I was completely ignorant of partitions, and I think I resized the one on which Windows XP Professional was pre-installed. Hey, where'd my data go? Over the next year, I had loads of newbie problems and started experiencing really weird bugs:
- Certain keys would stop working for no apparent reason;
- Flash would crash Firefox;
- sound of different types progressively failed until I had almost none left;
- I tried to fix Apache by reinstalling and apt-get choked - hard;
- programs compiled from the same source by gcc became inconsistent;
- diffs contained corrupted data.
After I finally got my /home directory backed up correctly, I used fdisk to repartition because I had been warned of the Live CD's "idiosyncrasies" (although I did have to tweak from the CD because of cylinder boundaries). I installed Jaunty and put the data back where it belonged. That messed GNOME up and broke the sudo command, both presumably because the data was generated on Intrepid. So for a while I only ran on the Live CD, which uses RAM as hard drive space; that got old really fast, although Google's storage came in handy.
I tried to install Jaunty on another partition, but the Live CD's second option installed it on a very small one that I had intended for something else. I only found out when the JRE required more space than I had. I had to repartition because the second installation made new sections that I didn't want. After figuring out how to work around memory conversion bugs in the Live CD's partition editor, I finally got a clean install.
I installed Jaunty again to get a programming partition, and again on the partition I intend for Windows so I can debug my /home data. All three use the same /home partition so I can easily transfer data. My backup has a profile folder named "chris" as does my main install, so I had to extract without ruining the clean profile. I managed that by renaming the real one "_chris" and copying the extracted data to the temporary installation's profile. The user ids were (I guess) the same for both users, so ownership was automatically transferred.
The other time that I extracted my data, I only ran into problems after restarting. This time, I tried running Pandora, to lighten up my debugging tedium, and it froze Firefox like the bad old days. So now I know two things about the remaining bugs:
- They reside in my profile;
- they are not all triggered at startup.
- I didn't make a thread for this case, although this one is related; the above case was later and (I think) cross-browser.
- No thread for this one either, but this is related.