If you use computers in your business and you’ve ever had a problem with I’m willing to bet you’ve been advised to “turn it off and back on again”. It must seem like the IT guy on the other end of the phone doesn’t know what the problem is. Well, in essence he probably doesn’t. Let me explain a bit about what we do and why we say this. My company has been helping small and very small businesses with their IT for 15 years. Compared to the big corporate world the one thing that comes over loud and clear is they haven’t got money to burn or time to spare. If there is a quick, sensible and reliable fix then let’s just “get it done”.
A good support company knows when to dig deeper and when discretion is the better part of valour.
There are so many component parts of a computer system that interact with each other. A complex and random set of events that may cause one of these components to fail can then cause the other components to give up the ghost as a consequence.
At least until you restart it.
A quick restart will make everything play nicely again and sometimes things are good to go with further problems. It’s such a quick test that it’s always worth doing – remember for those working in a small business, the pressures of stress, time, money and deadlines are always present so a quick and painless test that may work is always worth trying first.
Of course if it still doesn’t work properly after the restart then we, as the IT support company have to get into gear and find out what’s going on.
So what’s changed?
It could be a hardware fault and usually the first place we look is to see if the hard drive has failed. It’s relatively easy for us to check this remotely though we’ve noticed over the last 15 years that hardware faults are getting rarer.
After ruling out simple hardware faults we move on to look for what’s changed in your environment. It could be a routine update, or some software you’ve just installed. Or maybe that shiny new photocopier that the printer company have just installed on the network isn’t configured properly on your machine. There are certain signs that indicate malware and virus so if we see these then we’ll run the appropriate scans.
Please tell us everything!
So often something that seems completely irrelevant to you may be the source of the problem, or at least it could be an important part of the jigsaw of issues that we need to put together to get you back up and running again, and if you’ve done something you’d rather not discuss because you feel you may feel it’s your fault, please do tell us. We’d just like to get it fixed – after all it’s what we’re here for and we’re certainly not in the business of mocking you for any mistake you’ve made. In our experience it’s usually not the user’s fault but if we know what we’re dealing with we can get you back up and running quickly
After all, if you knew it all, you wouldn’t need us!