Owies

I’ve had a challenging few weeks.

It started off with a typical sinus infection… or allergies, I’m not sure which exactly. All I know is that I had a sore throat, stuffy nose and semi-regular headaches. I managed it with cold medicine and nose spray the best I could. I continued my normal workout regimen because usually, working out actually helps with congestion. This wasn’t the case this time around.

The problems hung out for a few days. It started to clear up on Friday around my birthday. On Sunday, we decided to go on an 8.5 mile bike ride. It felt great to be out in the sun and spring air. When we got home however, my right ear instantly filled up. It’s like someone poured glue in my ear. It started a high-pitched squeal.

The worst part was the pain. The pain was epic. I’ve never had pain in my ear like that before. It was so brutal that I would try anything to get rid of it. I tried all kinds of home remedies. Nothing worked. A few days later I finally went to the doctor and he confirmed it was just a massive ear infection. They gave me a shot of some plant spores in my ass and sent me on my way.

A day or two later we were sparring in Tae Kwon Do class. I was fighting one of my classmates and decided to do a regular, clean roundhouse kick with my right leg. I brought it up. So did he. We kicked at the same time. Our shins met and clacked like swords. The pain was instant and terrifying.

The bruise was even worse. Fifteen minutes after sustaining the hit my leg was already bruising.

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The pain subsided a little bit. I suppose it was adrenaline kicking in or something. Who knows. It really didn’t feel that bad. Then I got home and noticed my leg was burning. I looked down and discovered that it was pissed.

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This really wasn’t turning out to be my week.

I forgot the best part. While this fantastically shitty week was going on… I was working from home because of how awful I felt and the fact that I was deaf in my right ear. I just wasn’t fit to be around people. I had absolutely zero joy to share with the world. I was working along on and then decided to take a break. I went downstairs to grab a drink or a snack or something. I don’t remember. I came back upstairs and my Macbook Pro was completely black. The fans were running… loud. This wasn’t good. This usually only happens when I’m booted into Windows 8.1.

I pressed a key. Nothing.

I powered it off. I waited a few minutes. I pressed the button once more to turn it back on. I was confident this was all going to be okay.

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Nope.

Yeah, that’s my Macbook Pro with a blue screen of death.

I made a genius appointment. They took it in and held on to it for a few days. They contacted me back around three days later and proclaimed that the Data Doubler part I had put in to run the secondary SSD was faulty. As soon as they unplugged it from the logic board everything was fine. “Weird,” said I, since this had been running fine for three years. I picked the laptop back up. I turned it on. Sure enough, it was fine.

Fifteen minutes or so later, it died again.

thanks apple

I made another genius bar appointment and brought it back. This time I had replace all of the original parts in the MBP.

During this time I worked off my iPad as the primary machine for a few days and then switched to my 2008 Mac Pro. This was fine because I wanted to work from home anyway, thanks to my medical challenges.

On Saturday that week they returned the MBP with a brand new logic board. It’s been working fine ever since. This time, I thank Apple… without the sarcasm.

My leg and my hearing were still bad. At this point I’m in week two of a nightmarish way to start my 43rd year. I was having trouble walking for sure and my leg developed hematomas all over the place from the injury down to the bottom of my foot. I was icing it regularly and doing my best to keep the swelling down. The swelling is what was hurting the most. The injury itself wasn’t that bad.

Now it’s about three weeks later and my hearing has gotten better. I ended up visiting an ENT thanks to a friend of mine who works there. I had been prescribed another round of antibiotics from my regular doctor.

He also put me on blood pressure medicine.

Out of all of the maladies, this was the most crushing I think. I felt like I had failed. Three years ago this doctor had told me to lose weight or face high blood pressure and diabetes. I lost 80 lbs. over the past three years and I’ve managed to keep most of it off. I was putting weight back on this week because… this week. I wasn’t given a choice on the blood pressure medicine. This saddened me for a few days, but the more I think about it, the more I think it was a good idea. We’ll see.

Overall it’s been a really tough week. I’m getting through it. I’ve not really worked out in 2-3 weeks and that’s been tough. I hate feeling like I’m a lazy bastard. I hope the worst is behind me and it’s nothing but up from this point forward. I probably needed a break anyway.

Boot Camp 5 is out with 10.8.3… but beware the Windows 8 Support

I still have a 2008 Mac Pro (3,1) and it’s still running strong. I’ve invested a lot of money in keeping that thing running. I probably won’t do that again for a machine such as this, but for now I intend to keep it afloat for a few more years. Yeah, I know, it’s 5 years old already. Still, it’s a beast. 8 processors with 32gb of RAM and multi-terabytes of hard drive space can last me a little longer.

I was excited to learn that Apple intended to release official Windows 8 drivers for Boot Camp 5 with OS X 10.8.3. I had already installed Windows 8 on a separate partition and it runs pretty nicely. I had to manually add the NVidia video and Realtek audio drivers, but that solved just about every major noticeable issue. Aside from that, it would be nice to have to Boot Camp utility in the systray to boot to the other OS when I wanted and some official HFS+ read support on the Windows OS. I was excited.

10.8.3 dropped yesterday… finally. I hastily ran out to pick it up, install it and launch the Boot Camp utility to download Windows Support. The first irritant was the notice that it would no longer download to a folder of my choice. Now they enforce you to download the WindowsSupport files to a USB disk or MS-DOS FAT drive. Whatevs. I hooked up a USB disk. About midway through the download, it stopped and said, “Oh, hey, by the way… this Mac will only support Windows 7. You okay with that?”

Uhm. Hell no, I’m not okay with that.

I’m not sure if there actually is a component in this Mac that lacks a Windows 8 driver or Apple is just being lazy. I suspect it’s the latter, since a lot of these drivers are stock on Windows 8 or they download when you install the it anyway (one of the nicer new features of Windows 8 – the driver download stuff actually works).

Over on MacRumors I found a forum post that linked out to a support article. Looks like I’m “officially” SOL. However, there’s a way to download the Windows Support drivers without having to go through Boot Camp, which I just did. I’m going to see if I can force feed them to the Mac’s Windows 8 install. We’ll see how far I get. I would prefer to install the drivers individually and just install components that need the drivers. There aren’t many. Mainly, I just want that HFS+ and Boot Camp app support.

The Realtek and NVidia drivers are already out there. That’s why I suspect Apple is being lazy.

If you’re curious, check back later for the results.

UPDATE: It mostly works, but there is some driver in there that makes Windows 8 mad. It bombs with a KERNEL_SECURITY_CHECK_FAILURE. I suspect an “sfc /scannow” will fix that, but I will have to try that later.