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Technical Support

Virtually all new PCs come with a period of free technical support, provided by the maker of the unit. For a retail PC, you will generally contact the manufacturer of the system, not the vendor. Mail order and custom-built machines are generally made and sold by the same firm, which of course also provides technical support for them.

If you encounter difficulty with your system, it is usually best to see if you can identify and correct the problem yourself first. Don't do anything you feel uncomfortable with, and don't open the PC box unless you are sure doing this won't void any warranty you might have on the machine. But if the problem is related to a peripheral, software program or operating system setting, you may be able to fix it yourself, which will save you time and hassle. The Internet can be of assistance here, as it provides a wealth of resources to help you with troubleshooting.

If you do need technical support, don't be afraid to use it--after all, that support is part of what you bought when you purchased a new PC. Contact the manufacturer either online or by telephone, and follow their instructions. To help you get the most help while avoiding a bad experience, I have written an entire section on obtaining technical support; see here.

Tip: The best technical support is that which you provide yourself. Invest time and effort in learning as much about PCs as you can, and you'll not only have to call for support less often, you'll get more from the calls you do make.

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