The screen went grey & my laptop never woke up again

I knew my 7 and a half year old laptop was on borrowed time.

If you've asked me about how long your laptop would last I would have said "2 to 3 years" and then start planning to replace it.

But because I am the fixit guy and not paying for my time I can work on my stuff and keep it going longer than most people.

So my beloved Alienware 17 Laptop had had several transplants and upgrades through its life. Two new hard drives (SSDs), CPU and GPU processor reseating and re-application of thermal paste.

There were a couple of times were I thought I'd lost it for good but managed to coax it back to life.

Not this time.

This time all I got was 4 beeps indicating the total failure of the motherboard.

But because I knew that it was on borrowed time AND that, regardless, backups are critical to disaster planning and business continuity, I just turned on my backup/test computer and picked up where the Alien had left off.

Maybe a second computer sounds like a luxury.

Maybe in the past it was, but these days it is pretty much essential for any serious solo business person to have this redundancy set up and ready to go.

The cost of losing days of work is often much dearer than that of a second computer.

Also, the current availability of new computers has been compromised by the pandemic. If you don't already have another computer ready to go you may not get one as fast as you once would have.

Such is my preparedness that I had actually set up my iMac to be a third fallback...and my mobile (read crappy) laptop as a 4th line of defence.

Now that's overkill and definitely not for everyone, but I could do it so I did. :-)

I've now broken down my dead Alien into useful, recyclable and disposable chunks.

It still makes me sad to see how it ended up but it had a great life and we had fun together.

Even its death was a source of amusement. So quick. So thorough.

So, how well are you prepared for such an event?

Yeah, I thought so.

Read more here:

Good luck, but better prepared.


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