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Checkups for Myself and Computer… And Using Linux

After hiding from them all that time, having more and more that mental image from back when I was in school and not going because I was too scared and ending up pacing in front of the door, dressed to leave and with the keys in my pocket, and freezing whenever I heard those keys and thought they were dad’s and he was coming home and will be angry I didn’t go again and kept getting more and more terrified by both going and staying with every passing moment, ended up calling dad to my room last Wednesday evening, so not that long after posting the previous personal post, and ranted for over an hour about all sorts of stuff. And did that in front of the open window, didn’t really realize it, and some of that stuff sure wasn’t what you’d want all neighbors to hear. But the immediate result was a decision to go for an ultrasound the next morning, so with him, not with Ada, which felt even more rotten after all that mess and her offers and my quite senseless rant asking if she really meant it.
Can say it was a good doctor though, explaining and showing at length, even drawing a little, recommending tests and treatments and changes, not just doing her part and sending you away with only the results. She’s only there for two hours per day though, in which time I assume she can only fit two or three patients, and with this quality of work and the lack of appointments I’m surprised there’s no queue in front of her door, but it was just me and dad waiting for quite a long time for her to finish with the person who was already inside when we got there and then there didn’t seem to be anybody else after me. But she really doesn’t seem to have heard of the concept of doctor-patient confidentiality, since after explaining most things to me she asked me to call dad in and leave the door open, supposedly because it was hot, and then she also told him everything she had already told me and then continued from where she had left off for both of us. So she didn’t just specifically tell my dad everything, but also talked about my health and lifestyle and shit, literally, with the door wide open!
Either way, she didn’t see anything that bad, though the ultrasound is for organs, not intestines, and she did mention an endoscopy and/or colonoscopy a few times, but didn’t actually say it’s really needed and so I ignored that part. Found a few grains of sand in my right kidney and a fair amount in my left, but no stones. As for the issue that brought me there, she said she saw inflammation, a lot of fluid that seems to be stomach acid reaching even the duodenum, and microlesions on both my stomach and duodenum which, combined with what she assumes is chronic gastritis and the hyperacidity, may occasionally cause some blood vessels to rupture, causing that bleeding in my stomach which results in the black shit. Clear risk of duodenal ulcer, but there’s no such thing at the moment, nor anything else more concerning. Said a lazy gall bladder is also a possible cause for the hyperacidity, but at first she said it may just be a case of some bad days, stress, anger, anxiety, since we all get some of those from time to time, at which point I meant to tell her to try every single moment, all of it.
Did say I should have my crap tested, but while I assumed it will be tested more thoroughly, including to tell me how much blood really was in there and anything else they may figure out from it, she just wrote down to check for that bacterium that causes ulcer and that’s all they did, since the results I got on Tuesday said nothing except that said bacterium wasn’t present. So I guess next are the blood tests she recommended, but dad was told it will again be something limited and if I’ll get blood drawn again for the first time in many years I’m thinking I should at least have full tests done. And most preferably also make use of the fact that, since I show up as being employed, I have a right to such tests for free every so often and never made use of it, so it shouldn’t be paid either, even if that’ll mean going through a certain procedure I have no idea about and likely catching the brief window of time when funds are available to cover such tests at the start of each month.

The issue with that is that, while dad will definitely have to sort out anything that needs to be done before the actual tests, as I have absolutely no idea what to do or where and couldn’t handle any of it even if I did know, I really didn’t want to go with him there as well. Then again, even he said he just has an idea about who my doctor may be, assuming he signed me up for one when I got thrown back here ten and a half years ago, definitely not knowing for sure, and I definitely never went there, so it may be quite a mess anyway, but if he will figure it out and considering that offer and how messed up I am and that message I sent her and everything else, as insane as it is, I did rather want to go with Ada at least for this. I mean, I definitely don’t want to go at all, but if I must, then it seems the least terrible option, yet one that’s no longer on the table as things went sour starting last Friday and really crumbling for good over the weekend.
The reason was the usual one, my stance on breeding, but it struck unusually late, seeing as this tends to happen from the beginning when the issue comes up with someone I’m talking to and I’ve been talking to her for some time now and she actually messaged me first, so one’d assume she knew it all very well. But apparently not, and that seems to be the end of having anything to do with the only person I was talking to that I could and was also sort of thinking I actually wanted to meet since Jen cut me off completely several years ago. Sure, met Andreea a few times before that went sour, and twice more after, when we just happened to bump into each other while attending the same event, but when we met intentionally it was because she wanted to and I felt terribly awkward, so that doesn’t count. This time I was sort of starting to dare to hope I may have something of a friend around here, especially since, as I said, she was the one initiating contact, and so much for that… And I guess it serves me right for daring to think there may be anything to hope for.

