Amber Computer

Solutions

Setup

Need help setting up new computers and transferring data from old computers? We can setup your new computer for ease of use and the most appropriate security and backup solution. Or do you need help setting up Desktop computers, Laptop computers, tablets, phones, printers, broadband routers, wifi, or network equipment? We can help you do that and explain what you need to be aware of, and how it all works together, and also any training you may need to get you started with this new kit.

Protection

We can  suggest and install Anti Virus, Firewall and Backup solutions that will keep you and your data protected. We can provide computer health checks, including hard drive and security checkups. We can give help and advice on subjects from passwords to how to protect against ransomware viruses.

Repairs

Below are just a few of the repair services we provide, if your particular problem is not listed simply contact us and explain and we are confident we can help you Laptop repair Desktop repair Virus removal Malware removal Adware removal Slow Laptop or Desktop Browser problems WiFi problems Broadband problems Router or Hub problems Printer problems Email Problems Data recovery Areas covered include but not limited to Inverness, Nairn, Black Isle, Elgin, Forres, Dingwall, Beauly, Grantown, Invergordon, Aviemore, Cromarty, Tain

HOME USERS

Made with Xara
We provide home users a very flexible computer support solution. We can come out to your home at a time to suit you or you can drop the computer off at our premises.

Upgrades

Need a RAM upgrade to make your laptop or desktop run faster? Want to replace your hard drive because its wearing out and slowing down your laptop? Would you like the latest operating system? Or maybe replace your hard drive with the latest Solid State Drive (SSD) to make your laptop run super fast?
Amber Computer Solutions logo

Setup

Do you need help setting up and integrating new equipment into your existing system? Or transferring data from old equipment to new equipment? We can help you setup your new equipment so that its ready to go straight away without you having to waste time setting it up. We can also help harden your new equipment so they are less likely to be attacked by malware and viruses, also provide a backup solution that will protect your data. Do you need help setting up routers, servers, NAS, printers, scanners, tablets or any computer or network related equipment?

Protection

We can  suggest and install Anti Virus, Firewall and Backup solutions that will keep you and your data protected. We can provide computer health checks, including hard drive and security checkups. We can give help and advice on subjects from very strong passwords to how to protect against ransomware viruses.

Repairs

Below are just a few of the repair services we provide, if your particular problem is not listed simply contact us and explain and we are confident we can help you Laptop repair Desktop repair Virus removal Malware removal Adware removal Slow Laptop or Desktop Browser problems WiFi problems Broadband problems Network problems Printer problems Email Problems Data recovery Areas covered include but not limited to Inverness, Nairn, Black Isle, Elgin, Forres, Dingwall, Beauly, Grantown, Invergordon, Aviemore, Cromarty, Tain

SMALL BUSINESS USERS

We provide Small Business users with a very flexible computer support solution. We can come out to your premises at a time to suit you or you can drop the computer off at our premises.

Upgrades

We can provide various upgrades, from RAM upgrades to Solid State Drive (SSD) Hard drive upgrades to your Desktop or Laptop computers to improve their speed and your productivity
Amber Computer Solutions logo

ABOUT US

Amber Computer Solutions logo
“Hello my name is Ian Gillespie and I am the owner here at Amber Computer Solutions. I moved to Inverness in 2004 and started Amber Computer Solutions the same year. I came to Inverness because this is where all my family lives. Starting my own business had been a long time ambition, I felt that I could provide a service tailored to my customers with exactly what they needed, a straight forward, understandable, working solution to their computer problems. We have many satisfied customers and hope that you will become one soon. “ Thanks for checking out our website. Ian
Ian Gillespie owner at Amber Computer Solutions

CONTACT US

Amber Computer Solutions logo

REVIEWS

Amber Computer Solutions logo
Please provide as much information as possible so we can help you

