Wednesday, December 26, 2012

Congratulations to Nik Lewis for earning his CCNA Certificate!!

One of out techs just passed the CCNA. What is the CCNA? you ask. I'll tell ya.

The CCNA is by definition:

The CCNA certificate validates the ability to install, configure, operate, and troubleshoot medium-size routed and switched networks, including implementation and verification of connections to remote sites in a WAN.

Basically this means you're a pro at your knowledge of installing, troubleshooting, and operating an enterprise on a branched network. So when you have several workstations in an office that are all networked together that is a LAN, or a Local Area Network. When you have an office in one place and a workstations in another location that need access to that network, that is a WAN, or a Wide Area Network. This involves setting up security, network types, routing and switching, IP addressing, establishing point to point connections, etc.

We continue to challenge ourselves to bring you the most knowledgeable and certified staff that we can. The more we know the better we can help you with your IT needs quickly and efficiently.

Tuesday, December 18, 2012

Home gadgets review from the consumer reports to me to you!

What do computers and blenders have in common? Well technology of course. It's all science and invention and a lot of these gadgets have computers in them.

Kenmore Elite 7206 Grab-N-Go

It has a door in a door. In other words you can snack items and beverages in the little door so you're not standing with large doors open looking for a juice box. Convenience and energy saving!

LG WM8000H(V) Front Loading Washing Machine

Not only is it large capacity, but loads in the front, can take a beating, and is energy efficient.

Vitamix 5200 Blender

This is the top rated blender beating out 50 other blenders for the top spot. At a whopping $450 price tag you may be wondering, whhaaaaat?! If you're making smolthies every morning and perhaps have a newborn and want to make your own baby food then this thing is for you. It has power and is easy to clean. But if you're like me and only use your blender once or twice a year for Pina Coladas, then it's a bit over the top.

Wolf R484DG

It's a $10,000 kitchen range with two ovens, four burners, and a dual 22 by 18 griddle. I'm a cook, this is awesome, but totally out of my price range. But I tell you what, if I had that kind of money laying around, this would definitely be on my wish list!

Friday, December 14, 2012

Cheap Smart Phones to be the Norm by 2017

You know the longer something is on the market the cheaper it gets? As new models or better technology are available, the existing tech becomes more accessible.

Currently the iPhone 5 and the Samsung III are the two most popular phones with consumers right now. The 16GB iPhone 5 will set you back around $1000, but are sometimes available for around $200...with a two year mobile phone and data service agreement that is. What a lot of people don't know, is that there are ALWAYS cheaper smart phone options for you.

I worked for a major phone retailer for about a year. I was there when the iPhone 4 was almost out and the Galaxy S II, or the HTC Sensation were the hottest things you could carry in your pocket. However, we had Android phones that were priced, full retail, around $200. Often these more affordable were free with contract.

What was the biggest difference between the $700 dollar phone and the $200 phone? A big one was screen resolution and size. The larger, pricier phones had larger, clearer screens. The Galaxy phone series were known for coming pre-loaded with HD movies like Avatar and Inception. Their cameras were also quite fancy, sometimes exceeding 8mpx. The cheaper versions didn't come with a block buster movie, but they had decent cameras. Most had around 3-5mpx.

The most popular feature of a smart phone is of course the "smart" part. In other words it's data. The smaller phones had the same android market as the big boys. They also had GPS, multiple screens, you name it. The phone was just as smart, just maybe not so flashy.

When I left, we had a smart phone with the same screen size and the giant Sensation, and a 5mpx camera, but made with lighter and cheaper plastics. The processor was not a dual core, but neither was the big Galaxy. That smaller phone went for around $175. It was free with contract. Not only was it VERY similar to the bigger, shinier phones, but you had four colors to choose from.
So now lets look to the future when this tech is old and the new is coming. That $175 dollar phone will be the one they lend out to get people by while there new phones are getting shipped in. The $800 dollar phones will be $175, and the latest and greatest model available will probably do your dishes.

Wednesday, December 12, 2012

Lenovo to release Professional Powerhouse

Lenovo, one of our favorite brands for both laptops and desktops, is releasing a new touch-optimized, Windows 8, business class notebook. Lenovo is taking advantage of Windows 8 design of focusing on touch surfaces. The Operating systems was born for this.

The notebook will come with either an i5 or i7 processor, that's quick, and slim 14 inch, 3lb design. The system also went forward with opting for a solid state drive, the next step in hard drive technology. The i5 model will have 4gb of ram and the i7 will double that to 8gb.

Preorders start at $1,499 and will begin to ship out December 21st. This is no joke, beefy, durable, professional machine. Call for more details or to order!

Tuesday, December 11, 2012

Considering the Cloud to store YOUR data?

Amazon, among the millions of other things they do for you, is now offering a service called Redshift. Redshift is basically a cloud based warehouse. Cloud based storage is a low cost option to building internal infrastructure that needs to be maintained.

Most companies would agree that affordable is a big bonus. Cloud storage, however, leaves some people leery about security. How safe is your businesses sensitive information from security breeches to corruption? Also one aspect that needs to be considered is the amount of bandwidth that will be used for the actual transferring of data. You could quickly use up your monthly quota if you have one in place by your internet service provider.

Redshift claims it can store and manage data at around $1000 per terabyte per year. Compare that with a lot of on site services that will cost $25,000 or more. This sort of data storage and analyses is generally used by large businesses. Thanks to the cloud, now small businesses have an option they can afford.

Monday, December 10, 2012

911 text service coming in 2014

This is really good idea and probably one that you're surprised hasn't been implemented YET!

In a lot of emergency situations victims can't talk or are afraid to. A large percentage of people in need of help have texted friends for support instead of calling 911. It's fast, it's easy, and emergency dispatch is 20 years behind the curve on this one.

The first step is to set up an automated response message explaining that their message was NOT received. until the infrastructure is in place, it is imperative that people know they can't reach responders this way.

Technology has been an ongoing challenge for the emergency systems that we have relied on. Landlines were easy to pinpoint location. Each line was installed at a particular address and they didn't move. With cell phones it got a lot trickier. This lead to pin pointing possible areas by determining what tower the signal came from. This is was not as easy as it sounds however, as it opens doors for law enforcement to trace peoples locations. There is a fine line between protecting our privacy and protecting our lives.

With a 911 text service this could be easily over come. If a person texts 911 it could be assumed they WANT their location traced. I surely would.

Thursday, December 6, 2012

Death of the disc drive

burning a disc is soon to be a thing of the past. CD's, DVD's....personally I don't don't even own any, (albeit my Bollywood Collection. They are too obscure still in the states to find downloads).

