Posts Tagged ‘it’

Field Services In Need of a Push?

Authors: Diana

Success in IT Field Services and in working as an Independent Contractor takes many skills, but cutting through all the noise, finding the information that matters, and being responsive when it counts is certainly one key to success.

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D7 – The Ultimate Technician Tool Every Tech Should Have!

Authors: Micah Lahren

We all have our little USB toolkits, our ‘ultimate’ CD’s, our repair disks and other related repair tools. Most of us like to have a comprehensive list, a solution for every possible problem we could encounter in the field, to the extent of carrying around drivers for common hardware in the rare case there is no reliable internet connection near the client. The issue with having a comprehensive set of tools often means you have to search through your tools for the one you need, and once you’ve located it, run it, and then search for the tool you need to use next.

You may have a routine you would like to automate, but instead you sit there at the computer and babysit the mouse, clicking once every 5 to 15 minutes to close something, affirm something, or perform some other menial task. While automation is a partial solution, there is a much better solution that has been available for about a year in the tech sector, about which there have been some recent improved developments. It’s been mentioned on Technibble and Podnutz before, but it deserves full coverage.

Enter D7, the ultimate technician tool, from Foolish IT, LLC. What is D7, and what does it do? Perhaps a better question would be: What doesn’t it do? It has everything from ‘one-click’ malware removal automation, Windows repair and maintenance, backup, restoration, and migration of data, as well as a slew of system tools, shortcuts to commonly used tweaks and configurations in Windows, and much more! It can keep your tools updated, yet is fully portable. Yes, you can put it on your UBCD4WIN drive and run it from there.

A note of caution is in order, however. This is not a tool designed for consumer use. This is strictly for Tech use. The rest of the tools in your kit might be hacksaws, maybe even circular saws. D7 is the V8 chainsaw of the Tech world. It can do a lot of damage if you don’t know what you’re doing with it, and that is why you can password protect it when you leave the client’s computer, so that they don’t inadvertently find it and toy around with it when you leave, requiring you to return and repair the havoc they might have caused.

Seriously, though, what does it do? The official web site (www.foolishit.com) has some good info on how to use it and configure it if you’re new to the tool, but for starters, it offers offline and live malware removal assistance through internal tools as well as third party tools you can customize yourself. It will automatically download and extract those tools when they are missing, and you can configure it to update your tools with the use of Ketarin. It’s a registry editor with a mass search and delete feature.

It’s a data migration tool, with backup and restore features as well. It’s a networking swiss knife tool, with handy shortcuts to commonly used components in Windows that we use often, but tire of locating the long way through the Windows OS. Command line tools are condensed into ‘one-click’ executions, so you can forget needing to remember all those executable names and extensions. It also includes password removal features, and is more or less the equivalent of a virtual locksmith.

Let’s take a look at version 6.7, the last ‘free’ D7 version. (I’ll discuss more about this later, this has to do with the recent developments regarding D7.) On the left side, you’ll see the tabs you can click on, such as Reports, where you’ll find info reports, malware logs, and can perform screen captures and access them. On the Customize/Install tab, you can change host files, update third party apps, and work with dSupport. The Maintenance tab covers everything from Time Zone checks to system cleaning tools such as deletion of temp files, internet files, cookies, history, toolbars, BHO’s, and registry cleaning tools. The Maintenance II tab has many more utilities you can use to test and stress test hardware, check performance, and repair other items such as the Windows Updates feature.

 

The Malware Removal tab covers malware removal assistance, and provides easy ways to recover shortcuts and hidden files after the infection. It includes scanners and methods of fighting malware as well, which you most likely wouldn’t find all in one place like this anywhere else. The Windows Repair tab has a plethora of repair tools for nearly everything you could want, from repairing the firewall, checking system files, using MS FixIt, clearing print spoolers, and much more. The tweaks tab is handy for tweaking features within Windows. Datagrab is your backup tab, and it has some extremely useful features as well. DataRestore is where you work on the restoration of data, and is fairly self-explanatory. DataMigrate is again, self-explanatory, and allows you to migrate user settings, mail settings, and search for specific files with specific extensions, in case they are hidden on the drive.

