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10:01 am on Sep 7, 2018 (gmt 0)

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A power surge destroyed several devices in my home last night.

A construction company was doing work on the street in the middle of the night. It is common to do street work at night when there's light traffic (I'm in a large city.)

They apparently jackhammered into an electrical power line, one of several supplying power to my high rise building, somehow causing a power surge and knocking everything I had connected off line.

I was downstairs in the gym and all the lights went off. The elevators were also knocked out. Took a couple hours for power to be restored.

Everything on one side of my place that wasn't behind power surge protectors is now toast: my (old) desktop Windows 10 work machine, an audio effects rack of several components, a cable TV router, and a couple lamps with one of the bulbs bursting.

I have all windows machines cloud sync'd and files shared so not too much on my desktop was lost (I don't think.) I also have external backups.

Very bizarre. Only one of the audio components was actually plugged into the wall electrical outlet, but they were all connected and all are destroyed.

Everything else was either behind surge protectors or was connected to wall outlets presumably on a different circuit so they are all good.

My ISP will be out later today to replace the TV cable box and my home owner insurance should cover the other stuff after my deductible... and no one got injured.
10:25 am on Sept 7, 2018 (gmt 0)

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Oh, how annoying. There's some work involved in fixing all that at your end, and the recovery of the data is probably the worst. hopefully, it's just the power supply on the Windows machines.

Good to hear nobody was injured.
1:53 pm on Sept 7, 2018 (gmt 0)

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We once had damaged poser cables cause a huge surge. This was in Sri lanka where such thing are more common, so we had surge supressors on everything. Neighbours mostly lost things that were plugged in all day like fridges.

Another surge there (before I got careful about having surge suppressors) caused smoke to pour out of a PC. I lost the power supply and the built in ethernet, so a replacement power supply and a network card restored it to working condition.

We also once had sustained high voltage, and the (ceiling, not computer) fans were spinning round faster than usual but they survived it.

Very bizarre. Only one of the audio components was actually plugged into the wall electrical outlet, but they were all connected and all are destroyed.


Ouch. Explicable - it does not take much to damage stuff if it goes in through a low voltage port/socket.
2:51 pm on Sept 7, 2018 (gmt 0)

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That is not what you needed. Quite a setback, even if temporary and lots of extra busywork. I hope it can all be restored quickly.
3:48 pm on Sept 7, 2018 (gmt 0)

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Oh, cripes.
A construction company was doing work
A few years ago, my corner of the state was without Internet for several days because someone had cut the cable connecting us to the rest of the world. (I do not live in a major city.) Initially it was assumed vandalism, but it eventually turned out to be CalTrans. I remember thinking at the time that it sounded like a punchline gone astray.
9:03 pm on Sept 7, 2018 (gmt 0)

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Doing the desktop autopsy now.

Definitely the power source is trash, but also seeing the singed terminal to the MB and lots of burned-up fuzzy stuff I assume was formerly dust, lint and kitty hair from yesteryear's GF's pet Felini.

Seriously coming to the conclusion that I will move on from using a desktop at all. I do have 2 other Window 10 machines that are mobile & more suited to today's usage. This may be the opportune time to let go of old habits.

As said above, most all important files are cloud based so no loss there. What I will lose are several old dinosaur programs no longer available but which I've become comfortable using over the years and will likely miss. In order to retrieve those programs and their drivers and other files, i would need to invest time & money to resurrect this machine, which I guess I won't do.

Guess this was the nudge I needed.
9:52 pm on Sept 7, 2018 (gmt 0)

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You can put hard drives in an external drop-in USB case and read them from another like machine. An inexpensive piece of equipment that can come in handy. Assuming the drives can be read.
10:33 pm on Sept 7, 2018 (gmt 0)

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Thanks not2easy, I had considered something like that but have come to the conclusion to move on.
7:08 pm on Sept 11, 2018 (gmt 0)

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Just completed switching out all electricity outlets to surge suppressor outlets in my music studio. Will also continue to use the surge suppressor strips for a few of the high-end devices. The studio was not hit with the power surge but it got me thinking proactively.

Will do the same to my home tomorrow.
9:06 pm on Sept 11, 2018 (gmt 0)

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The studio was not hit with the power surge but it got me thinking proactively.

Will do the same to my home tomorrow.
Times like this, itís important to keep oneís priorities straight :)
9:41 pm on Sept 11, 2018 (gmt 0)

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Well the studio generated the income to buy the home, so yeah :)

I have no problem putting music before all other things. It's how I maintain my sanity (or at least maintain the appearance of said sanity.)
11:07 pm on Sept 11, 2018 (gmt 0)

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I have no problem putting music before all other things
Well, where else would anyone put it?
1:47 am on Sept 12, 2018 (gmt 0)

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:)
8:14 pm on Sept 12, 2018 (gmt 0)

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@keyplyr
Great story... Thanks! [sarcasm]
I have a work crew digging up the street in front my house right now. Power cables aren't buried, but all it takes is one lazy backhoe operator to drive around with a raised shovel and zapp! there goes the neighborhood.
You've got me stressing!

On a more positive note, thanks to the post I have taken the time to unplug my tube amps from the wall, so if anything happens they'll be safe.
8:50 pm on Sept 12, 2018 (gmt 0)

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I've been installing sure suppressors in certain places to help protect selected pieces of equipment. Worth doing, imho.
9:04 pm on Sept 12, 2018 (gmt 0)

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Don't forget to protect your phone lines, if you are not on fibre to the router..
10:23 pm on Sept 12, 2018 (gmt 0)

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"phone lines?"

Thanks for the FYI, but I haven't used phone lines in many years, although they are probably in the walls of my (22 year old) building. Yes, all internet connectivity is done with fibre optic cable in my city.

The mobile networks are in the middle of switching all towers to 5g and are promising an ETA sometime in 2020. My next computer will be 5g.
 

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