Phone and mobile numbers

BLOG

Amber Computer Solutions logo
Below is a little blog I will be updating from time to time on subjects that I feel will be of use to all my customers
6th August 2014 I would like to post here not only experiences of helping customers but also information and articles that I find interesting and hopefully you will find useful. So here is one about the future of your home appliances. It just goes to prove that when it comes to security we have to be ever vigilant. And that lazy programming will cost us all eventually. Here is a link to the bbc article https://www.bbc.co.uk/news/technology-28582479
5th August 2014 I helped a customer today who was having problems after their email account was hacked. We helped them reset some passwords and removed malware from their pc.  The best defense against email hacking is complex passwords.  What I mean by complex passwords is long passwords, the longer the better, the minimum length now is usually 8 characters but its usually best to use 12 characters now  using Upper and Lowercase letters mixed with numbers and if the email system allows, the use of symbols (£$) as well.
11th August 2014 Today I helped one of my regular customers as I replaced their 3 pc network running Windows XP on which they run their networked Accounts and Payroll. I replaced it with a 3 pc network running Windows 7. I hear you asking, Why Windows 7? Why not Windows 8? Its the latest version of Windows and must be the better choice. Well you are right it is the latest version of Windows but when it comes down to user functionality I still think Windows 7 has the edge. Its familiar interface is much easier to use for users transferring from XP. Its also still a very resilient and secure operating system. XP lasted over 10 years in use and i think Windows 7 will do the same. So if there is anyone out there who has Windows 7 and is thinking its time to upgrade to Windows 8, I would say hang on and think about what you would gain from Windows 8 before you upgrade. If you think you need the extra functions of Windows 8 then go for it, if not then stick with Windows 7 its a good work horse. If you are still on XP then it may be time to upgrade to either Windows 7 or 8 depending on your situation. If you want to talk about your choices then give me a ring.
12th August 2014 Today I helped a customer by removing lots of malware from their pc they had installed a program that would convert WMA to MP3. Unfortunately they had just typed convert mp3 into google and clicked on the first thing they saw. This resulted in the pc becoming filled with malware programs that changed the home page, search settings and installed software that popped up repeatedly annoying the user and slowing the pc. This is a good warning to all to be very careful what software you download, If you can try and find a review of the software or the website you will download it from. You need to be careful because many malicious people are packaging their own malware inside legitimate software and bundling it on the internet then paying for google ads so they appear at the top of a google search.
15th August 2014 Yesterday and today I had two customers with the same problem. Both had Norton 360 antivirus. Both systems had tried to update themselves and failed. The worrying thing was that neither norton 360 gave an indication that they had failed and were not protecting the pc anymore. My solution was to remove norton on both pc because the subscription only had a few months to run. On one I installed AVG Free and on the other I installed Avira. Both these anti virus are very good and free to use. This could potentially save them up to £70 per year on the cost of norton. If you have norton 360 check that it is working properly if its not give me a call and I can help get it wotking again or put you on a better solution.
20th August 2014 Yesterday i helped a customer who had no internet, it was a problem with their router and wifi settings in their pc. Once both problems were corrected they were back online. If you are experiencing similar problems then give me a call.
20th February 2015 Today i helped a customer who had their home page and search hijacked by some software that downloaded from the internet. The customer was looking for some software to help them open PDF documents. So they typed something into google to help them open files and downloaded the first thing they saw. The software they installed then installed several other pieces of software which included the file viewer but also a browser hijack and pc speed up software. You need to be very careful when searching for software using a search engine. A good PDF viewer is foxit reader, its better than adobe because its smaller and doesn't have to be updated so often.
12th July 2015 It's time to talk about upgrading to Windows 10. It will be available for download from the 29th of July. It will be a free upgrade available to anyone with Windows 7, 8, or 8.1 on their machine. Is it worth upgrading? In a word Yes. There are many reasons why its worth upgrading. Microsoft have said the upgrade is free for one year and Windows 10 will remain free for the life of your machine. The User Interface is much better than that of Windows 8 or 8.1 Windows 8.1 will be the last version of Windows with a built in lifespan, Microsoft have always released a new version of Windows every 3 years or so making the previous versions obsolete. Windows 10 wont be like this, they will continue to improve it for many, many years. So if you upgrade to Windows 10 your version of Windows will effectively never be obsolete. There are some precautions everyone should take before upgrading to Windows 10. These precautions are not really to do with Windows 10 specifically they are more like precautions everyone should take before upgrading any software. Make sure you will not exceed your broadband data quota, the download of Windows 10 is somewhere in the region of 4GB, if you are unsure check with your broadband provider to find out if you have a quota and what the limit is. Make sure you have enough free space on your machine before installing Windows 10. Backup your data before you install Windows10. Just in case. The installation could take a few hours to complete, if you have a laptop make sure it is plugged into the mains. Make sure the power settings of your machine are set to stop it going to sleep while unattended (otherwise the installation may stop while you are away from the machine and take much longer to complete) If you have any questions or problems installing Windows 10 then please give me a call.
