Monday, April 20, 2009
MacBook Pro Failure
So my MacBook Pro starting experiencing kernel panics last Thursday. I did the special PRAM reboot, and things seemed fine, but then the problem re-occurred. I went to the mac store to see if I could get an appointment with a Genius, but the earliest that day conflicted with picking up my son from school, so I ended up buying a new MacBook Pro, because I felt I couldn't afford to be without laptop. Certainly an impulse buy, and now that I investigate kernal panics some more (e.g. Mac OSX Kernel Panic FAQ, Apple's Kernel Panic Page, New Screen of Death for Mac OSX) it seems like I might have been able to resolve things without shelling out $3K for a new MBP. However, I feel like I really needed a reliable computer under me, and at least two other MBPs in our lab have got kerput recently on two far more experienced OSX hacks than me.
Of course then I ran into all sorts of issues with the data transfer. My mail client Thunderbird and the software I use to run windows (VMWare fusion) had various issues on the new MBP. In the former case there was some kind of theme issue that eventually got resolved, and in the latter a re-install of the latest version of the software seemed to handle things, so everything is pretty much resolved now, but not before I spent two days trying different user account transfers trying to rule out the hypothesis that it was using an ethernet cable instead of a firewire cable that had caused some of these problems. There was a scary moment when after re-installing OSX on the new MBP when I couldn't get the transfer working from the old machine, or from my time machine; but I got through this after my good friend Ken Mayer suggested a superduper backup to an external LaCie drive, which worked. As a result I was able to transfer everything to the new machine from the external drive, and I seem to be out of the woods ... fingers crossed.