Microsoft Saves the Day on Friday the 13th

July 14, 2007 at 6:43 am (computer art, Digital Art) (, , , , , , , , , )

The trouble began when I decided to free up some space on my overly-full hard drive. I removed some large programs that I rarely use, Encarta, Big Box of Art, Macromedia Freehand and a few others.  Suddenly I could no longer access the internet.   When I tried to shut down the computer, it would remain hanging, forcing me to do a hard restart.  I thought I’d easily resolve the problem by doing a defrag of my system, but I got a message saying it requires 15% free space to complete this operation, whereas I only have 10% free space on my hard drive.  

I then came up with the brilliant idea to do a System Restore, which would allow me to go back to a point in time before I removed the programs.  This was unsuccessful.  I spent several hours trouble shooting the problem until I finally decided to put in a service call to Microsoft.  My hopes weren’t overly optimistic.  It is Friday the 13th, and although I’m not  superstitious, prior experience with IT Departments left me feeling skeptical. 

I Thought I Might Be In For Some Cosmic Retribution

I noted the irony, after my last blog entry praising the PC and mocking my Mac Powerbook Pro.  I thought I might be in for some cosmic retribution.  I reached a Microsoft Service Department in New Delhi, India. The service person,  Sumitan Kaushal, was working the graveyard shift, 12 and a half hours ahead of Vancouver time.  My call went in at 6 pm my time and he so patiently and politely guided me through a labyrinth of steps, using the process of elimination, until we finally arrived at a solution three hours later. It turned out that uninstalling the programs had created a conflict with Norton Antivirus, which I then had to uninstall and reinstall.

Maybe I’m still entrenched in student mode, but I actually enjoyed this learning experience.  Sumitan was a consumate professional throughout the process.  It was like attending a captivating seminar.  Microsoft should be proud to have him as one of its own.  His service was beyond excellent.  In a show of appreciation, I afterwards sent an email to his management, commending the great service.  It certainly confirmed my faith in the PC and Microsoft.   And it’s a darn good thing, because just yesterday I slapped down more than $6000 to have a brand new custom built computer, that will run Vista. With a dual quad core processor and 6 gigs of RAM, watch out!  My digital art will be smokin’ !!


  1. Joni Solis said,

    I have a new PC with Vista and I am still trying to figure it out. Many of my programs had to be updated to work with it and some just will not work with it at all. I also had to buy a new scanner and printer to go with the Vista PC – my old ones wouldn’t work with vista. I do wish you the best and hope you keep us posted about your new computer.

    >My digital art will be smokin’ !!

    Your art is already smokin hot and I haven’t a clue about why you are needing to go to school. Keep living your dreams and sharing them!

  2. Austin of Sundrip said,

    Norton Anti-Virus is the root of all evil. LOL I hate those people. I can’t say I’m a fan of Vista either but I am a fan of your creations so smoke away……

    I have 1G of hard drive space with 85% free.. It’s shameful really. The only art programs I have are Picture It Publish It, which I do all my work in with occasional brush stroke in the even worse written program Corel Painter Classic. Somehow people like this stuff but if they knew the sad programs I use to create it they’d cry with me and for me.

    Anyway, glad you got the NAV thing fixed. I’m just not a fan of those people.

    PS. I dream of owning a MAC and Corel Painter 9.5 (keep dreamin’ I’ll never see it) I really like your work though. I look forward to seeing more.


  3. galefraney said,

    Hi Joni and Austin,

    Thank you for your interesting comments. So far I’ve only loaded Norton & CS3 Design Suite onto my new computer. Norton wasn’t compatible, so I had to go to the Symantec site and get the newer compatible version, which wasted the good portion of an afternoon, trying to figure out what to download. I’ve not yet tried loading my other programs, and I’m a bit afraid because I’ve heard that there are so many programs that aren’t compatible. For example, I’ve not yet tried loading the software for my Epson 4000 printer. I hope it will go smoothly and be compatible. Since I’m in school and the workload and homework is enormous, a few wasted hours troubleshooting an installation problem or operating system incompatibility can waste so much valuable time that I could have been using to work on school assignments.

    Yes, I hear Corel Painter 9.5 is amazing. I would love to learn the program if I had more time, maybe one day I will. 🙂

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