4th August 2015 It seems there are some unsavoury types targeting inverness, cold calling and pretending to either be from Microsoft or TalkTalk. They basically are very convincing to the uninitiated and want access to your pc, once given access to your pc by asking you to go to a website and clicking on a link. They then proceed to password protect your pc so you cannot gain access to it again unless you pay them money. I have successfully removed these passwords for some of my new customers but the best defence is to not allow these unsavoury types access to your pc in the first place. No matter who rings you and asks you to type things on your pc, do not do it. Microsoft wont do this, neither will TalkTalk, no reputable company will ask you to do this unless of course you have first contacted them for help.
24th December 2015 I would like to wish all my past and future customers a Very Happy Christmas and I hope we can all have a profitable and healthy 2016. Cheers
24th May 2016 Well it seems that Windows 10 is now being forced on to us. In the last week i have had many customers report that Windows 10 has started installing on to their computers without their consent. I have customers who do not want or require Windows 10, this is because they have software that will not work in Windows 10. If you are like them and you neither want nor need Windows 10 and would like to stay on Windows 7, 8 or 8.1 then let me know I have a fix which can stop Windows 10 from installing and also remove the downloaded files associated with Windows 10.
20th September 2016 Ransomware - These very nasty viruses are becoming much more common on the internet so I thought I would explain what these viruses are for those who have not come across them and also explain how to avoid them. Ransomware is the latest in a long line of viruses; basically what it does is search your computer for your files and encrypts them with very strong encryption, effectively making your files unreadable. The files are encrypted with a special key known only to the person who created the virus. The files can only be decrypted and returned to normal with this key. The virus then places instructions in with your encrypted files on how you can decrypt your files, returning them to normal. These instructions usually require you to access a website and pay a fee in bitcoins to be able to get the decryption key. Now, this is all done anonymously so you have no idea who you are dealing with and of course there is no guarantee that they will give you the decryption key. My advice is do not pay these people, the only reason they do this is to make money and if people do not pay them, then hopefully there will be no incentive for these people to create these viruses. Most Ransomware viruses are spread via email, once the virus infects a computer it then sets about encrypting all the documents, pictures, videos and music files it can find (they also encrypt other files as well but these are the typical ones). The virus looks at all the drives it can see on the computer, so C: drive obviously but also any external drives that you may have plugged in at the time of the infection, so if you leave an external usb hard drive plugged in or a usb stick to do backups automatically, then these files are at risk from the virus. It also looks at any network drives that are accessible from the computer, so if you have a Network Attached Storage device (NAS) then any drives that you have automatically attached to your computer are also at risk from the virus. The virus can act very quickly, it is possible for the virus to encrypt 1500 files in 3 minutes, but on a faster computer this could be much faster. To avoid this type of virus requires a few levels of protection. As I said most of these viruses arrive by email attachment, so the first level of protection is you, always treat attachments with caution. If you don’t trust an email delete it. The next level of protection is a good anti virus, if your first level of protection does not stop the virus then hopefully the anti virus will. The final level of protection is your backup, you will need an external drive that you will connect to the computer to do the backup and then disconnect from the computer when the backup is finished. This external drive can be a usb stick or a usb hard drive. I would recommend backing up at least once a week or more often if your data changes often and is very precious. With these three levels of protection in place, the worst case scenario would be that you accidentally open an attachment that had a virus and your anti virus did not stop it but you could restore your files from your backup. If your computer has been infected with a virus and you need help with the virus removal or need help setting up a backup procedure to protect you from this or any other types of catastrophe then get in touch and I can help.