As for the computer issues, a brief e-mail exchange with the support department of the store I got it from didn’t help, since they just said I should bring it in to have it checked out and that they can’t help me in any other way until I do. So, seeing how issues seemed to be piling up, I eventually gave in and did that on Monday, taking out the HDDs, DVD drive and TV tuner but leaving the two additional fans I had installed. Also wrote a note that filled an entire page at font size 9, mentioning the lack of the HDD and the addition of those two fans and explaining both the new and the old issues, including one that appeared at first but then seemed to just go away on its own, and asking for everything to be investigated and whatever the real problems and causes are to be sorted out, though in case of those CPU warnings I said I only want it replaced if they’re signs of an actual problem and the new one won’t be similar or worse, considering what I found about it being a known issue that can safely be ignored and others experiencing even hundreds of such warnings per day instead of the few I had.
Annoyed at myself that I forgot to take a screenshot of the mouse statistics just before turning it off then despite reminding myself several times to do that as the last thing, since these drivers keep track of clicks and scrolls and distance covered and I wanted to see the wear over time. Granted, I’ll have been missing this period now either way, seeing as I didn’t even dare to try to install those unofficial Linux drivers that exist, but if I can’t get back on that system without reinstalling Windows I’ll be losing all the time since the end of May 2015. And it is double clicking at least on some buttons, and now I’m seeing that the wheel also seems to tilt left if I scroll down hard, which wouldn’t normally result in any noticeable effect before and therefore I have absolutely no clue when it started happening, but which on Linux seems to return the window to its initial state, so if I scroll quickly down a page I end up thrown back to the homepage. Most notably, this means I try to avoid scrolling down whenever I’m writing something, in anything.
The bit about being unable to get back to that system without reinstalling is due to the fact that I think you need to reinstall Windows if the motherboard or CPU are changed, right? So if they do that, I’ll be forced to reinstall… And I have no idea how that will work, with how Microsoft is messing with older versions to force everyone on that fucking Windows 10, with updates taking a long time and recently seeing reports of being impossible to perform on new installs, and them only being available as a cumulative patch as of next month and with older ones about to be gradually added to said patch, making it impossible to avoid those you don’t want to install, whether because they break something or because they force “telemetry” or something about Windows 10 or who knows what else down your throat. So if I’ll need to reinstall, I fear I either won’t be able to anymore, in which case I have no idea what I’ll do, or that I’ll be forced to even take the bad updates I had avoided and hid. But this latter scenario is very likely from now on even without reinstalling, so no clue what to do about it. I just know the computer is the one thing I was still sort of controlling and doing anything with and now that’s also being taken away, at first because I literally had to give it away due to the problems but obviously even without that, due to what’s happening with software in recent years.

