Thank god for Gmail and Mirra

Something has gone desperately wrong with my Toshiba laptop. It fails to restart and even trying to boot from a Windows XP CD doesn’t work (I get a mysterious “halacpi.dll could not be loaded. Error code is 7”, which even Google doesn’t seem to elucidate). Toshiba recommends I use the recovery disk, which will instigate a full system recovery.

That, of course, also means the loss of all my data. Fortunately, Gmail and Google Calendar allow me to function from any computer (so much of my life is browser-based these days). And when I get my computer up and running again, there’s the handy little Mirra box in my office that has quietly been backing up all my stuff all the time. Phew.

5 thoughts on “Thank god for Gmail and Mirra

  1. matthew wrigley

    there is also the possibility of pulling any data direct off your hard drive: install a new hd and do a system restore on that (free hd upgrade included!)… then put the old hard drive in a usb enclosure to retrieve the data.

    you may have problems retrieving the data from the now-external drive if it is NTFS formatted. your local friendly technical chap should be able to work something out on that front, however.

    good luck!

  2. richard lander

    i had both my PC laptops (Dell, Samsung) fail within 2 weeks of moving to barcelona. I did manage to suck out most of the wanted documenst thanks to a genius techie. But I wouldnt touch them again in a thousand years. It has to be Macs now. no reason not to on price, spec, compatibility issues. For the 1 in 1,000 sites that wont function on Mac browsers it’s a 5 min walk to the net cafe. go on, you know you want to do it …

  3. Felix

    As a paid-up member of the Cult of Mac (and someone struggling with a Dell laptop at the moment for reasons far too boring to get into) I agree — but with the proviso that Mac HDs are no more reliable than anybody else’s. Yes, your local Genius Bar will probably do a system restore for you on the spot and for free, if you ask them nicely. But you still have to back up your data — and Mirra, it seems, is not Mac compatible. (Why not?)

  4. Lance Knobel

    I used Macs from 1985 to 1998 or so. Why did I change? Two reasons: the cost gap between Windows machines and Macs, and my reaction against what Felix accurately calls the Cult of Mac. It’s the same reason I never wanted to join the Groucho Club.

    Despite what Richard says, there is still a significant price gap. The cheapest MacBook is $1099. The cheapest Dell laptop is $506. Is the Mac better. Probably. But I’m acutely price-sensitive at the moment, one of the costs of being in a precarious start-up.

    So we’ll see. It looks like my Toshiba can be saved, even if it means wiping my hard drive. Can’t beat free at the moment.

    On Mirra, I think they are idiots for not supporting Mac. I know the box is Linux so you’d think it would be OS-independent in all its functioning.


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