 

Offline Ops can find keys, restore settings after malware removal, and perform other tasks as well. The Config tab sets up the customized options, Updates and Sync updates your third party tools, and syncs your D7 configuration to a centralized location, and keeps all your D7 drives in sync. All in all, a major comprehensive computer repair utility, and best of all, it’s completely free! If you’ve never used it before, go check it out. Once you’ve downloaded it, simply mouse around inside the GUI, nearly everything has a tooltip that shows up in the bottom of the GUI that describes what it does. The best part of it all is that you can automate nearly every routine of tasks you want to perform!

Regarding the recent developments, as of July 30th, 2012, Foolish IT, LLC is partnering with RepairTech, Inc, to create a new revolutionary tech product, combining TechUSB with D7 to create TechUSB Pro. For those serious about computer tech and the repair business, this is a tool you need in your toolkit. It will be a premium product, brandable with your own company name and logo, and include premium features such as uploading D7 logs to your TechUSB Portal online. D7 6.7 is still free to use, although it has some ‘nag screens’ when you try to perform certain tasks. As far as I know, previous versions (with less features) don’t include those nag screens, but if you see this tool being useful in your company, you won’t regret the small price for the usage of the premium version. The company branding feature is sure to impress your clients as well.

In summary, D7 is one of those tools you just shouldn’t be without. Remember to protect the client from locating it and toying with it on their own, and you shouldn’t have any problems. Use it wisely, and you will probably wonder how you ever got along without it!

© Technibble – A Resource for Computer Technicians to start or improve their Computer Business
To get started with your own computer business, check out our Computer Business Kit.

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Tweaking.com Registry Backup – Backup and Restore the Windows Registry

Authors: Bryce Whitty

As Computer Technicians, occasionally we need to dive into the registry to make some changes such as removing registry keys that a virus or some software left over. Of course, it is always a good idea backup the registry before you make any changes in case something goes wrong. Tweaking.com’s Registry Backup is a free tool that makes backing up and restoring the Windows registry easy.
In the past, many technicians used ERUNT to do this task but unfortunately ERUNT hasn’t been updated for many years.

One of the main features that Tweaking.com’s Registry Backup has over ERUNT is that it makes use of the Windows Volume Shadow Copy Service (VSS) to create its backups. This is the recommended backup method by Microsoft as it is deemed safer than RegSaveKey function which ERUNT uses. The application comes with a portable and installer version, it can restore the registry from Safe Mode and it maintains detailed logs of the work it has done.

Registry Backup can also be used as an ongoing registry backup solution as it allows you to schedule backups.

Screenshots


 

Downloads:

Download from Official Site – 3.83mb

© Technibble – A Resource for Computer Technicians to start or improve their Computer Business
To get started with your own computer business, check out our Computer Business Kit.

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Mail Viewer – View Stand Alone Email Databases

Authors: Bryce Whitty

Mail Viewer is a free and portable application to view standalone Outlook Express, Windows Live Mail and Thunderbird databases. By standalone, I mean it will display a list of the emails contained in the databases without actually setting up the email client the file belongs to. Mail Viewer allows you to view most of what you can in an ordinary email client such as view single emails, attachments and HTML preview. It also features powerful search and filtering capabilities to find specific emails inside the databases.

I recently used this application when my father needed to reference an old email from 2007. We always keep backups but it was around this time he migrated from Outlook Express to Mozilla Thunderbird, so I wasn’t sure which database this email from 2007 was in. I also had backups of the backups from various periods so I had to look in many different backup versions to find it. While it isnt too hard to setup the old database in the new application, it would have been quite time consuming to search through all of the old backup versions. Mail Viewer was perfect for this situation and is definitely worth adding to your toolkit.

Mail Viewer is free for both private and commercial users.

Screenshots:



Downloads:

Download from Official Site – 1.37mb

More Information

© Technibble – A Resource for Computer Technicians to start or improve their Computer Business
To get started with your own computer business, check out our Computer Business Kit.