And yes, I mentioned Linux above, and that’s because I’m now back on the old computer and, while the old Windows install was untouched on one of the HDDs, I chose to throw Mint 18 (Xfce) on it, even if my only previous experience with Linux was about a decade or so ago, brief and leaving me feeling more clueless than I was when I first started using a computer. I mean, theoretically I could have just connected that HDD, but there was the updates issue to consider, seeing as it’ll have to recover all the time since May, if not even April, of 2015, and also that I’ll have the antivirus and firewall and a few other things to update as well and doing all of that without reinstalling may have even been more likely to cause problems, skipping ahead so much at once. So I just did this, installing Mint on the old IDE HDD left in this computer and not connecting the main ones at all, leaving them there in a corner so nothing that may happen on this system will affect that one once I’ll get it back. Copied what I also occasionally back up on the USB stick to this one, but keep my edits and changes to a minimum and plan to send myself an e-mail with them in plain text to just make them again, so there won’t even be a single file from this one moved and, normally, no chance of infection.
And that’s because, no matter how much people keep saying Linux is very safe, I feel very unsafe without a good antivirus and, perhaps even more importantly, a powerful, highly customizable and reasonably easy to use application-level firewall. And there sure seems to be a serious lack of this for Linux, and if there’s one main thing really making me once again pretty much completely turn my back on the idea of perhaps switching someday, preferably before the official support for Windows 7 will end or it’ll otherwise become unusable, it’s this. Few solutions seem available and having a look at how to install and use them makes me forget about even considering trying, and the community’s attitude whenever the issue seems brought up in the discussions I found, namely that such programs are not needed on Linux, gives me little hope of a change and just tells me I could never belong here, because for me they are absolutely mandatory, first for system monitoring and control, even before actual security.
But back to this old computer in itself, it started just fine after sitting in a corner since the end of May of 2015, even remembering BIOS settings and having the time exactly right, though I thought the BIOS battery was low even then and completely expected it to be dry by now. Don’t have the power saving software it ran all along and without which it quickly overheated, since that has no Linux version, but I installed BOINC anyway, even on the first day, when I just had the CPU fan, the two other old ones which had come with the case still being wherever dad had thrown them after asking me for them when I replaced them. That meant it really smelled like hot metal and burning dust and I could feel it heating up the room, and I had to increase the temperature it starts beeping at from my conservative level to a more normal one. Also meant the poor CPU fan was at the highest possible speed and particularly loud, so much so that I did have to turn it off when I went to bed Monday night.
Dad found those fans the next day though, and after fixing the rear one with just two screws, since I couldn’t find what I needed to hold the other two in place, I did something with the front one which I should have done all along. I mean, that serves quite little purpose in front, so instead of putting it back there, I placed it upright on the video card, so it helps cool both the CPU and the motherboard’s big heatsink. It’s held in place with two of those little plastic things for holding cables together, one hooked around what I think is some unused power cable and the other around the rear fan’s cable, plus its own cable pulled under others. It’s not pretty and not particularly safe, but shouldn’t normally fall, and after doing this and with the case open the temperatures are very fine despite the lack of power saving, and the CPU fan is also sticking to much more normal speeds, so not much noise either.
Otherwise, one obvious problem is that I can’t get my TV tuner to work on Linux. Didn’t expect it to work at all at first, but then I started looking around, found some potential solutions, tried one program, then some script which supposedly used the Windows drivers in some way, then another program which others said is the only one which works with this tuner, then editing some file others were saying should be edited, but I’m not getting anything. Yes, Zapping seems to see it just fine and it even detects the signal through it, as setting it to Romania and telling it to scan for channels finds 42 or 43, seeming to alternate there, so missing just a couple of the 45 I should have, and checking a few of the listed frequencies against the list on the provider’s site tells me it does find them correctly. However, I get absolutely nothing else. No picture, no sound, nothing. And since I’m not doing much of anything else here, nothing to try to play, not keen on seeing how to download something to watch, not editing files, rather staying away from even entering passwords in too many places and doing too much on various sites, I rather miss that option of maybe finding something to pass the time with…

But this sure was a long post again, so let me just finish it here by also saying that this week’s run was yesterday and I finally managed to get back under 35 minutes. Took pretty much everything and stuff in my abdomen hurt all day, only getting better at night, but the total time was 34:52, with sector times of 4:33, 5:17, 5:59, 4:35, 5:18, 6:10 and 3:00, making for lap times of 15:49 and 16:03.
Was also saying I’ll be going out more these days, since I’m doing even less than usual here, but the weather hasn’t been nice, autumn deciding to come very suddenly after we got over 30°C even last weekend. Pretty sure I won’t even attend the march I was considering to attend tomorrow. Still definitely not in any sort of state that would permit it, plus that it’s that one organized by and focusing on cyclists, and after an initial message also inviting pedestrians and stating that they should be able to keep up at a light jog, more recent posts only talk of cycling and other similar means of transportation.

Written by Cavalary on September 23, 2016 at 7:49 PM in Personal | 0 Comments

Another Year of Statistics: Starting Over

As I said a year ago, I will now be starting over with the statistics, so check that previous statistics post for the data covering the first five years since launching this site. Not that it should be of any interest to anyone, of course, especially considering the low number of visits, but I’m posting it nevertheless, largely for my own use.
Next time there will be three columns once again, but now there will be only two, with the first one covering the entire period since the previous post, so from September 21, 2015 to September 20, 2016, while the second is the usual one I add at the end, covering the last month, so starting on August 21, 2016 and also ending on September 20, 2016.

