Archive for the 'Support Calls' Category

McDavid and SiriusXM

Posted in General, Support Calls on September 12th, 2013

Got to give props when they are due and they are.

With McDavid, I had a knee brace that the threads had fallen apart on and it was only about 6 months old and I was going to toss it. Before I did that I thought, well let me take some pictures and send it to their customer support. Before the hour was up I already had an email stating that they were sorry and that they’d like to send me a new one. I replied with the specs they needed and voila, a new one is on its way! Great support and quick on their actions.

With SiriusXM the story is a little different but the end result was also in my favor. So back when Sirius first started I bought into the Lifetime Plan. I had a portable Sirius radio that I used with that account. The radio broke about a year later, I sent it in but I never reactivated the sirius on that radio and just kind of lost interest as I had changed jobs and no longer had really long drives (so the need wasn’t really there for it). Since 2005 I have had several lease cars but I did not want to transfer or move my Lifetime Plan over to these given they were leases. I now own a car and decided it would be a good time to bring the Lifetime plan over to this car. I called SiriusXM and spoke to a representative about what i wanted to do (move my lifetime plan to the car’s radio). The representative said I would need to pay 75 bucks for some new fee that I had no idea about so I asked to escalate to his boss. His boss approved the waiving of the fee and after a few more settings I was set to go.

Kudos to the 2 companies above… hooray for the customer (me) !!

No batteries available and fans running at full speed

Posted in General, Support Calls, mac on September 8th, 2013

After getting my mac working again (see how I fixed it here), it still had issues such as not recognizing the battery and the fans were running wide open (with little to no cpu usage or memory usage). Also unusual was the magsafe light was showing on at times and would not show power at other times when my mac was in use. While running off of battery my mac would still show no batteries available (how crazy is that?).

I tried a million different things to fix this new issue (holding shift, control, option and power for x seconds at boot, taking out battery, taking out magsafe power and running off of battery – none of which worked) and and the steps that worked for me

For Mac portables experiencing issues related to the MagSafe power adapter and/or battery, try:

Unplug the MagSafe power adapter from the Mac and the wall power socket for several seconds.
Shutdown the Mac. Physically remove and re-insert the battery (if it’s removable) and startup the Mac.

Source:
Apple Support

Error STOP 0x000000ED UNMOUNTABLE_BOOT_VOLUME Dell Diagnostic failure Error code 1000-0142

Posted in General, Support Calls on October 21st, 2010

My wife’s laptop rolled over today and showed us it’s ugly blue screen… which revealed..
STOP 0x000000ED UNMOUNTABLE_BOOT_VOLUME

I then ran the Dell diagnostics (found by hitting F12, just after boot, then selecting Diagnostics). The diagnostics reported the below for the hard drive..
DST Short Status Test–FAIL
Error code 1000-0142
MSG:UNIT4: DRIVE SELF TEST FAIL
Not comforting but ok..

I then downloaded a quick and dirty recovery boot cd found here ( I know there are better and more packed util’s out there but I just wanted to get this fixed asap)
The Computer Paramedic – Recovery Console CD Image
Burned it to cd.

Loaded into Recovery Console and typed:
chkdsk c: /p/r

After roughly an hour (don’t worry I was busy doing other stuff), I rebooted the machine and voila, got the laptop to roll back over and play nice once again.

Happy wife, Happy husband..

Human Error?!#$

Posted in General, Support Calls on February 2nd, 2009

In my last post titled “This site may harm your computer..” I ranted about on my Saturday morning regarding my google search efforts which were all being flagged as harmful.

The BBC reports Google attributed the Saturday morning issue to human error. Go figure… Google gets their filter list from stopbadware.org and apparently they received it fine (assuming) and when they inserted the list this go round, all sites were incorrectly marked or flagged as malicious in some manner. Google’s VP of Search and User Experience admitted that tighter controls need to be wrapped around this manual process.. Hallelujah!

Reading further into this at the stopbadware.org blog it appears that Google does not use them for their filtering and its a home grown product. That makes more sense to me.. than what I read on the BBC page.

Finally, reading on Google’s Official blog it appears that the / was marked as malicious hence marking anything and everything else as malicious. Now we understand – taking the long way around the internet but oh well, at least I now know what made my surfing (and I’m sure a few of you other folks as well) a little rougher that Saturday morning. I’m at ease now.

Source: BBC

Windows File Transfers (SMB)

Posted in General, Site of Interest, Support Calls on March 13th, 2007

Windows File Transfers suck, let’s face it. I would have hoped that by now Windows would have above average file transfer capabilty built in by default – but NO, they choose to have Movie Maker instead ;)

Chuck, what are you talking about? Let me explain. Take a 500 meg file and copy it across a local or wide area network to another windows machine (using either a mapped drive or unc path). While the transfer is occuring do something stupid (yank the ethernet cable, disable the nic, boot the switch or router, restart the machine on the other end, etc.). You’ll clearly watch your file transfer take a dump (literally). Microsoft could help low lives like myself who sit at home and ponder thoughts like this with a little extra effort. I’m not quite sure if Vista resolves this issue but I’m not giving into Windows Vista just yet so it’ll be sometime before I see that functionality. If any of you out there are using Vista, I’d love to here if this works for you? (that is without Total Copy – and from what I can see, this version is not available for Vista – so you might have to gopher for something else). My logic for using Total Copy was just for simplicity sake not to promote their product, but heck I’m going to use it on all my machines ;)

Anyhow, go ahead and undo what you did above (put back the cable, enable the network card, etc.). Make sure you have a connection between the 2 windows machines. Map your drive or do a unc path and then install this a little app named Total Copy (currently at 1.10 official release). Now, that you have it installed right click and drag the 500 meg file from your pc to that remote machine and select the “Total Copy” option. Go ahead, don’t be scared. Yank the cable! Down the interface – do as you please. Wait until the thing chokes and you’ll receive a menu from Total Copy stating that it sensed something bad happen. Options include:
Retry every 20 seconds
Skip file
Manual retry
blah blah blah…

Ok, now wait a little while. Go grab a nice cold Dew crack it open and take a nice swig. Re-enable the network card or undo whatever you did in the step above. Once you’ve re-established connectivity hit the manual retry. In my case I was asked if I want to overwite the file, copy rest…etc. I chose Copy rest. Low and behold a little while later – the file copied (without the need to start from scratch and without the senseless worrying you’d do if you were uncertain that the link between the 2 machines would remain up for the duration!). Such a stupid little thing that can make such a HUGE (Absolutely Enormous) difference to us IT people. Total Copy is only 252KB in size!!! So, why can’t Microsoft put this functionality in their OS (they’ve got MovieMaker) ? I know tons of Sysadmin’s who would be real appreciative (including myself). The OS used for this example is Windows XP Professional SP 2.

In today’s world, files are enormous and you don’t want to spend extra time re-sending them (only for the potential failure to reoccur). Yeah, I know, I could use ftp, sftp, etc. but I still wouldn’t mind having the SMB option available to me. Heck sometimes ya just want to use what comes from the factory!!!

Anyhow, just my 2 cents.. Hope it helps someone out there in the digital world.


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