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AndalayBay

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As most of you know, we're having our house renovated. These are major renovations that involve completely gutting the basement and first floor. We had the floor at the front of the house moved up so that the whole main floor is now level. The front door was at street level and as soon as you came in the front door, you had to climb a flight of stairs to enter the living room. Then there was another step that you needed to climb to get to the dining room and the rest of the main floor. We have removed all those stairs and moved the front door up so the stairs are now outside the house. This gives us a lot more room on the main floor and allows us to move the coat closet and powder room to be near the front door, where they should be. Now guests don't have to walk halfway through the house to hang their coats!

 

We were supposed to be in our new basement by Christmas. Not only has that not happened yet, I had to tell the lead contractor that I was going to bring in my own painter since his guys were doing such a lousy job. My painter has been fixing up the mess in the basement for the past week and won't be done until early next week.

 

I won't be able to return to modding until the basement is finished and we can move downstairs. The basement has always been the location of our office and where we have all our computers set up, including our gaming PC's. We moved them into a small room upstairs, but that was too hot and small to be a suitable workspace, so I haven't be able to use my gaming PC for over a year. I've been using my iPad to visit and post on the forums. I haven't even played any PC games for over a year. I wanted to check something quickly in Oblivion a few weeks ago and I couldn't even remember how to open the menus. :lmao:

 

I use my Mac to maintain the server and the forums and I do have access to that, but I use both my PC and the Mac when I upgrade the forums, so I haven't been able to do that either. I haven't even been able to set up my new Mac yet! :cry:

 

Once we move downstairs, the guys will get started on the main floor and the second floor. We're having a lot of work done on those floors as well. We started this process in the fall of 2015 with initial consultations and the design of the new layout. Architectural drawings had to be created that were sent into the city for approval. Construction on this scale requires permits. We got the permits and work actually started in March, 2016. At the time the lead contractor said that the work would take anywhere from six months to a year and it now looks like it will be over a year by the time they are finally done.

 

Anyway I just wanted to explain to everyone what my status is because people have been wondering what's going on, which is quite understandable. I hope I'll be back in a couple of weeks. Once the basement is done, we have a lot of stuff to move down and we'll need some strong arms (and backs) to get the furniture and appliances moved. I still expect my modding and site maintenance time to be sporadic until the renovations are completely done. It's really hard to concentrate when you're working in a construction zone.

 

IP.Board will be discontinuing support of version 3.x in April, so we will have to upgrade to version 4 before then. They will also be discontinuing their chat service at that time as well. We don't use the chat room anyway, so that won't affect us. I'll have to upgrade the forums to the latest version of 3.x before upgrading to version 4 because all the migration scripts were made for the latest version. I'll post an announcement when I'm ready to do the upgrades.

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We finally got the raceway wired up! For two old folks with shitty knees, it was torture. :lmao: Actually it's not 100% - we still need to connect all the lan cables to the wall panel. We decided to buy a punch-down tool this time. I bought a little kit made by Fluke that looks pretty cool. Cost $200 but it has the impact tool (or punch-down tool), probe pic, D-snips and cable stripper. Now our wiring jobs should be much easier. :D

 

Now we can clean up the office, move Jimi's workstation into its final home and start moving mine down. We're getting there!

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Finally got my PC moved downstairs, all connected and I hit to power switch to start it up... Nothing. Dead. Toast. Took the machine apart and ran the self-test on the power supply and it's dead. It's only a couple of years old and has a seven year warranty, so I can return it, but I'll be down until I get a new one. I have an old 1000W PS, but I don't think it has enough connectors.

 

I wonder if it was the heat in the room upstairs that fried it. It is odd that it seemed fine until I shut it down to move the machine.

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It doesn't have all the connectors I need. I've got two R9 290X's in there.

