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I have some of the worst damn luck with computers. I have an external hard drive with two partitions connected to my PC.  This is where I store the majority of my music and video downloads, where I save my edited video prior to authoring and burning to DVD, and where I save my backup files.  Well, that hard drive crashed tonight.  Up until that, I had been happily burning off some of the downloaded concerts that were filling up much of the space — in preparation to compiling my Thailand trip DVD (all four hours of that video — meticulously cut down from amost six hours — was also stored on this drive).  Of course, the partition that I can’t access is one with the video and important music files.  The computer reads the other partition (which contains CD artwork and MP3 downloads) just fine, but then it just seems to go around in circles trying to read the second partition.  In addition to the video and some very rare concert downloads (I was converting FLAC files for a 5-CD set of Billy Joel archival recordings dating from 1974-76 when the crash occurred), all of my backups are contained on that drive.  Perhaps the most frustrating is the fact that I’ve lost the last two weeks of entries into my massive CD inventory program (around 100 discs with artwork, track listings, reviews, recording source info, etc.).  I have no desire to try and duplicate all of THAT work.  I also lost my recent audio tape transfers of certain Rainmakers concerts I was preparing to upload for other fans. In the case of one 4-disc project, it was the THIRD time I’d done the work.  I have no desire to do it again.

I doubt if I can do anything with the files on the first partition, either, as when the computer starts trying to read the second partition it hangs up all the other applications until I completely power-down the external drive.

This is why I’m being very careful with my new laptop — making sure I backup often and that I don’t put too much intensive labor on it.  As for the PC, I think the crashes I’ve experienced may be because of something faulty with the CPU or the paging system.  When I purchased it, I had put together the components so it could handle labor-intensive activities such as editing audio and video.   Something along the way must have become corrupted (although troubleshooting turns up nothing).

I don’t know which I’m more frustrated about — having to restore the recent additions to my CD inventory (I’d wanted to complete much of it before returning to Thailand) or having to start over on the trip video editing.  I simply don’t have that much free time available as I want to have everything out of this apartment except the furniture when Keith arrives a mere 34 days from now.