Because computers are run by operators, User Error is the most common cause of computer malfunction. When the user is at the computer, he or she may add or delete certain files or he/she may remove or exchange certain hardware features.
When we look at user error, we must remember that since we’re human, the user error may be easy to solve by simply asking the last user if he/she installed any software, re-configured any software or hardware settings, etc.
A large percentage of computer malfunctions are due to environmental factors such as power surges caused by lightning, resulting in overvoltage.
Another cause for failure may be room temperature being too high or low, as well as dust, dirt, or sunlight. If you’re in business and heavily dependent on your computers, such factors as room temperature, sunlight and protection against power surges is of the utmost importance and simply cannot be overlooked.
The most common pc problem is when you can’t access your PC at all. When you turn on the power switch, NOTHING HAPPENS.
Here is a quick checklist of troubleshooting procedures you should follow if you encounter this problem . There are videos you can view on the Internet should you need assistance in just how to perform these procedures:
Try the Power Switch a second or third time. If nothing happens..
Check the wall outlet for power. If the outlet has power.
Check the power cord itself from wall to computer.
Check the Power Supply inside the System Unit. If you’re not comfortable getting inside your computer seek a qualified technician like GEFNET.
Replace the Power Supply rather than trying to repair it. This is a simple fix but again if you’re not comfortable seek professional help.
If the system make those noises and it appears to be booting, but the screen is blank, check the Monitor.
If the monitor proves to be good, check the Video Card, even in a new system.
Another big headache you will most likely encounter if you’re a regular user of your computer system, is the fact that Windows will fail to load or the system’s POST will fail to run. Google POST to learn much more about the Power On Self Test. Don’t forget those preventive maintenance procedures that can be done often to keep your PC running at peak performance. GEFNET has a multi-point checklist that you should do to your computers on a daily, monthly and yearly schedule just ask us for it and we’ll send it to you.
Running such Windows utilities such as Scandisk, Disk Defragment, and Disk Cleanup will help your computer performing at its best. Using a can of compressed air removes dust that could build up to the point of causing a short. There are several other programs out there that can help keep your computer running smooth ask GEFNET what we recommend.
If you get the computer to boot but it does not want to read from the hard drive the Master Boot Record on the hard drive may be corrupted or even missing. The options to help with this vary depending on the OS you are using. You don’t want to do any further damage to the computer at this point because you could lose data so search how to fix MBR for your chosen OS or let a qualified technician do this for you.
If all else fails take it to your local GeeK or give us a call and we will go through all the different parts of the computer to make sure they are functional. It’s a matter of elimination before we find the culprit causing the problem.
If this is something you think you can handle just go through the various hardware components of the computer and ensure it is working then move on to the next one.
Last but not least the most important factor when a computer dies is did you have a backup? Computers can be replaced, programs can be replaced, but data such as your documents, pictures, etc. cannot be replaced. Now is the perfect time to check your backups or make fresh ones because the next time you try to turn on your computer it may be dead.
-Greg Fultz, Lead GeeK @ GEFNET