Byte Me Article 462 – Recipe for Success

Recipe for Success

Barney and Andie want to thank everyone for the lovely comments following last weeks’ article.  Due to their newfound popularity they have already put in for a pay rise and are strutting with an extra skip in their step – what wags!  The topic for this week, however, is much more boring!

In computer userland out there, many people are still confusing what is covered under a warranty as opposed to what is covered under maintenance or support.  They are thinking that the warranty that is given with a new computer should cover them for a period for all the events they strike.  This is not the case and for comparison purposes here we will use the example of a motor car as this analogy often helps to demonstrate the point.

A computer warranty is offered with purchase to cover manufacturing defects – but nothing more.  An example of a manufacturing defect is a faulty screen, keyboard, ram stick, motherboard, hard drive or solid-state drive.  These warranties do not cover the contracting of a software virus or malware – or the installation of conflicting software.  They also do not cover changes that are made by the end user which lead to computer problems.

Using the example of a car, the manufacturer’s warranty does not cover servicing or maintenance of the car.  It also does not cover tyres or windscreens or an accident such as running into a tree or the unfortunate event of getting water or other contaminants in your fuel.  For these events we pay for vehicle servicing, which is sometimes a fixed service cost and most of us pay for comprehensive insurance.

This is the same in the computer field.  An example could be that your new laptop was getting your emails when you first took it home, but suddenly stops receiving them.   If the laptop still boots into Windows and seems to run fine then this will not be a warranty issue.  Reasons could be a problem with your email provider’s account, a problem with your anti-virus software, a problem with your email client software, a problem with the Windows firewall or a user changed setting.  None of these events are covered by warranty.

So how can you protect yourself from unforeseen computer expenses?  The only way is to have a service or maintenance contract with a computer company that offers these facilities.  Most smart businesses employ a managed service provider (MSP) to look after their entire network.  This is something that we have been offering to businesses for over 15 years now and to home users for the last 5 years.

One of these contracts is exactly like having an insurance policy on your car.  Just like getting hailed on, getting a virus may not be your fault but I can guarantee that it will incur an unplanned cost to fix.  Paying a small amount each month is easier to budget for and should also come with the best anti-virus and protection software that your MSP can provide.  For both businesses and home users we have a ‘recipe for success’ – a suite of software programs and configurations that keep you very safe.

Not only does this sort of contract eliminate unforeseen costs but with us it also includes a managed backup system to keep any files that you value for whatever time frame you deem necessary. 

Future Byte Me topics can be emailed to [email protected] and Bruce is contactable at Kerr Solutions, 205 Musgrave Street or on 07 49 222 400.

We have developed a brilliant self-help troubleshooting section on our website – so if you are having computer problems, but can still browse the web, please check it out.  Click here to go to Kerr Solutions IT Troubleshooting

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