Showing posts from June, 2016

Screens of Blue - The Update

My next task was to run Memtest86 and Check Disk. Both utilities reported no issues. That was the first bit of good news I had had from the computer in a while. At that point, the issue was narrowed down to either the video card or the motherboard. I ran down to a local 'chop shop' (that's what I call a store that sells computers and used computer parts). For $20, I was able to get both fans and a cheap video card (RADEON 4600 512MB). I replaced the rear exhaust fan, but had some trouble getting the case off to access the front fan. I left that for later and kept the case open with a regular desk fan blowing in it. I replaced the video card, fired her up and installed the drivers. Word came up without an issue. Okay. I tried GiMP. No problems. No crashes, no blue screens. That was already an improvement over what I had been getting. I took a deep breath and started testing my games. I started small with Hearthstone which should be less taxing on the video card than anyt

I See Screens of Blue

I was merrily doing my Garrison chores one fine evening when the screen changed to this wonderful technicolor display. The sound froze and then the screen turned blue and filled with a bunch of computerese. I recognized from the file name that one of my ATI RADEON dlls was the culprit. I shut down and restarted and everything came up fine. I chalked it up to a glitch and after a few moments started up WoW again. When the blue screen returned, I knew I was in trouble. I dove into trying to figure out what was going on starting with the video card drivers. The card I have is a RADEON 6800 series and they stopped supporting it back in March, but I tried every driver available for it on the ATI website, even the beta ones. No driver I tried made any difference. My next thought was to see if maybe, somehow the video card had become loose in the PCIe slot. I didn't how that could happen, but at that point, my main goal was "what", not "how". As soon as I touche

Mr. Hammer Goes To Beta

Thanks to a contest run by the good folks over at WoWhead, I am now in Legion Beta. This blog post is Spoiler Free. Legion goes live in 82 days. I leave for vacation in 79. If you are thinking, that's great, plenty of time to play, you'd be wrong. If I try to break out the laptop and fire up WoW during this vacation, Mrs. Hammer will ensure that the Happiest Place on Earth isn't so happy. My goal with Beta is to both enjoy the story and figure out where everything is. When it is live, I'll be going as fast as I can in order to catch up. It's hard enough securing a tank spot. There's two and only two per raid. Being behind won't help. Hello Beta Logging into Beta was a jarring experience. I've been using ElvUI or Spartan for so long, I had almost forgotten what the default UI looked like. Character copy isn’t implemented yet so you get a stock Level 100 of your chosen class. Sure, I can call him Honors Hammer and make him look like Honors Ham