November 9th, 2008

flock

It's been quite a weekend...

irpooh 's computer is now running Intrepid Ibex, after way longer than it should have taken, with an AMC Clint Eastwood marathon running in the background as a twisted counterpoint. Basically, two things got in the way:
  1. Upgrading rather than doing a clean install led to bizarre behavior with the nvidia proprietary driver. (Yet another reason that nVidia needs to get with the program and release documentation of their srizonified hardware to allow proper Open Source drivers.) Eventually I gave up and did a clean install--I had her data backed up, so why not? (Well, one reason is that I didn't make a list of the installed packages, but we'll install those we forgot as needed, and will know better next time.)
  2. The wacom driver is new and improved--it now works and plays well with the Bamboo--but OTOH, currently at least it doesn't set up nicely for x.org; by default all it notices is the pen (not the eraser either, just the pen). Nice as the pen is for graphics, it was a MAJOR pain to use for general UI. So, we found docs on what to put in xorg.conf, and we're happy again. Heck, it's even smart enough now that you don't have to take the mouse off the pad to make it realize that you're not doing anything and shut down the monitor or fire up the screensaver.
So, now she's up and going, and we will do the laptop next.

The other fun thing: the pilot light on the furnace went out, just as the weather turned very cold indeed. We suspected that something else was the matter, as we didn't smell skunking factor. Bell Brothers has just now been and gone, having lit the pilot light, verified that we once again had heat, and allowed as how we could have it cleaned, but he'd be considering a replacement. The furnace has almost certainly been in place since this complex was first built... which would be about the time I graduated from high school.

So, a few minutes and $112.50 later (it's Sunday; they charge more for that), we're finally warming up and looking at how much a furnace will cost, not to mention that probably the drain for condensation from the air conditioner is blocked, causing a lot of rust on the furnace, so we get to do that, too. My understanding is that up until very recently, this was all dealt with by the condo association... which is probably one reason the furnace is thirty-five years old (actually thirty-seven, but the complex, I'm told, was built in 1973).

Somehow, I'm not expecting help from the Obamessiah with this expense.

UPDATE, 1:53 a.m.: That didn't last long; we're without heat again. Guess we'll be replacing the furnace with, as they say in the Supreme Court, all deliberate speed.

UPDATE #2: The condo maintenance guy came by to relight the pilot light (*sigh*) and make noises about replacing the thermocouple. Apparently Bell Brothers recently came by to do a check of all the furnaces in the complex. irpooh was around for that, and at that time, the BB guy said our furnace is old (yup) and that we should get a CO detector. According to condo maintenance guy, other furnaces nowhere near as old as the one in our unit got replaced (!).

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