The trouble with troubleshooting

July 13, 2018


Carrying on the topic of demystifying IT, this week I’m going to take you into the heart of Lucidity Support and put some reasoning behind why our support technicians can sometimes ask questions that may seem like a waste of time.

To start off with I’m going to relate IT troubleshooting to the art of Sudoku, a puzzle consisting of a 9 by 9 grid where you are expected to fill in every block with the numbers 1-9. Sounds easy right?

That’s when they throw in the rules; each column and row can only have each number represented once. No duplicates. These puzzles can range in difficulty depending on how many pre-existing numbers are in the grid. Solving these puzzles require you to use the process of elimination to determine what number can be entered into each box.

Taking it back to IT. Just like Sudoku, our technicians are required to first figure out what the issue isn’t.  

To do so we use some of the following questions:

1. What were you doing at the time the issue occurred?

This helps us to determine what apps and systems may have been running that may have caused the issue.

2. What was the error message that appeared?

This is probably one of the most crucial pieces of information we gather, as most systems and applications will have error messages that give us information on how to rectify the issue or lead us to where we can investigate further. In this instance screenshots are always preferred, alternatively you can allow the technician to remote onto your computer to view for themselves.

3. Which server were you logged into?

If you are a Managed Desktop user, you will be logged into one of your companies servers, identifying which server you are on can help us identify where to investigate first, instead of going through each server individually.

To locate your server, you will either have a blue bar across the top of your screen with something along the lines of APP-MHA002. This would indicate you are on MHA Server number 2.

Alternatively you may have a small Lucidity icon down the bottom right of your screen, hover over this and it will reveal your server number.

4. Who else was affected by the issue?

Let’s say your internet stops working (for some of us it’s the end of the world), so you call up your IT company and say that your internet isn’t working. There are two possible situations here. Either there’s an internet outage or something is wrong with the computers network connection. Both scenarios have very different troubleshooting steps. Identifying that you are the only person affected rules out an outage as your colleagues are still able to connect successfully. By ruling out the internet connection this means we can troubleshoot with you to find out what happened to your PC.

At Lucidity we are currently reviewing the support team structure and working on a new process that will get our support tickets to the right person first time, with all the information they need to resolve the issue.

Next week we will do a follow up blog that gives you a bit more information on our new process and some additional questions that we will be asking to make sure your support request gets to the best person for a speedy resolution.

Watch this Space for more info!

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