I didn't have a good weekend. There was a sweary rant on Friday (aimed at me by some random bloke), then a bout of feeling not at all well on Saturday.
Then, on Sunday I woke up to find my PC dead. It was showing the infamous Blue Screen of Death (itself unusual in post-XP versions of Windows), and when rebooted it just didn't come back at all - the screen was lit but blank.
This precipitated something of a panic. Although I had been planning to replace the PC at the end of the month anyway, I had hoped to have it up and active for the upgrade. And although I was in the habit of regular updates, for reasons unknown Vista decided that this would stop working late in January. Provided the last backup was still good, I wouldn't have lost much, but you're never 100% sure...
There is good news on that front, at least: I got a suitable hard disk enclosure, and have verified that the HD on the laptop was not the cause of the problem (I suspect the display driver), so everything remains intact - I just have to copy it across.
So, what this really means is that my plan to get a new PC had to be brought forward by a few weeks, and also conducted with rather more dispatch than was intended. (Even that may be a good thing, since it means I need a good PC now, rather than having the luxury of waiting for the perfect PC. And since "the perfect PC" is a mythical beast, that saves me what could be a long process of deliberation.)
Of course, the other part of upgrading a PC is the process of setting it up for use, which in this case will mean getting used to the new OS layout, sorting out which settings can be set back to a classic mode and which cannot, and also installing the required software on the new machine. To an extent, even that's a blessing, since it automatically means getting back to a reasonably clean slate - I can install only those handful of applications I actually use, and leave the rest behind.
(I'm intending also to take this opportunity to upgrade the handful of applications I do use to their latest versions. Which means a bit more expense, and a bit more of a lead-time, but this is the best time to do that - otherwise, I'd be installing the old versions only to remove and replace them later.)
So, anyway, that's where we are on the PC front.
#18: "Pathfinder: Empty Graves", by Crystal Frasier