The scenario is simple, some electronic device (be it your TV, VCR, cassette player…oh wait 2018…right… your Smart Phone, Laptop, Router, Smart TV, etc) is not behaving correctly, and you hop on the phone – rotary dial; oops , I mean touch dial…oh yea 2018…scroll through your contacts (hopefully this isn’t the smart phone causing issues) and contact the family tech guru (computer wizard as my father calls him…me) or call that company’s tech support, and what’s the first thing they ask – “have you tried turning it off and back on again?”

There are three reasons for the above scenario:

  1. This is not a new issue, troubleshooting technique, or resolution. This is why I mentioned TV, VCR and cassette players. Technology, or rather electronics occasionally have glitches, the easiest way to clear the device’s memory and get it back to working order is often removing the power (turning it off) and reinitializing power (turning it back on).

  2. This is not meant to make the caller with the issue feel inferior or incompetent, nor to be demeaning by the person assisting with troubleshooting. It is simply the first step in troubleshooting.When we work on our own systems and devices, its the first thought that comes to mind. That being said, its not always the first thing we personally try. Perhaps I’ll do a blog on the troubleshooter’s hands-on process another time as it is a large topic in and of itself.One additional point, we know that rebooting your computer can be frustrating – especially if you do work on it. How do we know this? Well we usually have multiple browser windows open, multiple tabs in those windows, a myriad of other programs open, and lastly, we probably have unsaved work – because despite how much we preach the “save early and save often” routine, sometimes notepad is just meant to be a scratch pad damn it! However, when it comes down to it, we still have to bite the bullet ourselves, close everything and hope your browser sessions restore, save that notepad text file to never be opened again, and reboot the computer.

  3. Lastly, why am I making my “firstnew blog post about this familiar issue? Well, there are three reasons for that too (again with the numbers…).

    1. It helps build a relationship with my readers (yea, I’m trying to do that now). It is something familiar we can all relate to, and it helps to know that everyone experiences it.
    2. It is sage advice, and I want everyone to know that tech support doesn’t think you are an idiot (I’ve personally seen brilliant tech people make the dumbest mistakes – it happens to everyone), they are just trying to help.
    3. This is not my “first” blog post. This blog was originally founded in 2009 as a way to spread information about tech related topics for all audiences from end-user (not a derogatory term, just means you are the final person using the product/system) to tech specialists. However, I have always had issues with procrastination and grandiose ideas for blog posts. Rarely have these two worked well together, I can’t count how many old posts had been started, but never published. The last blog post had been made almost two years ago, and it was the cliche, “hiya folks, I’m still kicking, I’ll do what I can to try and post here more often.” This is me rebooting the blog – turning it off an back on again if you will. This isn’t just limited to the previous aforementioned quote, its an attempt to reach out and try to help people again. I’m not saying I’ll try and be more active, I’m saying I’m going to try my hardest to make a blog post every week. (Time frames are crucial, just like with quitting smoking, you can’t just say I’ll quite some day). Will it happen every week, no, but I’m at least going to try. I’m also going to try and focus on topics I can make a post about in less than an hour. This should help with the procrastination aspect and the grandiose topics. If they are huge topics, I’ll make them arc over several posts.

Lastly, welcome back to Open Intel, hopefully I will not disappoint you.

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