I offer online troubleshooting and advice using Remote Utilities, a remote support program that allows me, with your permission of course, to view your Windows PC so that I can diagnose your problem and hopefully fix it. Remote Utilities (www.remoteutilities.com) has a good reputation for ease of use and good security. The Wikipedia article about it provides more information (though it is a bit out of date) and links to reviews.

My main specialities are Windows XP§/Vista/7, Ubuntu and other flavours of Linux, Android, and WordPress. I can troubleshoot a wide variety of software-related problems from bootup failures to malware infections to problems with a specific program/app. I can also provide help by demonstrating how to do various tasks, such as writing a Word macro, or virtualising a computer using free tools.

§ Special Windows XP upgrade offer

Windows XP is no longer supported by Microsoft and so is increasingly vulnerable to security attacks. It is therefore inadvisable to continue to use it even if it’s running smoothly – unlikely, as most XP systems have got clogged up with bloatware and run slowly and unreliably.

Some XP users will take the opportunity to upgrade their computer to Windows 7 or 8, but if you have an older machine with limited resources this may not be practical. Not many people realise that there is an effective, free alternative – to install a Linux-based operating system, which will run well even on older computers. Even better, there is a version of Linux called Linux Mint which is designed to look and feel like Windows XP, so it is very easy to make the transition without much of a learning curve.

If you want to do it yourself, you can download Linux Mint from www.linuxmint.com, or alternatively I can install Linux Mint for you provided your system meets a few basic requirements (see panel). For a limited time this service is available for only £60 – good value for resurrecting your old PC so that it runs like new and is safe from Windows malware!

The upgrade service includes:

  • Guidance on how to run the required system checks before upgrading
  • Help with backing up your existing data (documents, emails, pictures, music etc)
  • Remote installation of Linux Mint on your computer
  • Help with restoring your data
  • Installation of Linux Mint programs to replace your most-used Windows programs – in most cases direct equivalents or closely similar programs are available, and where this is not the case it may be possible to run your Windows program in Linux Mint using an emulator
  • Links to tutorial articles and videos to get you started on Linux Mint

How to request online support

I am developing an online ticket system for requesting support, but until this is ready please contact me to send me your name and contact details, and to let me know what computer problem you have or what help you would like. I will get back to you as soon as possible to arrange a mutually convenient time for the support session. If appropriate, I will send you a download link for Remote Utilities.

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A private chat panel will open, and if I’m available to help I will start a support session with you as soon as possible. Please be patient, as I may not be able to respond immediately.To get started, please just fill in the support request form to the right and click the Request support button to send me your name and contact details, and to let me know what computer problem you have or what help you would like.

My normal working hours are Monday to Friday 10.00–13.00, 14.00–17.30, though please note that I am not always available during those hours. In this case, you can ask me to get back to you by email or text to arrange a mutually convenient time for the support session.

The Remote Utilities program will enable me, with your permission, to view your computer screen remotely and to share control of your computer so that I can diagnose your problem and work together with you to fix it, or show you how to do a task that you would like help with.

Our initial chat will establish the nature of your problem and whether I should be able to help solve it. If it’s outside my areas of expertise, I will say so, and if possible will suggest other sources of assistance.

If we agree to go ahead, I will then ask you to pay for the initial 60-minute session. My standard hourly rate is £24, but discounts are available to people on a low income. Payment is via Paypal, but you don’t need to have an existing Paypal account. Any currency conversion happens automatically at no cost to you.

Once your payment has gone through, I will use Remote Utilities to view your computer screen remotely and to share control of your computer so that I can diagnose your problem and work together with you to fix it. We will use Remote Utilities’ online chat facility, or talk using Skype if necessary (you don’t need to have Skype installed; I can use Skype to call your landline or mobile*).

At the end of the 60 minutes, if more time is needed to finish the job, you will have the option of continuing by paying for a further 30 minutes, or of booking a follow-up session at a later date, or of course you may decide not to continue. If I have not been able to solve your problem or provide a satisfactory workaround within a mutually agreed time (default 90 minutes), I will refund your payment in full.

Because I’m currently using a trial version of LogMeIn’s software, in order to assess its suitability for this service, you may see a warning advising you to be cautious. Please don’t worry about that – I shall be signing up for the paid version very shortly – but if you have any concerns please do raise them with me.

* Calls to Skype accounts, or to UK landlines via Skype, are free; other calls will be charged on at cost.