Solving a Variety of Consumer Computer Problems (Case Study)

Solving a Variety of Consumer Computer Problems (Case Study)

It was interesting after my recent varied office session to have a similar situation today with an end-user. Similar, in that it was varied and we covered a lot of ground.

Wayne had saved up a dozen different issues to ask me about or get my help with. And most of these were not everyday items! So here’s what we dealt with today:

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Solving a Variety of Office Computer Problems (Case Study)

Solving a Variety of Office Computer Problems (Case Study)

Many of my service calls only involve 1 or 2 problems. Today’s service call was different. This afternoon, I helped a customer with at least 9 different issues.

I arrived after lunch to help a local small business complete their move into a new office. As is sometimes the case, when I finished the main things the business owner (we’ll call him Jeff) had called me out for, he had a few additional things he needed a bit of help with.

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Malware Warning: Avoiding Personal Security / Security Tool

Malware Warning: Avoiding Personal Security / Security Tool

There is currently a pretty widespread attack going on by two variations of the old “your computer is infected with viruses” scam.

personal-security-virusThis scam consists of a program that will infect your computer and then harass you in an attempt to extort money from you. The program attacks your legitimate antivirus software and Windows itself, and makes your computer nearly unusable until it is dealt with.

It informs you that you are infected with numerous viruses, and that scanning with Personal Security (or Security Tool) is the answer that will fix the problems.

For a price, of course.

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AVG users: It’s time to update to the new version, 9.0…!

AVG users: It’s time to update to the new version, 9.0…!

avg-logo

November 2009 — If you’re using AVG as your antivirus, you’ve probably seen some popup windows appearing lately telling you that it’s now time to “upgrade” your AVG antivirus.

In this post, I will tell you how to get the new free version of AVG. And we’ll also run through how to update if you’re using the paid version.

First, though, a few words on the current antivirus (and virus) situation in general.

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Multiple Layers of Computer Security

Multiple Layers of Computer Security

16-layersThis week I talked with a man who’s concerned about security. That’s not at all unusual — most of us have some computer-related security concerns.

But this particular man’s small business requires him to deal with some confidential customer information that he in no way wants compromised. So for him, it’s a bigger issue than it is for the typical home user.

As with most things security-related (whether it be home security, airline security, personal security or national security), there’s no single all-in-one solution. Any good solution to security (in whatever realm) is likely to involve multiple layers.

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How to Capture a Screenshot From a DVD

How to Capture a Screenshot From a DVD

On some Windows systems, it's easier to fight the Huns than to capture a screenshot from your DVD.

On some Windows systems, it
can almost be easier to fight the
Huns than it is to capture a
screenshot from your DVD.

Today I had a customer who wanted to capture screenshots from a DVD he owns. The reason: Slides are presented on this DVD, and he wanted to be able to print a copy.

Should be simple, right?

Not necessarily. On some Windows computers it IS easy, but on some other systems it’s not easy at all.

In fact, I had tried this particular task on my own computer a couple of years ago, reached the limits of my personal patience at the time, and left it for some other day.

Today, as it turns out.   Continue reading

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A Lesson in How To Check Out Businesses and Identify Internet Scams

A Lesson in How To Check Out Businesses and Identify Internet Scams

billed-7990

It’s a good idea to read the fine print.

This blog post was written as a follow-up to my post on the widely-advertised teeth-whitening scam.

The following techniques may not enable you to sniff out every possible kind of scam — you’d need a much more sensitive “scam-meter” to sniff out the typical investment fraud, for example — but in many cases, especially those similar to the one mentioned, these checks can be really useful.

And any legitimate business should pass the first four tests. If it passes all five, that’s even better.

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Learn the trick, discovered by a mom, to RIP YOU OFF!

Learn the trick, discovered by a mom, to RIP YOU OFF!

white-teeth-scam

Scamming “white teeth” ads seem to be
everywhere. Once they get your credit
card info, they’ll repeatedly charge you
big amounts. Similar scams are based on
work-at-home schemes, acai berry
supplements, and other products.

If you do much web surfing, you’ve almost certainly seen the ads. They’re EVERYWHERE.

“Learn the trick, discovered by a mom, to turn yellow teeth white for under $5,” they say.

Get really white, beautiful teeth for less than $5? Now if you’re interested in improving your appearance (aren’t we all?), that sounds like a pretty good deal, doesn’t it?

Get ready to get scammed.

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What it Takes to Really Fix a Virus-Laden Computer

What it Takes to Really Fix a Virus-Laden Computer

Click here for the scan you computer.

“Click here for the scan you computer.”

I just got off the phone with a woman who told me she had a computer that was probably well-infected with viruses and other malware, and she wanted to know how much it would cost to fix it.

When I told her the likely cost, she said, “Okay, thank you,” and hung up.

Now I’m sure that Tina will find somebody to do the job (sort of) for less than I typically charge for a job of this type.

And she’ll probably get about what she paid for.

Or, maybe not.

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Cost? A *Minus* $58.64!

Cost? A *Minus* $58.64!

money2Any good professional knows that sometimes customers shoot themselves in the foot by skimping to try and save a few bucks, and sometimes they come out really well by actually calling the professional for some help.

Recently one of my customers purchased a new computer when her old computer died. She asked me to rescue the data, if possible, from the old computer.   Continue reading

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