Surviving A Support Call

Previously we talked about how to work out who to call when you have computer trouble, with a non-working email as an example.  That’s half the battle won, but to sort out your problem as quickly as possible you need to win the second half as well … what information to give.

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Finding The Problem

Never tell a computer that you’re in a hurry, or say that something is important!  If you do you can rest assured that something will go wrong, but finding exactly where it’s gone wrong can be a bit daunting.  It’s best to spend some time going through a simple checklist before wasting time ringing the wrong people.

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Online Shopping

My usual method of Christmas shopping was to have a blind panic on Christmas Eve and race from shop to shop doing a yuletide trolley dash.  Since moving to Spain I’ve had to think a little more in advance and either travel to the UK each Autumn, or shop online.

Online shopping is probably the cheapest and easiest option with many advantages.  Security has improved greatly over the past few years, and most shops gift wrap for a small extra fee, and then deliver direct to whoever you’re buying for.

The most well-known shopping site is Amazon ( which includes a wish list function so you can send a Christmas List to your family and friends.  A site aimed at Ex-pats called “Send Present To UK” (  has collected together many high street shops that offer online services split into categories, and also includes some of the more unusual present ideas, such as days out, indoor skydiving, hotel mini-breaks and more.

One word of warning when online shopping – Allow Plenty Of Time.

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Responsive Websites

People sometimes say they “don’t understand kids these days” with the latest slang.  Well, it’s not just kids, try working with computers.  If someone had asked me just ten years ago how many Gigs I’d got, I’d assume they thought I was in a rock band, not how big the memory was in my computer.

Now, with tablet computers becoming a regular site, we have another change of use for a word…Responsive.

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The Cloud

I was asked the other day “what is the cloud?”. After trying to remember some long ago school lesson, I gave what I thought was a very intelligent answer about water vapour and evaporation, just to get a blank look in return. Then I realised they were talking about computers.

The Cloud (or sometimes iCloud) has been a rather vague expression doing the rounds in relation to computers for the past few years, but many people are still unclear about what it actually is.

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Advice For A New Tablet

Tablets have become all the rage lately.  A few years ago, if someone had told me that, I would have been horrified at the thought of everyone popping pills as a daily routine.   But I’m talking about Tablet Computers fortunately, and they are becoming almost as common as mobile phones.
With Christmas coming up the number is set to soar, with over a billion tablets expected to have been sold by the end of the year worldwide.  With any new computer, whether a tablet or more traditional desktop or laptop, the temptation is to switch on and start playing, but there are some important steps you should take first to ensure you don’t fall victim to a malicious website, forum post or email.

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