Not only does the device in your machine that reads the discs take up valuable space, but most of the information we get from them is available in streaming or downloadable content. This even includes software. 

The new iMac was released this week sans an optical drive. It's the first computer to be released without one, but will definitely not be the last.

Information is stored in sleeker and faster fashions these days. How many people do you know that carry around thumb drives? I have two in my purse right now. I think one has some digital art work on for impromptu portfolio viewing, and the other has a few episodes of Adventure Time. These drives are getting smaller and smaller but the storage space is getting bigger and bigger. You can fit several gigabytes in the size of your pinky. You can't fit that much on a disc. Not to mention that discs are just so fragile that they are a pain to travel with.

This has been prevalent, almost painfully, in the music industry. I can't remember the last time I bought a CD. By car doesn't even have a CD player, but it does have an auxiliary jack. In fact, I think my PC is the only thing in my house that can play music CD's. Maybe my Xbox can? I don't even know.

Don't panic yet. If you end up with a PC that has no optical drive and still have all your information via burned disc you can purchase an external optical drive that simply plugs into a USB cable. 

You may, however, want to consider backing up your data onto an external drive. We can help you out with this. A Terabyte drive is only around $100 and that is enough space for 10,737,418 pictures. Or you can fit roughly 5000 movies! The point is, it's a TON of space. The drives take up less than a square foot. Think about how much space all those discs and discs racks take up? Too much we say.

Wednesday, December 5, 2012

The computers in your car

The first self propelled mechanic vehicle was created in 1769 by Nicolas-Joseph Cugnot in France. It was far from a car, in fact, it was a steam powered tri-cycle. This was 167 years before the first programmable computer came around in 1936.

Today's cars could have as many 50 micro processors in them. This may complicate the do it yourself system, but they do make it easier to service your car professionally. Some of the tasks of these processors are:

Sophisticated engine controls to meet emissions and fuel economy needs.

Advanced diagnostics.

Safety features.

And my favorite part, convenience. 

Controlling the engine is the most processor intensive job in your vehicle. It keeps track of coolant levels, temperature, exhaust....and calculating the results to determine the best spark timing, or how open the fuel injection should go. 

Another area where creating computerized communication standards is called the "Instrument Cluster". This cluster gathers and displays data from various parts of the vehicle. There's a LOT more to it then that, but it has to do with car makers being able to tell the cluster makers the car specifications which makes panel design easier. Well that's part of it. 

Car computers handle "Multiplexing". This means sending power to the appropriate switch. Think of all the switches just on your door; windows, mirrors, locks, etc. The multiplexing keeps the wiring from getting out of control. 

These are just a couple tasks that computers do in your vehicle, and these are the ones you don't see. Think of your speedometer, GPS, radio....they're everywhere.

Tuesday, December 4, 2012

Don't want to get sick? Don't lick a toilet seat.

Our last lesson didn't stick so we're going to reiterate with some gruesome analogies.

One thing we deal with in our office ALL. THE. TIME. is viruses. And not just viruses, repeated viruses from the SAME PEOPLE.

Almost 100% of the time our customer is verklemped as to how in the world did they get a virus when they have antivirus. And not only antivirus, but anti-virus that we, your IT company, provided to them.

Ok, here's the deal party people. It's flu season. So what do you do? You go and you get a flu shot. You eat all of your veggies and buy yourself some oranges. You get plenty of sleep and even make it to the gym. Are you going to be impervious to influenza? NOOOOO you are not. You go lick that toilet seat and no amount of multi-vitamins are going to save your intestine.

In other words: having an antivirus installed in you system is a good road block but it does not mean that you will 100% be immune to viruses. This is especially true if you are engaging in risky behavior.

Now don't be offended. Seemingly innocent acts can wreak havoc on your machine. We're not trying to say you're doing anything you shouldn't be doing, but we are saying be aware that you are not invincible.

Here are some ways that you can pick up a virus:

1. You get a pop up that says your computer is infected and you have to click the pop up for the fix. This pop up may even have the name of your anit-virus on it!

2. When you're installing new software and it prompts you to install secondary software. This is VERY common. Just say no to additional software!

3. Not running your operating systems updates. An out of date OS is more vulnerable to infection.

4. Being a pirate, and we don't mean the scurvy kind. Downloading software, music, movies, TV shows, name it....and it is VERY risky.

5. Opening an infected email. THIS IS THE NUMBER ONE REASON WE GET INFECTED MACHINES IN THE OFFICE. You can have a spam blocker on your email and still get malicious emails. If it looks unfamiliar it probably isn't a good idea to click on that link. Like we showed you in a previous newsletter, hover your mouse, WITHOUT CLICKING, over any links and read the address that pops up. Look suspicious? It probably is. We can not stress this enough. Just because you have Outlook, with spam filter, and anti-virus does not mean that EVERY email in your inbox is safe. You still need to use your common sense. A customer recently called in with ANOTHER virus on two of their office machines. They clicked on the same email. The email was from UPS and claimed they tried to deliver a package and couldn't. It prompted them to click the link for delivery information. UPS doesn't email links like this. They will generally leave you a paper receipt with a tracking number. Just because you recognize the company doesn't mean it's real. Be VERY careful if it looks at all out of the ordinary. For instance: This paragraph is a link. Hover over it and read the address. It may show you the address in a pop up window or at the bottom of the window. It should say, and that's legitimate! But if it said something like: its bad.

5(continued). Email attachments. Most email providers are set to download attachments automatically. You may want to block this and set up attachments to download upon approval. Some of our customers go a little too far in this department and block ALL attachments. This is not a good idea as any forms, invoices, bills, etc, will be sent to you this way and will now be sent directly to your spam or rejected all together. I get a lot of returned email when a customer asks for quote to be sent to them just for me to get a failure notice. I then have to ask them if they have attachments blocked which almost always leads to a service call from a technician to get them UN BLOCKED and that costs money.

6. Games. Free gaming sites can be loaded with bad ju-ju.

There are different types of infections as well, not just viruses.

Viruses: a virus is a small piece of software that piggy backs on real programs. Example: a virus might attach itself to a program or a spreadsheet. Each time the program or spread sheet runs the virus has a chance to reproduce.

E-mail: An e-mail virus travels as an attachment to email messages, and usually replicates itself by automatically emailing itself to dozens of people in the victims address book. Some viruses don't even require you to click, but rather will infect you by simply viewing the message.

Trojan Horse: this is a program. The program claims to do one thing, like a game, but instead damages your system when you run it. 

Worms: A worm is a small piece of software that uses computer networks, like your office, and security holes to replicate itself. A copy of a worm scans networks for another machine that has a specific security hole. It then copies itself to the new machine within that security hole and starts the process over.

