Tag Archives: computer repair

Dangers of Remote Computer Repair

When you computer is on the fritz, you may be very desperate for instant repair. You go to Google, Bing or Yahoo and the term computer repair results in thousands of options. Many web only computer repair organizations have very impressive websites and offer rock bottom prices. The problem is, you have no way of knowing where these companies are operating from, who the people are behind the screen, and what kind things they may be doing on your computer in the background.

Most remote computer software allows the technicians to do things you cannot see. While they may advertise you can watch everything the technician is doing, this is simply not the case. While most of these companies are legitimate, they often use remote technicians operating out of their home or worst yet in a third world country call center. Also, many of these organizations perform no background check on their employees. So be very careful when considering these companies for solving your problems.

Many computer repairs can be performed remotely but the fact is, it is not the case for all of them. In other words, after paying $39 to $199 for a remote fix, you may still need to take your computer in for further repair.


  1. Many good local computer repair companies offer instant remote support to clients. They might be able to help you today and still follow thru with a hardware repair if needed.
  2. Call the company and ask them where they are physically located. If they avoid answering the question, this should be a big red flag.
  3. 3. Use a company which provides verifiable domestic mailing address. A P.O. Box in Anytown, CA can mean the company is hiding or not operating from a legitimate place of business.
  4. Even if they seem to have a local address, you should use an online map service like Google maps to see what other companies use the address. Many nefarious companies will rent a private mail box in a mailbox store to appear more legitimate.
  5. Don’t simply believe a local phone number means they are local. With voice over internet, companies in third world countries are able to get local phone numbers. Also, just because they have a toll free number, doesn’t mean they are local.
  6. Companies which seem to offer local support everywhere are likely using local computer technicians on a contractual basis.
  7. If it sounds too good to be true, it usually is. Companies which seem to offer the lowest price are mostly offering the lowest service. Pay now or pay later truly applies. You don’t want to more than once for the repair, so shop around and avoid low cost providers.
  8. Read BBB reports on the actual BBB website. Many companies throw the BBB logo on their website and have a history of complaints or no experience with the BBB at all. Angie’s List is also a great place to look for reviews.
  9. Look to see if the company is a member of a local Chamber of Commerce. While this by itself does not indicate legitimacy, it goes further to verify they are a real business.
  10. Don’t provide your credit card number to anyone in a chat window. Make sure the website you are providing payment information has a valid, trusted website certificate from a reputable company like VeriSign.

When in doubt…Check them out!

Laptop Power

A recent call for support presented a young lady who was having trouble with her laptop computer.  She explained the patient computer had been back to the manufacturer three times in the last 30 days for a handful of issues all pointing to one thing…power problems.

When we advised the client the problem was likely a power supply issue she advised that she didn’t think so as the system was powering fine.  She later explained she had replaced the original equipment manufacturer (OEM) power supply with one of two non-OEM’s that she had purchased through a well known auction site.  The decision to purchased non-OEM was due to the higher cost.

We can certainly appreciate saving money, but at what cost.  Non-OEM laptop power supplies are not necessarily manufactured to the standards or specifications of the OEM.  If you decide to purchase a non-OEM or aftermarket compatible product to power your laptop, you could be exposing your laptop to an unregulated power source.  One that could damage your laptop in the short or long term.  This concept is true with aftermarket non-OEM batteries.

The pro’s of aftermarket non-OEM power supplies and batteries are limited to reduced cost or perceived savings.

The con’s of the same include;

  1. Potential damage to your laptop
  2. Voiding your laptop warranty instantly.
  3. Frustrating problems which seem unexplainable.
  4. Offset of the savings over a the OEM product when you need to replace a poorly manufactured power source yet again.

Carefully consider the purchase of non-OEM laptop power supplies and batteries.  Understand the risks involved.  If the OEM replacement is available, you should spend the extra money.  If you are unable to purchase an OEM replacement from your local computer supplier or battery store, check web sources and popular auction sites before deciding on the aftermarket product.  Remember that you will always get what you pay for.