I went to see a client this morning. She had no internet. Yesterday a Virgin Engineer spent two hours at her house and couldn’t get it to work. She then spent three hours on the phone to Virgin who eventually blamed her computer. She was so stressed that she took the night off work.
I got her back online 35 minutes after I arrived. The problems was an incorrect setting on her Virgin router. I fixed something in 35 minutes that virgin couldn’t fix in five hours!
I then spent the remaining 25 minutes of my one-hour minimum call-out fixing a blue-screen problem (caused by overheating) and speeding up her PC a little.
This ‘can’t get on the internet’ type of problem is very common. It’s not something the Internet Service Provider (ISP) can easily diagnose over the phone. It needs someone actually there to see what’s going on and to try things in a logical order.
The ISP will tend to blame the client’s computer (especially antivirus) first, but they could be barking up the wrong tree and wasting lots of time changing the computer settings. Almost always, the first thing I do is connect my laptop to the modem/router and see if I can get on the internet. If I can, then it’s likely to be a problem with the client’s computer. If my laptop can’t get on the internet, then it’s likely to be a problem with the modem or router or a line problem, and the ISP can’t blame the client’s computer. Either way, we’ve just saved half of the time by ruling out half of the possibilities.
So, next time you can’t get on the internet, call me and I’ll figure out what the problem really is. The alternative could be spending five hours with the ISP, not getting the problem solved, and losing a night’s money because you’re too stressed to go to work.