Tuesday, 24 January 2012

Unit 2 - Computer Systems

Hardware components

RAM (Random Access Memory),
CPU (Central Processing Unit),
PSU (Power Supply Unit),
USB (Universal Serial Bus),
Hard Disk Drive,
CD-ROM Drive,
Floppy Disk Drive,
Video Card,
Graphic Card,
Ethernet Cable,
Expansion Cards,
Sound Card,

Unit 2 - Computer Systems

what are all of the specific components of computer sytems:
  • CPU -
  • Hard Drive configuration and controllers eg. SATA, IDE, EIDE, Master, Slave
  • Internal Memory: RAM, ROM, Cache
  • Graphics Card
  • Sound Card
  • Video Card
  • Power Supply
  • Ports: USB, Parallel, Serial
  • DVD-ROM /CD-ROM drive
  • Fan
  • Network Card
  • Motherboard
how do you set-up and maintain computer systems?
install the operating system
run system tests to make sure the system is running correctly
back up your files so that if you lose files you can put them back on
make sure everything is up to date
set up account and login settings -admin

Tuesday, 17 January 2012

Unit 12 - Technical Support

Future Trends

-A rise in those working from home.
-Businesses spanning more than one site.
-Business operating 24/7 across the world.
-Cost savings for small companies by having support cover many sites.
-Increased productivity for IT staff/
-Cheap to implement - VNC, Windows remote desktop and Windows Live Messenger are free.

Drawbacks of remote support

-Needs faster internet.
-Communication with the technical user.
-If the network or server goes down, then nothing can happen.

IT support for the future

-Support systems that know you.
-Smarter peer-to-peer support.
-Virtual worlds with avatar support.

Tuesday, 13 December 2011

Unit 12 - Technical Support

Information that can assist us in solving IT technical faults are as follows:
-Ebooks: 24/7
-Books: Oreilly, SAM's Teach Yourself
-Internet: Clustering (webclust), listing
-Training Courses: Online, 121, Group, Cascading "Train the Trainer"
-Fault Logs:
-Solved Tickets: Internal Company
-Knowledge Base: Outside of the company archive
-Hardware and Software Manuals
-Intranet: (CMS Content Management System, Repsitories)
-Online Chat: (IRC Internet Relay Chat Channels)
-Phone Support Lines:
-High Sreet Desk Shop Counters: (e.g Techguys)

What would need to be taken into consideration when making a product recommendation.
-Level of knowledge (End User)
-Budget (Allocation)
-Operating System
-Role Specific
-Peripherals and Devices

Helpdesk Knowledge Library
1)      Computer seems to randomly crash without error message.
-Check event logs for any errors, and find out what program is causing the problem.
-Check your temperatures on the motherboard, CPU and GPU. Test your memory with memtest.
-Take all the RAM out and try to run them on a PC one by one and see if it does it again.

2)      Blue screens of death.
-Reboot the PC.
-Go into safe mode on start-up and restore the last known good configuration.

3)      Corrupted data.
-start the computer from a bootable CD, then scan the hard disk for errors. If the scan completes successfully, the registry can be restored by hand and the computer can be scanned for viruses.

4)      Some memory intensive programs crash on start up.
-Add more sticks of RAM.

5)      The screen changes colour and flickers.
-Check to see if the video cable is in correctly and plugged in, check for video drivers updates.

6)      The computer eventually stops booting up and makes continuous or repetitive POST beeps.
–Refer to POST beep codes from computer manufacturer and see what the problem is via how many beeps you hear.

Why does validity and reliability matter?
-We need detailed accurate information about a fault in order to process the support call
-Invalid information will delay the fault resolution
-We need to ask the right questions to our customer to gather the right information.
-Detrimental problem solving
-Avoiding reoccurrence
-Save money and time

Tuesday, 29 November 2011

Unit12 - Technical Support -IT Technitians (SysAID)

ERP - Enterprice Resource Planning

A ticket system is a fully automated web based help desk. Anyone can download a ticket system program free via the internet. Once you have the software program installed, you can then at any time submit a ticket to the support team of your ticket provider, about any problem you are having involving anything technical with your pc. You can send a ticket via the program you have installed on your pc, by email or phone; this makes the process much quicker and cheaper as you do not have to spend time calling a helpdesk.

