What's the dumbest mistake you ever made on your computer?

Discussion in 'Community' started by Doctor Q, Oct 23, 2002.

  1. Doctor Q Administrator

    Doctor Q

    Staff Member

    Sep 19, 2002
    Los Angeles
    We all make mistakes when using our computers. Sometimes they are easy to fix, but sometimes not. What's the dumbest mistake you've made?

    Wiped out your homework or Ph.D. dissertation or new novel by accident? Trashed a client's database without a backup? E-mailed a love letter to the wrong person? Posted your credit card number in a newsgroup? Come on, fess up!

    I'll go first. I wanted to impress a magazine columnist with my clever analysis of an article he wrote. I pasted in a bunch of text from various sources, intending to pick and choose facts to summarize. I added a few notes to myself. Then I clicked Send instead of Save. I immediately sent an Oops - disregard previous e-mail message but I ended up looking pretty darn foolish.

    Your turn!
  2. mattevil macrumors member

    Jun 19, 2002
    a long time ago i couldn't figure out why my ethernet wasn't working and i found out i was using a phone cord rather than cat 5 wire (i knew needed cat 5 too)
    that's pretty embarassing.
  3. edesignuk Moderator emeritus


    Mar 25, 2002
    London, England
    When I got my first PC and was totally new to the world of computing.
    I (just about) figured out how to add a second hdd to my PC, a 10Gb drive as my 1.6Gb was almost full. I decided that I wanted my OS on the new drive (slave) and to then use the 1.6Gb as backup for files, so, being the novice I was i just cut and paste the 'WINDOWS' folder from the c: drive onto the new d: drive....I'll let you figure out what happened when I tried to reboot :( :p :rolleyes:
  4. diorio macrumors 6502a

    Aug 22, 2002
    The dumbest thing I've ever tried to do is run a game with requirements about 5x more than what my computer can run, freezing up my computer. My video card also went out but I'm not sure what caused it.
  5. Taft macrumors 65816


    Jan 31, 2002
    I have a friend who tried to install an Airport card while his iBook was still on. It fried his logic board.

  6. beez7777 macrumors 6502a


    Aug 5, 2002
    Notre Dame
    i non commercially file shared, which led to the opening of a corrupt file. next thing i know the os cant recognize my hdd and i need to reformat, wasnt that bad tho, ive done worse things on my pc:)
  7. richierich macrumors newbie

    Jun 14, 2002

    I managed to crash OSX + XP simultaneously on my ibook and lovely Dell PC!!!!!!!

    God knows how I did it, but probably my best to date........ apart from maybe the night before my professional Architecture exam (a 3 day exam done at work), I was printing out stuff at work and managed to totally crash the server so it wouldn't turn on again!!!!

    I was in charge of the IT in the office so in between doing questions I was fixing it - total nightmare!

    I think I am quite good at this...............
  8. fragiledreams macrumors member

    Aug 26, 2001
    Athens, Greece
    I did put a memory module incorrectly resulting... smoke and fire :D
  9. ejb190 macrumors 65816


    I couldn't get a disk to eject from my Powerbook's VST Zip drive. In the process of getting mad at not getting the paperclip to work, I managed to break the drive. Costly mistake...but I did get the disk out.
  10. kenkooler macrumors regular

    Jan 2, 2002
    Mexico City
    forgot the root password on a linux box with 4000 mp3s...
  11. bomega macrumors newbie

    Oct 22, 2001
    Amsterdam, Netherlands
    I rule!

    Okay, my list of stupid things I did with my computer:

    I once wrote a report of about 10 pages. I saved every 10 seconds because I didn't want to lose anything. Someone called me so I stood up and tried to press COMMAND S to save. But I missend and pressed COMMAND A then S and then COMMAND S which left me with a saved document which contained one "s"...

    One night I left my Powerbook open because I was working on a book and I was almost finished. I was looking after someone's house and they had a cat, the cat peed on my Powerbook so the next day I turned it on and it didn't wake up but started to smoke...

    A guy I knew didn't know what aliasses where but he did notice they did the same as programs. He even went as far as testing both files and yes, they funtioned exactely the same. So he made aliasses for all programs on all the computers in my school, tested them all and then deleted all programs.

    Computers are great fun!
  12. scem0 macrumors 604


    Jul 16, 2002
    back in NYC!
    I deleted the HD without aking my sister, and I deleted about 20 'really important pictures' of her with her friends. I don't understand girls...... :eek: :rolleyes: ;)
  13. edesignuk Moderator emeritus


    Mar 25, 2002
    London, England
    I'm sure you're not the first to think that ;) :D
  14. Skandranon macrumors regular

    Feb 1, 2002
    North Carolina
    Weeping with laughter!

    This thread is AWESOME. Thanks, Doc Q. You guys just made my day, man.

    Alright, my turn:

    I was sitting in a Mac computer cluster, working on a Power Mac G4. The desks were all side by side, rows and rows of Power Macs. I had two other people working on either side of me.

    The setup itself was exactly like the one I had in my apartment, with the Power Mac tucked neatly by my feet and a brilliant 15" LCD flat panel display on the desktop. I was working on IE when the damn computer crashed on me. I barked an expletive and reached down to the Power Mac next to me and hit the reboot button.

    Next thing I know, my neighbor's LCD display winked out and the reboot chime resonated through the cluster. My screen meanwhile didn't even blink.

    I could have sworn I heard this guy's neck crack the way his head snapped back. He spun around to face me with bulging, bloodshot eyes.

    "What did you do." He said in a flat, murderous voice. I felt the blood rush from my face.

