Slow Internet Connection
Firstly is this a problem that has been long running or a new issue?
If it’s a new issue it’s likely due to some line work or possibly a line fault in your area. Contact your internet provider to report the issue or request an update on the current status.
Sometimes line conditions may be causing problems so we would recommend dialing 17070 from your landline handset and choosing “Quiet Line Test” which is usually option 2. Put the handset on mute and you should hear nothing through the handset. If you do hear any line noise, cracking, buzzing, popping or humming, note the sound heard, time and when you conducted the test. Repeat this over varying times and conditions as sometimes we find issues only occur at particular times and in varying kinds of weather. With this information it can be helpful to contact your supplier and this should help them to eliminate if you have a line fault or not.
You can check your line speed with a lot of companies online, simply search your providers name and ‘speed test’. If there isn’t one visible for your provider, search for their customer service line to speak to someone about the issue.
Quite a common cause we find with a lot of our customers is location. Due to the largely rural areas we operate in, connection can be quite difficult to come by. It may be worth contacting another provider to see whether they can improve your current speed. For example, BT are always putting in new fibre lines in new locations and w3z, a local firm, are always looking to expand their connections also, so you may just get in lucky.
If you’re unsure of what you’d need to say or who is best to speak to, contact the team for some advice as we’d be happy to point you in the right direction.
Home Wi-Fi issues
We have had other instances where the house itself is the problem. Either a large house, old house, house with thick walls, across a farm yard – you name it, we’ve seen it!
There are solutions to accommodate this and improve your connectivity within your home. Our technician Aaron loves a home or business wi-fi project, so he’s the best guy to speak to about getting the right solution to suit you.
We’d ordinarily organise a site visit, to confirm the issue and come to a conclusion for the best solution. From there we can put together a quote for the job and upon approval by yourself get you booked in to improve your home connectivity. It’s nice and easy once it all gets going.
Contact a member of the team on 01335 81 80 81and ask about improving your home wi-fi set up and we’ll get started from there!
My program is frozen.
A good way to tell whether your device or simply just a program has frozen is to select the combination of keys CRTL, ALT, DELETE (you must press all three together)
This should open up an options menu on your PC – if this happens, select the ‘Task Manager’ option.
A window should then open on your computer that shows all of the open programs and the speeds at which they’re running. If you select the program you seem to be having issues with, you can force close the program using the ‘End Task’ button.
You should then be able to use your device again.
My PC/Laptop is frozen
If you have been moving the mouse unable to see a change and have attempted to use the CTRL, ALT, DELETE method to no avail, your device is well and truly frozen. If you have unsaved work it may be worth leaving the device for a few minutes to see whether it comes back – don’t click anything or press anything for about 15 minutes to just see if it comes back. If it does save the work asap and try to properly close down any programs etc.
If the device does not come back after waiting, you may need to force shut down the device. To do this you will need to hold the power button down for a few seconds until the screen goes blank and the device powers down – you will most likely lose any unsaved work by doing this.
Computers freeze for a number of reasons, but if your device is getting on in ages (over 5 years), then it’s likely it’s way of saying it needs to be replaced.
If the issue persists it may be wise to bring the device down to the workshop so that our technicians can take a look into it.
If you have any questions on top of this please contact a member of the team on 01335 81 80 81 and someone will be happy to help.
I have a frozen smartphone/tablet
Sometimes smartphones do freeze and begin to run slow, just as with computers. In fact it came out earlier this year that Apple were purposefully slowing down older devices to encourage people to purchase a new one. Whilst this has supposedly been resolved, naturally this does happen as time goes on.
If your device freezes however, you will need to try and force shut it down. Google how to force shut down your device, and turn it back on again.
If this issue persists it may be wise to back up your data, or try to take note of when it freezes (i.e. is there an app it always freezes on?) as if there is a pattern you may be able to break it by removing an app or program.
If unsure of what to do next, try searching the issue – is it common? If so it may be wise to contact the manufacturer. If less so, contact a technician and we’ll see how we can help you.
My device is running really slow
As machines get older they begin to run slower, it’s unfortunately a (strangely) natural thing.
Other reasons a device may run slow is it’s specification (i.e. the processor and RAM/Storage space the machine has) and this isn’t always easily or cheaply altered.
If you’re interested in this as an option contact a technician who can give you an idea of price and timescale.
We can however look into your software and as upon setting up the device there are sometimes ‘drivers’ and other programs that are required to set up the operating system but later not necessary. Removing these programs may give a little extra space that can possibly improve the speed of your device.
External Hard drives
We always recommend having an external hard drive to back up your important data. Whilst expensive, devices can be replaced, data cannot!
However if your machine starts to run slowly this is all the more important, as it could possibly be a sign of a struggling hard drive.
If you bring the device down we can have a technician run a diagnostic and clean up of your device for you, but if the machine is over 5 years old, it may be time to start considering a new PC!
As a disclosure, we unfortunately do not deal in the repairs of printer hardware. If a part needs replacing we unfortunately cannot facilitate.
