The Stress of PC Troubleshooting

When problems arise with your computer, try to avoid going down the path of instant and prolonged crazy rage. A computer is a complex piece of electronics and, when used properly or improperly, may exhibit a multitude of strange behaviors. None of which will be resolved successfully if you lose your cookies.

A total of three toasters I owned over the years caught fire for various reasons and now, when I make toast, if toast actually comes out of the toaster and the toaster isn’t on fire, I enjoy my toast. However, if the toaster decides to malfunction, I will happily eat chocolate cake for breakfast instead as I watch the toaster burn to death in my sink.

Don’t let electronics beat you, you can survive computer problems in a less stressful way by backing up your data for times of malfunction and just handing the pc over to someone to fix it. Don’t waist time calling 1-800 numbers or calling friends to troubleshoot, life is too short, just drop it off at a pc repair place and go on living – wahoooooo!

If you decide to adopt this strategy, there are few things you need to do and know before proceeding with the “drop off and go” method:

  1. Only one document on your computer should contain confidential information.  Avoid sprinkling confidential information around to multiple files.  Having all confidential information in one file makes it easier to keep track of the file and you only have to password protect one file instead of multiple files. If the file is password protected, then you don’t have to worry about removing the file from the computer when you have someone work on your computer.  To avoid drawing attention to the file when someone else works on it, avoid calling the file “Passwords.docx”.  Name it something that would blend in with the rest of your files (i.e. VacationFlyer.docx, recipesFromDecember2013.docx, etc.).
  2. Understand that computer repairs may be costly so take your computer to a business that has been in operation in your community for a long time and has a solid reputation.
  3. Troubleshooting a computer may seem illogical at times in regards to price, here is an example:  Your printer has suddenly stopped working.  There can be 20 different reasons why it has stopped working and each reason takes a different amount of time to troubleshoot.  The printer is out of paper, this resolution takes 1 minute to diagnose.  The print driver is no longer valid after the latest Windows update, this resolution takes about 30 minutes.  The computer has a virus and is affecting all peripheral devices, this resolution may take hours and may involve wiping the machine clean and starting over (which means you will lose all of your data).
  4. Back up your data to an external device (hard drive, thumb drive, etc.) once per day/week/month (whatever you are most comfortable with).  Keep this device in an area separate from your computer.  This is your protection against theft and computer virus destruction of data.
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