    What I neglected to realize was that despite the fact that the setup mirrored my own at home, the computers in the clusters were situated to the RIGHT of each user. Since I've got my Power Mac at home on my left, it was only natural that I hastily lunge over in that direction for a reboot button.

    I tried explaining this to the guy next to me, but when he started breathing heavily, I gathered up my goods and hauled ass out of there.

  15. solvs macrumors 603


    Jun 25, 2002
    LaLaLand, CA
    I installed Win98. First Edition. Almost as bad as WinME. Almost.
  16. scem0 macrumors 604


    Jul 16, 2002
    back in NYC!
    Oh yeah, and once I was at school, and while passing through the library I tripped over a cord, and all the computers turned off. I am a really good actor though (not to brag) and I acted like I didn't know who had done it. The librarians would have gotten pissed. The librarians at my new school are 10x worse though.... :D
  17. P-Worm macrumors 68020


    Jul 16, 2002
    Salt Lake City, UT
    One time I was working around in OS 9. I went to my home folder and decided that i didn't like the user name I had given myself and decided to change the name of it. This was before I realized how OS X works. Your home folder is actually the root deal and when I boot up into OS X I got the message saying that the computer couldn't find the Operating System! Needless to say, I had to almost clean install to get it back to the way it was before.

    All I wanted was a different folder name...:p

  18. jelloshotsrule macrumors G3


    Feb 7, 2002
    last year i was doing my first professional animation.... ie, getting paid for it. it was an after effects puppet animation. at some point after i finished the actual animation, but before the backgrounds and everything were finalized... i reformatted my drive. i had sworn i'd backed everything up.... well, of course, i hadn't

    lost the original puppets and the ae file. luckily i had the rendered movie..... so rather than replacing the background layer. piece of cake. i had to mask it all and do it that way.. blah

    but it got done.

    and he was none the wiser... bingo
  19. King Cobra macrumors 603

    Mar 2, 2002
    The dumbest mistake I ever made was coming to this thread and typing this. :)

    But I did have a problem with installing Mac OS X 10.1 on my iMac 233, with only 64MB of RAM. Man, did that go slow. Even worse, I could not connect to the internet or load Classic. I spent probably a whole day trying to figure out WTH to remove, WTH to try, and WTF to do. I ended up removing OS X after reformatting the Hard Drive back to a single partition and installed OS 9.2.2. I now have 160MB RAM for that sucker. :rolleyes:
  20. Goblin2099 macrumors member

    Jul 18, 2002
    New York City
    Over this past summer I had an internship at a production company. One of their DVD players, the kind that are tall and long in the back but not wide at all, had a DVD stuck in it, so I offered to fix it. It turns out, in a move almost stupider than the one I was about to make, that someone was actually lazy enough to tilt the drive backwards while trying to eject the disk. Anyway, I start unscrewing things, keeping track of everything and not having any problems. Of course, these things aren't mean to be opened, and it's just one case within another within another...real pain in the ass, but only a few wires needed to be temporarily pulled out. I fish out the DVD, and put it back together, with an extra screw factor of three. I test it out, with a Krystoff Kierslowski movie if I remember, and, lo and behold, it works just fine. A couple hours later, I go back to it, touch the casing, and get the jolt of my life. I had managed to ground it wrong when I put it back together, and a charge had been building up in the case. All was fixed and in the end nothing was harmed, but the editor who saw me when I recoiled from the shock still won't touch the DVD player.
  21. coopdog macrumors 6502a

    Oct 5, 2002
    The Great Midwest

    1. My friend had just gotten his new iBook and called me to come see it. I went over there messed arround w/ it later that night there was a big glass of coke next to it i knocked it all over the keyboard. He and his dad spent hours and about 10 air cans cleaning the board. They took every key off cleaned, blew it out, washed it w/ distilled water, and put them in a weird H20 chamber thing. His dads weird. The next day they sent it to apple got all kinds of new crap for it. It didn't wreck his comp i was surprised!
    2. I had my G4 tray open while holding a fruit punch i bent over to remove a ram chip forgeting i had the drink in my hand. Went all over. This also happened w/ my CDR.
    3. I sent pay pal a bad email that i didn't mean to.
    4. Reformated the wrong HD
    5. Did the dock hack on a bunch of school emacs got in big trubble.
    Thats about it
  22. FelixDerKater Contributor


    Apr 12, 2002
    Nirgendwo in Amerika

    On the PC I decided to delete IE just for the heck of it to see what happened. I knew what the outcome would be, but I had to do it just to see for myself. Bad idea. On the C64, playing my favorite game, I forgot to close the latch on the floppy drive so the disk got screwed up and I could never play it again. Doh!
  23. Mal macrumors 603


    Jan 6, 2002
    On my lime iMac, I ran the restore disc on "erase and install" instead of running the install disc because I thought it would just fix all the problems with the system software. I've since learne better, and I'm now an Apple Tech, but that was pretty embaressing. :p

  24. Sun Baked macrumors G5

    Sun Baked

    May 19, 2002
    I always like the smoke test portion of computer repairs...

    After I finished checking a drive out, one time puff of smoke and a capacitor spews the gut of its winding all over the inside of a floppy drive. Worked after installing a new cap and ribbon cable.

    Then the monster internal fans connected directly to the main power - ooops crossed wire blowing by the surge strip and trips the breaker. :(

    Also cutting the wrong cable/wire is always fun.

    At least I know how to take apart the Apple Pro Keyboards and clean up a spill quite quickly and easily now.

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