So just keep in mind that it happens to everyone and no one is 100% protected. Computing just doesn't work that way. Just keep diligent and be picky about what you click on and where you go!

Tuesday, November 27, 2012

The revolving door that is the Windows Presidents office.

Steven Sinofsky unexpectedly left his seat as President of Windows Division at Microsoft on November 12. In 2006, CEO Steve Balmer appointed five presidents for five divisions of Microsoft. Sinfsky was president of Windows and Windows Live.

Sinofsky is just one of several Microsoft Executives that have left in the past four years, many of whom are still in the running to potentially be the heir to the CEO. The list goes as follows;

1. Jeff Raikes.

He was with Microsoft for 27 years. With extensive experience designing Office programs he was promoted to VP of Microsoft Office, and retired as president of the Information Worker business line. He is now the president of the Bill and Melinda Gates foundation.

2. J. Allard

J is best known for his work with XBox, Zune and Kin. He helped drive the path of Microsoft toward the cloud. He left shortly after Microsoft sided with the tablet friendly Windows 8 instead of his own two-screen tablet.

3. Robbie Bach

Robbie was head of the business end of things. When he left in 2010 he was the president of Entertainment and Devises.

4. Stephen Elop

he left to help Nokia as he is now their current CEO. He has the least amount of Microsoft under his belt as he was only there from 2008 until 2010.

5. Ray Ozzie

Ray left suddenly for unknown reasons. Could be the slow progress of cloud computing. He developed several products that were handed over to Sinofsky's team, and then killed. I would be mad to.

6. Bob Muglia

Muglia was president of the Server and Tools Division. He notoriously did not get along with Sinofsky, and with his foundation in hardware, it proved a rough transition to a cloud based environment.

7. Andy Lees

Not exactly fired in 2011, Lees was President of the Windows Phone Division. He was sidelined in 2011 but made a comeback in 2012 when brokering an agreement with Barnes and Noble that lead to the joint Nook Tablet venture. This upped him to Corporate Vice President.

8. Paul Maritz

Paul was with Microsoft for 14 years managing Windows 95, NT, and Internet Explorer. He left and became lead of rival VMware, and later EMC. A definite contender to replace Ballmer.

Windows 8 Apps store hits over 20,000 and most of them FREE

That may not sound like a lot of applications for an application store, but consider it has only been open for a fraction of the time the Mac store and Google Platy have.

Here's the really fun part; 18,000 of those are FREE! That's 87% of all the available apps. Not only that but nearly 500 new apps are appearing every day. The goal is to have 100,000 apps within 90 days of the store even though it's sprouting quickly, it may not be quickly enough.

With the holiday season in full swing there should be a boost in downloads. There should be thousands of computers and tablets being given for gifts and the first thing anyone would do is start downloading apps. Lets hope developers have enough to offer!

Friday, November 16, 2012

Holiday work, watch out!

We all know that Black Friday is just around the corner. For most of us, however, we will still be getting up and heading into the office as per usual...I requested the day off to visit a friend in Washington but for the REST of you is status-quo.

Retail stores aren't the only shopping outlets busy that day, so are their websites. That means people at their desks are browsing Apple's website and not their TPS reports. Shoppers are expected to spend $54.5 BILLION dollars online alone this holiday season.

So watch out on your productivity this holiday season, but the REAL potential problem is the use of company bandwidth. While most employees may be shopping on their personal laptop or phone, they will still be using the company network.

Before you get too stringent on your employees keep this in mind: allowing workers a bit of flexibility in time management actually HELPS productivity. Letting people take the occasional break from work tasks to read a quick article, check up on Brangelina, etc., helps prevent burnout and people feeling too repetitive which actually diminishes productivity considerably. It needs to be within reason of course!

So here's the question: is the occasional personal browsing affecting your bandwidth? That may just point to another problem - your ISP. You may need an upgrade in bandwidth or speed.

There are a few things to figure out BEFORE you upgrade anything  Do you have several employees streaming music on Pandora or Youtube? That's a HUGE reason for bandwidth consumption. I don't even get to stream Pandora from my office network. Nix that in the bud and you'll have a TON of free bandwidth.  

So what IS my point exactly? Well first, Holiday shopping is bound to happen. Make sure that it is within reason. if you are noticing a slow down of your internet speeds look for the causes. Too many people streaming? Too many people shopping? Or maybe it's time for an upgrade in your internet service. If that's the case we can help! Give us a call and we'll see how to improve your speeds...maybe even talk to your employees about the proper use of bandwidth :)

Thursday, November 15, 2012

Chromebook a steal at $199

First there was the Samsung Chrome book for $249, and then there was the release of the Acer Chromebook just a couple weeks later for $199.

So this begs the question: what's the difference?

Two obvious differences are battery life and storage space. the displays are the same with the same resolution, and both come with the chrome operating system. The Samsung Chromebook features a Solid State Drive with 16 GB of storage, while the Acer version comes with a hard disk drive and 320 GB of memory. That's a BIG difference, but the fact that the Samsung has a solid state is a little flashy at the cost of space.

The Samsung has 6.5 hours of battery life while the Acer has about half that. Yet considering the Acer has 20 times the storage it may not be that big of a selling point.

Both notebooks depend on the internet to function. It's Chrome based OS runs all of its applications in the browser. It has just begun to start incorporating offline apps that you can access with no internet connection.

We had a customer bring one in yesterday, the Samsung version, and it was a very neat device. The screen was crisp and bright and the entire unit was slim and light weight.

A good Christmas present perhaps?

Wednesday, November 14, 2012

Awesome Holiday Special from us to you!

We came up with a great offer for our customers for the Holidays. It's easy to shop for toys and gadgets and socks, but what about a service? You can offer your friends and family peace of mind by signing them up with a Club Fix IT membership.

We'll handle their monthly virus removal, disk cleanups, and even backups if you sign up for the Gold. Perfect for college students or family members with a new machine. They don't even have to be in the Treasure Valley. Our remote support is available and with the membership all services are at a discounted rate!

Each Club Fix IT membership comes with an annual 20-point Precision PC Tune-up. Sign them up between now and New Years and we'll give you a free Tune-up as well! That's a $200 value on top of the Club Fix IT savings!

Just give us a call today for details! Club Fix IT 208-367-1000

Tuesday, November 13, 2012

iPhone no longer top selling phone...It's the Galaxy S III

The elusive white whale of smart phones is the "iPhone Killer" to take down the iPhone as the most sought after hand held device on the planet. Enter the Galaxy S III. It shipped 18 million units worldwide vs iPhone's 16.2 million.