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Apple Retail: Putting more ‘IT’ into SMBs

Authors: Diana

Guest blog post by Kevin Kay, founder, Willows of Easley When it comes to technology, I just want it to work. Technology is essential for every small business – but we’re not in a position to have an ‘IT Department’ dedicated to helping us manage our network, set up a workstation or troubleshoot a technical […]

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Fabs Autobackup 4 Tech – Now 25% OFF

Authors: Bryce Whitty

I just got an email from Fabrice, the creator of Fabs Autobackup telling me that Fabs Autobackup is now 25% OFF for a limited time.

This brings the price down from 50 EUR (about 63 USD at the time of writing) to 37.50 EUR (47 USD). Fabs Autobackup 4 Tech is one of the most used pieces of paid software in my business.

For those of you who dont know what Fabs Autobackup is, it is a small, portable application that makes backing up and restoring your clients data incredibly easy. It will backup pretty much anything your client would want backed up such as their My Documents folder, browser favorites, emails, address books and more to a location of your choice.

I personally use it to back up my clients data to a USB hard drive, plug it into the new machine, hit restore and all the data and settings are back where they should be without all the manual work. It works on Windows XP, Windows Vista and Windows 7.

This software is a must have in any Computer Technicians kit and now is a great time to get yourself a copy with the limited time discount. With the time you save with this, it wont take long for you to recoup your investment.

You can read more here:

http://www.technibble.com/fabs-autobackup-4-tech/

 

© Technibble – A Resource for Computer Technicians to start or improve their Computer Business
To get started with your own computer business, check out our Computer Business Kit. Fabs Autobackup 4 Tech – Now 25% OFF

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3 Ways for Computer Technicians to take Advantage of the Mass Adoption of Tablets

Authors: Bryce Whitty

The computer market is constantly changing and one of the big changes in recent times was the introduction of cheap netbooks like the Asus EEEPC. Now we are seeing the mass adoption of tablets like the Apple iPad and in both cases, some computer technicians have expressed fear that this will reduce the amount of desktops and laptops we have to repair.

It is quite possible that they will change the computer repair scene but I don’t see it as a problem, I see it as an opportunity. Most industries are constantly evolving and the repair work we do needs to be slightly altered to keep up.

In this article, I’ll show you three ways to take advantage of mass adoption of tablets.

 

Setup & Syncronization

We all know that tablets can be used for watching movies and playing some games, but the real power comes from when they are hooked up to other devices and services. It could be connected to the internet so clients can download their emails, stay current with the news, watch their stocks and know what the weather is going to be today.

You would think that if a client was this well connected that they would probably know how to set all of this up themselves, but with the simplicity of the Apple iPad, there is a huge generation of people entering the digital realm that previously wouldnt go anywhere near it. As intuitive as these modern devices are, they still need someone to enter their POP and SMTP settings, they still need to hook it up to their wireless (if they have one at all) and still need to setup an account with the App store.

A good example of this is one of my clients who has an iMac, iPhone, iPad and she would be an intermediate user who knows how to use most of the functions. When I was called out there was a few problems she wanted me to look at but one of them was that she wanted her emails to appear on all three devices because with the current setup, if the iMac opened it first it would not appear on the other two devices.

All I had to do was turn on the “leave a copy on server for X days” option in her iMacs email application. It is simple work for you and I, but there are so many people who dont know there is even an option like this. Apple claims that the devices “just work” and stand alone they are pretty good, but they dont always play nice with other software which means there is plenty of work in this area.

Education

As intuitive as tablet operating systems are, plenty of people still dont know how to use the device. They are well aware of what it is capable of thanks to the commercials but have no idea how to actually do it. In my personal experience with iPad clients, most people wanted to be able to check their email, check the weather and maybe play some music.

I would show them how to download an application if their device needed it to use those features (after setting up their app store accounts), showed them that there is now an icon on the home screen, press this and then that. I billed many hours this way and the clients loved me for it because their children and grandchildren would either go through it all too quickly for them to learn or get frustrated trying to teach them.

