Troubleshooting: Fix The Little Computer Repair Problems Yourself
”It takes two to make a thing go right, it takes two to make it outta sight”
It might `take two to make things go right´ (you and us here at Little Computer People), but it only takes one computer to make things go wrong. At least it can feel that way at times. What do you do when you’re screen goes black? Why is there no sound coming out of your speakers?
Step One Is…
DON’T PANIC! There are many ways to troubleshoot these common annoyances that you might encounter. That’s why we here at Little Computer People have compiled a list of the most common problems you´re likely to face on your PC or laptop. And with it, we have our top solutions to help you out on your way to becoming tech savvy. And of course, remember that if none of these solutions help please call either one of our computer repair shops (Richmond, Sydney) to have a mobile PC tech visit your home or place of business to help solve the issue.
Helpful Hints to Remember
Some problems have easier/quicker fixes than others. There are many things that can be the source of the problem when it comes to your computer. In some cases, it requires a bit of trial and error to work out the right approach. Our recommendation is to keep these hints in mind as you start your problem-solving process.
Write down all your steps: If you take careful notes you won’t get mixed up about what you have already tried and what haven’t yet. You can avoid making the same mistake multiple times and if you end up needing to call us in for assistance we will know exactly what you´ve done so we can more quickly get to the source of the problem.
Take Note of Error Messages
When you see one of these messages jot down the details. This may come in handy down the road when checking in forums for others experiencing a similar issue. It can also be useful when contacting the professionals for assistance.
Check The Cables
If you are on a PC with a multitude of cables, but sure to check their connections. If you have a problem with your keyboard or mouse, the first thing to do is check the connection, plug and unplug them is necessary.
When nothing else works, try restarting your device, whether it´s a computer, a tablet, or a cellphone. Something this is just the jolt needed to reset and solve whatever the glitch is you are dealing with.
The Process of Elimination
This is the best way to start figuring out what has gone wrong with your computer. Make a list of potential causes, and work your way down the list to eliminate them. If you can identify the culprit than that makes finding a solution that much easier.
You have to print out a report to hand to your prof or boss by tomorrow. But the printer isn’t working. There are a few things that could be causing this, so time to work through them to eliminate possible problems and find the solution.
First, is the printer on and plugged in correctly to a power source? Yes. Now it’s time to check if you have ink left and that you have paper in the paper tray. Check and check! Those aren’t the issues, on to the next potential culprit.
Is the printer and computer communicating properly?
A new download, or an updated operating system, might be interfering with this connection. If there has been no changes since the last time the printer worked then you can eliminate this potential source.
Next check the USB cord is connected properly, you find it’s not! It must have come loose, and you´ve found your problem! You reconnect it and the printer starts working again.
Here, using the process of elimination we were able to narrow down this issue and then take steps to resolve it.
Common Problems and Simple Solutions
Often, simple issues can be fixed with quick troubleshooting strategies, for example closing and reopening a program. It is so important to try all the simple solutions before going to more extreme measures. If you run out of options and the problem still hasn’t been resolved, that’s when it’s time to contact the experts here at Little Computer People.
Problem #1: The power button will not turn on the computer.
Solution 1: Check the power cord. Is it firmly plugged into both the computer and the power outlet?
Solution 2: Check that the power outlet is working correctly. Plug your computer into another source or another electrical device (such as a lamp) into the original electrical outlet, to verify that this isn’t the issue.
Solution 3: If you are using a surge protector or power bar, check that it is in fact turned on. It may need to be reset, turn it off and then back on again. Check with another device that the surge protector is working as it should.
Solution 4: Are you using a laptop? Is the battery just dead? Plug it into the electrical outlet and see if now your computer will start.
Nothing helps! Okay, so now it may be time to call our (Richmond/Sydney) computer repair shop.
Problem #2: An app is SUPER slow.
Solution 1: Close and reopen the application. Or close other apps that might be slowing down the overall processing speed.