When you are submitting a ticket, you will have to fill out a few fields to explain more on the problem you are having. Some of these may be as follows:

  • Category - what help do you need, and about which topic
  • Title - what is the topic problem
  • Description - explain what isn't working correctly, what does the error message say
  • Urgency - Is it a problem that needs solving urgently or not
  • Asset - Is this a problem with the server, networking, hardware, software, etc.

Always make your problem clear in the title, and explain in brief what the problem is. Do not mark your problem as urgent if it's not.

Once you have sent the ticket (the problem), you will receive an email back straight after to indicate that your message has been received and that you will be contacted again shortly after with help on how to solve the problem. You will be given your own personal tracking number, so that it makes it much easier when you’re back in contact, so that you can give them your tracking number and your problem can be opened via their database. This is so that you do not have to explain every time when you’re in contact with the helpdesk what the problem is. They will know by their records what the problem is as they save every ticket you submit to their database for when you contact them again.

The IT technician tracks your problem in their own time, each technician is given problems to tackle so that there are enough IT technicians to solve each problem you and other people have. Once they have the knowledge to fix your computer, they will contact you back shortly after you have provided them with your problem, so that they can fix it. They will then keep the knowledge stored in their database once they’ve researched it, so that they can help any other end user when they have the same problem. The steps of the process of submitting a ticket are as follows:

  • Submit SR through end user
  • Email confirmation
  • Notify assigned IT administrator
  • Search knowledgebase
  • Retrieve information
  • Remote control
  • Email confirmation

When you’re back in contact with the technician, they can take remote control of your computer and fix the problem themselves quick and easy.  This helps the end user as they get to the problem quicker as they know what they’re doing. The end user should watch and take notes on what the technician is doing, so that if the same problem occurs they can follow the steps and fix the problem themselves. 

Most helpdesks have one email address (the same one each) for every IT technician, and the email will go to everyone and someone will find the solution to your problem. Once an email has been sent, it then triggers of a service report. Most technicians have their email connected to their phone, so that no matter where they are, they will receive the email to be able to fix the problem quicker.

VPN - Virtual Private Network

Tuesday, 22 November 2011

Unit 12 - Technical Support -POST

POST (Power-On-Self-Test).

When the power of a PC is turned on, POST is the diagnostic testing sequence that a computers basic input/output system runs to determine if the computer keyboard, RAM (Random Access Memory), Disk Drives, and other hardware are working correctly.

If the necessary hardware is detected and found to be operating properly, the computer begins to boot. If the hardware is not detected or is found to be operating properly, the BIOS issues an error message, which may be text on the display screen or a series of coded beeps, depending on the nature of the program.

Since POST runs before the computers video card is activated, it may not be possible to process to the display screen. The pattern of beebs may be a variable numbers of a short beeps or a mixture of long and short beeps, depending on what type of BIOS is installed. - The patterns of beeps contain messages about the nature of the problem detected. For Example: If the keyboard is not detected, a particular pattern of beeps will inform you of that fact. An error found in POST is usually fatal and will halt the boot process, since the hardware is absolutely essential for the computer functions.

Tuesday, 18 October 2011

Unit 1 - Communication and Employability skills in IT

Effective Communications
Main Skills:
-General Communication Skills
-Interpersonal Skills
-Written Communication
General Skills:
-Audience: choice or languages and the delivery of the message
-Cultural Differences: the use of some words/signs can be unacceptable
-Age of audience: the terminology used

Primary school children, would like to see BRIGHT COLOURS/IMAGES/VIDEOS/TOYS/LITTLE TEXT


Groups based in the UK opposed to Europe, would like to see an INTERPRETOR/DIFFERENT LANGUAGES

Technical Skills....
-Use of tools
-problem solver
-identifying components
-logical thinking
-use of correct equipment
-installing hardware/software
-good, accurate, fast typing skills