Ylum’s hardware woes

You may have noticed that ylum’s been a little shaky this week, staring on Labor Day or so. The good news is that shakiness should be abating. The bad news is that I’ve had to work some to get that to happen.

I opened it up on Sunday (the 3rd) to put a drive in for backups and get them running again. On the way, I found that my case fan had seized up. You nemember that 100+  degree week at the end of July? I imagine that’s when it seized. The bad news is that’s also probably when the capacitor blew on the main board (see the image). blown capacitor

Surprisingly this didn’t just shut down the machine when it happened, though the hardware has been sensitive, and I haven’t been able to reliably talk to my iriver. Well, I couldn’t leave it like that once I found it, and I really wasn’t happy with the cooling properties and general crumminess of my case, so a new case was called for as well as a new mainboard.

The new case is pretty spiffy – black with two cooling fans and real mounting hardware – and after a wrestling match with the AML on the BIOS chip, I’ve got FreeBSD booting and running credibly on the thing. This needs a little more tweaking, but it’s servicable.

Now proper backups are running as well, so there’s some hope that if my disk fails, some of this stuff will survive. Overall, things are better than they were – faster CPU, more memory, better cooling – but it was a pain getting them here.

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