First, I get a call from an old friend, out of the blue, asking about her computer...a Compaq. Dealt with that one...move along.
After the last round of bullshit, it was working fine, and then, the other day, it decided not to boot. OK, fine, no problem, after a few tries got it to boot into Safe Mode, and ran a System Restore...problem solved. "For now...MUAH HAHAHAHA" said the gods, as they wrung their hands. Earlier today, still working fine, no worries. This evening, working OK, no worries. Then, for no apparent reason, upon boot, it no longer gets mouse or keyboard response...um, yeah.
OK, fine, sayest I, and off to work I go again. Nothing I try gets anything from them. It's booting OK, but with no mouse or keyboard support, I cannot log in to an account to do another System Restore or much of anything else. OK, I think, next try...boot into Last Known Good, at which point it begins going back to power up screen every few seconds. Same for Debug Mode. Well, this is a revolting development. Note that I got it into MS-DOS and the keyboard works fine. At this point, nothing will get it to even BEGIN loading Windows. OK, boot off the flawed CD of XP, and get the Recovery Console up. Fixing the boot sector does nothing. Writing a new Master Boot Record does nothing. In fact, it claims the drive is now flawed or unrecoverable.
Pretty fun stuff for a machine that isn't even connected to the outside world. Now, I know that the installation of XP is flawed, and I figure that has something to do with it. So, sad to say, Microsoft is actually gonna get some money out of me. Out of my tax return, I'm breaking down and getting a legit copy of XP, so at least I know it will work properly, and if it doesn't, I can bitch at them. Plus, I never got any restore discs or anything with the Banshee, and if something died, I'd be fuckered, so it'll be nice to have around.
*sigh* I hate Compaq computers. Never have I seen one that wasn't a big pain in the ass.