What does the Galaxy have that the iPhone doesn't? Well it has a bigger screen, longer battery life, and a higher pixel rate for it's camera. The iPhone 5 is made of aluminum, which while light, feels a bit more fragile. Then there's the app store debate. The Apple app store generally charges for every download, while the Android Market has thousands, if not millions of free applications.

Apple has gone to painstaking lengths to make the iPhone 5 as thin as possible...resulting in a bizarre change in connectors...but it IS very thin. The edges are now a bit beveled so it's more hand friendly. So point to Apple for a sleek design. While the Samsung's design is sturdy, there have been issues with a seemingly flimsy backside.

Like we said the screen is bigger. Not just bigger, like HUGE bigger. The iPhone 5 has a 4 in screen. The Samsung Galaxy has a 4.8 in screen. That's almost and ENTIRE inch! In the phone universe that's the difference between a planetoid and a gas giant.

Also point for Samsung for implementing a quad core processor. Wow.

These are only the results for the third quarter. We will have to wait and see if this trend has longevity. Because if Apple is good at anything it's keeping it's fan base loyal.

Thursday, November 8, 2012

The future of the Internet

Can you remember a world without the internet? I remember I was in the 6th grade and every morning we watched Channel 1, a news program aimed at youth. It was amazing. It starred a young Lisa Ling and Anderson Cooper. (I suddenly feel my age). One day on our morning news an even younger Anna Paquin (around the time she became the second youngest Oscar winner in history for her best supporting actress in The Piano) came on screen and with her quirky New England accent told a room full of mesmerized children about "The Information Super Highway".

It was really hard to imagine as a sleepy 11 year old. I had an Apple at home but it didn't talk to anything or anyone. I had a drawing program and a few games and I thought that was pretty spectacular. Now it was being proposed that everything I ever wanted to know would soon be at my fingertips. It was hard to comprehend.

The first thing I utilized was email. I could write to out of town family members quickly. It was great. While away from my mother I felt a little less home sick. Then I discovered gaming, and forums, and chat rooms. The internet was far more than I ever couldn't image.

Right now we see the internet as a place. We go there for information, or entertainment. But that's all going to change as the web becomes more integrated into our lives. It will be apart of every thing we currently take for granted: opening doors, preparing our dinner, and even driving to work.

Think of the internet as one giant algorithm that recognizes patterns in our lives and adjusts accordingly. You can already see traces of this in the advertising that pops up when your on line. While not a perfect science, it is often fairly accurate. Now imagine that on a larger scale. For example: (and I'm completely making this up so I hope I get royalties!) we may be able to pay for everything via our smartphones. So you go to the grocery store and all you have to do is link your phone to the payment console. Now image that yourphone keeps track of everything you buy EVERYWHERE and generates the appropriate coupons and discounts automatically. you don't have to clip and hunt anymore. The pattern recognition that you buy a LOT of coconut milk automatically gives the best deal. Now that's convenience.

Friday, November 2, 2012

6 Tips to a faster computer!

1. Remove Spyware and protect your system against viruses -

You can get a free scan and cleaning tool from: Malwarebytes, and Anti-virus at: Avast!. Now this is not a fix all, install it once and you're good, solution. You have to continue to use it. We have countless customers that call in with viruses AFTER we install these, or other anti-virus, and get them running. They wonder how they could have gotten a virus with the software installed. Well you have to continue to USE it. Activate the program, run scans, and clean up infected files at LEAST monthly.

2. Free up disk space -

Use disc cleanup to:

Remove temporary internet files.
Delete downloaded program files, such as ActiveX controls and Java applets.
Empty the recycling bin.
Remove Windows temp files.
Delete optional components.
Delete programs you don't use.

Here is a great resource to walk you through a disk cleanup for Windows Operating systems: Windows Disk Cleanup

3. Speed up access to data -

Run the disk defragmenter.  This is fairly easy but can take some time. Go to Start Menu > Accessories > System Tools > Disk Defragmenter. In the dialogue box that pops up select the drives you wanted to run this on. general your C: drive, and any other drive you use frequently.  Select "Analyze Disk". After the analysis is complete select defrag. It can take several minutes to complete so do this when you aren't in need of your computer.

4. Detect and repair disk errors -

hard drives can develop bad sectors and this can slow down the processing speed. If you use your computer daily, do this once a week.

Start > Computer > right click on drive (C: for instance) > Properties > Tools > Check now. In the Check disk dialog box select "Scan for and attempt recovery of bad errors and sectors. After it's complete select to "fix".

5. Learn about Ready Boost -

This is a work around instead of adding more memory. you can use non volatile flash memory to improve performance.  For Windows 7 go here: ReadyBoost.

6. Upgrade to Windows 7

Because it's great.

And remember, we'll help you with any and all of this! Treasure Valley IT

Thursday, November 1, 2012

Awesome new Tech for the Holidays!

Need gift ideas for the techie in your life? There is never a shortage of cool gadgets and gizmos to choose from.

There's the obvious; a new iPad mini, a working borg costume...but what if you want to get creative? Here are some ideas:

Gamer in the family? How about a wireless Fender Mustang Pro-Guitar for Rock Band 3? For your guitar enthusiast that aspires to fly through expert in Rock Band. Retails for $149 and available at most popular retailers.

For the PC Gamer on your list the AMD's Radeon 6850 graphics card is both powerful and relatively inexpensive. You'll be blown away by the extra skins you can access for Skyrim when you upgrade your card. Retails for $179, available at Amazon, NewEgg, and more!

Rovio Wi-Fi Roaming Robot is for...well EVERYONE. Who doesn't love robotic pets?! And get this; it doubles as a home security camera. $199 Available at
For the techie fitness buff there's a Fitbit. My folks have these and LOVE them! It keeps track of all your energy expenditure, food intake, steps, heart rate, even if you wake up at night! Check out their website here:

And don't forget that we can help you out too! Give us a call at 208-367-1000, or chat with us on our website: TVIT and we'll give you some ideas and even get it ordered for you!

Tuesday, October 30, 2012

Windows App Store opens

Microsoft Office the most widely used operating system on the planet so it's hard to understand why the biggest obstacle Microsoft has in the application department is relevancy. With rivals like Apple and Google (Android), it's a stiff competition. So Microsoft is holding a four day seminar in Redmond Washington "Build" to pitch to developers.

Microsoft wants to put a dent into the tablet application market. Currently Apple dominates with it's iPad. Windows hopes that with it's new tablet based platform, Windows RT, it will become a stronger force in the handheld markets. Convince the developers and then it's up to the consumer. We'll see if they bite.

Friday, October 26, 2012

Windows 8 is now available! Check it out

Windows 8, Microsoft's new operating system that encompasses the tablet experience, is out in the wild as of today!