Hardware Repairs

Last but not least, tablets are portable and they will get damaged so there is an opportunity in repairing them. There are many resources out there to learn how to repair tablets but one of the best I have found is the iFixit.com tablet section. They have instructions for repairing Apple iPads, Nooks, Dell Tablets, HP Tablets, Motorola Tablets, RIM Tablets, Amazon Kindle Fires and the original Amazon Kindle. They do have a parts link on the right hand side where you purchase parts, but eBay has far better prices.

Of course, you shouldn’t learn the basics on your clients expensive devices. Instead, buy some broken devices and spare parts on eBay for dirt cheap, fix them and learn along the way. You can even sell the fixed device afterwards and make money from your education.

I don’t see the mass adoption of tablets as a threat to our industry, just an opportunity. They dont replace Desktops and Laptops, but work along side them and actually pulls people further into our world with a heavier reliance on technology.

© Technibble – A Resource for Computer Technicians to start or improve their Computer Business
To get started with your own computer business, check out our Computer Business Kit. 3 Ways for Computer Technicians to take Advantage of the Mass Adoption of Tablets

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Inside an Apple Technicians Toolkit

Authors: Bryce Whitty

Guest Post by Marco Rodi: Marco Rodi owns an IT Engineering university degree. He has his own computer repair business (OrdiRodi) that mainly does Apple Support.
There are a few articles here on Technibble about what is in a PC technicians toolkit. However, when you are an Apple Tech your bag is not quite the same. Whenever a client calls me for an emergency, these are the tools I always carry in my Apple technician toolkit, no matter what the problem is.

Lion/Snow Leopard Boot USB

Usually, when your client’s computer won’t boot into the OS the CD drive won’t work. Either a CD will be stuck inside and you can’t eject it, or you can’t insert a new CD as the system won’t recognize it. This is why I always bring a Bootable USB drive with either Snow Leopard of Lion on it. When you insert it in your client’s computer, you can hold the “Option” key (ALT key if you are using a non-Apple keyboard) while you boot the Mac and select your USB drive. To create this USB Key, you need your original Lion installation file or your Snow Leopard CD and use the Disk Utility application on your Mac. (http://www.cultofmac.com/105527/how-to-make-a-bootable-install-disk-of-mac-os-x-lion/)

Snow Leopard CD

I always bring the Snow Leopard CD. Sometimes you won’t need a USB drive as CD Drive will work just fine. If you install this version on your client’s Mac, you do not need a serial number.

Dust Blower

No matter what I do on my client’s computers, I always use the Dust Blower at the end of the job. It adds a professional touch to it and usually the client has never removed the dust. Here in Montreal, I always buy the DustOff Original Duster. You can buy a 10 pack of those for just $12.99.

Knopixx CD

Incredible tool that lets you boot in a complete Unix environment directly on the CD. You can access the hard drive and backup files. This is really helpful if the OS does not boot and you want to backup your client’s files. You simply need to insert this CD and an external drive to backup everything. (http://www.knoppix.net/)

Universal Drive Adapter

This will let you repair your client hard drive directly from your computer. You remove the hard drive from your client’s computer, plug it into this device, and access it via usb from your machine. This tool is good to repair disk permissions, backup files and to completely clear a hard drive. It works perfectly on both Mac and Pc. You can buy this one here: http://www.ifixit.com/Apple-Parts/Universal-Drive-Adapter/IF107-108

ProTech Base Tool

When you try to open your client’s Apple Computer and either change the RAM, remove the hard drive or change the motherboard, you will always have to deal with an unusual screw. Apple does it on purpose so nobody can open/fix their machine except them. You really need to bring all the tools necessary to remove all the pieces for your needs. I use this set of tool created by ifixit: http://www.ifixit.com/Tools/Pro-Tech-Base-Toolkit/IF145-072
It has everything you need to repair iMacs, Macbooks, MacPros, iPhone, iPod Touch etc.

RAM Memory

Sometimes, when you try to boot the computer and you hear one or two beeps, the RAM failed. I always bring extra RAM to test this issue and to sell it to my clients if this is the problem.

