UK: What to do after the crash.

UK: What to do after the crash. - Six steps to speed recovery when your system breaks down.

Last Updated: 31 Aug 2010

Six steps to speed recovery when your system breaks down.

When your computer system goes down it can be very frustrating.

Who do you ask for help? Do you help yourself? Are you going to lose valuable information? If you are a small to medium-sized business, the following suggestions may ease the pain and speed up the recovery process.

Ideally, the person or group looking after your IT will have developed a 10-point plan clearly showing you the best steps to diagnose and overcome the problem. If not, read on.

Switch your machine off, leave it a minute, then switch it back on as you normally would. You'd be surprised how often this seems to work - at least in the short term.

Do you have any 'first-aid' or 'self-help' software on your PC? If so, run this if you can. If it has already been installed on your PC, the chances of a quick and successful recovery for your PC are higher.

Accurately report the problem - write down exactly what's gone wrong with your PC and what you were doing with it when it happened.

This can make recovery easier for a technical person. When did your computer start 'going wrong'? Did this happen when you installed additional software or changed the machine's configuration, for example?

Make sure you have a record of the computer's details - all the names of the software applications on your hard disk and the names of any files you were working on at the time. Hopefully you or a colleague will have recently 'backed up', which means a recent (though not necessarily the latest) copy of your files can be easily retrieved.

Attempt to take the system back to the last known working state. Ask your IT person if they can revert your system files back to their original state. If not, reload those applications that won't work. Let others in your office know of the problem and how best to overcome it.

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