- Make a backup of ALL your important data, preferably to an external device, portable disk, second computer, or CD/DVDs.
Make a clearly written copy of
your login user names and passwords,
computer login, WiFi, website, ebanking,
Facebook, email, disk encryption keys,
all of them.
If they are case sensitive make sure you
get it right when you write it down.
For example "windows login - username = Joe - password = Sinbad - this is my main windows account/profile"
- Put all relevant Operating System and Application software disks together in a bundle, make sure each one has the required serial numbers etc, should a re-install be required.
- Make sure that any cables required such as mains leads, USB cables, printer cables etc are present and correct, also make sure that any relevant battery powered devices such as wireless mice & keyboards, PDA's and laptops have charged batteries.
- Try to have the person who uses the equipment most, or who is most knowledgeable about it and any problems that you have, available, preferably in person, or able to speak on the phone.
- Make a list, describing in your own words (do not worry about not sounding technical, do not worry about sounding stupid, you will not) of the problem as you see it, and also make a note of any other little niggles or annoyances or changes in behaviour that you have noticed, even apparently irrelevant stuff like "it only seems to happen in the morning" is both relevant and useful information.
If you have anything
important or involving a deadline,
such as "I need this essay printed
today!" or "I need this
computer to be working by 10 a.m.
tomorrow!" please make sure you
write this down as well.
Be specific, if you need an essay or document try and tell us the file name, where it was saved, what words the first paragraph started with, things like that.
If the job is offsite, e.g. I am going to be removing your laptop or desktop computer, please ensure that ALL the following are present and together;
- The Computer itself.
- If a laptop, the power brick and lead.
- Any relevant CD/DVD disks that came with it.
- Your login password, written on a note / paper.
- A contact method whereby I can get in touch with you that does not involve you using the computer I am removing!!!
If you do this we can hit the ground running, and be working within a couple of minutes of walking through your door, because all we have to do is quickly run through this checklist with you to get a good idea of the background to the job.