External USB Hard drive

I bring my pocket 1TB external hard drive for backup. (model no. WDBACZ0010BBK-NESN). Usually your client won’t have another drive to back up his files. I like this HP drive because it is Mac/PC compatible and it supports USB 3.

USB Key

I bring my 4gb USB key that includes all the free software Mac offers. I always install all of them on my client’s computer. I know this is personal but up until now, my clients love it! This usb key includes:

Suction Cups

The iMac is the most difficult machine in the world to change its hard drive. Why? Because you have to remove the huge front glass. The only way of doing it is with suction cups. I only bring those if my clients have a problem with an iMac. http://www.ifixit.com/Tools/Heavy-duty-Suction-Cups-Pair/IF145-023

Magnifying glass

I usually use this on Macbook’s problems. When you have to change the trackpad, keyboard, motherboard etc. http://www.ifixit.com/Tools/Helping-Hands/IF145-082

Kensington Contour Pro 17″ Nylon Laptop Case

I can easily fit all of those things in this bag. I also always bring my 15” Macbook pro in it. http://www.futureshop.ca/en-CA/product/kensington-contour-pro-17-nylon-laptop-case/10040886.aspx?path=28ee4468307abdf19cb8fdcfbaa5cd56en02


These are my main tools that usually cover everything I need. Whats in your Mac technician bag?

© Technibble – A Resource for Computer Technicians to start or improve their Computer Business
To get started with your own computer business, check out our Computer Business Kit. Inside an Apple Technicians Toolkit

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Tales from the Tech Trenches: A Coworker and Her Motherboard

Authors: Bryce Whitty

A Technibble forum member has shared one of his experiences as a Computer Technician with us and the lessons he learned along the way. Due to the public nature of this article the technician wishes to remain anonymous. This is his tale from the tech trenches.

Anonymous Writes:
A co-worker of mine has an HP a6663 she bought in December 2008 and used until January 2010, when she asked for help. The symptoms she verbally described were merely those of Spyware. I agreed to fix the problem for $60 thinking it was only Spyware, but when I got there it would hang solid, Blue Screen of Death as well as sometimes fail to POST. In addition to it being so loaded with Spyware it would take 35 minutes to boot (when it worked).


I didn’t really want to open the computer or do much for the $60, but I did agree to fix the problem and I also know that she would not be able to tell the difference between symptoms caused by bad hardware from those caused by Spyware. I knew she would not consider the computer repaired even if I had removed all the spyware, because it would still freeze and crash.

When I started work, I presumed it would boot fast enough to backup my co-workers information and then I could run the HP recovery utility (in the worst case scenario – if the standard Spyware cleanup tools don’t work) and copy the information back onto the system. It became apparent this wasn’t the case. When it did boot, little things like the extensions to .zip were broken and 20+ toolbars/desktop-bars were installed. Windows was foobared enough to not be able to copy files!

It would freeze solid, so I knew it was a hardware problem that must be resolved first. I tested it with Memtest 86+ which it passed. It then hung on POST; again, I knew it is a hardware problem. Anyway, I tried Bart PE to copy the information off but it didn’t see the hard drive for more than a few seconds each time I booted it.

I decided to try CHKDSK on Windows PE which took about 5 tries to boot without crashing, so I knew something was terribly wrong. None the less, I pressed on and it fixed 20,000+ NTFS errors which made me question whether the hard drive was good. In my experience usually a drive is bad when CHKDSK has errors scroll for 10 minutes.

I opened the case and pulled the drive to make a backup of the data first in case it died during diagnostics. Then I ran the Western Digital Diagnostics which it passed. The computer was out of warranty anyway and the drive was never covered by Western Digital being a HP provided part. When I opened the case, I saw bulging capacitors and knew that was the culprit.

1. I called the user back and told her I got her data and that the drive itself is fine, so no need to buy a new one.

2. I explained that the computer is out of Warranty from HP, which is BAD because it needs a new motherboard due to bulging capacitors.