12th July 2016 Pc Scams - I think we all know there are always people out there on the internet trying to scam us but one of my customers experienced a scam recently and I thought I would bring it to your attention. He was doing a search on the web and a screen popped up explaining that British Telecom had detected suspicious activity on his IP address, it also stated that some spy- ware may have breached his network and he should call a free phone number to resolve the problem. They stated that 60% of services on the pc were turned off, well that’s quite normal, many services on windows PC's are not required to be on all the time and in fact many should not be on all the time. They stated that his security system was turned off, this was a lie as it was on. They stated that his data was corrupt, another lie, it wasn't. They stated he had no anti virus, another lie, he did have anti virus and it was active. They stated his browser was corrupt, another lie, the only thing wrong with his browser (he was using chrome) was that they had somehow locked it so he could not close it or open another website. If he had used another browser he would have found that they still worked, in fact in one of their messages they actually asked him to open internet explorer to check that their company was legit. Now the only reason my customer engaged with these scammers is that the screen look legit (he is a BT customer) and he could not close the browser and the messages panicked him. I would advise anyone who gets any messages on screen while surfing the web to treat them with caution, obviously if your anti virus is telling you that you have a problem then you should pay attention. But otherwise you should try to close the browser, if that fails try to shut-down the pc, if that fails then call me. But the bottom line is don’t call the numbers on screen and don’t engage with these people.
CompTIA A+ Certified Linux Professional Institute LPIC-1 Certification CompTIA Network+ Certified CompTIA Security+ Certified CompTIA Linux+ Certified Microsoft Office Master Certified Microsoft Certified Technology Specialist Microsoft Certified IT Professional Microsoft Certified Systems Engineer Microsoft Certified Solutions Associate Microsoft Certified Systems Administrator
“We can’t recommend Ian highly enough, He is eternally patient and no matter how big or small the problem is, you know if you call he will go out of his way to help. Over 10 years we have worked with Ian we have recommended him to several of our clients who also run small businesses and they have been similarly delighted with the service received.” Mobile Book-keeping Solutions - Inverness
25th December 2016 Thank you to all of my customers who have used my services this year I'm very grateful, without you there would be no Amber Computer Solutions.  I would like to wish all of my past, present and future customers a Very Merry Christmas and a Healthy and Prosperous 2017!
29th January 2017 Over the last 3 weeks I've had a few customers who have had phone calls from people pretending to be from either BT or Talktalk. Now I have posted on this subject before but i thought i would revisit the subject as there seems to be a rise in these situations again. Basically the call takes this basic course, they ring up and say they are from these companies and tell you that there is something seriously wrong with your computer or broadband and they need to have remote control of your pc, once given remote control they proceed to install bogus software pro-porting to fix the problem, you are told to leave the pc on and the phone off the hook for hours. Sometimes they say that they need to issue you with a refund to compensate you for the inconvenience and want you to login to your bank to issue the refund. Sometimes they call back and ask for hundreds of pounds in payment for fixing these imaginary faults. The bottom line here is neither of these companies will ring you to fix your problems, unless you have rung them first about a problem. But lets be honest here, we've all dealt with big companies before and even when we have rung them up about a problem that needs fixing and they said they would ring back, when has that ever happened? DO NOT GIVE ANYONE YOU DON'T KNOW REMOTE ACCESS TO YOUR PC EVER!!!! If you're a customer of mine simply tell them thank you for notifying me of this problem i will contact my IT professional and get the problem resolved, hang up the phone and call me and i will tell you its a con, or if you're not my customer yet then simply tell them the same and ring me and I'll tell you its a con. These people are professional crooks and they run this operation like a business, they are not chancers just ringing up out of the blue, they have enough personal information on you to sound very convincing, often they know you are a customer of BT or Talktalk, know your address, phone number and name at the very least. The information they have on you may have come from one of the many security breaches these companies have experienced over they years. I'll say it again for emphasis DO NOT GIVE ANYONE YOU DON'T KNOW REMOTE ACCESS TO YOUR PC EVER!!!!
11th October 2017 Scams, Phone or Pc - I thought I would post about this today as it is a constant problem and we all need to be forever vigilant. Hopefully this information will allow you to check if the phone number that called is a fake or not. I had a call from this number 01618503593 today. It was an automated call instructing me that it was from the HMRC and that they had been trying to contact me for some time. They then proceeded to tell me that because they had been unable to contact me HMRC were going to sue me and to press 1 to speak to a representative. Now I've seen enough of these types for scams to know it was exactly that. The important thing to remember is that HMRC would not contact you this way, it would be via a written letter and it would not be a single letter at that, But what you may not know is that there is a very easy way to check if the number calling you is a fake and that is to simply type the number into google. If you do this then usually the top website is who-called.co.uk and clicking on that website will take you to a page where people who have been contacted by that number are discussing the call. This can usually instantly put your mind at rest and confirm that it is a fake call. I hope this information has been helpful and remember never let anyone you do not trust have access to your computer.

