How to survive in Paris

After several years of waiting, finally I got a computer from a Brit as a deal. It was MacBook mid 2009 with old body. And I was happy with it. Started to do programming again, learned xCode and Objective-C and even hitchhiked with it to Finland and Estonia.
But when I got back to Barcelona to do some paid work to the customer, it’s screen went broke. Just green spots where covering the screen on several places. And to my surprise, they could even move to be in another place next morning.
To replace it was costing 170 EUR and it took me some time to get the money. The first screen they replaced was functional only few days and then it’s backlight went off, so this time I was able to get it replaced as warranty.
But taking this computer again to my Paris trip wasn’t making good for it’s screen again. When I got back to Barcelona, that screen had same symptoms as first time.
The irony is that this guy asked my services just in time when I had troubles with the screen and I wasn’t able to return my part of the deal.
So, obviously I had to find some better solution as replacing screens every few months wasn’t an option for me. Besides, after installing Yosemite the computer started to act very slow for me to use.
And thanks to my family and friends, I was able to buy MacBook Pro 2009 model with unibody. I was hoping, that glass protected screen will not have such kind of problems as my previous computer had. Obviously, it wasn’t designed to be carried in my back-bag all the time.
And when it arrived early summer, I was finally able to start my trip to Paris and even was able to agree one small work to do for the customer to write a simple iOS app for him. But when I was nearly finished, one morning the Yosemite didn’t come up anymore. And when sometimes I was able to get it up, it was showing that hard disk was OK but it never saved anything to it. My first thought was, that when hard disk test went thru, it must be that Yosemite is somehow corrupted and tried to get a slot in Apple Opera store. I had some doubt that it could be the cable or cable connectors, but I didn’t had any screwdriver to test this theory out.
OK, in Apple Opera I first insisted that they will open it and check the cable first which they did and didn’t find anything odd there. So, then we tried to install Yosemite. And that young Apple technician wanted to reformat hard disk first. But we never were able to create a partition. So, now I had lost everything in that disk. Later I found out that it was SSD disk. That’s why it acted so strangely allowing to read data. But you can’t format a SSD disk, so I was wondering what those steps has done to it. Anyway, now I carried a piece of scrap in my back-bag as it wasn’t even useful to recharge my iPod through it’s USB bus as I didn’t had USB charger.
Visiting Apple repair shops in Paris was a joke. As my French skills are not enough to explain difficult technical problems, so I hoped that maybe computer guys there speak at least elementary English. But that’s seems to be rare. And when I finally find one to explain the problem (I wanted to know, do I have to replace the cable or is it something still wrong with hard drive) they took it for testing. I explained that my login password is now irrelevant and they have to boot it up from CD or other external source. Anyway, they asked me back after hour and then it took another hour and finally they come to conclusion that I have to throw my computer to poubelle. That’s French professionalism?
Being back in Barcelona, where I had a screwdriver I put my old computer hard disk to it and it was not recognized at all. So, obviously the problem was in cable. I had one USB disk, so lucky that Apple technicians here in Barcelona where able to install Yosemite to it and was able to use my computer again. But USB drive isn’t a good choice to run operating system. The times when you move something and external cable connection could be lost, you have to restart the system always from recovery mode.
Thanks again to help of my family and friends, I was able to order new cable from eBay. This time I put some tape under disk, between the cable and body to keep it safe. And a day before it arrived, another problem occurred. It stopped charging battery. And when battery went empty, it dropped dead.
Ok, I noticed small cut on the charger cable so obviously was thinking that this is a cause and cut the cable to connect it inside of charger. Opening Apple charger is kind of complicated procedure as Apple probably was thinking that it’s easier to buy new charger for 50 EUR, than fix it.
This didn’t help and it refused to charge or take current in even other chargers, so it must have been something inside. And my Internet investigation showed, that there is DC logic board which could be the problem. They asked 90 EUR to replace it in local repair shop, but as it cost only 14 EUR in eBay, so I was thinking to save and replace it myself.
And when that piece finally arrived and I was ready to take into pieces my computer, I run a problem that I need a special screwdriver to do it. And it’s so special that none of local hardware stores are selling it. So, again I had to order it from eBay and now waiting for it. It should have been arrived several days ago, so maybe the seller was again scammer. Meanwhile one impatient potential customer are trying to give me a little bit work to finish his app and I have always excuses him as the my situation continues weeks now.
To be honest, it’s my second iPod as well. The first one lasted only three months and one day stopped to turn on. So, I was thinking it’s now dead and as I had money left from my computer budget, I used it to buy a new one. But somehow it started working again after some days, when I already had got the new iPod. So, I had two of them and was trying to sell old one in eBay. To my unfortunate, the highest bidder never paid and answered to my emails, so I had to wait over a month to cancel the deal. During this period that iPod was in the box at the bottom of my back bag and when I finally took it out, the Home button was in loose and it never took any power in. So, I just throw it away. So, better keep it in your pocket and use every day to be sure that it will continue working.
On old days, I never encountered so many hardware problems. We used IBM notebooks and usually they needed to be replaced being outdated rather than any hardware problems. So, we were able to concentrate writing software as nowadays, I’m dealing more with hardware problems than are able to write software.


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