3. I contacted HP and they would NOT send me the part. They wanted me to send the computer in with $200 to diagnose the problem, which I already knew was bulging capacitors. They said if it needed a new motherboard then expect the total to run up to $400. I asked/begged them to sell me a replacement motherboard but they refused, insisting that part is ONLY serviceable by an HP repair center.

4. I searched on the Internet and eBay for a replacement board and did not find anything for this model.

5. I then packaged the motherboard up properly in anti-static wrap & packing material in a Priority Mail box and addressed it to be sent to Badcaps.net for recapping. I had my co-worker sign a form saying she would pay for the re-capping and that I am not responsible if the recapping does not work.

The recapping will be an extra $80 paid directly to BadCaps.net of which I will take on $60 (full payment of my labor agreed upon) risk. Basically saying, if it doesn’t work you still pay for the re-capping, but I won’t bill you for any of the labor up to this point.

6. I later get chewed-out by co-worker that the $20 shipping is expensive (I forced her to send it Priority Mail with Delivery Confirmation) mainly because it only gets handled for two days and has some tracking in addition to a properly sized, free box. I simply told her to mail it herself with HER return address and call me when the part arrives.

7. I find out from BadCaps.Net she doesn’t have a PayPal account to pay the $80 for the recapping, so I made the payment and printed the PayPal receipt for reimbursement.

At this point, I am at 3 hours of work and $80. I have also made two trips – one to do the initial work presuming it was just spyware and 100% user stupidity and take the drive for backup (as well as write down all the serial numbers for warranty lookups), and the other trip to package the motherboard up for shipping after I figured out what to do.

8. She called me that the board came in and to come over. I arrive at the scheduled time and she wasn’t home. $^&*(%!!!

9. I re-schedule the call out. I arrive and inspect the motherboard; it looks fabulously repaired! I install it and cross my fingers that it will POST and be okay after having like 20 caps replaced. Everything works, no hangs, no freezes, etc.

10. I go through the HP recovery process, Windows Updates, install her Microsoft Office, setup her Internet access, install her printer, install her scanner and create her icons. I install Security Essentials and Firefox (because it is more like IE than Chrome and safer for home users than IE).

11. Reload her data from backup.

12. Configure Windows backup and teach her how to backup her data.

The job was done in 3 trips, 4 hours total work and 1 hour research checking warranties and places to get it re-capped in addition to $80 of my own to pay for the capacitor repair.

  • I never changed the original estimate from $60 and the travel cost of $9.
  • I never charged travel on more than one trip, yet there were three.
  • I did not charge for getting the packaging material (I bought), time getting the Priority Mail box and getting an anti-static bag – all of which took probably an hour, some travel and $5.

Then she says, “Can I pay you in installments?”

Me (not really caring; since, I am asking for so little): “Sure, go for it. Do you have the first payment now and how much?”

Her: “We get paid at work next week.”

Me: “Okay.”

Her: “Can I have an invoice?”

Me: “I hand her an Invoice for $60 labor, $9 travel, and $80 for the re-capping.”

Pay Day comes around and I don’t say anything hoping she will pay pro-actively. I wait two days and send another invoice.
She then tells me at work she has an installment of $80 as repayment for the portion of the BadCaps.net recapping. I took it, so I am at least at the break-even point except for my time and fuel running around.
I mailed a receipt showing that I put it toward that and now she owes on the $60 labor and $9 travel. Two weeks later we got paid again, so I asked about it and she paid me the $69.

What I learned

1. Simple jobs aren’t always simple when there are multiple problems.

2. Don’t quote a fixed cost and stick to it even as other problems crop up.

3. Don’t work for co-workers.

4. Never buy (and try not to avoid working on) a computer that doesn’t have a good source of original, spare parts.

What I should have charged

1. $80 for the Recovery (not $60 for Spyware removal)

2. $20 for the Hard Drive Diagnostics & Motherboard Diagnostics (bad caps)

3. For packaging/shipping materials (aside for the free Priority Mail box)

4. $80 up front before sending it for re-capping, not after.

5. $60 to cover the backup/restore

6. $40 to clean the dust & remove/install the motherboard… should have charged something for that trip.

