Hooray for old hardware

My current hobby of playing decades old console video games through emulation is contingent upon some rather old PCs continuing to work as if they were new.  When I think about how my newest and main emulation PC is seven years old now, and how its backup is eleven years old, I realize that things like computer parts just don’t last forever.

So eventually I’ll have to buckle down and buy a new emulation PC.  But I can forestall this as long as I take proper care of my hardware.  There is no need for me to upgrade right now, especially since I can’t work due to the migraine associated vertigo I suffer from.  (This is also what’s keeping me from my current set of video game reviews, in case you’re wondering.)

I can look forward to the wonders of emulating the Nintendo Game Cube and the Sony PSP when I eventually do get a new PC, but that will have to wait until I’m working again.  In the meantime, I just wanted to rant about how I managed to “save” a hard drive I thought was dead.

Back in 2011, my music editing and (at the time) gaming computer suffered a really nasty crash.  The motherboard had some capacitors go on it and at the very same time, the hard drive crashed.  I suspect that the first event somehow caused the second.  I probably ranted about this on this blog when it happened.  I remember my Windows XP installation had gotten all fucked up, and it wanted me to activate Windows, thinking that it had now been installed on a RAID configuration of some sort.

Well, I bought a hard drive enclosure so that I could try to rescue some of the music I had edited from the hard drive.  I was unsuccessful, and I lost a bunch.  It turns out it wasn’t much of a loss because my editing methods since then have improved greatly and I would have re-done all that stuff anyway.

But after I replaced that computer (the last Dell I will ever fucking buy), I put the dead hard drive and enclosure in storage and forgot about them.  Until recently.

Now, I have an external hard drive hooked up to my emulation PC that gives me access to my collection of ripped PlayStation 1 discs, my Sega CD games, and my TurboGrafx-CD games.  Like a bolt out of the blue, I just suddenly remembered that I had a drawer full of old hard drives and an enclosure, and I decided to see if I could make use of any of them.

It turns out that I could use about half of that 500GB hard drive, and that takes care of my needs comfortably.  Even nicer is that the “backup” emulation PC that I leave it connected to has a firewire port, and I can use that instead of having it take up one of the relatively few USB ports that thing has.

It’s not much to celebrate, but it’s better than having these items collect dust.  And I think it’s good to see a hard drive I thought was ruined serve at least some purpose.