May 06, 2017

Some Saturday Computer Rambling

It was nice to finally have some sunshine Friday afternoon. It wasn't hot but bright. Heidi even took the long way back to the house after an after lunch break outside.
By the time she walked up the driveway from the middle of the yard, she decided the best place to be was back under the blankets, rain or no rain.

She camped out in Sadie's chair for the rest of the afternoon and evening.

The cooler temps didn't stop Sadie though. She knew the rain had stopped and with a little sunshine there had to be a chance for a walk, at least in her mind. She surveyed the property line for any new scents after the rain, hoping to see me head to the field with my camera in hand.

But it wasn't going to happen. Even in the backyard, water was coming up the sides of my shoes when walking through the grass. Did you notice Sadie's ear flipped up in the picture above? I did not until I loaded it into the blog.

Stella could tell from a distance that she wasn't going to get her paws wet and was more interested in returning inside, beg for some of my dinner and prepare to watch (sleep) some Reds baseball.

By 6pm you would have thought we had moved to some lakefront property as the winds picked up and all of that water was showing some small wave movement. I could tell it was starting to recede ... maybe not.

The 75+ year old fence post made it through all of the rain and high winds. It is much more stable and stronger than my mailbox pole that the state highway department moved for me when they repaved the highway in 2006. I could also see some of my new grass growing on the left side of the post along the bank.

More rain was expected, so we woke up fairly late with a light rain this morning. It must have started after 3am because it wasn't raining when I went to bed. I still think I see some of that water draining out of the field.

Sadie gave the wet field a detailed inspection when she got up. There has been a lot of growth after all the rain but this portion of the field is the tallest grass.

She tried to get Stella to move and talk me into walking. It wasn't quite noon when the rain stopped and it looks like we should have at least through Monday night before there is a chance for more rain. There's enough time for that weather forecast to change.

Heidi wasn't out long and refused to walk in the wet grass. She took a few steps in it to relieve herself but jumped back on the mulch to walk behind the yews. She rarely likes posing for pictures.

She and Stella woke up this morning with some gunk around their eyelids. Wunderground shows the allergies are high today, my sinuses agreed.

Tall wet grass must taste good after a lot of rain. Stella couldn't stop eating grass and walked back inside with a few strands of the green stuff hanging from her jowls. Are her ribs starting to fade away?

I thought I'd check and make sure before canceling today's walk. I looked at the edge of the field, on the path next to the yard ... If it is this wet at the low point of the field then there is a lot of standing water the further into the field we'd go. Umpire's decision ... no walk today.

Maybe the sun can dry this out within the next 4-5 hours, we will check back then. It does not look hopeful though.

Sadie lives to walk. She wasn't too happy about today's cancellation. It's been 3 days since her last walk in the field. While I was on the roof yesterday afternoon she took off and I saw her almost at the first corner (turn) of the walk ... just stepping into the woods. Would that count as a walk?

Stella does not like to get her paws wet. You can see she is not that happy walking back to the house ... or was it because I called her to come inside. Yet yesterday while I was on the roof cleaning the gutter out, she wandered back to the neighbors drainage ditch. That sent me over the edge of insanity when I saw her. Too close to the highway, I wasn't a happy camper.

Here are some pictures of the hounds watching baseball on tv at night. Normally Sadie is in her chair with the ottoman but Heidi had taken that spot and wasn't moving. So she joined Stella on the couch next to me.

As the game went further along, they both gradually moved in their sleep to gain a little more space to sleep while I was being pushed toward the arm of the couch with barely enough room to sit. This is a nightly routine for them whether I am there watching tv or back in another room on my computer.

These last three pictures were taken with the iPhone 6s camera.

With the weather the way it was the last couple of days I've spent a lot of time on the computer trying to find out why my computer is not operating as fast as it use to before the crash a few days ago. My internet connection is still faster than ever, testing at 48Mbps downloads and over 5.5Mbps uploads, so it's not that.

I usually find a lot of good information concerning Apple computers over at the MacRumors Forum. I did this time also. It's always the place I go before I download any kind of software or apps. I also check out the CNET Reviews before adding anything to my hard drive.