 

I got the self test to work. Now it looks like it's a short in the motherboard. If I remove the main motherboard power connector, the self test will work. As soon as I plug it in, it fails. The motherboard has a power button right on the board and that doesn't work either. I'll try vacuuming it again tomorrow and if that doesn't work, I'll probably have to take the whole machine apart, which will be a huge pain in the ass! :mad:

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Finally got my PC moved downstairs, all connected and I hit to power switch to start it up... Nothing. Dead. Toast. Took the machine apart and ran the self-test on the power supply and it's dead. It's only a couple of years old and has a seven year warranty, so I can return it, but I'll be down until I get a new one. I have an old 1000W PS, but I don't think it has enough connectors.

 

I wonder if it was the heat in the room upstairs that fried it. It is odd that it seemed fine until I shut it down to move the machine.

Some power supplies has a fuse.  Was that power supply fused?

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The power supply is fine since the self test works. I was thinking it might be a fuse, but I eliminated that possibility when the self test worked. I think a motherboard short is a possibility since the problem occurred after we moved the machine.

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Got it running. It appears that it was clogged with drywall dust and it must have gummed something up that wouldn't allow the power supply to even turn over. I wound up removing all the cards and pulling out the hard drive cage. I vacuumed everything and reassembled it one component at a time. I started it up after installing each component.

 

It sounds awful, but it's running. Now I don't dare shut it down for fear it won't boot again. I definitely need to replace some fans.

 

So I'm basically back. We still have a lot of stuff to move downstairs, including my Mac and the desk that it sits on.

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Not to be a downer, but vacuuming PC parts is a bad idea. Vacuums generate static, and static is the enemy. That could have fried everything with a static discharge.

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I don't use regular vacuum cleaner attachments. I have a set made for electronics. I also just do the fans and don't touch any of the circuitry. Lastly I wear an anti-static wristband. I've been doing it for years. :)

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Oops! We used to use a UPS but decided that the expense wasn't worth it. We just use surge protectors now and let the machines shut down when the power goes out. We have regular backups if needed.

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I much prefer even the 6 minutes of warning my crappy UPS gives me. I've lost enough time on corrupted Windows to want to deal with it again, backups or no.

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Yeah, it would just cost too much to protect our systems. We had three UPS's until the batteries died and we'd need at least three to protect our computers. We have a file server, a backup server, two powerful gaming PC's and an iMac. The last UPS's we had were 750W and that wasn't enough. The file server and backup server are both Unix which is a little more robust. So we just have surge protectors and hope everything will come back up ok.

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It's hard to figure how big it needs to be. I used to buy APC units and they would take the unit back and give us a new one if the one we bought didn't work. I think that if we bought one for our game machines, we'd need a unit capable of 1000W and that would be pretty expensive. APC uses VA for the capacities, so it's hard to equate that to the amount of power your PC uses.

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APC makes good solid units, but yes, they are expensive. You get what you pay for I suppose.

 

When I was still running MUD servers here I had an APC capable of delivering 1000 watts on its own and I extended that with two accessory battery packs. The decision paid off twice. We had a pair of power outages a week apart during a stretch of bad weather with severe thunderstorms that both lasted nearly 4 hours each. The units outlasted them both.

 

The Cyberpower I have now on my PC is only 500W but it's enough to keep the system up for ~5 minutes which is usually all I need to get out of everything and shut down cleanly. I have never trusted Windows to handle uncontrolled shutdowns properly. Something always goes wrong.

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Time for an update: we're still not done moving downstairs!! The contractor has had to find other work while they wait for us. It's been really frustrating, but Jimi is getting hammered at work, so we can only do stuff on weekends. I can't do much by myself. Anyway we're hoping to finish this weekend. In fact the guys will be coming on Monday to seal off the kitchen and start gutting the second floor.

 

Forum upgrades: Support stops on 3.4.x tonight. I won't be able to get the forums upgraded before then, so we'll have to be vigilant about new registrations until I get the forums upgraded. We might have to set them to be approved before new members can post. I hope to get the forums upgraded in the next week or so.

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