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Hardware Hacking

Journal Journal: HD Freeze a Good Way to Recover Data? 1

I'm fairly familiar with the inner workings of a computer, but not by any means an expert. I know how to replace the easy components like RAM and the HD, but not a whole lot beyond that. Recently, my MacBook hard drive started with the click of death and isn't recognized anymore. I got some quotes from some data recovery services and it was looking like it was going to cost between $500 and $2000 to get the data off of the drive.

A friend of mine told me if I bought some dry ice and froze the drive, I'd be able to pull data off of it. He also mentioned this would void the warranty on my hard drive. However, since I can buy a new drive for much cheaper than the recovery service, this is no big deal for me. What I want to know is if this is something I can manage with my limited knowledge of hard drive components. Also... if it's a good idea or will blow up my house.


Journal Journal: What Can I use Instead of iTunes? 1

I've been using iTunes for a few years now. While most of my friends don't bother with things like ratings and such I find those features extremely useful. I rate most of my music and I create dynamic playlists based off of things like play count and last played date and rating to create a relatively fresh rotation of music. I would really love to get out of iTunes entirely and use something slimmer, but I can't seem to find something that will offer what I need.

Here's what I want:
  • The ability to port over all of my existing data such as play count, play history, ratings, etc.
  • Dynamic playlist support. For instance, I want to be able to make a playlist that will only include tracks rated above a certain threshold and hasn't been played in the past ten days.
  • I use XP, so it would have to be Windows compliant. (unless there's a Linux-only solution... that might tip me over the edge on the way to Ubuntu)

Any ideas?

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