I have used other computer engineers before however none came close to Ian who is the best by far. I highly recommend...

Posted by Gregor Hay on Saturday, 18 August 2018

Friendly and efficient service, arrived on my doorstep the same day. Although the problem took longer to resolve than anticipated he didn't want to charge more than the original quote. I'll be back...����

Posted by Patricia Davies on Wednesday, 25 July 2018

Really knowledgeable about all things computer, super helpful and friendly service. Would highly recommend.

Posted by Malcolm McCurrach on Friday, 22 June 2018

We have been using Ian for our computers ever since he was recommended by a friend almost two years ago. Every time Ian...

Posted by Bruce Ritchie on Wednesday, 14 March 2018
14th June 2018 Hello Everyone, Windows 10 bi-annual update 1803 is now installing on most windows machines. And it's causing a few problems. I have seen at least 7 pc's in the last few weeks all with different problems related to this most recent update. For those of you who do not know, Windows 10 has two major updates a year. One in March and one in September. This along with the year is how we know which version of windows 10 we are using. So for instance the current Windows 10 version is 1803, year 2018, month march 03. Some of you may have 1709 or 1703. These bi-annual updates are huge, sometimes up to 4GB in size. This can cause problems if you don't have enough space. It uses a lot of internet bandwidth and takes a long time to download. My advice is if you see your machine doing any updates is to leave it to do the updates and not put it to sleep or shut it down. These updates also can take a long time to install, again my advice is to just leave the machine on and let it finish. Even if you think its stuck and not doing anything, be patient and leave it as long as you possibly can. Some customers have thought that the machine was stuck doing the update and turned it off during the update, this unfortunately caused further problems because the machine was in the middle of the update and when turned back on could not complete or rollback the update, causing windows to be unusable. These problems were corrected but if you leave the machine to finish its updates corrective action may not be necessary. If you have any questions or problems then please get in touch. Ian
27th June 2018 Hello Everyone, Windows 10 strikes again! The latest Windows 10 update 1803 is causing users some more problems. I've seen a few customers over the last two weeks with a new problem. It's the @ symbol, you will probably only notice this if you type an email address, but what is happening is the @ and the " symbols are swapping places, so when you type an email address like sales"ambercomputersolutons.co.uk you get the quotes symbol " instead of the @ at symbol. So what is causing this? keyboard language. The latest update to windows 10 is replacing the English UK keyboard with the English US keyboard. Yes I know, how helpful is that? If you are suffering from this issue or any other computer issue then please get in touch and I can help you put this right. I wonder what fun will be in the next update to windows 10.

Setup

Need help setting up new computers and transferring data from old computers? We can setup your new computer for ease of use and the most appropriate security and backup solution. Or do you need help setting up Desktop computers, Laptop computers, tablets, phones, printers, broadband routers, wifi, or network equipment? We can help you do that and explain what you need to be aware of, and how it all works together, and also any training you may need to get you started with this new kit.

Protection

We can  suggest and install Anti Virus, Firewall and Backup solutions that will keep you and your data protected. We can provide computer health checks, including hard drive and security checkups. We can give help and advice on subjects from passwords to how to protect against ransomware viruses.
Made with Xara

HOME USERS

Amber Computer

Solutions

Upgrades

Need a RAM upgrade to make your laptop or desktop run faster? Want to replace your hard drive because its wearing out and slowing down your laptop? Would you like the latest operating system? Or maybe replace your hard drive with the latest Solid State Drive (SSD) to make your laptop run super fast?

Repairs

Below are just a few of the repair services we provide, if your particular problem is not listed simply contact us and explain and we are confident we can help you Laptop repair Desktop repair Virus removal Malware removal Adware removal Slow Laptop or Desktop Browser problems WiFi problems Broadband problems Router or Hub problems Printer problems Email Problems Data recovery Areas covered include but not limited to Inverness, Nairn, Black Isle, Elgin, Forres, Dingwall, Beauly, Grantown, Invergordon, Aviemore, Cromarty, Tain

SMALL

BUSINESS

USERS

Setup

Do you need help setting up and integrating new equipment into your existing system? Or transferring data from old equipment to new equipment? We can help you setup your new equipment so that its ready to go straight away without you having to waste time setting it up. We can also help harden your new equipment so they are less likely to be attacked by malware and viruses, also provide a backup solution that will protect your data. Do you need help setting up routers, servers, NAS, printers, scanners, tablets or any computer or network related equipment?

Protection

We can  suggest and install Anti Virus, Firewall and Backup solutions that will keep you and your data protected. We can provide computer health checks, including hard drive and security checkups. We can give help and advice on subjects from very strong passwords to how to protect against ransomware viruses.
We provide Small Business users with a very flexible computer support solution. We can come out to your premises at a time to suit you or you can drop the computer off at our premises.

Repairs

Below are just a few of the repair services we provide, if your particular problem is not listed simply contact us and explain and we are confident we can help you Laptop repair Desktop repair Virus removal Malware removal Adware removal Slow Laptop or Desktop Browser problems WiFi problems Broadband problems Network problems Printer problems Email Problems Data recovery Areas covered include but not limited to Inverness, Nairn, Black Isle, Elgin, Forres, Dingwall, Beauly, Grantown, Invergordon, Aviemore, Cromarty, Tain
We provide home users a very flexible computer support solution. We can come out to your home at a time to suit you or you can drop the computer off at our premises.

