My Xbox 360 returns!

Two weeks to the day I shipped it off, my Xbox 360 arrived back at work via UPS. I’m an utter crap bastard when it comes to blogging since I do have an almost finished post on “Shipping your fooked 360 to Microsoft” which I should have posted earlier, but I’ll do that tomorrow.

Anyhoo, here it is in all it’s boxed glory (a different box from what I sent it in):



Neato! There’s a cracking letter explaining what was broken, which in this case was the motherboard. So nothing major then…


And I like how I’m an Xbox Enthusiast, I’d have preferred Paying Customer who doesn’t like faulty hardware, but then I’d have never have bought a 360 if that was really the case.

They’ve given me a 1 month Xbox Live Gold Subscription Card which is cool. Unfortunately they don’t seem to have put the case on properly since I had trouble connecting the hard drive and the power supply especially. For the latter it looks like the case is slightly off to the left, but some brute force sorted that out.

I checked the serial number and it is indeed my Xbox 360, not a refurbished one like they seem to be doing over in the U.S. So I should have no issues playing all my Xbox Live Arcade games offline. It’s still as noisy as ever and it had forgotten it’s wireless network settings, but that’s not really an issue.

Other than that though, it all seems to be OK! I’m pretty impressed by the turnaround Microsoft did on it since I was told it would be 25 days, so I wasn’t expecting it back until October at the earliest!

So it was nice surprise and at least now I can have a proper go playing that Bioshock demo!

How to tell someone where to stick it

This is how you do it courtesy of

To everyone who thinks Apple owes them money because the iPhone price dropped

Whine a little louder, the starving people in Darfur can’t hear you.

To those of you wondering why my misanthropic tendencies are so well-developed? Shit like “YOU DROPPED THE PRICE, WE DESERVE MONEEEE” is why. I hate entitlement queens, and MacMacs are the worst of all.

Every.Single.Complaint resolves to “Waaah, I want my $200 because I couldn’t wait, WAAAAH”

Fucking crybabies. Get bent all of you, and eat glass.

Ah, genius. Wish I had that kind of, erm, style. I totally agree though. Those asshats who paid silly money for an iPhone when they came out don’t deserve anything back… what’s that old saying? A fool and his money are easily parted?

The IT Crowd – Series 2!

Theitcrowdep2still-792586Doh, I had intended to post about the new series a couple of weeks ago when it started… but well, yeah. Anyhoo, the good news is this.

The IT Crowd is back on Channel Four, with four episodes to go! Originally there were meant to be eight episodes, but Graham Linehan (creator of The IT Crowd and of course Father Ted) noted on his blog:

Sorry about the wait, and sorry there’s only six episodes, but really, if there’d been eight episodes, two of them would have been bollocks.

Btw, his blog is aces, very interesting read. Anyhoo, BoingBoing, as always has links to BitTorrents for the first two episodes.

And related to that, I found details on The IT Crowd USA (NBC Site). Ugh…


It’s not really the same is it?


No.. but fortunately they’ve had the good sense to at least keep Richard Ayoade as Moss. I’d be interested to see what it’s like.

D.O.A. – One Inspiron 640m

Inspn_640mAh dear, less than a year old and kaput. It’s rather a long winded story, but here I go anyway!

Originally I got an Inspiron 640m for meself but it turned out to be so much faster than the Inspiron 9100 I had at work that I started to use it for work. So work kept it. Which was good, because another Inspiron 9100 we had broke and my old one was nicked for parts.

Then a couple months of later it was decided by the powers that be that us developer types should have fully Vista capable laptops, and who I am to disagree with an order like that?

So a Dell Precision M65* was my replacement (and a Dell Precision M90* for the over dev monkey since he wanted more powaaaah!). And off the Inspiron 640m went into the unwashed masses of the rest of the company.

And all was well until a couple of weeks ago I get a call saying the trusty old Inspiron 640m wouldn’t power on. Odd I thought, and it was shipped back to our office. And indeed it wouldn’t. Just a green flash of a battery light and off it went. Great…

Dell_precision_m65_notebookSo I took it apart and found a sticky goo underneath the keyboard and on the chassis. I looked further and it seemed to be on edges of the compartments on the bottom of the laptop and throughout the machine. I asked if something had been spilt on it and the reply back was a negative.

A bit of investigate led me to one of the motherboard supports (i.e. part of the plastic outer casing) which looked to have melted. I managed to peek at the mobo and noticed it had scorch marks. The support was on the left hand side of the machine, next to the fan mounting which is just above the CPU. 

So it looks like it had burnt itself out. Cause of? Unknown. But very strange.

Anyway, the little bugger was scavenged for memory (since I’d upgrade it to 2GB) and put to one side, waiting for some spare time to ring Dell support up (not a fun job). Still, it’s a bit of a sad end to what was a very good machine.

Well maybe not for World of Warcraft, regardless of what other peeps say…

* Ignore the exact specs of the reviews on the Precisions. Our beasties both have Intel Core 2 Duo T7600’s running at 2.4Ghz with 4GB RAM and NVidia Quadro’s!

One Year On…


Well I managed to do better at getting in to work today than I did on the 5th September 2006. I even tempted fate and took the same route at almost the same time.

So, where are things a year on? Well, I’m still trucking :) Oh, and happily married :). Our first anniversary is on the 22nd and I’m whisking wifey off to Italy.

Anyhoo, it took nearly 4 months to get another car sorted (mine was a write off). So Kate’s trusty Escort was commandeered so I could get to work. It held up pretty well, after it’d had a service and been welded back together (she’s had it 3 years and not had it serviced once!).

My insurers, Direct Line, were pretty good at errr… coughing up the dough. I was surprised that my insurance premium actually went down when it was renewed earlier in the year.

Most of my problems were because the car wasn’t my own, but a company one and so there are various other peeps involved. And as everyone knows, the more people you get involved in something, the longer it takes to get anything done…

The other party still refuses to accept any liability and amusingly on Monday just gone, I had to fill in forms to take him to small claims court to recover various losses (company car payments for new car, insurance policy excess, etc).

I would have hoped that by now that would have been sorted, but there you go. Hopefully in a years time I can report that it’s all done and dusted!