We can however help with software and connection, jams and new purchases.
I can’t find my printer on my computer
Firstly, is your printer ethernet or wireless? (i.e. does it have to be plugged in to print?)
If it does have to be plugged in, please check the sockets to ensure it hasn’t become dislodged or come out. Then restart the printer.
If it is wireless, check your Wi-Fi connection, if you have poor Wi-Fi your printer may struggle. If it is still on the Wi-Fi please restart the printer.
Can your computer find the printer? Is it an option to print from said device? If not please contact the team who can get on remotely and take a look at the set up.
If it is visible, is it online? If the device is saying its offline, there’s an issue with the printer itself – if you haven’t already, please restart. If you have, contact the team who should be able to get on remotely to your PC to see the issue.
If you have a WIRED printer you would also be able to bring it in, but will need to bring your laptop/PC along with it for us to connect the two together.
If an error code is showing on your device, please restart the printer and see if the code returns. If so, take note of the error code and contact the team.
Your printer may also give messages about a lack of paper, low ink levels etc, but if your device does not have a screen we advise you check these first before calling.
You may also want to check the printer head to see if there is a paper jam.
If in doubt please feel free to contact a technician on 01335 81 80 81 – please ensure you have the model and manufacturer or your printer to hand when calling.
Unfortunately we do not specialise in fixing hardware issues for smartphones or tablets. If your device is in warranty we would recommend contacting the manufacturer who may be able to solve the issue free of charge. Alternatively if it is not, you may be able to find a shop in Derby/Uttoxeter that offers phone repairs.
Do you fix software issues?
Unfortunately not. If you are experiencing any issues with your phone software, you will need to go back to the manufacturer, especially if the device is still in warranty.
Do you help with set ups?
We can assist in the set up of a new smartphone as well as the data transfer from an old one. We do ask that you ensure you bring a few things with you:
1. Your old phone (if wanting a data transfer) – with given passcode
2. Any passwords for emails/accounts you would like setting up on the new device
3. Any information necessary for setting up the phone (i.e. your Apple ID)
4. Charging cables for any devices
We are, more often than not, able to transfer data from one device to another, provided we have the necessary account information (ID and password) and correct cables to do so. This does differ dependent upon device, so if unsure please contact the team on 01335 81 80 81 to find out what you would need to bring along.
How to tell if your machine is infected
Some virus’ are clear as day and present themselves in the forms of pop ups, unknown programs appearing on your device or a strange electronic voice taking over your speakers. However others are quiet and calculating and may not always show themselves.
If you suspect you may have a virus it’s a wise idea to open your anti-virus software and run a malware scan. This will highlight if your machine is infected or if there are any concerns over your security.
If you do not have anti-virus software, it’s very advisable in this digital age to consider getting some. If you contact a technician on 01335 81 80 81 and explain the situation, they will be able to get on remotely with you and run some scans to ensure you aren’t infected and clear the machine up if it turns out that you in fact are. Alternatively you can pop in store and have it cleaned up physically rather than remotely.
What do I do if my device is infected?
Turn your device off and contact a technician who will advise you to bring it in store. We can then decipher the degree to the infection and clear the machine up. If you don’t have anti-virus already we will recommend you consider getting some, however will not install anything without your explicit authorisation.
What do I do if someone I don’t know accessed my computer?
If someone you don’t know has accessed your computer remotely, either via a number given in a fraudulent email or via a pop up on your screen, you will need to bring the machine in store instantly. We can then take a look at what files they have accessed, if any, and remove any remote software they have installed. It may or may not be necessary to change your passwords for any programs, but a technician can advise you on this.
If you use online banking we would advise contacting the bank to inform them of the issue as they may wish to alter your bank details to ensure they have not been masked.
If in doubt, please contact the office immediately. Some virus’ can be a simple and more or less harmless browser pop up, but others can be far more harmful to both your device and the data it holds. The best thing to do is to turn the device off and bring it into the office – this will ensure whoever has accessed the machine is no longer able to.
Before you contact the office there are a few things we will need you to try:
1. Have you restarted your router?
Restarting the router can sometimes be the kick needed to fix any internet issues (whatever you do, do not reSET the router however).
2. What is the connection status on your device?
You must ensure that you are connected to the correct router, that your Wi-Fi is turned on and that you’re not in ‘flight mode’. It may sound obvious, but these things happen.
If you’ve recently had a new router or altered the password to your router, you’ll need to reconnect to your new Wi-Fi before your internet will connect again. There should be a password attached to your router or that came along with your router when issued.
3. Is there a line fault with your provider?
BT give a service that allows you to check the line connectivity in your area, as do many services. If unsure however, call your internet provider and ask if there are any issues or maintenance works in the area.
4. Contact the team.
If you have restarted your router, contacted your internet provider and are still having no luck, it’s time to contact the team. Take note of what your router is doing – what lights are showing up, what colours are those lights? Have you been experiencing internet issues for a while or is this a one off? Where are you located? (some areas have much poorer and more intermittent internet than others)
With this information we can start to form a picture instantly upon your initial call and saves us requesting you go back and forth to gather this information for us.
