I spent the majority of yesterday early afternoon trying to get my new computer to work. Last week it started not allowing my shortcut to the internet not work.  I was so frustrated I tried many different ways to fix it until I ultimately had to call some techie for help.

Now here is how much I actually know about computers.  Nothing!  I clicked the little internet explorer icon to get to my server to check emails.  I go to facebook.  I write my blog and do some research.  I may cruise around some sites looking for info.  I do not spend hours on the computer.  I am a ‘jumper’ off and on to see what is up and move to other things.  The computer is on all day and I check in and out.

Before last week I the clicked the internet icon which brought up my server homepage.  I clicked emails, put in my username and password and voila – emails.  I could then click on my history and get to facebook.  I could google anything and find it.  Last week and I believe on the 23rd specifically I would click the internet icon, click my emails, put in the username and password and the page would come up with no emails.  I could see that I was on the email page.  The email section was not populated with my emails.  Same thing for facebook.  I could get there and see the banner on the top that has my name and ‘home’ and the wall/page was not populated with information.  It was blank.  If however I went to Google Chrome and put in my server name, Comcast, I could pull up both my email and facebook accounts fully populated.  It just did not make sense.  I finally gave in and called for help.

I have to stop here and note how hard it is for me to ask for help.  I have a chip in me somewhere I am certain that is an “I can do it alone” mechanism that does not allow me to say “could/would you help me please”.   Well unless it is a big project and then I like to make it fun and “Tom Sawyer” others into joining me – I still work unlike Tom!

I wonder often what it says about me as a person.  Am I simply too stubborn to ask?  Do I think I know it all and need no one?  Am I kind enough not to want to bother anyone?  Is it easier just to do it myself?  The answer probably is a little of all of those.  I am getting better about it though especially if strength is involved.  I used to open pickle jars easily.  I have been known to struggle and win with their opening.  I have tried and tried before I hand it over to someone stronger. Now I give it a try.  If I do not succeed I hand it over right away.

Yesterday as I gave in and called tech support I had my pen and paper ready for any phone numbers or directions for now or for the next time this happens.  I called my server first as a beginning.  They worked with me for over a half hour to no avail.  ‘Blake’ sent me to Microsoft.  I wrote down the number and called.

I was pleased that I did not have to wait on the line for hours.  A lady named “Mary” answered and listened to my tale of woe.  She asked for my phone number in case I should get lost in the transfer.  It seems she could not help me I had to go somewhere else.  A girl named ‘Daryl’ answered this time.  She ran me through a few different things and said it sounded like third party add ons (?) and she could not take care of that.  At this time I remembered I upgraded my security and suggested it might have something to do with the issue.  She said something about java and said something about ISP and Microsoft and I was lost.  In the next minute she said I had to call my computer manufacturer as it was their problem.  She gave me the number.

The manufacturer lady was named ‘Naomi’.  She asked for my serial number.  Well this is a desktop and the tower is in a box on the side of my desk.  To get to the serial number I have to lie down and crawl through the kneehole to the back.  I also have to have a flashlight.  ‘Naomi” showed me how to get the serial number from a click of the mouse.  This was exciting as I love learning new things.  Sadly I forgot to write it down and cannot remember how to do it today.

All of them took me to ‘tools’ and ‘internet options’ and to many different places and finally ‘Naomi’ said she would have someone call me back within 30-60 minutes.  I hung up and started cleaning the office – long overdue chore – as I waited.  It was not too long when I got a phone call.  It was ‘Naomi’ calling again.  She asked if she could get on my computer remotely.  There is nothing on here that is that private so sure!

Next I watched the mouse pointer being moved all over my screen.  She did all the same things the others had asked me do.  She opened this and closed that and looped back to the other.  Nothing changed.  She came back and asked me to put in my username and password to try any of those and still no progress.  I told her I had found a recovery program in my computer while waiting and ran that to no avail too.   She ended saying that someone would call me in 30-60 minutes as she had tried all she could try.

So after all this time no change.  I still had to get to my server through Google Chrome not my Internet Explorer icon.  The end all was that I could get to my emails and facebook so was it really a big deal that my Internet Explorer icon did not work?  To me, yes, as I do not like having something not working or ‘rigging’ something to make it work.

So back to cleaning and waiting.  AND thinking.  Hummmmm let me think.  Let me go to the system place.  It seems to me that if it is not working then something in the system set up is off.  Like getting a kink in a garden hose – the water stops.  Untwist it and the water starts.

I opened this place with much trepidation as I did not want to crash the whole thing.   I found that recovery thing thinking if I ran it again it might just work.  I had forgotten how nervous this all makes me.  Going into these places for me is like opening the hood of a car.  I can find the oil thingy to check the oil. In a truck once I could even move the gear thing to get it out of first when it was stuck.  Otherwise I am looking at a vast void of wires and metal.  It is an abstract painting that means nothing to me!

I read very closely the screen before me.  I went to the control panel.  Then I clicked System and Security.  I read the information and chose Action Center.  In this area I read ‘Review Resent Messages and Resolve Problems’ and I clicked it.  Now I believe I did this before yesterday. I was getting nervous.  If the techies had not made me go here should I really be messing around with this?  I just seemed logical to ‘resolve problems’.   I plodded on and hit open and there was the ‘Recovery’ button.  I hit it feeling better as I was quite sure I had been here before.

I read what was before me and it said ‘Restore this computer to an earlier point in time’.  Again I knew I did this and nothing blew up.  Before me was the button that said ‘Open System Restore’ and I clicked this with confidence that this had been done before.  The screen came alive and another screen popped up and I was immediately concerned though now there was nothing I could do to stop it.   When it stopped much to my relief another window opened with yet another box.

This box was entitled ‘Restore System Files and Settings’.  I was about to click the ‘next’ button to run the program when I noticed a box that said ‘Choose a different restore time’.  What???  I can choose a different date to go back to and restore my computer?  You have to know that I clicked this button.  Some dates appeared.   Since I believed the whole thing happened on or around January 23rd I chose the date of January 17th as a restore date.  With a very casual attitude I said to myself ‘here goes nothing’ and clicked the button.

The screen went blue words appeared that the system was being restored do not touch buttons and I almost panicked.  I watched and realized there was nothing I could do now until this was all done.  I walked away!

I came back a couple of times to check to see if it was done.  The last time I saw the computer restarting itself and my regular screen appeared with the wallpaper of Portland Headlight with all my icons neatly on the side.  Could it be?  I clicked the Internet Explorer icon.  It took me to the comcast homepage.  I clicked the email icon and put in the username and password and VOILA – my email was populated and all worked well again!  Tried facebook and VOILA there was my wall populated with news from my friends.  I had fixed the problem.

I am no techie.  I have no idea what is in this machine or how it works.  I do however have curiosity, logic and determination.  They won the day yesterday and I am up and running yet again!!!



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