If there is one thing I have learned over the years it is loss. I moved a lot in my youth, 18 schools in 12 years. For a long time it seemed like anything that I cherished was broken or lost. I lost extended family like most people do. Lost friends to drugs, alcohol, cancer and other maladies. The loss of a spouse breaks part of you and does not repair, were it not for the kids I would have probably had a lot harder time with it. Now I am kind of numb to loss of any kind. At times it feels as if I have no heart, but really it’s just that loss is no longer perceived as a huge deal, just another part of life. You know, shit happens.
By now you’re wondering what prompted this after a year of not putting anything on here. Obviously, I suck at blogs and I even suck more as a writer. As any Second Life dancer knows our creations mean a lot to us. Either through blood, sweat, and tears or through emotions they hold or express for us. I guess I was feeling a bit cocky about having 60 dances in my portfolio and life put me back in my place. Each one a labor of love and dedication. I did have it well organized, being a bit OCD, how could I not. But I did have a single point of failure that I was ignoring. They were all in one folder. Second Life ate that folder right before a show.
I was preparing to perform at Winds after having successfully practiced a few days before and suddenly I did not have the PD saved with my outfit. Now that is weird, I thought, but I went to find the dance folder where all of that is kept and it was gone. Not just that dance folder but the entire 60 plus dance folder. I say plus because I had other dances I was in the middle of that weren’t yet completed. I searched several times for things that were in the folder, thinking I some how moved it to another directory. I couldn’t find it, then I noticed that none of my PD links were saved with the outfits (note to self if the PD is copyable save the final object copy with the outfit instead of a link.) I told the managers in group chat that I would have to pull my dance from the show that night. I spent the remainder of the night going through everything in my inventory trying to find the folder or parts of it or anything. Nada. Next night I did the same to no avail. It was a weekend so I tried other things before putting in a ticket. Logging into other viewers including the Second Life viewer. Clearing cache, letting everything reload. Standing in the bottom of the ocean at one of the ‘get your inventory back here’ spots in the grid. Still nothing. I went to the Community and Knowledge Base.
Well seems there is a new bug in SL. Fully outlined in the “Warning! Don’t Let This Happen To You” thread.
“It now seems clear that there is a random bug that accidentally deletes folders and puts them in Trash — and then may give you a warning message from a new feature, called “Warning: Your Trash is Overflowing”. If you then flush the trash, you will never get back folders that in fact you may not have intended to delete at all. It’s random. “
I remembered getting this message on Saturday morning when I was getting ready for the day’s shows. I ignored it, several times. Sunday afternoon I’d had enough of it popping up. Now I spend huge amounts of time when I’m not creating dances or exploring or hanging out with friends, sorting my inventory. So it didn’t seem too weird that this message came up. I looked at the trash folder to see what constituted it being overflowing and it did not seem like it should be at that point yet. There was not a lot in it. I did open a few folders in it that were not empty to see if they were the culprit. After being laggy in a show on Saturday night I figured it would not hurt to empty the trash and get my inventory down. Weird thing too is that the number of inventory items did not change. Then off I went to the show on Sunday night and wham… all gone.
Monday morning I put in a ticket. I got two emails from Linden Labs on Monday. First one saying that they knew this was a problem and were working on it. Second one to ask me a few questions which I answered right away. Monday I logged in to SL with the mind set it was all gone. I started searching through my inventory for pieces of my last 3 years in SL. I recreated the directory structure and put the pieces in the appropriate dances. A partial stage here, a notecard there, even a few rezzers. No PDs. But I think I have gotten all the items related to dances in their appropriate folders. Out of 60 plus dances I was down to five and parts of about 15 others. On Tuesday, Linden Labs informed me that they attempted to fix it and if I had anything that was retrievable it should be in my inventory. Nothing there in any viewer or the bottom of any ocean.
This was almost a month ago. For a while I sorted, taking comfort in the fact of organizing things into buckets (yeah, I’m weird). My SL and RL dogs playing and laying around me for minor diversions. I felt empty, devoid of response. I didn’t log into SL for about a week and cancelled shows I was performing in for the rest of the month. I slowly came back in and worked with Jo some on her new dance, “Love Runs Out”. It got me jumpstarted again and I went and took another look at the damage. I had a 3 hour challenge dance, “I’m Yours”, I’d done a few months ago in a DOL challenge. I redid it for more people. Then I started the saving and boxing… I copied every notecard from everything, movers, PD, rezzer, all of it and saved them both in a box together and on my computer and on my back up drive. I boxed the stages and movers and the choreo rings. I made a new box for the dance, put those two boxes, the PD and the Rezzer into it and saved it in three places. The original folder, a system folder in my inventory, and a trunk on my property right behind my build stage so I could look at it every day and make sure it’s there. Paranoid right! lol That done, I had “When I’m Gone” out of that folder when it disappeared because I was performing it that weekend and I did the same with it. And so on. Cost me a lot to recreate the PD for the dance, “Earned It” – Couples version (I had too versions) I couldn’t do at Winds as it had a bunch of no copy 3FX couples dances in it. I got the copy versions this time. No more no copy. I know I lost a lot in those PDs.
Now the slow process of recovering those I liked most between making new dances begins. Did I mention MIM is coming? I am over it. Shit happens.
Save, save, save and not in the same place. Keep a box on your property somewhere.