Went to pick up my laptop today after a few days of gnashing my teeth with frustration. I’m very attached to my laptop. I spend quite alot of time with it. It’s like my best friend and work bud – I plan my diary with it, keep all my addresses and important info, keep up with work and personal correspondence, have conference calls on it, keep my lists, graph out designs, do the layout for my patterns, edit images and keep all my photos. I go shopping with it, visit friends and family, and keep up with chatter from knitting friends. So, you can imagine, I know it pretty well. I know when it needs a break, and I know when it’s not feeling well. When it’s a case of repairing permissions, or when it’s something more serious. It’s like when you know when your cough is more than just a cough, or when you’re not feeling right and you know it isn’t just a cold. Well, my poor little laptop hasn’t been herself for months now. So what does one do when the apple feels poorly? Take it to the mothership of course.
I made my appointment with the genius bar. It turns out that genius bar is filled with people who are familiar with apples but not experts as we (I) might be led to believe. They are enthusiastic, and knowledgeable but by no means specialists. Having brought my baby in once, and had her lobotomized (aka ‘clean reinstall’) where everything was wiped and the OS reinstalled completely, she still wasn’t acting right. The chap who wiped my laptop told me to come back if she was still spooling more than she should. When I was putting together the last pattern for the Knit Love Club I lost that document half a dozen times before I gave up and moved to the desktop. I kept getting the swirly bonbon constantly and then the dreaded blue screen. So I brought her back in.
What did the Genius Bar tell me? They opened safari and clicked a few links. Closed that, then opened another application and clicked around. Closed that. Then told me, that my laptop was acting as they would expect. That nothing was wrong with it. That my mail accounts were probably slowing it down. WTF? To the point of freezing my laptop?! That my mail accounts had no effect on the speed for 6 months but all of the sudden have paralysed my baby?! Or that, having purchased an Apple Time Capsule, that it was causing the spooling? AN APPLE PRODUCT SOLD AS BEING A CONVENIENCE FOR ITS OWN COMPUTERS? That it should be incompatible was laughable.
Now, I am a huge Apple fan. I love my macs, and they have served me well over the last 6 years. This is the first time that I’ve had a problem, and I was rendered
speechless with frustration that they would tell me the laptop was fine
when I bloody well knew it wasn’t. I resent being told by a 22 year old kid fresh out of university that I don’t know computers and that they just crash sometimes and go slow. The advantage of being my age, is that with it comes 14 years of working with computers – starting out easy with word processing for university assignments, then very large corporate computer systems with a slew of crazy applications all integrated to work together, and then of course a computer based small business which requires use of many different applications often at once. So though I am not an IT expert, I do know when a computer is acting in a way it shouldn’t, and I also know when a decrease in speed is normal. So having made it clear I wasn’t leaving with the laptop unless it was fixed, I made them sign it in for stress testing.
I got a call on Monday to tell me that the hardware was completely fine, that they ran their hardware diagnostics and it came back clean. I asked them what exactly they did to stress test it – did they use it as someone whose computer is the hub of their business and personal life? Or did they do what they did at the genius bar – open safari and click a few links, close that then open another application? I don’t practice application monogamy. It just isn’t practical or generally possible. Who checks mail, then closes the application before opening up Word or some other application? Sometimes I have to see my mail to write a document, or vice versa, or have my photo editor open to add a photo to a document or email. Or listen to music while putting together a spreadsheet file to embed in a document layout. I told them how I use my computer (seriously, am I being naive? I assume how I use it is no different than most. Do people really practice application monogamy?)
Anyways, another papa john later, the very patient lady on the receiving end of my increasingly apoplectic ranting got a technician to call me back. Who apparently ran a third party diagnostic tool and found that… wait for it… my hard drive was in early stages of failure. And that was the reason it was spooling like crazy. Because it had to reallocate the failed sections of the hard drive to healthy sections. Hence the crashing. And he told me that having a gazillion (okay 9) mail accounts would not cause my laptop to crash, or slow down nor should Time Capsule cause it to spool. So the Genius who told me all the crap is not so Genius after all.
But I have my baby back, and she’s good as gold. Bonzai baby, bonzai.