November 11, 2018

A Little iMac Hiccup ... Virus???

Yes, there are some eyes under that skin you see. This is the look Stella gives me when she feels I have not given her enough treats or snacks. Last night she wanted more of the grain free dog bones that were flavored with bacon. For a 'cleaner' photo I wiped off the drool on the sides of her jowls before taking the picture. Even after the walking I did to grab the iPhone to take the photo, she never moved.

With the second day of the coldest days this winter, the hounds do a lot of sleeping. Although the room is not cold Heidi knows it is winter and will shiver until I bring out the sleeping bag for her to sleep on or wrap up in on the couch.

This was Friday night ...

I decided to test the quality of sleep for the hounds, so I put a piece of the pumpkin pie crust in front of Stella's nose while she slept. It was funny to see her nostrils twitching while she slept after the crust was placed there but she never woke up.

As I glanced out the window this morning in the computer room, the field was covered with white heavy frost. I did not know at the time it would be a great background for taking photos of Stella and bring out that red coat of hers. These fresh deer prints kept Stella busy this morning. She was active because they were scattered all over the field but not nearly as hyper with excitement as Sadie would have been. Sadie would have been going out of her mind with fresh deer prints like this.

Stella was going to try a different entry point into the ragweed burrs but I was right there and talked her into walking back to the path to start her walk.

It was freezing, crisp, and extremely quiet this morning. The skies were beautiful.

For some reason I keep wanting to buy a smaller camera with a zoom capability. I know the picture sharpness will not come close to what I get with the older Nikon D3200 but for some reason the urge to buy one has been strong the last two days. If I were to buy a new lens for the D3200 I have come to the conclusion I need one with a range of 18mm-135mm. But does it really make a difference if I already have a lens I use every day that is 18mm-200mm ... no it doesn't. I'll keep what I have.

The problem getting up at 6:15am or around that time to start our day ... the hounds are begging for lunch by 10am now. For 31 years I've had hounds, I never fed them more than once per day unless they were puppies ... until Stella showed up in August 2015. She had come from a home that had 'free feeding' ... ate when she wanted.

Yes, on the walk before 8am ... there is that sun again.

I could hear that distinct sound a bloodhound makes when they are sniffing a scent in the tracking mode ... their jowls flap just a little. One year when I left Bertha, Winston and Max at a kennel while I was away on a business trip the kennel owner heard that sound when walking Bertha ... she said in all the years she had hosted different breeds of dogs and walked all of them ... she had never heard a sound like that, only from a bloodhound.

This is about all the intensity Stella shows when tracking.

Of course there is always time for her to have some natural deer protein ... especially when it's frozen.

Freezing cold and crisp.

She knows the deer went that way but we are on our way home and it's getting cold.

When I told her "let's go home" ... she took off trotting.

There were till plenty of things to check out until she got to the backyard.

I was happy to see that the last of the leaves from the Mahogany tree are gone. I can now mow the leaves for the last time this year. I'll do that sometime this week after the temps crawl back up to the mid-40's. That small north side yard has the most leaves as the winds seem to always blow them there, where they get trapped between the house and that small bank.

Once again this morning Stella did not stop at the trees or the fence to smell but she took off along the edge of the field and yard. If she had her way she would have gone back into the field in the middle of all of those burrs.

For the first time since I have bought this iMac in May 2017 it had a 'hiccup' this morning. The computer hard drive locked up as I was moving my morning photos to the external hard drive, something I do everyday without any issues. The Activity Monitor was telling me a system program that moves those files was "not responding".  It did not matter where I put the cursor and clicked ... the computer was locked up. I had to hold the power button to turn it off.

I unplugged the 4-port USB hub, then turned on the computer seeing it boot up with no issues. I then plugged the USB hub back in and tried to export the morning photos to the external drive ... same result and the Activity Monitor telling me that same program was not responding.I repeated the process to turn off the computer but did something different after I rebooted it.

To find out if it was my hard drive acting up or the external drive I did NOT plug in the 4-port USB hub. I opened my Apple Photos program (like Windows My Pictures) and tried moving the photos I selected for this blog to the Blog Folder on my desktop so Blogger can import the photos to the blog.

Ah ha .... the Activity Monitor had in red "Photos" ... "not responding.

So it was something on the hard drive. I opened the App Bitdefender and updated their latest Malware files, then ran their Critical Locations Scan, something I do weekly. It did not find any malware or viruses. The computer was running normal as I read the internet sports, answered emails and a few texts during the scan.

I decided I'd run their "Deep System Scan". I had not done that since buying the computer. It took 48 minutes to scan everything. I gave it permission to scan my photo library that has over 70,000 photos since I was trying to export photos that froze up the computer. It found 3 files of malware, all from one App that I had personally downloaded before I bought this computer in May 2017. All the apps, photos and document files were uploaded from my Time Machine backup when I was setting up the new computer in May 2017. This app came along for the ride in that transfer.

The app is called DrApp Cleaner. It was an easy fix. Bitdefender had quarantined the files to prevent any harm to my hard drive. All I had to do was go into my Finder folder, then Applications folder and delete the App "DrApp Cleaner. Once the trash was empty, those three files disappeared from the Bitdefender log.

I turned off my computer, plugged in the 4-port USB Hub and then turned on the computer. Everything loaded normal with no issues. I exported 74 photos from this mornings walk to the external hard drive for backup with no issues.

The iMac was and has functioned normal every since I removed that App and those "spy" files as they were called. I jumped back into my Applications Folder in Finder (Windows My Computer Folder) and deleted any app that I had not used. If I could not remember what the app did, then I must have not been using it and deleted those too. Any system app was protected by Apple by not giving me the option "Move to Trash".

In the meantime I am going to try to warm the house up. I am going to 'give-in' to the hound's demands that they want to be fed and feed them. I'll try to grab a few more photos for this post before I post it.  SUCCESS with the after lunch photos !!!

It was the normal after lunch routine. That might show 38° but believe me it feels much much colder than that.

Stella stood and sniffed the air putting her plan together. I had a good idea where she was headed if she got the chance.

Heidi could tell by the freezing feeling, she didn't have a lot of time to relieve herself and then get back inside. She had to be quick.

Sure enough ... there goes Stella into the field but luckily behind the area with all the burrs. Once she saw me walking up the path she came running.

By the time I had Stella back inside the carport I see Heidi is sprinting across the front yard and up the driveway. She was cold enough that she was first inside not waiting for Stella to step in front of her. Then it was a fast run through the kitchen and jumping up on the couch for some afternoon sleep.

With all the leaves down from the Mahogany tree and most from the tall Sycamore tree, I'll get some but but not this many leaves after I mow them again. This should take about an hour to do the whole yard and I'll be done for the 2018 Leaf Project. It might snow on Tuesday but will be in the upper 40's for most of the week. I can mow then.

It's a pretty good retirement day here in 'the tropics' of Southern Indiana.


  1. I feed Pheebe morning and night. I doubt she would ever let me try once a day.It's her daily amount (according to weight ) just divided in two. Did you switch to twice a day now ? I'm going to try the pie crust test. Mabe on Al too :) Kelly

    1. I switched to twice per day in 2015 after I couldn't take any more of Stella's howling and Heidi'd barking around lunch time. Heidi figured out what was going on and decided to help Stella in getting them all three fed.

  2. Careful. You could lose a finger putting some pie crust in front of Al snoozing.

    1. Barney ... I doubt that Al's nostrils would twitch though. LOL

    2. I think Pheebe would be up there trying to get it.

  3. Heidi is really a character. Loved all her photos tonight. Your photos of the landscape and beautiful blue skies are wonderful.