playing games again....

    [Link Expired]

    Hauling America one pixel at a time
    [Link Expired]

    Bill Hemb; train sim repainter
    http://img53.imageshack.us/img53/3793/tmdlogotsfww6.jpg

    Bill Hemb - Texas Western Railway CEO and CMO of the Trainsim Motive Division

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