Field Since the previous listing Last month
Visitors 3112 208
Visits 3403 235
Pageviews 5104 413
Top countries 1. United States: 47.31%
2. United Kingdom: 7.26%
3. Canada: 4.20%
4. Romania: 4.06%
5. Germany: 3.09%
6. Australia: 2.91%
7. Singapore: 2.73%
8. Russia: 2.38%
9. China: 1.50%
10. India: 1.41%
1. United States: 43.40%
2. Romania: 6.38%
3. Singapore: 5.96%
3. United Kingdom: 5.96%
5. Germany: 2.55%
5. Italy: 2.55%
7. Brazil: 2.13%
8. Australia: 1.70%
8. Ireland: 1.70%
8. Malaysia: 1.70%
8. Poland: 1.70%
8. Russia: 1.70%
Top traffic sources 1. Google: 76.29%
2. Direct visits [1]: 18.57%
3. Facebook: 1.03%
4. MobyGames: 0.97%
5. Bing: 0.85%
6. Yahoo!: 0.62%
7. DuckDuckGo: 0.15%
7. OkCupid: 0.15%
7. WordPress Tavern: 0.15%
10. SETI@home: 0.12%
1. Google: 73.19%
2. Direct visits [1]: 20.00%
3. Bing: 1.70%
3. Facebook: 1.70%
5. Ask: 0.85%
5. Draggo: 0.85%
5. Yahoo!: 0.85%
8. ComputerGames.ro Forum: 0.43%
8. MobyGames: 0.43%
Top landing pages 1. Now I Know What Having Your Bowels Turn to Water Means…: 57.71%
2. Perfect World International Information Dump: 6.55%
3. Site index: 4.20%
4. Hackers “Killed” The Adrenaline Vault: 3.35%
5. Blog first page: 2.91%
6. Answers for the Forsaken World Searches – II: 2.44%
7. Answers for the Forsaken World Searches – I: 1.59%
8. Healer by Jason Engle: 1.56%
9. Why Ruin It with Growls?: 1.47%
10. Angel Rose by Anne Stokes: 1.29%
1. Now I Know What Having Your Bowels Turn to Water Means…: 59.57%
2. Perfect World International Information Dump: 9.36%
3. GOG.com: Now with Microtransactions and 30 Prices for One Game: 6.81%
4. Blog first page: 5.11%
5. Site index: 2.55%
6. Hackers “Killed” The Adrenaline Vault: 2.13%
7. Fantasy Art Gallery index: 1.70%
8. Answers for the Forsaken World Searches – I: 1.28%
9. Both “Answers for the Forsaken World Searches” pages: 0.85%
9. No More Separate Non-Security Windows Updates…: 0.85%
9. Tactics for Empires of Arkeia: 0.85%
9. Why Ruin It with Growls?: 0.85%
Top viewed pages 1. Now I Know What Having Your Bowels Turn to Water Means…: 39.73%
2. Perfect World International Information Dump: 4.86%
3. Blog first page: 3.15%
4. Site index: 3.04%
5. Hackers “Killed” The Adrenaline Vault: 2.31%
6. Fantasy Art Gallery index: 2.06%
7. Answers for the Forsaken World Searches – II: 1.80%
8. Healer by Jason Engle: 1.53%
9. Angel Rose by Anne Stokes: 1.49%
10. Secret Garden by Anne Stokes: 1.47%
1. Now I Know What Having Your Bowels Turn to Water Means…: 34.87%
2. Perfect World International Information Dump: 5.57%
3. Blog first page: 5.33%
4. GOG.com: Now with Microtransactions and 30 Prices for One Game: 5.08%
5. Fantasy Art Gallery index: 2.18%
6. Hida Eijiko by Mario Wibisono: 1.69%
6. Sun Shangxiang and Zhen Mi by Wu Shuang: 1.69%
8. Scholomance Special Edition by Wu Shuang: 1.45%
8. Site index: 1.45%
10. Hackers “Killed” The Adrenaline Vault: 1.21%
10. Salvation by Mario Wibisono: 1.21%
10. Ulrik by Mario Wibisono: 1.21%
Visit depth – One page: 89.63%
– Two or three pages: 7.02%
– Four or five pages: 1.26%
– Six to ten pages: 1.03%
– 11-19 pages: 0.35%
– 20+ pages: 0.71%
– One page: 90.21%
– Two or three pages: 5.96%
– Four or five pages: 1.28%
– Six to ten pages: 0.85%
– 11-19 pages: 0.85%
– 20+ pages: 0.85%
Top browsers 1. Chrome: 48.05%
2. Safari: 30.27%
3. Firefox: 11.25%
4. Internet Explorer: 3.29%
5. Android Browser: 1.41%
1. Chrome: 42.13%
2. Safari: 34.04%
3. Firefox: 14.04%
4. Internet Explorer: 2.98%
5. Opera: 1.70%
Top operating systems 1. Windows: 34.38%
2. iOS: 31.74%
3. Android: 27.24%
4. macOS: 3.38%
5. Linux: 1.65%
1. Windows: 37.02%
2. iOS: 33.62%
3. Android: 23.40%
4. macOS: 3.83%
5. Wii: 1.28%
Top screen resolutions 1. 360×640: 18.40%
2. 375×667: 14.37%
3. 320×568: 9.29%
4. 1920×1080: 9.23%
5. 1366×768: 8.99%
6. 414×736: 3.59%
6. 1280×1024: 3.59%
8. 768×1024: 2.88%
9. 1600×900: 2.64%
10. 1280×800: 2.29%
1. 375×667: 16.60%
2. 360×640: 16.17%
3. 1920×1080: 9.36%
4. 320×568: 7.23%
5. 1366×768: 6.81%
6. 414×736: 5.96%
7. 1024×768: 5.11%
8. 1440×900: 3.83%
9. 1680×1050: 3.40%
10. 1600×900: 2.98%

