5 Common Sense Computer Tips Before You Contact Tech Support

tech_support-150x150The graphic (way below) really does represent the truth behind tech support. Although this is hilarious and strangely true, I figured I’d help you folks out with 5 common sense computer tips before you contact tech support.

1. Reboot Your Computer

Yes, it sounds silly but 95% of all computer issues can be resolved with a simple restart of your computer. And this goes for both Apple and Windows.

Just like people computers get confused and sometimes a swift kick in the er… power down and restart fixes it. The technical reasoning is that you are clearing the system of errant programs or services, clears out the memory of anything resident causing the initial issue,  and resets windows back to a (hopefully) consistent/stable state.

2. Check Your Power and Cables

If your computer suddenly cuts out and you are unable to restart it? Check to see if you have Power. I cannot tell you how many time’s I have actually had this type of call.

Me – “Yes, How can I help you?”
User – “Um, My computer won’t start.”
Me – “Ok, is it plugged in?”
User – “Uh… Let Me Check” *Windows Startup Sound in the Background*
User – “The cleaning crew must’ve unplugged it on accident last night”
Me – “Very good, Have a nice day.”

Remember Keep It Simple Silly (K.I.S.S) 

As a side note – if you have a laptop that will not boot?  Unplug it, remove the battery, then hold down the Power Button for a few seconds while it is unplugged. Then pop the battery back in and plug in the power and *poof* magic your laptop will boot (hopefully lol.)

3. Clear Out Your Cookies and Temp Files

If you are unable to access a specific page on the internet and you are able to access others? Clear out your Cookies and Temp files in your browser. Most likely a bad cookie will prevent you from accessing the site. Mind you this will only work if the website is actually up and working to begin with. Also you might want to check out my favorite free utilities I posted recently to easily assist with this!

How To Clear Your Cookies and Temp Files

Internet Explorer

Click on Tools -> Internet Options -> Under Browsing History select Delete -> Delete All

Firefox

Click on the Firefox bar -> Tools -> Clear Private Data Now  *I’ll need to confirm this!

Chrome

Click on the Wrench icon -> Options -> Under the Hood -> Clear Browsing History -> Check the First 4 Boxes in the List and then click on the Clear Browsing Data button.

4. Lost Internet Connection?

For me this usually means my son has pulled the power to the wireless router again. Yes, he knows how to do this at age two already!  It is really fun when he does this during a Call of Duty match online when Mommy was supposed to be watching him!

Sorry- getting off topic here. But it does make a valid point.

The first things you should do besides rebooting your computer if you lose your Internet Connection are:

  • Unplug your ISP Modem (Cable/DSL provided to you by your Telephone Company or Cable Company)
  • Unplug your Home Wireless Router (if you have one  - Nowadays you can’t live without one! ) Otherwise skip to the next step.
  • Shutdown Your Computer(s)

So Everything is Shutdown? Good!

Give it about 30 seconds then plug everything back in the following order (It is IMPORTANT to do it the way I’ve written:

Modem (wait for blinky lights), Home Router (again blinky lights!), then your Computer(s)

And of course.. check those Cables!

If this doesn’t fix it.. contact your Internet Service Provider (ISP) – NOT Your Computer Manufacturer.

5. Check Google

The real truth behind Tech Support is REVEALED – We search Google for your solution a lot of the time as there is no way to remember every nuance of everything that can go wrong with computers and software. So try a simple search (Remember K.I.S.S?) before contacting Tech Support!

tech support - the truth

The Truth Behind Tech Support Revealed!

But – if you don’t wish to do any of the above – please feel free to contact tech support – they are going to make you do all of the same things I’ve mentioned anyways! :-p

And remember this isn’t Rocket Surgery – just Tech Support!

Make sure to share your tips, tricks, or funny tech support stories below!

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Jason Mathes

Jason Mathes

Owner/Operator at avgjoegeek.net
Dad, Geek, Gamer, WordPress Blogger. I share my love of gaming, technology, and WordPress with you in the form of reviews, tutorials, and how tos. Everything from the current game I'm playing, to the latest tech I'm into and of course whatever I'm doing with WordPress as well.
Jason Mathes

@avgjoegeek

#Geek #Gamer #Blogger I love #WordPress! I also do reviews and how tos from the latest #games #android, and #plugins. Stay tuned for #Giveaways as well!
Jason Mathes
  • http://www.spinxwebdesign.com/ Brain

    I like the way you explain, I always did Google search whenever i got stuck then it is for computers or any other thing. There are so many ways to do the things by our self and Google is always there for help us. Like your second point, this thing happen to me very often.

    • http://avgjoegeek.net avgjoegeek

      Brain thanks lol – If more people did this I would probably be out of a job!

  • Lee

    Hi really enjoyed your post.
    Let’s be honest we all get frustrated and do silly things where computers are concerned. All your points are straight forward and we all know them but how many times do we struggle along for ages instead of just doing the obvious. I know I do and if people are honest a high percentage of people do exactly the same. So good post just good down to earth common sense stuff.

    Thanks again

    • http://avgjoegeek.net avgjoegeek

      Lee – thanks for dropping by and commenting! I’ve been in the tech support business for a long long time. And I still do some of the things written in the article! It’s just human nature. The idea though is if we can remain calm – a lot of the time we can resolve our own issue instead of having to contact tech support just to be told to “reboot”.

  • a gaming computer

    Sometimes I hate to call on a contact tech support because they are not really giving you exact information you want.

    • http://avgjoegeek.net avgjoegeek

      LOL I understand – that is probably due to the fact a lot of help desks have a strict script they are stuck following. Corporate ones are setup a little different and allow a little free thinking.

  • Nikki

    Hee hee, this reminds me of all the silly things my customers do when they do a quote for insurance online and get stumped by their computer and call me….
    “no ma’am, I’m sorry. Simply telling your computer ‘talk to me’ does not make us call you. You have to click on the ‘talk to me’ button and enter your phone number so our phones can route the next available representative to you.” (… Yes this happens a lot- a customer will call in to yell at me because I didn’t call them when they said ‘talk to me’ aloud to their computer….)

    • http://avgjoegeek.net avgjoegeek

      Too funny – for me the best one was when I asked a user to “reboot their computer” and I hear a big “thump!” over the phone. The person had actually kicked their computer!

      I asked if they felt better afterwards and then asked them to power down and power the computer back up. :)