Microsoft made a BIG decision to make operating systems across ALL platforms uniform. That means that you will have a similar experience   When you get on your Windows smart phone or tablet you will be met with the same user interface as you would on your PC.

The look of the interface has already earned a nickname among the social networking universe as "Window's Metro" because of it's bright colors and touch sensitivity.

 And here it is folks! Your Metro, I mean interface:

Right click on icons to select them. You can customize tiles by dragging them around the screen. It's like it's core operating systems set to "Easy". It's contacts will be a miasma of Facebook, Twitter, LinkedIn...etc. Also, you can easily set a background image to each monitor in a dual monitor set up.  

Being that this OS is including tablets and smart phones there has got to be apps right? Of course right! So Microsoft is jumping on the app bandwagon. Apps can show up as tiles, or rather a tile of a shortcut to the app.

Start up and shut down times are considerably faster thanks to a simplified hibernation routing that stores the OS's kernal session to a file on the hard drive.

Malware scanning is integrated into file transfers so may notice a bit of slower speeds there. This totally ok though because there is a new file transfer dashboard that lets you pause and cancel transfers as needed. There's also some really handy restore sail safes installed in case of disaster. There's a "Refresh your PC"  option that will back up your data, re-install Windows, and load your data back up. And for a more hardcore tool you have "Remove Everything" that does just that: nukes your system and re-installs  a Windows 8 from the beginning.  

So if you're giving it a try let us know what you think! Personal feedback is more valuable than an article any day! Tell us what you think.

Monday, October 22, 2012

About Us

Here at TVIT we help our clients with all sorts of stuff!

We help businesses get networked and running smoothly with little to no hassle. Business Services

We help residents set up wireless routers and protect against viruses. Residential Support

We'll help you buy a new computer! These are just examples of systems we can help you find.

So browse around, there's nothing we won't help you with when it comes to your computers and technology.

Star Trek Inspired Computer

Star Trek is one of my favorite shows. Specifically The Next Generation and Deep Space Nine. One of the most overlooked characters in the shows is "Computer". She has all the answers. She flies the ship in and out of danger. She will tell you where your friends are at whether they like it or not. She's great.

Google is using Star Trek's Computer to develop the "ubiquitous computing" computer. You will not longer have to go through the laborious task of getting your phone out of your pocket, unlocking your phone, and googling for an answer. Simply state your question and the voice prompted search will supply you with as answer.

This can be incorporated into all sorts of home devices and appliances. Imagine you're cooking dinner and forgot what order to add ingredients into the pot for that awesome creme sauce. Ask your refrigerator and the answer will pop up on it's built in monitor. Ah yes, butter, flour and THEN milk. BINGO (add a little garlic and parmesan, spoon over breaded chicken breast and your family will think you're a genius....but this isn't cooking with Casey, it's computers so I'll get back on topic)

How about you want to know if there's any episodes of Battlestar Galactica playing. Ask the display you  have mounted in you living room wall.

Have a bet with a friend about who's had the most cameo's in movies, Steve Buscemi or Stan Lee. Just ask your toaster. Well that may be a bit far fetched but you get the picture. Convenience is just around the next space anomaly.

Wednesday, October 17, 2012

Benefits of Cloud Computing

"The Cloud". It's the term on every bodies lips these days. It sounds so ethereal. It sounds so...confusing.

Things keep getting smaller and smaller. Your computer, your monitor, and now your storage. Your storage has gotten so small in fact that it turned into a cloud. Basically that means that you don't need hardware anymore to set up back ups or store files. There is a vast network of systems worldwide dedicated to doing that for you thanks to the internet.

One obvious benefit of cloud computing is in the case of disaster which might ruin your hardware and you are stuck with data loss. If you store your pictures, videos, files on the cloud, you could run over your laptop with a truck and all your precious data is not lost!

Another obvious benefit is space, physical and technical. When using the cloud to store documents you don't need hardware taking up desk space. Also when you are using hardware, there is a finite amount of usage drive space to fill up. If you have a 1TB external drive, that means you have 1TB of space. If you need more then you go out and you buy ANOTHER drive and that takes up more desk space. There is virtually endless storage space available, well, virtually.

With information being stored in the cloud you can access it anywhere. It also allows for others to access your data easily if you need them to. Cloud computing services can more often then not be accessed with a computer, tablet, or mobile device. That's convenient!

Tuesday, October 16, 2012

Microsoft Surface and Touch Cover

Microsoft Surface comes out October 26th and starts at $499. But what is it?

Well short is that it's a Tablet Computer. it has an extra large 10.6 inch screen. What's so unique about this tablet is actually one of it's accessories; the Touch Cover. It's an ultra thin and flexible touch keyboard. What I mean by touch keyboard is that it doesn't actually have buttons, just a surface that mimics a keyboard.

There's a pretty cool video here.

Looks like it snaps on and off pretty easily. There is a stand on the back of the tablet that props it up and then with the Touch Cover keyboard your tablet instantly resembles a mini laptop. That's REALLY convenient. Tablets are cool for not for typing emails or updating your blog! oh....and they come in different colors! swooon

Monday, October 15, 2012

Microsoft to challenge iTunes and Spotify with new music streaming in Windows 8

Xbox Music will now be integrated into Windows 8 as it's default music player. It's a free music streaming software platform that can be upgraded to ad-free for $9.99 a month.

The service will debut on Xbox Tuesday, October 16th, 2012. The service will also be rolled out via PC and tablet with any Windows 8 purchases or upgrades. An interesting twist is that there will be a version available for the Android and Apple platforms.

Microsoft is turning the Xbox brand into something more than just gaming but an entertainment hub.

This puts a lot of pressure on Pandora and Spotify. Windows 8 will undoubtedly sell millions of copies of it's new operating system over the coming years, and having Xbox music as it's default player will put that service in front of all other streaming music players.

There will be nothing stopping customers from downloading another service on their devices but there are advantages. You will have unlimited play back of any song in the library instead of just having to wait for one of your favorite songs to be replayed. There will also be a cloud accessible database. This means you can access any song in your library from any of your devices that has the player installed, your phone, tablet, Xbox, PC, etc.

Zune will continue for Windows 7 users but will over time will be getting phased out in favor of Xbox Music. I like the idea of having all my music accessible wherever I am. music streaming is great, but I know the sometimes there's just a particular song that I want to hear which makes me pause my streaming service and look it up on line via Youtube or something similar.

Thursday, October 11, 2012

The Benefits of Setting up a Network

Networks can be set up anywhere, not just the office building. You may be thinking, "What's the point?". There are quite a lot of benefits to setting up a home network to make life easier for you.

