Tips in Business

July 21, 2012 by  
Filed under Every thing you Need to Know

When I entered the realm of computer repair I thought I had a very strong mastery of computers. As it turns out, there’s always something new to learn or some new technology to follow. In this article, I want to list some of the less obvious tips that would have saved me hours of troubleshooting if I had known about them when I started.

Be thorough. While the rest of my advice is technical and specifc, this first suggestion will save you the most amount of time in the long run. After hundreds of diagnostics, it’s easy to cut corners because for the vast majority of cases you don’t need to do additional tests to discover the cause of an issue. but every now and then, a closer look will save you time and money. For example, always strip a laptop down when testing a motherboard failure. even if it looks like the common video chip issue there are rare circumstances where the problem was a faulty memory stick or slot. Test your machines through and through!

Connectivity issues. during malware removal, a couple of unobvious causes of a connection failing are proxies and old Norton installations. In the first case, many of today’s viruses enable the windows proxy settings which prevent the computer from loading websites despite being connected to the internet. The remedy is to simply remove the proxy settings in the Internet Options window. In the case of old Norton installations, stopping Norton from running or failing to uninstall it properly will cause the software to block internet accessibility. Bypass this by downloading and running the Norton Removal Tool (which is much faster than uninstalling through windows anyway).Laptop Screen Diagnostics. when a CCFL laptop screen goes dim, the culprit is usually the backlight of the screen module. every now and then though it is the fault of the inverter. For years, I would try to carefully test the voltage of the inverter with a multimeter. This was not often successful. sometimes there would be low voltage or no voltage at all even though the inverter was functional. You can easily determine if the inverter is working by taking a cracked screen and plugging it in to the inverter. when you boot up the laptop, the screen will light up even though it is cracked to reveal that the inverter is functioning properly.

Malware Removal. when you run msconfig to analyze the start-up items (Or tools like HijackThis), you’ll often see malware items in the user’s application data folder. However, you’ll be unable to view those files and delete them even if you edit folder options to view hidden files. The solution is to view SuperHiddenFiles by downloading a tool such as D7 (which is an amazing computer repair tool that every technician should have). If this is a client’s computer, remember to turn off the view hidden/superhidden files options to prevent user your own diagnostic. when a client comes in explaining in detail what’s wrong with their computer based on a third party diagnostic, it lures you into the trap of thinking that their analysis is accurate and that there aren’t other problems to be discovered. While I don’t suggest ignoring your clients completely, I certainly recommend doing your own evaluation every single time. This will save you money on ordering the wrong parts and time wasted on a misdiagnosis.

Finally, I would suggest that computer technicians create a thorough process for each type of repair that leaves the customer satisfied. Simple things at the end of a repair such as installing an anti virus and updating drivers will leave your clients far more satisfied than if they had to spend hours learning how to do those things on their own after paying you for your services.

About the author: Karim Salmi is the lead technician at VitalTech Computer Repair in Maryland and located in Rockville.

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