Today is the last day of my vacation and I have been messing around with a few things in an attempt to get back into active blogging. Although I have played the hell out of Tropico 4 since May (367 hours on Steam, to the detriment of all other games), there is really not a singular go-to game for me. This afternoon I tried to install the original Rainbow Six game from Red Storm Entertainment, only to find that it does not play nice with Windows 7 (even with all of the compatibility capabilities).

Giving up on that I noticed that Steam is having a sale on 2K Games, with a number of them at a deep discount. I went ahead and picked up The Bureau: XCOM Declassified and three DLC items for less than $10, and presently am waiting for it to download over my wireless connection. A couple of weeks ago my apartment building was struck by lightning, and even though I have a surge protector we lost the router, a Blu-Ray player and my Ethernet connection to this PC has become inoperable.

Early today I spent some time cleaning up my work space, and opened up my Gateway FX6860 computer to see if I could unseat the NIC and put it back to see if that might help, only to find out that the network connection goes straight into the motherboard. At least it gave me an opportunity to dust out the case which I have not done since purchase. The specs on this machine state that it has a PCI-E expansion slot but I did not see one on the case.

Step 1: Dust!!

Step 2: Remove kitten.

Step 3: Done!!

The issue that I am having is that the integrated LAN does not recognize that there is a Cat5 cable plugged into the socket (this was not an issue prior to the lightning strike). I have a cable running from the port to the router now but it still does not recognize that there is a cable connected and the Control Panel Network Connections panel shows the Local Area Connection with a large red X and a notice that the network cable is unplugged.

The tech data on the product page has this under the expansion section:

(2/3) PCI-E x1
(0/1) PCI-E x16

I am really not sure how to interpret that information, and as I mentioned above I did not notice any free slot on the motherboard for me to install a NIC to possibly bypass the integrated hardware which is no longer working (it worked without issue for two year right up until the strike).

While waiting for the new game to download, I tried playing the original Ghost Recon on Steam and it is screwing up now. At first it would not start at all and after verifying the game cache (which did download one file) I was able to play one mission, however now it is back to not working past the main menus (and verify game cache now says everything is fine). This is frustrating as I really enjoyed the original game and wanted to continue the single player campaign I had been posting about.

The new game is almost finished downloading so I am off to try that out to see if it is worth some blog attention.

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