How do you rebuild something that's been lost forever?
That's been my quest since I realized that the data that was on my computer is NOT COMING BACK.
The only thing to do is to start over, and -- without the baggage of having to live with bad decisions you made on previous computers (weird file setups, layers and layers of archives, etc.) -- you try to build it all better.
One thing that strikes me is how much quicker my computer is running now. The hard drive was probably already failing when I was at BlogHer, which is why I couldn't live blog LIVE over there and spent two hours after each session just fixing weird involunatry typos.
But I know part of my computer's slowness was due to all kinds of crap that various programs stuck into my startup routine, hogging my computer's memory and causing it to take a loooong time to bootup. I'm nipping that in the bud by going into startup every time I reinstall a program and removing all the extraneous bits I don't want as soon as I see them (because otherwise, I can't tell what they are or if I actually do need them).
And I'm going somewhat analog. Among the ton of BlogHer swag I received was a little black book titled the Internet Password Organizer. It's a simple idea - it resembles an address book with alphabetized pages. But instead of phone numbers, you record websites and passwords. When I saw it in the beautiful bag I received from Silicon Valley Moms Blog, I didn't think I would have a use for it, as I kept every password email I ever received in an Outlook folder and could do a quick search whenever I forgot one.
But I can't do that now. And a hard copy backup is starting to look good. So this book is my new right-hand (so to speak, as I'm a leftie). I'm not sure where I want to keep it -- don't really want to pack it in my laptop bag, so I guess it will stay somewhere in the house. I just hope I don't lose it!
Some of the files that were lost date back seven or eight years -- and if I really wanted THOSE, I do have old backups.
But the stuff that's lost forever is the material that has built up since I purchased this computer in 2007 - oh yes, and from a couple of years before that, because a few months ago the external hard drive I was using for backups had failed and I was TOO CHEAP to spend $100 on a new one.
I've learned that lesson. No more waiting around for help in repairing something as important as that.
Anyway, like I said - I'm focusing on rebuilding. My husband successfully managed to transfer all the media files from my iPod to a newly installed version of iTunes. I am now able to bore all of my friends with Series 4 and 5 of the British TV show Shameless ... and I can't use the "I don't have my iPod" excuse to avoid working out at the gym.
All my Playlists got lost in the transfer, but that's just a minor inconvenience among so many major inconveniences I am facing.
Like what to do about all the financial stuff that had been in Quicken. I need to pay bills today. I can download bank statements from the last few months, but don't know if I can get them dating back to the beginning of the year.
And there is the ever-present nuisance of hunting down email addresses that no longer exist in my contact list. If you sent me an email in the last couple of weeks and I haven't replied - or if I have promised a reply and you haven't received it... please accept my apologies.