Contact a technician on 01335 81 80 81
If you receive an email from a sender you do not recognise then there is a possibility it could contain harmful content.
If you do open the email, whatever you do, do not:
1. Click on any links in the e-mail
2. Open any attachments in the e-mail
3. Ring any numbers in the e-mail
If you’re ever in doubt of the authenticity of an email, search for the company online and contact a number on their official website to enquire about the email.
What do I do if you click on the link/attachment?
1. Close your browser
2. Run a scan with your Anti-Virus to check your device is clean
3. If really concerned shut your device down and bring it into the office
Email is sending out spam
Another way hackers can cause issues on email is by masking your email address. Unfortunately if they mask a copy of your email domain this may mean you haven’t SPF, DKIM and DMARC records set on your domain. These are used to help prevent unknown senders from abusing your domain and masking your email address.
For anyone unsure on what the SPF, DKIM and DMARC records need to set to on their domain and how to set these we recommend contacting our support technicians who can assist in guiding you through configuring these and any further best practices to keep your domain as secure as possible. For users of shared email platforms usually SPF records are already set so this could mean your accounts password has been compromised.
If you feel someone has accessed your account without authorisation, the first thing to do is to change your password. This will boot anyone out that should not have access to your emails automatically. You will have to sign back in to your email address across platforms again, but this will lock them out. It also is recommended to check to ensure that all of your security records are updated to something completely new and that anything has not been added while the account has been compromised. This sometimes also means ensuring there are no email rules and other settings which have been added without your knowledge that could be used to regain access after you change your password.
Two Factor Authentication
Two-factor authentication (2FA), often referred to as two-step verification, is a security process in which the user provides two authentication factors to verify they are who they say they are. Where possible we recommend that this is always enabled as this will help prevent someone from breaching your email account so even if someone does get hold of your password they are less likely to be successful in gaining access to your account.
Locked out of emails
If you feel you may have had someone access your emails without authorisation and you have since found yourself unable to sign yourself into your emails, you can go through the ‘forgotten password’ route. Head to your web-mail provider and attempt to sign in – you should then be given the option to try again or select a link ‘forgotten password’. You should then be able to follow the steps to reset your password.
If this doesn’t work, you will need to contact the providers customer service team and inform them of what has happened.
If you have any questions of what to ask or aren’t sure of the correct number to call, get in touch with a member of the team who will be happy to ensure you have the right details to move forward.
This issue is very commonplace nowadays, with even very large and well known companies finding themselves becoming victims. Last year saw the NHS fall victim to a phishing email and so there is absolutely no shame in admitting it. These situations happen to the best of us!
If you’re with Office 365 there is a very good chance that your password will have expired.
For security purposes, most Office 365 accounts have a set password expiration every X amount of days. This is alterable and if you wish to do so please speak to a technician or your manager for authorisation.
Failing that, head to portal.office.com and sign in with your current password, this will then log into the Office 365 web portal and prompt you to change your password.
You may then sign back in to your Outlook app and continue as normal. (Please note that this could also alter your sign in password, if you’re uncertain, please speak to a technician)
If you forget your password, contact the office to have a technician reset it on your behalf.
– If you use an app, such as Windows 10 Mail, Windows Live Mail, Outlook, Apple Mail or other and are unable to log in, it will likely ask you to confirm your log in details. This will happen every time you change your password and on the odd occasion otherwise. Simply re-enter your log in details and you should be back on your way.
– If you find you’re struggling to receive/send emails, firstly check your internet connection, if the server is struggling with connecting to the internet, your emails will be slow at coming through. See what to do if you have poor internet here.
If your internet is all fine, try going online to your webmail (gmail, yahoo, btinternet, icloud, hotmail, outlook, w3z – the list goes on). If you aren’t able to log in to the webmail either it may be there is an issue with the email provider, in which case you’re best to call their support team and log an issue.
If you can log in on the webmail, contact one of our technicians and we will be able to take a look remotely as to why your mail app isn’t working. Find out how to log in remotely here.
If you are unable to log in to your webmail you will either need to reset your password (if it states the information is incorrect) or alternatively contact your provider via their customer service line and report the issue.
Windows Live Mail
If you are having issues with Windows Live Mail this is likely because it is no longer supported by Microsoft. This means that there will be no new updates for the program and any faults that come up are likely not going to be resolved. We advise anyone still using Windows Live Mail switch to their webmail or look into using Windows 10 Mail, which operates fairly similarly.
Unfortunately there isn’t a great deal we can do to resolve any issues with Windows Live Mail and so suggest trying these alternatives first.
If in doubt please feel free to call the office on 01335 81 80 81 for advice from a member of the team – please explain your issue as clearly and as in as much detail as possible.
Should you be unsure of what’s best or have any further questions, please feel free to contact the team on 01335 81 80 81 and we will assign a technician best able to handle your concern.