Tools of the trade – helpdesks and tribulations

As an information provider I totally depend on my main tool – the pc . When it malfunctions or just decides to have a sulk, I know it could be a time wasting affair.

Years of using IT equipment and software means that I (sometimes with the help of my husband) can generally sort out most of the commonly occurring minor problems, but now and again something new crops up.

When the problem is caused by things outside one’s control life gets very frustrating,

I had problems with my Outlook Express mailbox yesterday. I only use this for mail relating to my major client who uses a reputable mail hosting company. Their service is generally first class, so when I found that I was unable to open the mailbox (because a massive mail with big attachments was being re-sent and re-sent for some unknown reason) and I had spent too much time trying to sort it out, I contacted the mail hotel’s helpdesk. They were very helpful, spent ages sorting things out. I had to leave for a meeting immediately after this.

When I returned I was ready to spend the evening catching up on time lost in the morning – only to find that the mailbox still refused to do anything other than tell me that it was loading mail…. another call to the mail hotel and a really efficient person listened to the problem, and told me HOW TO SORT IT. It took two minutes, and a clear description of how to deal with the matter if it should happen again. As always, it’s easy when you know how! Why didn’t I get this information from the first person I talked with?

I have a folder on my pc where I list all the various computer tips and tricks – and a paper copy for those times when I cannot get access to the electronic copy. It is a useful memory-jogger when I know I have had this problem before – but not quite how it was fixed.