File Sharing

This will erase your need for flash drives, external drives, burning info to disks, or zip drives (remember those?). You will be able to easily access files on another computer in your home. 

Data Backup

You can back up your data on another system. Let's say you have two computers. have each computer back up to the other in case of crash or corruption. That way you are always covered!

Printer sharing

You don't need a printer for each computer in your home. One printer for the den, one printer for the office, one printer for little Timmy's longer. Get one. Even better, get one that's wireless so you don't have to worry about cables. (Don't know how to set up a wireless connection with a printer?....that's ok we do!)

Internet Sharing

Some Internet Service Providers will try to talk you into multiple accounts for your home. Don't do it. It will save you hundred of dollars to just share one connection in your home. There are lots of internet packages in the Treasure Valley that offer high speeds that will be enough for multiple users. This is not suggested for dial up connection, however, since it will be noticeably slow.


You can play multi player games if you're all networked together. A lot of popular games have a feature called LAN MODE. LAN stands for Local Access Network. Ever heard of a LAN party? Well now you can have your very own!

Home Entertainment

You can integrate your gaming consoles, like the Xbox 360 or the PS3, to your network. They can be included in the file sharing, and have access to your Netflix account your networked internet setup.

It's convenient, it's fun, and it makes you look cool! In my own home I like it because I have several movies stored on my computer. What I used to do is load up the movie on a thumb drive and then plug it into my Xbox and play it from the consoles media player. That's  not hard by any means, but it can take several minutes to load onto the drive and then the format may or may not even work on the Xbox. With my TV hooked directly into my computer I just change the input on my TV to the one I have my computer hooked to and it makes my TV a second monitor for my TV. Then I just select the movie and play! I can surf the web from my couch, watch documentaries from's great!

Setting all this up can be a little tricky but we can help. Just give us a call and we'll get you set up too! Treasure valley IT

Wednesday, October 10, 2012

Basic Computer Tips

Shut down your computer properly.

That's right! There is a right way. If a computer is shut down unexpectedly, it may have been in the middle of an operation. By interrupting the process means the computer has unfinished business and can leave corrupt files lingering in your system. To avoid this, shut down all the programs that are running and then go to your start menu and select "shut down". If it takes a few moments that's ok, don't force it, it's just tidying up. 

Uninstall trial software and unused programs the right way.

Erasing the desktop icon does NOT remove the program from your computer. It only removes the short cut. When a program is installed it can store files in several places throughout your system. Some programs have a tool that will uninstall it. This can be accessed by going to your start menu, opening the programs lists, selecting the program, and then selecting uninstall. That is not always available however. So the easiest route, and one that you can use for any software installed on your computer, is in your control panel. Open up your start menu, go to control panel, and you should see an option for uninstall programs. This will populate a list of everything installed on your PC. Now be careful, just because you've never heard of something doesn't mean it's not vital to the functioning of your PC. Only uninstall something if you're sure you don't need it. For instance, did you download a trial of a game and the trial period is up and you don't want to purchase it? DO this process, find the game on the list, and uninstall it. Poof! It's gone and you won;t be bother with it's popup's to buy it anymore.

Set a Computer Maintenance Checklist. (If you're comfortable working with your PC)

This is for more familiar users. There are several steps you can take to maintain your system. Think of it as an oil change for your computer. It's fairly detailed so I'll just leave this here: Computer Maintenance Checklist

Use Anti-Virus.

There are a lot of options and picking the right choice can be confusing. We can help you decide what will work best for you, install it, and show you how to utilize it.

Perform Regular updates. 

You know that pop up you get that says "Windows Updates Available"? Those aren't spam and they are updates that your computer needs to run smoothly and interact with other programs better. You can set up your computer to run these automatically if they aren't already. Give us a call if you need help to set up this convenient feature.

Learn how to multi-task like a pro.

An awesome keyboard shortcut to switch windows without having to leave the keyboard is Alt-Tab. It brings up a window showing all the running programs. Just keep hitting the tab button while the Alt button is held down until you reach the window you want to access. Release the Alt key and VIOLA! 

If you have any more questions computer tricks or maintenance or basic training we're hear to help! Give us a call!

Monday, October 8, 2012

Windows 8 upgrade for Windows 7, and what you get

If you purchased Windows 7 or a computer with Windows 7 installed on it between June 2 2012 and January 2013 you are eligible to upgrade to Windows 8 for $14.99.

You can register your purchase on the Windows website. Then you'll receive an email with a promotional code along with purchasing instructions and when the download is available.

A nice Bonus that is included? 90 Days of Microsoft technical support at no charge.

There are some new great features that Windows 8 has to offer. There's the Windows Store similar to Google Play, or Apple App store.Prices will range from $1.49 to $999.99. There will still be free apps available, but if a developer decides to charge for the application, pricing has to be set to a minimum of $1.49, NOT the regular 99¢ that we're all used to seeing in other app stores.

Windows 8 is optimized for touch screens. That's pretty cool but irrelevant for most PC users, but a big boost for tablets.

Windows 8 can integrate with other Microsoft Accounts to synchronize user data. Do you have Xbox Live? I sure do. Well that is considered a Microsoft account and can now be managed in the new operating system.

Better use of multiple monitors. The task bar can be displayed on more than one device. That's great. But not only that, you can customize each task bar so they are different per screen. This will come in quite handy for my home set up where I do a lot of graphics. I can keep all my Adobe programs pinned to one side and all my resources and specs on the other.

Also the look of the Task Manager is going to change some. Tabs will be hidden by default and only the running applications will show. Resource utilization will be represented by a heat map, with darker shades of yellow for the heavier use. Performance will be categorized by CPU, memory, disk, ethernet, and wireless. The Processes tab lists application names, application status, and overall usage for CPU, memory, hard disk and network resources.

Integrated parental controls will be pre loaded. This allows Administrators of the system to monitor user activity, filter web sites, restrict applications and limits usage time.

Friday, October 5, 2012

Microsoft Office 365...Cloud Based Management

What is Office 365? I'll tell you....

It has the familiar programs; Word, Excel, PowerPoint, OneNote, know the ones. Some of the new features are  cloud based email, video conferencing, file sharing, secure administration, and the ability to edit documents remotely from anywhere.

Outlook on 365 gives you 25GB of storage space. When synced with you mobile device, you can remotely wipe your data if your phone is ever lost of stolen. Your emails will be filtered for spam, and free of advertising.

The instant messaging and conferencing features are great for business. You can view who's on line. Set up meetings with people on your contact list. There is PC to PC calling and you can set this up with audio and visual. This can potentially save travel costs by having remote online meetings that can include up to 250 participants. In the virtual meeting set up you're able to share desktops and presentations easily.