[1] Ever since switching to the new Analytics code, I ended up with a number of entries listing my own site as source, which are quite clearly direct hits from returning visitors. As a result, all such entries were added to the number of direct visits.

It sure was far less work to put this post together, compared to all previous ones which had that total column as well. Still took me a few hours, but considering my current mental state, only a few hours and having only one moment when I wanted to take a longer break, not even considering giving up at least for the day, sure says it was quite easy. Not even putting together entries that are wrongly counted separately was much of a problem, as there were very few of those now. Of course, it’s possible that some mistakes slipped through and I won’t check yet again now, but think I checked quite thoroughly while writing this, so it should be good enough.
As for the records, those are unchanged, namely 169 visitors and 180 visits, set on the old site by that large spike on August 16, 2009, and 333 pageviews, set on March 3, 2013. The graphs will likely be added, but the current situation with my computer makes me not bother with that at the moment, so I’ll edit this to add the links to them when I’ll actually add them. May be a while though.

Written by Cavalary on September 22, 2016 at 7:19 PM in Personal | 0 Comments

New Finds – VIII

At the end of the previous post from this series, written on the last day of 2015, I was saying I’ll set a clear goal for two more in 2016, and a tentative one for either three regular ones or two bigger ones, to include a total of at least 15 bands. However, it’s the second half of September and this is only the first, so we’ll see about even managing a second before the end of the year. And I’m hoping to finish this tonight, so no way I’ll include more than the regular five bands, even if it was quite easy to select that many as I glanced through the list.

Decided to go alphabetically this time around, so I’ll start with Aeternitas, definitely brought back to my attention these days thanks to Madeline, which I got rather stuck on. I had initially added them to the list probably over two years ago, judging by the upload date of Ethelred, since that’s the first song of theirs that I heard and apparently the first one that could have caught my attention, since their first three albums, released between 2000 and 2009, were in German, this song marking their switch to English. And now their first English album is about to be released next month, and if Madeline is anything to judge by, I have reasons to hope it’ll be a good one.

Next comes a Romanian band, Between Colors. Now I’ll readily admit they’re not something I’d actually listen to, the sound being rather too harsh for my liking, and I’d have probably dismissed them if they wouldn’t have been from here, but as it is and considering the low number of active Romanian bands that caught my attention in any way and that they’ll release their first album in November, let’s say I’m adding them here as encouragement. Sadly, though they actually list themselves as melodic metal, they don’t fit my definition of the term, seeing as for me that requires a lack of growls and they’re actually struggling to include some, which you can notice for just a couple of moments even on the older and softer Ghost Dance, which was probably the song that initially made me think I could hope for something more to my liking from them. However, Dark Side sure seems to indicate that they’re heading in the opposite direction.