Solution 2: Are you using an old version of the application? Check to see if it needs updating. Open the Help menu and look for Updates, or search online to see if the latest version is available to download.
Problem #3: An application has frozen and stopped working.
Within the app you might not even be able to close the window or click on any of the buttons.
Solution 1: Force quit. On a PC hold down the keys Ctrl+Alt+Delete (the Control, Alt, and Delete keys) at the same time to open the Task Manager. On a Mac hold down Command+Option+Esc. Once there select End Task or Force Quit depending if you are using a PC or a Mac.
Solution 2: Restart the whole computer. If you can’t restart or force quit the application, then the next step would be to restart the computer which by default will close all the open applications.
Problem #4: All the programs on the computer run SUPER slowly.
Solution 1: Scan for viruses. You may malware operating in the background causing things to run more slowly.
Solution 2: Do you still have available space on your hard drive? The more programs you have and the closer to the limit you are, the slower your computer is likely to run. Try removing files and programs that you don’t need anymore.
Solution 3: If you have a PC, another option is to run Disk Defragmenter. This is a utility in Windows designed to increase speed by rearranging files on your hard disk.
Problem #5: The computer is unresponsive and just completely frozen.
You can’t do anything, can’t click anywhere, can’t open or close apps, and can’t use any typical shut down options.
Solution 1 (Windows): Restart Windows. Hold down the keys Ctrl+Alt+Delete to access the Task Manager. Find the Processes tab and select Windows Explorer – Restart.
Solution 2 (Mac): Restart Finder. Hold down Command+Option+Esc to open Force Quit Applications. Select Finder and click Relaunch.
Solution 3: Press and hold the power button for up to 15 seconds to force the computer to turn off. Wait at least a minute before attempting to turn it back on.
Solution 4: It still wont turn off. If on a computer unplug the power cord from the wall. If on a laptop you may be able to remove the battery to force it to shut down. This should be the resort as information could be damaged or lost.
If you are worried about losing information be sure to call the Little Computer People PC repair shops (Richmond, Sydney) first.
Problem #6: The mouse or keyboard has stopped working.
Solution 1: If these are connected with a cable, check that they are plugged into your computer correctly.
Solution 2: If these devices are wireless, check to make sure they are turned on or that the batteries are charged.
Problem #7: The sound or speakers aren’t working.
Solution 1: Check the volume. Check that both the volume on your computer is turned on correctly. You can click the audio button on your keyboard or in the bottom corner of your screen to verify that the volume is turned up.
Solution 2: Check that the audio player’s volume is turned on. Many times these audio/video/webpages have their own controls, make sure the volume is turned up here as well.
Solution 3: If you have external speakers check all of the cables. Are they properly plugged in? Are they turned on? Are they connected correctly to the audio or USB port.
Solution 4: Sometimes one area doesn’t work but another does. Connect your headphones to check if you can hear sound through them.
Problem #8: The screen is blank.
Solution 1: The computer might just be in Sleep mode. Press any key of move/click on the mouse to wake the computer up.
Solution 2: Disconnect any peripheral device. Disconnect cell phone from your computer, a flash drive, or SD card. These items could be interfering with your computer.
Solution 3: Double check that the monitor is plugged in properly and turned on.
Solution 4: Check to make sure the computer as a whole is plugged in and turned on.
Solution 5: If on a desktop computer, make sure the monitor cable is properly connected to both the monitor and the CPU.
Solving the More Difficult Problems
If these steps haven’t helped and the problem persists you may need to ask for help. Start by doing a quick search on the Internet. Maybe others have experienced the same issue, and the solution is posted online. If your friends or family are tech savvy they might be a source of aid. However if the problem is very difficult you many need a more drastic solution. Potentially reformatting your entire hard drive or reinstalling your operating system. Taking extreme actions may cause more harm than good. Please, before you do this, contact us here at Little Computer People (either of our computer repair shops in Richmond or Sydney) to see if we may be of assistance. Remember we are here to help!