Setting Up My New Dell Inspiron 15 (3531) Laptop – Part 8


7:30 AM

wellnessPic_godsHerbsNaturesBotanicalPharmacy_healAllTea_01Woke up and got dressed. Felt constipated so grabbed my tea-ball and made some Heal-All Tea from Nature’s Botanical Pharmacy. Did 60 crunches, 3 5-finger pushups, & 200 dahn-jon taps. Had a bowel movement about an hour later.

Installed DAMN NFO Viewer v2.10.0032 RC3 (latest version from 2002 — yes, it’s that good). This program is useful for viewing the install instructions that come with many torrent, P2P, and warez files. Changed background color to dark gray and text color to light green.

8:15 AM

Installed Acronis True Image Home 2013 & Plus Pack. Took about 10 min. Made a 22GB backup. Took about 30 min.

9:11 AM

After reboot, changed desktop picture to one of Horseshoe Bend in Sedona and moved all desktop files into one folder. Now I will test the restore function. If all works, my files should be back on my desktop and there should be a photo of me as the desktop background.

9:22 AM

No-go. Recovery failed. My image is on an external USB 3.0 hard disk drive (HD). I am trying the restore from within Windows 8.1. Windows keeps restarting each time I attempt the restore, but upon login after restart, everything is still the same; recovery did not happen! Did some Googling and found this post on EightForums.com:

Acronis True Image 2013 and Windows 8.1

Here jimbo45 mentions

“ATH 2014 is actually much better all round — ATH 2012 was a real DOG, ATH 2013 (Boot version) had some issues with external SATA2 and USB3 devices — although a USB3 disk plugged into a USB2 port was accessible.”

Prior to that info my next step would have been to try to build a boot disk on my USB Thumb Drive. However, in light of this new info, I think it will be best to remove ATIH 2013 and install 2014 instead. Will need to install uTorrent first though. It’s cold in the apartment because we don’t have the heat on yet, and that has got me to thinking: 2 bedroom, 2 bath house with yard, good cable internet connection, and pond out back, 4-20 acres of land with trees on it, a river, creek or stream nearby, and my pickup truck and trailer/travelling library/gypsy wagon/tiny home…. This is the dream … also, home-made air conditioner using a trompe system and a solar-powered heating system for winter, with a nice cauldron for cooking stew. 🙂 I have to go pee now, (again — what was in that tea?) but will return shortly.

10:21 AM

Ok … I’m back. Let’s see; where were we? Ah, yes. Now I’m going to install PeerBlock & uTorrent. I may also look into Tor browser later on for it’s anonymity and privacy.

Installing PeerBlock 1.2

  • enable Start PeerBlock on system startup
  • Select to block all ranges
  • select Check for updates every week
  • click on Allow HTTP

10:29 AM

Damn. My fingers are literally freezing cold while I’m typinuTorrent Bittorrent Downloaderg this! Just at the limits of what is bearable. Google says it’s 50° out right now. Brrrrr!

10:36 AM

Installing uTorrent 3.4.2 build 32239, which is not the newest, but recent and has almost no ads.


Options> Preferences > Directories
  • Set path for incomplete, done, and torrent directories to external hard drive.

Disabled (falsed) the following settings in

Options> Preferences > Advanced

  • offers.left_rail_offer_enabled/left_rail_offer
  • gui.show_plus_upsell
  • offers.sponsored_torrent_offer_enabled/sponsored_torrent_offer_enabled
  • bt.enable_pulse
  • gui.show_notorrents_node
  • offers.content_offer_autoexec

Now I’m boiling water on the stove to try to create some steam.

Installed uTorrent (µTorrent Stable 3.4.2 build 35141)  over top of previous version. Removal of prior version was not necessary, new version installed very quickly, and all the advanced settings transferred easily.

NOTE: I was under a mistaken impression that build 32239 already had ads disabled; this is not the case. You will still need to disable ads in this version. Therefore, might as well get the newest version and disable ads in it instead.

11:33 AM

Uninstalled Acronis True Image Home 2013 and Plus Pack. Rebooted PC.

11:57 AM

Just finished eating a little lunch: quinoa pasta with brewer’s yeast, chicken sausage links, and organic apple cider. Now back to computer stuff.

12:33 PM

Finished installing Acronis True Image Home 2014. Set up the default disk recovery options:

  • enabled Validate backup before recovery
  • enabled Check the file system after recovery
  • Operation Priority: high
  • enabled Show notification message on insufficient free disk space
  • enabled Restart the computer automatically if needed for the recovery
  • enabled Save settings as default

12:39 PM

Set up default disk backup options:

  • Backup method: Full
  • enabled Validate backup when it is created
  • enabled Take screenshot upon a disk backup start
  • Number of backup attempts: 3
  • Operation Priority: High
  • enabled Show notification message on insufficient free disk space
  • enabled Save settings as default
  • turned off scheduled backups

1:06 PM

About to create a backup of current version, so that I don’t lose new files created since last time, and to test ATIH 2014 backup process. Using the defaults and this is the custom note for the image:

10/27/14 (12:43 PM) – Second image today. Background changed to Horseshoe Bend, AZ. Adds uTorrent, PeerBlock, ATIH 2014 and some data files.

Received Error:

Windows Smart Screen can’t be reached right now.

First time I ran Acronis install it said I needed to edit the hosts file with, activation.acronis.com

Instead of doing that edit, I ran the install again — this time it activated successfully! 🙂

2:24 PM

New Dell Laptop isn’t detecting external BLU-RAY drive. HELP! Contacted Dell Live Chat support. Was told to download new BIOS update, as well as four other driver files under the “CHIPSET” category at


A message popped up and said “This file will automatically self-install after downloading”. But, it did not install, so I had to double-click to do it manually. Going to finish installing these drivers one-by-one.

6:21 PM

Installed Sideband Fabric Device Driver

6:25 PM

Installed Realtek Card Reader Driver

6:28 PM

Installed Intel Trusted Execution Engine Interface

6:38 PM

Installed Dell Synaptics Touchpad Driver

Tried to restore original Dell image from this morning. No-go. 🙁

7:20 PM

Installed and then uninstalled Dell System Detect after realizing it wasn’t doing anything useful. Running Acronis process now to validate all images (about 5). Images that no longer exist are detected as valid and I’m not sure why. I figure should take about 3 hours or so. Will watch some movies while I’m waiting for it to finish.

10:14 PM

Well, Acronis finished validating all images finally and they all seem good. However, just a note: only Acronis 2013 and later version produced screenshots. Also, make sure all windows are cleared off the desktop when creating screenshots, otherwise they will be in the image!! Time to put stuff away for the night and start to unwind from a long and productive day. I’m probably going to leave Acronis alone for awhile. Now I have two laptops that can’t make Acronis backups… what gives? Anyway, goodnight for now my friends. See you next time!

Date Published: 2014-10-27
Date Updated: 2022-09-06

Eric Hepperle

Eric loves to write code, play guitar, and help businesses solve challenges with code and design.
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