Anyone, anywhere can access the up to date version of a file. You can control who can see files and invite other's to have access. There's even an internal social network.

Need a website? You will have access to SharePoint Online. The hosting fees are included in your 365 plan. No designer needed.

On the go a lot? There's even an app for that.

Friday, September 28, 2012

Windows XP is no longer the most common desktop icon….

Windows 7 is. Microsoft Windows XP holds onto second place and Windows Vista comes up in third. Following the top three are Mac OS X 10.7 and Mac OS X 10.6 at just over 5% of the market. Microsoft holds onto a whopping 92% of the operating system market.
Windows 8 is slated to be released in October 2012. This OS is versatile on both computer systems and tablets.

Those using XP, Vista, and 7 will be able to upgrade to 8 for $39.99 from an online download….and then we’ll see how long it takes for 8 to be the most popular icon. 

There's as different as January Zoolander and February Zoolander. 

Wednesday, September 26, 2012

New Bill that could actually DEFEND your online privacy

Recently introduced in the US House of Representatives is a bill that requires law enforcement officials to obtain a search warrant from a judge before getting into emails or collecting any data, including tracking information, from a cell phone. This would be a direct amendment to the Electronics Communications Privacy Act of 1986. The fore mentioned Act is considered outdated in today's smart phone environment where cell phones are a key component in social media and cloud computing.

The Department of Justice is the bills biggest competitor which believes that acquiring a warrant  makes investigations "more difficult to carry out". It will be a couple of months before the decision is final.

Friday, September 21, 2012

COPPA and the FTC

Why is 13 the magic cut off age? It’s because of COPPA, or the Children’s Online Privacy Protection Act. This restricts the collection of personal information from kids that are online. Any site that is aimed at kids younger than 13, Radio Disney is a good example, requires parental permission. Other sites simply ban younger users.

It’s not a flawless system. It’s not hard to click the “yes I’m over 13” button. Or change the year of your birthday, but for what the act is in place for, limiting kids information being gathered, it has worked.

Here’s where it gets complicated. The Federal Trade Commission is proposing changes that will effect access to information for EVERYONE. Third party plug ins on websites can result in IP address of a computer used by a child to be received. More specifically, if a plug in collects an IP from a children’s site there will be trouble. That’s extremely hard to control. Twitter can’t tell if someone else pastes a line of code into their site that links to Twitter.

So how would developers for these sites prohibit plugins being used on a kid’s site? That’s nearly impossible.

Here’s another obstacle the FTC is putting on the field. Changing the terminology of sites that are deemed “directed to children”. Right now it is exactly how it sounds, encompassing sites that are obviously aimed at children. The FTC, however, wants to include sites that may, unintentionally, ATTRACT younger audiences. The Audience of any given site can’t have a disproportionately percentage of children. Who decides this? Is 20% disproportionate? 10%? It simply isn’t clear.

And here’s the catch 22. The ONLY way to know the demographic of your viewers is to collect data….but wait, isn’t that what this is trying to PREVENT?? Interesting. It also violates adults First Amendment right held up by the Supreme Court to access information anonymously.

According to’s Emma Llanso:

          “COPPA is the only protect-the-children-from-the-Internet law passed in the late ‘90s that hasn’t been challenged in court. The Communications Decency Act (1996), the Child Pornography Prevention Act (1996), and the Child Online Protection Act (1998) each went to the Supreme Court and were all struck down due to First Amendment concerns about restricting access to information online...

COPPA hasn’t faced the same kind of challenge only because it has, so far, been narrowly focused and hasn’t interfered with adults’ or older minors’ access to constitutionally protected information. The FTC is proposing to radically alter that balance.”

My questions is at what point does responsibility of the online safety of our children fall from parents and guardians to lawmakers? There were few filtering devices in action when I was young. Only one that I can remember and her name was Mom and let me tell you it worked well. So how do you feel? This is the last weekend to submit your comments on the issue directly to the FTC:

Wednesday, September 19, 2012

iPhone 5's new connector....Possible Deal Breaker?

You know how if you want to connect your iProduct you plug it into your computer, charge station, and even your audio equipment via the USB port right? Not anymore my friend. Apple CHANGED the connection type. To what type you ask? Apple type. Yeah it’s about as promising as it sounds and here’s why:
EVERYTHING USES USB…well almost everything, but you’d be hard pressed to find a computer system built in the past 12 years that doesn’t have USB ports. It’s a pain enough already that the OTHER ends of Apple connection cables have to be Apple specific, but not BOTH ends? This is getting ridiculous! What does that mean for you? It means you have purchase adapters to connect the Apple cord to your computer’s USB port. Sound redundant? That’s because it is. It’s like they always say, If it ain’t broke…


Tuesday, September 18, 2012

Virus Protection is NOT be careful out there

Virus protection applications are based on “known” threats. This means that it has a list of “bugs” that it knows how to detect and exterminate...but there are always new bugs being created. When you have a virus you will begin to detect “symptoms”, just like if you were sick. The doctor can diagnose you based on the symptoms you are showing. But if a new virus shows up, the doctor, or Anti-Virus application, has to learn it and figure out how to deconstruct it. Anti-Virus is definitely helpful, but it is not 100%.

You need to be diligent in what you do and where you go on-line. Don’t click on links that are unfamiliar, don’t download unfamiliar content, and be wary of emails from unknown addresses.

Also know how your Anti-Virus functions. Some of the programs you have to manually scan the files in your system while some of them will run in the back ground. Some programs will only monitor your hard drive, and some will watch ALL traffic.

It all comes down to common sense. Be careful out there...if you think it’s sketchy, it probably is.

Monday, September 17, 2012

Hard disk or SSD (Solid State Drive)....Is now the time?

There are three main factors in comparing a Hard Disk Hard drive or a Solid State Hard Drive. These are: Capacity, Performance, and generally the deciding factor for most people, Cost.

So what exactly is a Solid State Drive? The simple answer is a drive with No Moving Parts. Hard Disk drives have one or more rigid rapidly rotating discs. Like a car or even your blender, as I'm sure you know, sometimes lots of moving parts can equal trouble. This is also a concern for temperature control, battery life and endurance.

Speed. Sold State will boot up in about 15 seconds blowing a the hard disk out of the water with it's time of over a minute....or MORE. This can add up my friends! The average person will start up their computer 5 times a day, adding up to 3-5minutes a day, and that leads to over an entire day a year.

Here's a big advantage: Durability! These suckers can be dropped from a multi story building, run over by a car, you name it. That is awesome.

Data Recovery is also a big selling point here and by data recovery I mean AFTER the drive has crashed. Generally when a Hard Disk crashes your information; pictures, notes, documents, are gone. When the SSD reaches the end of it's life it doesn't "crash" and all the data is accessible. In fact there are yet to be estimates about how long that data will be available but bets are in that it will be a VERY long time.