7. Travel for all three trips at $9 each.

8. I should have charged at least $20 installing the AV, Anti Spyware, Office, updates, etc.

9. I should have charged at least $20 for setting up the backup & teaching her to use it.

10. Should have charged maybe $20 per device i.e. Internet, Printer, Scanner

I wasn’t doing this job for the money; I looked at is as doing a favor for a friend that just wasn’t totally free. I was doing it to help out and wanted to make sure she was not over-charged. I merely quoted $60 because I don’t want the word getting around that I will do favors and to discourage her from asking for repeat favors.

The original idea of mine was that I would take care of her Spyware issues, get everything running smoothly in an hour and then train her with some basic knowledge to leave her feeling good with high esteem and some basic knowledge to prevent reoccurrence. I planned to be done fixing the problem in under an hour then stay around just long enough to make her feel she got “added” value beyond fixing a computer.

That said, I never expected this little job to turn into a big project involving research, paper-work, invoicing, receipts, appointments, a missed appointment, shipping, packaging, multiple trips, multiple warranty checks, visual observation/diagnostics of the motherboard, memory diagnostics, data recovery, drive diagnostics, restore backup, updates, training, backup configuration, printer, scanner, Internet, software installation and loan of money via a PayPal payment to re-cap the motherboard.

The entire time, I never budged on my quote because I felt I had a commitment and that she was a friend, but I should have either charged more or known when to walk away from the job.

I also wanted to keep the price very low because I knew she was far more underpaid than I am at work. She probably gets paid $1 for every $3 I get, and I felt for her situation since she just bought the computer 14 months ago. I knew if I didn’t fix it, anywhere she took it they would have quoted astronomical prices higher than those listed that I should charge. I knew if I didn’t fix it, she would have no choice but to buy a new computer.

A retail shop would have run into the same problems I did, have to make the same diagnosis or possibly make a miss misdiagnosis. They would also have a problem not being able to buy a motherboard from HP. Even if they could source one, they would probably charge $150 to $200 for it plus its installation.

Although we don’t forget how important it is to look after people (especially friends and family), we often forget to look after ourselves – that is the lesson I learned.

By the way, it has been over a year and she told me at work that the computer is still running great. She said it actually works better than new because it would sometimes hard-freeze a couple of times a month after the first few months of ownership. It has been rock-solid, stable and reliable since the new capacitors.

Do you have your own tale from the Tech Trenches you would like to share with us? Please send it here.

© Technibble – A Resource for Computer Technicians to start or improve their Computer Business
To get started with your own computer business, check out our Computer Business Kit. Tales from the Tech Trenches: A Coworker and Her Motherboard

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D7 – Computer Repair Multi Tool

Authors: Bryce Whitty

D7 is a small, portable application designed to aid in many computer repair related tasks and provide a uniform procedure for technicians to follow by automation.

D7 has multiple functions such as being an interface to quickly go to various system areas such as the system file checker. It also contains many fixes for common Windows problems such as repairing Internet Explorer, Repair Permissions, PIO/DMA mode fix, Repair Windows Update and more. It also contains a good collection of Windows tweaks.

D7 is much more than just a glorified front end to run tweaks and scripts though, it can also be used for automation in its Maintenance and Malware areas. Simply tick the tasks you want it to do such as Delete Temp Files, Empty Recycle Bin, Run CCLeaner and Defraggler and it will do these tasks automatically. You can also add your own applications for it to run automatically one after another such as various virus scanners for example. Take a look at the screenshots below to see its full functionality.

This application requires third party applications to make use of its full functionality. D7 is free for personal and commercial use and it was also created by a Technibble forum member.

Warning: This is a technicians tool and not designed for end users. This application can do damage to a system if used incorrectly. Use at your own risk. Additionally, due to the registry editing and file manipulation nature of this application, some antivirus products may detect this as a virus. These are false positives.

Screenshots:

Download:
Download from Official Site – 3.2mb

© Technibble – A Resource for Computer Technicians to start or improve their Computer Business
To get started with your own computer business, check out our Computer Business Kit. D7 – Computer Repair Multi Tool

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