Through the searches I was doing on Google, looking for answers or ideas on fixing that "slowness" that has gripped my restored hard drive, I ran onto another great site that has so many good articles, you cannot stop reading them. This place is good for Window PCs and Apple computers. Click here to see the site called MakeUseOf for some great information.

{Note: As an example of my newest computer issue I will discuss in a few sentences below ... at this point right before "the site .... " I clicked my curser there to add the website name. That froze my computer until I got a message that Blogger was 'not responding'}

Neither of those links are affiliate links. I copied the link for Macs but you can see PC drop down menu at the top of the page along with some other categories.

Even though my computer is currently frustrating at times, with the freezes and hangups doing just some simple tasks ... I like researching stuff like this and seeing if I can find a fix that works plus learning new tips and tricks for normal computer use along the way.

I've tried all three browsers (Firefox, Chrome & Safari) the past 24-36 hours. I always try to use Safari as my default browser but I always come back to Google Chrome. I don't see much difference in battery use between the three but I do see Chrome being faster and using less data to do normal internet surfing than the other two browsers. All three browsers were freezing at times ... but that might have been a weather thing since it hasn't been bad today.

During all the rain I lost my internet signal just once and only long enough for the house power to go off and right back on. Even with 800' visibility with storm clouds, my internet signal was never affected.

I did take a break from the computer yesterday afternoon and pulled my ladder out of the shed and got up on the roof. I wanted to clear the blockage on the front gutter as well as pick up all the smaller twigs laying on the roof from the high winds on Thursday night.

I needed to repair my downspout on the north side of the house right next to both satellite dishes. The wind was so powerful during the night on Thursday it not only pulled the gutter downspout out where it is mounted on the side of the house but also at the point it connects to the gutter ... taking the screw with it.

When I saw yesterday afternoon how that was hanging over my internet satellite dish, no wonder all three browsers were freezing even though I never lost signal. Who knows, maybe that wasn't it. It wasn't touching the dish in anyway but it was in between the transponder and dish.

My computer problem since I restored it after the crash has been software issues. Like clicking the button here on Blogger to upload photos ... click it ... takes forever to move.

Click on a cell on an excel spreadsheet, computer freezes. In Windows you would get the hourglass, on Apple we get a spinning beach ball.

I do run the Activity Monitor all the time so I can see it on my 2nd monitor, to track data and any sudden unexpected data surges. With a monthly data allowance you have to do that. On that same screen I can also check the memory being used or what percent of the CPU is being used by different programs.

That is where I saw it really did not make much difference in which browser I used.

I ran a free app today called Omni Disc Sweeper. It will show every file on your computer, categorized and hopefully tell you where you have files you can delete to free up hard drive space. Remember I bought this iMac in 2007 and the hard drive is only 500Gb.

Side note ... I remember in 1995 when I was thrilled to buy a new computer that had a hard drive with 350 Mb's .... megabytes. We wondered then what would we ever do with so much space on a hard drive. LOL

It will be 7 years of use this October for my iMac and I have only used 299Gb of the hard drive. The funny thing is, 252 of that 299 is nothing but picture files. I did not see any 'dead' files just laying around that I could delete.

So, since I do enjoy 'playing around' with stuff like this ... I am seriously thinking of doing a clean install of the OS, then ... restore my files from my back up on Time Machine. The difference is, the other night I only did a restore from that back up and the OS worked after that, it booted up.

I ran disk utilities again last night after 2am, and it found nothing needing repaired on my hard drive. Yet a 'clean' install of the OS gets rid of any hidden lingering issues ... sometimes.

If I decide to do that right after this post, it will take some time but maybe only a few hours. I noticed the other night it loaded my photo library only 45 minutes after I went to bed with the restore working on it's own.

It's times like these it's good to have not only everything backed up on an external drive but also a second computer, a laptop.

Is doing a clean install of the operating system just something to do while I am stuck inside or will it fix those small issues that have been popping up? Or, are these occasional freezes a sign that my hard drive is getting ready to die soon due to age and use?

With that last possibility, yes, I have looked at new iMacs to buy as a replacement. But, I've also been looking at cars on cars dot com also. LOL (That has to be being bored in bad weather)

No matter what, the rain has stopped and the sunshine is out ... that is always a good thing here in 'the tropics' of southern Indiana.

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