Disk and Radio Updates

I now have a matched pair of 500G Hitachi SATA disks (in stripped Sun Unipack enclosures) as my external disk and Time Machine backup disk, to avoid a repeat of a couple weeks ago.

As for radio stuff, a week after I bought the FRG-100 from a friend, another friend said “Hey, I have a Kenwood TS-430S here that you can have for cost of shipping.” DOH! Anyway, $80 in shipping fees later, I now have this setup for when I pass my General upgrade exam:

Kenwood TS-430 Amateur Radio Setup

Left to right: AT-250 automatic antenna tuner, TS-430S transceiver, PS-430 power supply.

I’ll eventually have to send it off for minor repair of a known problem and a tuneup, but that will only cost me $200. For a grand total of around $300, this is a VERY NICE rig that still runs around $600 with the extra components on eBay.

Now I have to figure out how I’m going to get a decent antenna up in the limited space I have available.

Well, Dammit.

Got out of bed this morning (I’ve been sick for the past three days), walked into the office, and my external 250G hard drive (a Western Digital combo USB2/Firewire unit) is making “CLACK. CLACK. CLACK” noises. It’s dead.

I lost a bit of stuff obtained via BitTorrent, along with lots of PDF archive documents, some work I’d done scanning a 300-page book to release as a PDF (with the author’s permission), and worst of all, the 40G of scanned comic books I’d collected over the past three years. I have nobody to blame but myself – I had another external 250G disk here that I’d been intending to hang off the Airport Extreme and use for backup for months now, but I never got off my ass and set it up.

After I finished being angry about the dead drive (which was TWO MONTHS out of its one-year warranty), I hooked up the other disk and set up Time Machine to do backups of my internal drive for now.

Thanks to a consulting client of mine, I’ve got two 500G Hitachi SATA disks on the way that should be here early next week. I’ll be putting each of them in a gutted Sun 411 disk enclosure, replacing the internal SCSI bits with a Sabrent USB2 to SATA adapter.

Once those disks are ready, I’ll be dedicating one of them as a Time Machine backup disk, with the other in two partitions; one for “critical” data (will be backed up) and the other for non-critical data (not backed up). The single 500G external for Time Machine should be plenty to keep a “rescue” copy of all the data on my internal (250G) drive and the 250G “critical” external.

This will leave my current USB2-based external 250G disk that I’m using for Time Machine until the 500Gs get here; I’ll either keep it detatched and hook it up once a month for “last ditch” backups, or hang it off the old Dell SC420 in the other room that does nothing but rsnapshot backups of my colocated server in Austin.