Byte Me Article 141 – What to do when things go wrong

What to do When Things Go Wrong

Some of my latest articles have been a guide on how to get expert help when things go wrong.  I have discussed the benefits of using a professional repair service as well as one that is willing to let you talk directly to the technician that works on your PC.  There are also many cases when having a little IT savvy and using some logic can save you the time and money of going to a professional.  The main distinction is knowing when you are getting out of your own depth and being prepared to stop!

Your first response when things are going wrong is to reboot your PC and this will fix a lot of the problems that we get phone calls about.  If this doesn’t work the next step is to consider the problem at hand.  If for instance it is a printing problem do not start reinstalling the printer driver as drivers rarely ever decide to corrupt all of a sudden.  We often see people do this and get into far deeper trouble when it was something simple like a disconnected cable or a corrupted print cue or even just a printer out of ink or with some other mechanical error.

One of the best self-help sources is Google as there have normally been thousands of other people that have had your exact same problem.  They have eventually found a solution and have been good enough to share that solution with you via the Internet.  Once again – it is great to be able to solve some of your own problems but you have to know when to stop and get professional help.

2013-09-07 Byte Me Article 141- Self Help

Another major source of problems that we see encountered with a simple solution is that of not being able to send or receive emails.  Again some logic needs to be applied and the first thing to check is whether you are in fact still connected to the Internet.  If so, then do not start playing around with mail settings but rather look for what should be the more obvious things such as a large attachment sitting in the Outbox that is not sending.  This later problem will also stop you from receiving new emails until you are able to shift or delete it from the Outbox.

Once again the actual mail settings themselves will not change so if they were setup right in the first place and they worked previously then you should be looking elsewhere.  Sometimes the simplest solutions are the ones that are overlooked because too many people think that it has to be a highly technical problem.  As another example we have been called out on site a number of times to diagnose a faulty Internet connection when the problem is someone hitting their download cap or simply misplacing and not paying their Internet account.

Mostly be careful not to launch into a ‘witch hunt’ from any pre-conceived ideas but rather think outside of the box using logic and checking for all of the simple solutions first.  If this approach doesn’t work then don’t “rip the entire engine out when all along you should have been getting a professional to repair the gearbox”. 

Future Byte Me topics can be emailed to [email protected] and Bruce is contactable at Kerr Solutions, 205 Musgrave Street or on 49 222 400.

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