Moving on, Imperial Age is a band I randomly stumbled into when YouTube happened to recommend the live version of Turn the Sun Off! to me and I clicked that link. Now I normally avoid linking to live performances, but I was completely stuck on this, the sound is definitely not a problem and this is in fact the proper version of the song, which was also included on their second album, which I’d actually consider their first proper one. Did try to listen to the original version of the song and to the first album as a whole, but I’d advise others to stay away from that, since I gather it was a one-person affair that’s quite worthless in my opinion. However, following the model of Therion, which they actually receive a lot of direct support from, other musicians were later gathered to fill the available positions and, while they may and do get changed, the end result at that point sure was awesome. That said, the second song I’ll link to will be another live version from that same concert: Aryavarta.

An actual recent find is Reagal, who are about to successfully crowdfund their first album after finding their way through some very difficult times. Admittedly, that success is largely due to the low target, of only £1100, and a few generous donors, but if they’ll manage with what at the moment, three days before the deadline, is 125% of that amount, good for them. Meanwhile, they seem to have plenty of gigs and also sing a fair number of covers, but The Flames and Wild Heart are their songs that are properly recorded and available at the moment and they definitely show a lot of promise.

And now allow me to finish this post with Trees of Eternity. Apparently first stumbled into them three years and a few days ago, seeing as that’s when I shared A Million Tears, and last month they announced that their album will finally be released in November, more than half a year after Aleah’s death. It’s a tragic story I don’t know enough about to say more, and it wouldn’t be my place to do so even if I did. As such, I will limit myself to simply sharing the other two songs officially available, Sinking Ships and Broken Mirror, and leaving it at that. Enjoy the music and, if you will, spare a good thought for her and those she left behind.

Guess that’s it, and I have to say at one point I was beginning to wonder whether I’ll manage to post this tonight after all, since it took quite a while. But here it is, and now let’s see how I’ll manage to post at least one more of these before the end of this year. There’s absolutely no chance I’ll post one including ten bands, so that idea of 15 bands included in such posts this year even if there will only be two of them is definitely abandoned, but I guess it’s not entirely impossible that I’ll have two more such posts by the end of the year. It is highly unlikely, however.

Written by Cavalary on September 18, 2016 at 3:58 AM in Music | 0 Comments

And Again: Cut Internet Cable, Computer Issues, Black Shit

Internet cable was cut again first Saturday morning, so exactly one month after the previous time. It seemed to be the same sort of issue as that time too, in the sense that it was probably not theirs but what links them to their provider, and the initial message was that the guy will see what can be done Sunday morning, but then it was fixed around 8 PM that same evening, and around 8:30 PM he actually called to notify us and ask to check if it’s really working.
Well, with all the construction work in the area lately, the problem was likely to repeat itself and did just this morning, also at about 8:30 AM, which was the time it failed on Saturday as well. However, this time my system actually noticed the lack of a connection, so it was something between me and their servers, not farther on. Got even scarier when the signal was completely gone for a while, making me think somebody was cutting the cables in this area one by one, but I guess what was going on was that they were working on fixing the issue, as the signal reappeared after a while and eventually the connection was restored as well, though it took some more time before that happened.
This isn’t looking good, since they really started working on the buildings on this street leading from me to them, right on the section in between, plus that they just recently actually started working on the front side of the building next to mine, after largely dragging their feet and only now getting around to finishing the back despite supposedly starting to work on it almost a year ago. So something’s telling me this will happen again, and I can only hope it’ll continue to at least be fixed on the same day, and perhaps even within a few hours as it was today, and that it won’t drive them out of business or away from the area.

Today’s loss of connection also seemed to cause an odd computer issue, where the CPU load was reported wrong, one SETI@home work unit appearing to take about 55% and the other about 45% instead of each of them at 50%, so fully using one core, and I was noticing some refresh rate issues, which became more obvious when I loaded a game, at which time I noticed a lot of cracking in the sound as well. After rebooting, the issue seemed solved, but the connection also worked after that reboot, and it’s also possible that something had to be reset before the connection could be restored after the work they did, though the LEDs on the switch only started blinking quite normally mere seconds before the reboot. However, when the connection failed again as I was writing this, the problem reappeared after turning the network chipset off and back on, disappearing when I unplugged the switch and reappearing when I plugged it back in. Rebooted again and, even though the connection still didn’t work right away, the problem was no longer there, but the connection was also restored within a minute or two, though the LEDs look all wrong. No idea what’s going on, but there sure is reason to fear a serious hardware problem here.
Also, on top of those issues with Emsisoft that aren’t actually solved but which at least in case of the apparently corrupt logs don’t seem to act up again, now I have something else which I wonder whether it has to do with hardware or software. What I mean is that I rebooted again on Monday to test something and for some reason also decided to install two optional Windows updates then, including the August bundle. Why did I do that, no idea, but after that reboot I saw all coolers being reported at 70.6% instead of the around 78% normal speed for the CPU temperature on the setting I selected, and that speed never changed. And I do know they were running slower, because the rear one is a bit noisy at higher speeds and I wasn’t hearing it at that level.
Uninstalling that update didn’t fix the issue, and neither did reinstalling it again today, along with the important ones and the July bundle which I had never installed before, both of them being reissued yesterday. Changing the minimum speed in BIOS to a custom 80% from the 70% of the selected preset worked as expected, but now I did another test by setting 70% at 30°C, 75% at 50°C and 80% at 60°C and I’m getting a steady 72.5%, which led me to believe that the BIOS had suddenly decided to set the fan speeds according to the system temperature, reported as 37-38°C, instead of the CPU one. But after this other reboot now, I changed it to 80% at 40°C, and still 80% at 60°C, and I’m getting 81.6%, so I’m completely at a loss, but it definitely is worrying and I’m thinking of anything from motherboard or CPU failure to some really nasty malware infecting the BIOS or something else that can’t be scanned. No idea what I’m going to do here.

