The Agony of Computer Meltdown

Last Thursday, I guess it was, my Old Dell, 5 going on 6 years old, went belly up. I sat down Thursday morning thinking I might resusitate it. I have a couple of fix it utilities. I thought I would run those again and I had already done a complete file check that took forever. But I was stimulated to this move by having seen recently and for the first time on my computer a blue and scary looking blue screen that said something about BIOS and if I couldn’t get it to work to contact my tech support.

Having no tech support, I am it.

So I started trying to clean up and found after a bit the thing crashing and all I could work in was the SAFE MODE, and then, lord knows what happened, the whole computer just went dead. Blank screen, nothing coming up. Just that little cursor up in the left hand corner blinking over and over.

I felt like a spike was being driven through the top of my head. All my stuff gone…for the time being; and student papers were due to roll in and what if I couldn’t relocate my grade sheets. Would I just have to make up the grades? That would be a first.

But I am prudent. I must have sensed the computer was on its last legs about 8 months ago because I signed onto a service called Carbonite that automatically backed up my documents online. So I went to the laptop I recently bought because my other one died, and went online and started the download. But damn it seemed to be taking forever and I wasn’t sure it was working. This went on through the night and into the next day. Finally I contacted support through their chat function and got Natalie. We had the following conversation:

Session Started with Agent (Natalie)

System: “Hello and thank you for using Customer Support Live Chat! How may I assist you today?”

Agent (Natalie): “Hello Nick.”

Nick Tingle: “Hello..I am trying to restore files to a new computer, about 8 gigs, some images and I was wondering how long it might take to downloadd this datea”

Agent (Natalie): “Recovering small amounts of data (a few files here or there) will probably take only seconds or minutes. Restoring all of your data will take longer and depends on how much data you have and the speed of your Internet connection. Most internet service prov
iders will allow you to download about 600-800 MB per hour, or roughly 14-18GB per day. For an average user, complete data restoration is likely to take at most a day or two.

Nick Tingle: “ok That helps it has been taking a while and I was worried about the slowness…I have cable”

Agent (Natalie): “Please allow me a moment while I review your account.”

Nick Tingle: “Thank you. I would appreciate yoour checking to see if I have messed up somehow….”

Agent (Natalie): “Please provide me the email address which you used to register with Carbonite, as I am not able to locate your account using this email address.”

Nick Tingle: “”

Agent (Natalie): “Thank you, Nick.”

Nick Tingle: “May I say you write very clearly and directly and also punctuate accurately. I am a university writing teacher and notice these things. I am screwing up with my sentences”

Agent (Natalie): “Your restore is progressing normally.”

Nick Tingle: “Hey…thank you…and may I ask have you been to college?”

Agent (Natalie): “You are most welcome. Yes, I did.”

Nick Tingle: “Well, I hope you get the career you want. Jobs are had to get these days. Good luck and thanks”

Agent (Natalie): “Nick, thank you for saying that. It was a pleasure assisting you. Thank you for taking the time to chat with us today. If you need further
assistance, please chat with us again at

As you will note, I couldn’t help being a writing teacher, commenting, as I did, on Natalie’s command of punctuation. I have not received a transcript like this before; I wonder if it was generated by voice recognition. If so I must look into voice recognition.

Not to destroy the suspense, but finally I did download most of my files to the lap top.

More later on the computer meltdown.