July 23, 2015

Rokka - Braves of the Six Flowers

So, while torrenting is down, I checked out CrunchyRoll, and ended up watching the first two episodes of Rokka - Braves of the Six Flowers because it looked like it had a bunny girl.

There are worse reasons for watching an anime.

Actually, for the typical Pseudo-medieval fantasy, where god-chosen warriors must unite to fight an ancient evil, it's managing to stick in a few unexpected twists, or at least interesting variants. The bunny princess is actually an extremely capable fighter, although not terribly experienced (and I can't tell for sure if the ears are part of her headdress, they probably are.). The roguish guy has been training almost all his life to be worthy of being chosen, and another warrior is known to the princess - he's one of her vassals who nearly bested her in the annual tournament. You see, this ancient evil keeps a reasonably consistent schedule, and with it being 300 years since the last attack, they're due. So they're not all strangers, and the choosing isn't a total surprise.

But the real surprise comes up in the second episode, and so this is a spoiler. One of the chosen is a warrior who has a rifle, and the power she manifests, as opposed to all the flying light blade powers everyone else has so far, is she can spontaneously make gunpowder, creating paper-wrapped cartridges around her supply of iron balls. She also an Albino, and keeps one eye covered. But where it really gets interesting is that she's a misanthrope, and apparently she's been going around the country murdering those who potentially might have been chosen. Rogeish Guy doesn't know that, and he's the first one to find her.

Clearly this is going to change, since this is only the second episode, but still, imagine if Sailor Mars was beating the crap out of her classmates just to keep them out of the running from maybe becoming one of the scouts. You gotta wonder whose side she's on.

So yeah, Albino Nutgirl, only not as fun-crazy as Shiro.

Posted by: Mauser at 03:40 AM | Comments (1) | Add Comment
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July 21, 2015


Cloning the HD still seems to be out of the question. so it looks like a new install is in order. On the plus side, it allows me to get rid of some legacy stuff from my previous system migration and turn on some more features of my motherboard. Like, for example UEFI booting, and changing my SATA mode from IDE emulation to AHCI.

This was tricky to make happen, and I'm not entirely sure how much better it will make things (since I'm still mid-transition) but I'm told it is an important step for the future, and it was darned tricky to make happen, involving downloading an ISO of the installer, and using a program to burn a DVD and to burn it to an SD/USB thumb drive, which while an interesting exercise, failed to twig the necessary bits to make the installer format the Hitachi 2TB drive in UEFI mode. The eventual trick was forcing the DVD drive to boot in UEFI mode, and then the installer was happy to also format the drive in UEFI.

After that it was simple install, load motherboard drivers (and their updates) and 217 Windows updates to have a virginal Win 7 install to work with.

The next trick will be trying to copy all my programs and their local data, and if necessary, the proper registry keys so as to not have to re-build EVERYTHING.

It's not the best result, which would have been to be able to clone the drive and continue on as if nothing had happened, but I have hope that things will be back to working. I was plagued with crashes and freezes and a boot drive that required a power cycle to reboot, and which had run out of spare sectors. Right now I had to turn off the page file and boot in safe mode just to run for more than 5 minutes. And it's been getting worse.

Pray for me....

Posted by: Mauser at 03:21 AM | No Comments | Add Comment
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July 09, 2015

If it Weren't for Etna...

... I wouldn't be online at all.

Seems that Seagate hard drives are becoming deprecated. Guess what Himawari's OS is installed on. Bit Rot has set in, and though I only know of three files that were affected (and nothing major was lost) there could be more, and at least one bad sector turned up in the worst place, the Master Boot Record. I discovered the problems after I got back from LibertyCon, and I found myself staring at a black screen saying some NT file couldn't be loaded.  It was trying to boot from my E: drive, which only contains my Anime files and a copy of my old XP install (trimmed) where I have some programs I want to remember to reinstall someday.

Much shenanigans ensued, and are still going on. I went out and bought two new WD 3 TB hard drives (last day of the sale at Fry's, $89 each!!) only to find that Win7 won't install on anything bigger than 2 TB. E: is a Hitachi 2 TB, so much juggling has ensued.

Now occasionally C:/D: can be induced to boot, usually by unplugging E: (the two partitions are a legacy of XP not being able to handle a big drive). After a successful boot, I can restart and connect E: and it will pretend everything's okay. But if you run the drive too hard, it seems to crash and reboot the system (and fail to boot the drive).

And it gets worse, as cloning software fails time and again ("If there weren't bad sectors, I wouldn't be cloning. No! Don't give up on the whole thing!") Windows Backup of course doesn't include the OS or the Program files (!) but the system image may. Only trying to install the system image on the other drive doesn't work because it's not the same drive, or something. It has been one frustrating failure after another.

(The worst was an attempt to install Win7 on the Hitachi. The configuration was ODD! My account had admin privs, but every time I went to delete large numbers of unneeded junk files being restored, it would demand that I click on a button saying I'm an administrator to delete them.  And then I've spent a couple of attempts to have the Win7 Install disk fix the boot process of the Hitachi, only to find out that the C: partition was blank, but the D: wasn't.)

It's even more complicated than that. I extracted all of the Windows Backup to one of the new 3 TB WD drives and set it aside just to be safe, and duplicated E: and D: to the other (the intent was to somehow get just C: on the Hitachi drive). I know my data is safe, and there are a couple of images of the rest of the system floating around, but getting anything to put them together in a way that WORKS isn't working.

In the meantime, I haven't been able to do anything useful on Himawari in over a week. I even missed the opening of the public Beta of World of Warships! Okay, that might not count as being anything useful either, but hey, it was a holiday weekend....

Posted by: Mauser at 04:20 AM | No Comments | Add Comment
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