And also no idea what to do about the health issues, since I once again shat black yesterday. Maybe not quite the same shade and definitely wasn’t as “explosive”, but I was rather expecting it after how things felt the night before, after quickly eating shortly before bed since dad only went to sleep around 3:30 AM. And things definitely aren’t well in my abdomen at all, and I keep feeling that odd feeling of pressure or whatever it is on the left side. And all I’m doing about it is panicking more and more… To the point that I sent someone a rambling message in which I was also asking if she’ll actually go with me if I will go to have things checked out, though we didn’t even meet before and it’ll be all sorts of fucked up and I have no idea how to do these things and won’t be able to think or speak or anything if I will go.

But at least I ran today, on about three hours of sleep and an apple and two plums, after not eating at all last night since dad seemed to have no intention of going to bed at 3:30 AM and I therefore decided to crawl in bed myself, eventually falling asleep at some point after 4 AM and waking up shortly before 7:30 AM. Tried to go to the kitchen and make a salad and grab the other things then, but his alarm rang at 8 AM, so I rushed back to my room as soon as he went to the bathroom and then just went out to run after determining that the Internet problem wasn’t going to be fixed right away. Did finally eat after I got back, since he wasn’t back yet, but I sure wonder when he sleeps anymore and how he manages this… And also how will I manage it if I won’t even be going to eat at night anymore…
But back to today’s run, despite the cool temperature and lack of wind, I really couldn’t keep up the passable pace of the first lap in the second, so the time was 35:44, with sector times of 4:37, 5:15, 6:12, 4:49, 5:25, 6:18 and 3:08, making for lap times of 16:04 and 16:32, that second lap being the slowest lap out of all proper seven-kilometer runs during the day. And I must say I really pushed towards the end to even manage that, even having someone in front of me that I struggled to not fall farther behind of on the second lap’s third sector, so without that it’d have been even worse. And things hurt in my abdomen after I was done in a way that didn’t really happen in quite some time even so.

Written by Cavalary on September 14, 2016 at 3:32 PM in Personal | 0 Comments

Quick Review: Sword of Destiny

I’m not keen on short stories and the first four in this book more or less just proved me right once again. They are well written and it is a plus that they’re connected, with bits of a bigger story to be found inside them, but they are nevertheless pretty much just short stories, at times forced, at times striding too far either into humor or into a fairy tale, at times simply seeming to not quite fit, and overall rather missing the tone, setting and mood that I expected, and which they perhaps sought. Also, one particular reason to be angry with Yennefer sure is stressed at some point, and by that I don’t mean the one most people reading this will assume. That one just makes me feel even worse about the way what to me is the only right choice was treated in The Witcher 3.
However, I rated this the way I did thanks to the last two stories, which definitely belong alongside the proper books in the series, being properly connected and certainly finding that tone and mood and setting, never losing their way. After reading the fifth and seeing as the book is titled after it, I assumed that will be the best one, but the last then proved me wrong. That was in good part thanks to the outstanding and guttingly bittersweet scene between Geralt and Yennefer, which caused me to need to take a break and which I’ll probably need a longer time to recover from, but definitely not only because of that.

Rating: 4/5

Written by Cavalary on September 9, 2016 at 10:52 PM in Books | 0 Comments