Technical Support Ideas
Naturally we all have times when we would just love to scream out loud and cry for help. This is why I have compiled a list of suggestions and links to some of the places I run to for help. In my opinion, the only way to eliminate a problem is to find out how to make it occur. This will help you to get rid of it. Using a technique like this will also help if you have to call a company for technical support.

The first thing to do is to find out if it is a hardware or software problem. Some questions you might ask yourself are:

  • Did I just install some new hardware or software?
  • Is it a certain program that I just started?
  • Have I ever had this problem before?
  • Did I just delete some files or programs off of my hard drive?
  • Has there been any other recent problems that could be related?
If it is a new piece of hardware, the first thing to do is to look for a troubleshooting guide that might have been packed with the item. If there is no luck there, then maybe you could look up the manufacturer on the Internet. Some companies offer free tech support email if you can wait a couple of days for a response. Another option is to see if a friend will let you hook it up on his computer. Works good for an external modem or Zip drive, but a little involved for an internal CD-ROM drive or sound card. The next solution is to use a search engine on the Internet and with a description of the problem. Chances are that there is someone else out there that has had the same problem and has gone to the Internet looking for an answer. If you are still stumped, the next places to go are either the original manufacturer or a computer repair shop. If the item isn't under warranty, then all costs including technical support phone charges could be your responsibility.

Most problems are just software related though and can usually be corrected by just reinstalling the software. That method doesn't usually let you know why you had the problem, but it gets you going again. If that doesn't work, then I suggest the above solutions again, look in the manual if you have one. Try it on another computer. If it doesn't work there, then you have a problem with the software. If it does work, try to think of some other similar software that you already have on your system that could be conflicting with the new program. Look up the developer of the software on the Internet. Companies usually keep good FAQs (Frequently Asked Questions) pages that cover encountered problems. Search the Internet with your problem. And if you are still having trouble, get in touch with a tech support person over the phone. Remember that the time that you talk could be costing you money. 

This page is posted to give you an idea of how to try to help your self out of a problem. If you have ever been on hold waiting for tech support then you would appreciate the thought that everyone else that was on the phone with that company had also given some effort to getting the problem solved by themselves. Although it might seem convenient to blame me if you have problems after using these suggestions, I will not be held liable for damages encountered by using my ideas. Also keep in mind that by trying to eliminate one problem, you could create more. Basically be careful and think before you click.

Some good places to stop for some help with windows 95 are:
Windows 95 Annoyances
 Bob Cerelli's Windows Page

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