Archive for the 'Tech Toys' category

Recover from BAD_POOL_HEADER blue screen errors after upgrading hard drive

July 27, 2009 10:00 am

I noticed recently that I’d get logged off from my computer over night. I’d leave the system running at night without logging off, and in the morning I’d have to log in again, with all the previously running programs gone. I had recently added a SATA controller in order to be able to run three SATA drives on this particular system (it only has 2 SATA ports on the motherboard), so I thought the culprit was a bad driver for the new card. Turns out that wasn’t it.

My computer runs backups over night (I use MozyHome), which shouldn’t be a problem, really. But as part of the backup, a volume shadow copy snapshot is made, and this step caused the blue screen error.

In addition to adding a SATA controller, I had also bought a bigger hard drive to hold my ever expanding collection of pictures, vacation videos, etc. When I installed it, I cloned the old drive (which was a PATA drive) to carry all the information forward onto the new drive.

Apparently, after you install a cloned a hard drive, some information is retained on the system about the old drive, and this affects volume shadow copies.

I had to go to Device Manager and turn on “Show hidden devices”:


Then, under Storage Volumes, I had to delete one in particular that seemed to have gotten a corrupted name (something like Generic Volume□□□ [not shown in this screenshot, since it’s fixed now]):


Just for good measure I deleted all of them (although they didn’t seem to really disappear), ignoring the request to reboot after each prompt to do so.

When I was done, a couple of reboots of Windows recreated the necessary information about these volumes from the (old and new) hardware. After that the volume shadow copy snapshots no longer failed and I was able to run my backups without blue screen errors.

Credits for this find go to the folks in this thread:

Pictures in my Windows 7 Theme Pack

January 28, 2009 10:29 am

In case you’ve seen my Windows 7 Theme Pack, here are the pictures that are in it. You may want to know if they’re worth it before you download the 12+ MB of .themepack file.

Old, eroded brick wall 

Clouds in the sunset

Sunset 2


A huge mural of Peanuts comics

Downtown skyline with Mount Rainier in the distance

Loom heddles 2

Dale Chihuly's glass ceiling at the Bellagio hotel in Las Vegas.

View from the Crab Shack

Grand Canyon sunset

Freshly cut strawberries

My first Windows 7 Theme Pack

January 27, 2009 11:21 pm

Just so I can say that I jumped on a bandwagon once: Mike Swanson inspired me to create my very own Windows 7 Theme Pack. It contains 12 pictures I’ve taken over the past year or so with my trusty old Canon PowerShot S30 (yes, I’m still running around with a camera that only does 3 megapixels.)

I’ve included a few photos in the pack that I managed to have included in the Spring 2009 software for the HP TouchSmart PC. They’re in the Personalize – Background area, should you be interested in finding them. Here’s one you may recognize:

Downtown Seattle, Mount Rainier and the harbor

While I didn’t put this one in the Theme Pack, I did pick a similar shot of downtown Seattle. Come to think of it, maybe this post will be inspiration for doing a “picture of the day” type of thing. Hmm. Been wanting to do that for a while.

All I can do now is hope the size of the pack (12 MB or so) won’t blow my bandwidth allowance…

Crayon Physics is out now!

January 9, 2009 7:48 pm

Just in case you haven’t seen it, this is probably the neatest geek game out there right now (next to World of Goo).

Crayon Physics Deluxe from Petri Purho on Vimeo

Go get it at

Perfect for the HP TouchSmart PC, by the way!