Environmental Factors are just not that big of deal for these drives. They can function in both high and low temperatures. Also altitudes of up 10,000 feet and humidity go unnoticed. Not to mention that drive can withstand 1500G force making them a must have in fighter jets.

Performance. There is a lot of technical talk I could fill this paragraph with but I'm just going to stick with the basics. I already mentioned start up time. It also accesses data a whopping 90x's faster than the hard disk. That's something you will actually notice on a daily basis.

Hard Disk Drive

Solid State Drive
While cost may still not be a strong point it is, like the history of all electronics, dropping rapidly. It went form  around $3.00 a gigabyte to less than $1.00. They are getting cheaper and cheaper and in my opinion well worth the price.

Want one? Just give us a call at 208-367-1000 or visit our website TVIT

Thursday, September 13, 2012

What TVIT can do for YOU

We are an IT company, that much you know. But what exactly does that mean?

Here at the front desk I get a lot of calls that start with "can you fix a...." "do you work on....", etc.

Generally the answers to these questions is "Yes." Here is a run down of a typical day for a Treasure Valley IT technician: Let's take a look at Nik's schedule today:

8am - 9am, on-site: Commercial Customer in Garden City, Router repair.

9am - 11:30, Bench (this means Nike is working on the system in our office): same Commercial customer as 8am appointment. "All computers are going super slow, possible virus."

11:30-12:30: Lunch (we let our technicians eat sometimes)

12:30-1:00,  Remote (this is when Nik can get into a system remotely from his desk here at the office): Commercial customer, server updates. Server updates are done for some of our contracted customers behind the scenes when needed.

1:00-2:30,on-site, Residential Customer in Meridian: Help set up a wireless printer and fixing missing icons on their desktop.

2:30-5:00, on-site, Commercial customer in Nampa: Program load-balancing router; going from the load balancer to a 20 port switch.

So as you can see not only do the techs do a wide range of work but also all across the Valley. We've gone to Caldwell and beyond.

Interested in buying a new computer? Start here: Computers
Need Security Management for your business? Go here: Security Management
Or do you just want to talk or chat to a person, like me? Treasure Valley IT Home Page (We have live on-line support that gets you straight to yours truly)

So long story short; we'll do what we can to help. We'll remove viruses, set up your printer, make a link to favorite web page, and even network your office building. Just give us a call and we'll take it from there!

Wednesday, September 12, 2012

Microsoft to end support and updates for Windows XP

Are you Using Windows XP? It’s great right? I use it at home personally. One thing that Microsoft does for it’s customers is updates. Most machines are set up to update automatically. You can also go to the Start button, Click All Programs, then Click Windows Updates. From that panel you can select and install what updates you want.

But those updates will be ending April 8th 2014. It’s a couple years off but that will give you the time it needs to make some decisions. Maybe by 2014 you’ll want a whole new system. And guess what? Treasure Valley IT can help you pick out the system that works best for YOU! We’ll even take care of setup, and all your data transfer so everything will be there and ready to go exactly the way you want it. You can also upgrade to Windows 7. This may or may not be a good option.  Not all machines are compatible with this Operating system.

If you are unsure of whether or not your system can run Windows 7, here is a place on line that will help you:

But as always, we are also more than happy to access what you have and let you your options. And like I said, there is still some time, but these things do happen....RIP Windows XP, you were a pretty solid and laid back kinda guy.

Friday, June 1, 2012

We want your feedback!

We are quickly growing and becoming more and more busy. Most of you know this. We'll be adding some new techs soon to help with the influx of calls. It is very important to us that as we transition to a larger and busier company that we maintain our relationship with our!

When you call in for an appointment, Danielle or Casey generally will generate a service ticket. That ticket then gets put on our service board. It's like a digital daily calendar that tells the technicians where to be an when. Lately it's been two places at once, and that's why we adore them. When the technician is done they will fill out a work order. This order then gets handed back to Danielle or Casey, and they enter in the time that the ticket took and then set the service to "completed". When that happens, the system we use should generate an email notifying you that the appointment was made and completed.

At the bottom of the notification is a link to a survey. The survey results will be directly linked to the service ticket created for that particular job. It will reference who was dispatched to help you and when. There will also be notes there about what the technician did.

We'd love to hear from you. Let us know what we do that is helpful and if there is anything we can do to improve. 

Thursday, May 17, 2012

What we need to know when you call in for service

What you need to know when requesting service –
First off we will need to know who you are. Let us know if we’ve worked with you before. Chances are if we have, we still have all your information on file.  Are you calling for your personal computer or a work computer…maybe even your smart phone? Give us a phone number that you can be reached at. We do a lot of schedule rearranging and if a spot opens we’ll give you a call.

The better you can describe the problem, the better equipped we will be to get it solved quickly and efficiently. Pay attention to what you were doing when the issue occurred.
                Were you on line?
                Were you trying to open a particular piece of software?
                How many programs were running at the time?

Also pay attention to any errors that may pop up. If you are getting an error message, make note of what it says and let us know. This may help us narrow down the cause of the issue a little quicker which can save you money.

Have you restarted your system? Sounds simple, but computers can get tired just like we do. An important part of the computer’s guts is it’s RAM. This stands for Random Access Memory. Every time you open something, or ask the computer to complete a task, it uses a piece of its RAM. When that gets full, the computer will have a hard time delegating its to-do lists. By restarting you are cleaning out that space and making it available again.

When you call in you will be speaking to Dispatch. (That’s me!) We are here to figure out who is best suited to help you with your problem. You will need to describe the problem to us before you can speak with a technician. Our technicians are generally very busy so it’s our job to juggle their popularity and ensure that you get the service you need as quickly as possible.

 It’s ok if you don’t know exactly what is going on. Just describe what you were doing in as much detail as you can.

We look forward to working with you!

Monday, May 14, 2012

Welcome to our blog!

Hello Treasure Valley! 
We've got exciting news. With the up coming distribution of our Newsletter we realized it would be nice to have a place you could all go where you can look back at everything that's happening. We'll be keeping an archive of all the past newsletters and posting helpful information. Have a question about a topic we posted? Just leave a comment and we'll try to answer as best we can. 

Need tech help? We work with all varieties of technology; computers, networks, printers, scanners, email, phones, Mac's and much more.  Call us to schedule a tech to come to your home or small business. Don't have time to meet up with us? We'll work on your system in house as well. Just give us a call! (208)367-1000

We look forward to working with you and all your tech needs!

And don't forget to check out our website!

The Treasure Valley IT Team