Found In the Woods

June 29, 2006

G4 gets a new brain. Highlights at eleven.

Filed under: Blogging,Projects,Tech — bsullivan @ 11:21 pm

So I got my new hard drive and memory in the mail yesterday from OWC. I decided to tackle the hard drive in my TiBook first so I got the instructions online and set to work. The install was really easy, actually. I was already familiar with the innards after doing the DVD-R drive (which I found a little harder, actually). So anyway, I plugged it in, screwed up the case flipped it over, with a big, excited, presents-on-christmas-morning grin, and booted to the OS X Tiger DVD.

When I got to the screen to choose which drive to install on, none appeared. (There goes that big grin). But, at the moment (about 10 mins ago) I figured I hadn't connected something right. So, I flipped it back over, unscrewed the cover, rechecked all the connections, reconnected it and tried again. Same thing. (Now a puzzled look) So I did this one more time. Same thing. (Beginning to get angry)

Each time I did this I bent over and pressed my ear to the keyboard to listen for hard drive activity and I couldn't hear any! So, naturally, I figured that the thing wasn't getting power and indeed the logic board connection wasn't properly hooked up. (* See, you also have to understand that part of the reason I'm replacing this hard drive is due to the fact that the OEM 20gb drive that came with the TiBook sounded like a refrigerator. The ball bearings must have been ready to wear through the case and into my lap. My wife yells at me every time I try to use the computer when she's in the room. Yes, it's that loud.)

It was at this point that I started cursing at myself and lamenting my aching back, the sweat pouring down my forehead and the back of my knees, the fatigue and my aching back. The last time I tried reconnecting and turning it on, I heard a faint *beep* quiet as a mouse but I KNEW it wasn't the DVD-R drive. This gave me hope… it also awoke the notion in my thick brain (which 2 minutes earlier I had contemplated perforating with a small phillips head screwdriver) that I had to FORMAT the drive before OS X would even look at it. Big duh.

G4 gets a new brainLessons learned? Don't try to install a new hard drive in your PowerBook at 11:30pm unless you have to. See, this should have been easy. All this week I've been spending my free time resurrecting an 8 year old PowerMac G3 blue & white. Even with the scoffing from my coworkers and the cries of "noooooooo, not that!" from my experienced Mac guru friends, I still press on in the hopes and dreams that I can make it into a useful server/kids machine. This will happen and when it does… I will be victorious!

Next up, install some more memory in the PowerBook G4 and in my iMac G5.

March 20, 2006

Bath room

Filed under: Blogging,Projects — bsullivan @ 2:22 pm

Our Bathroom was completed a couple weeks ago and I forgot to blog it. Well, I guess I've just been enjoying it too much and straight up forgot! Wow, the carpenter and all the other contractors did a spectacular job. Whenever you're in there it's like you're in an Inn or a B&B or something. It doesn't feel like our house. Everything is so nice and fresh. The room is more comfortable and everything feels so right in there; not hacked together like it use to be. It's amazing how hectic the transformation was from old to new and how great it is now. There are some pics up in the Gallery but nothing spectacular. I'll need a wide-angle lens or something to get some really good shots. View 'em here.

September 22, 2005

iPod my car!

Filed under: Projects — bsullivan @ 11:49 am

Yesterday I completed the installation of an interface in my 2003 Volkswagen Jetta Wagon which allows me to plug my iPod in to the OEM head unit and play music. I got interested in this about a year and a half ago after reading some extensive articles on the VW Vortex. I purchased gear for the install in August 2004 but didn’t get around to installing it until last month. Everything is in now and it is really wonderful. There are so many resources out there for doing this, if any of you are considering it, I highly recommend it!

Pics and details of the install are here.

July 29, 2005

Network install continuing…

Filed under: Projects — bsullivan @ 11:27 am

Got some more work done on the network installation at home. Installed some hardware in the cabinet and completed my first cable drop from the Rec. Room in the basement to the cabinet. Feels good to get going. More pics in the gallery.

July 1, 2005

Network Installation

Filed under: Projects — bsullivan @ 8:44 am

One project that I’ve got going right now is installing a wired network in my 57 year old house. The network will carry Cable TV, TelCo & Ethernet using COAX and 2 Cat5e lines. I decided against anything more extensive because I just don’t see the scope increasing over the next several years. Cat5e will be plenty for us. We’re not going to do any big media sharing or distribution so it should do.

As for wireless, I don’t particularly love it. I’ve had it for a few years and it’s great for casual use, but the signal disparities are frustrating at times. Then again, I have a 1st generation Apple PowerBook G4 with the crappiest WiFi antennas around. I love it for AirTunes tho. I’ve been working on this for several months on and off and I’m finally getting around to posting some pics. Enjoy, and check back for more.

One of the biggest stumbling blocks has been getting the lines from the attic down to the basement. There are no convenient spots to drop down. I’m investigating going along the wall behind the kitchen which is about a 1/2″ – 3/4″ space.

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