Upgrades

Need a RAM upgrade to make your laptop or desktop run faster? Want to replace your hard drive because its wearing out and slowing down your laptop? Would you like the latest operating system? Or maybe replace your hard drive with the latest Solid State Drive (SSD) to make your laptop run super fast?

ABOUT US

“Amber Computer Solutions is me, Ian Gillespie. I moved to Inverness in 2004 and started my computer business the same year. I came to Inverness because this is where all my family lives. Starting my own business had been a long time ambition, I felt that I could provide a service tailored to providing my customers with exactly what they needed, a straight forward, understandable, working solution to their computer problems. I have many satisfied customers and hope that you will become one soon. “ Thanks for checking out our website. Ian

REVIEWS

CONTACT US

Please provide as much information as possible so we can help you

Friendly and efficient service, arrived on my doorstep the same day. Although the problem took longer to resolve than anticipated he didn't want to charge more than the original quote. I'll be back...����

Posted by Patricia Davies on Wednesday, 25 July 2018

I have used other computer engineers before however none came close to Ian who is the best by far. I highly recommend...

Posted by Gregor Hay on Saturday, 18 August 2018

BLOG

Amber Computer Solutions logo
Below is a little blog I will be updating from time to time on subjects that I feel will be of use to all my customers

We have been using Ian for our computers ever since he was recommended by a friend almost two years ago. Every time Ian...

Posted by Bruce Ritchie on Wednesday, 14 March 2018
CompTIA A+ Certified Linux Professional Institute LPIC-1 Certification CompTIA Network+ Certified CompTIA Security+ Certified CompTIA Linux+ Certified Microsoft Office Master Certified Microsoft Certified Technology Specialist Microsoft Certified IT Professional Microsoft Certified Systems Engineer Microsoft Certified Solutions Associate Microsoft Certified Systems Administrator
“We can’t recommend Ian highly enough, He is eternally patient and no matter how big or small the problem is, you know if you call he will go out of his way to help. Over 10 years we have worked with Ian we have recommended him to several of our clients who also run small businesses and they have been similarly delighted with the service received.” Mobile Book-keeping Solutions - Inverness

Really knowledgeable about all things computer, super helpful and friendly service. Would highly recommend.

Posted by Malcolm McCurrach on Friday, 22 June 2018
29th January 2017 Over the last 3 weeks I've had a few customers who have had phone calls from people pretending to be from either BT or Talktalk. Now I have posted on this subject before but i thought i would revisit the subject as there seems to be a rise in these situations again. Basically the call takes this basic course, they ring up and say they are from these companies and tell you that there is something seriously wrong with your computer or broadband and they need to have remote control of your pc, once given remote control they proceed to install bogus software pro-porting to fix the problem, you are told to leave the pc on and the phone off the hook for hours. Sometimes they say that they need to issue you with a refund to compensate you for the inconvenience and want you to login to your bank to issue the refund. Sometimes they call back and ask for hundreds of pounds in payment for fixing these imaginary faults. The bottom line here is neither of these companies will ring you to fix your problems, unless you have rung them first about a problem. But lets be honest here, we've all dealt with big companies before and even when we have rung them up about a problem that needs fixing and they said they would ring back, when has that ever happened? DO NOT GIVE ANYONE YOU DON'T KNOW REMOTE ACCESS TO YOUR PC EVER!!!! If you're a customer of mine simply tell them thank you for notifying me of this problem i will contact my IT professional and get the problem resolved, hang up the phone and call me and i will tell you its a con, or if you're not my customer yet then simply tell them the same and ring me and I'll tell you its a con. These people are professional crooks and they run this operation like a business, they are not chancers just ringing up out of the blue, they have enough personal information on you to sound very convincing, often they know you are a customer of BT or Talktalk, know your address, phone number and name at the very least. The information they have on you may have come from one of the many security breaches these companies have experienced over they years. I'll say it again for emphasis DO NOT GIVE ANYONE YOU DON'T KNOW REMOTE ACCESS TO YOUR PC EVER!!!!
6th August 2014 I would like to post here not only experiences of helping customers but also information and articles that I find interesting and hopefully you will find useful. So here is one about the future of your home appliances. It just goes to prove that when it comes to security we have to be ever vigilant. And that lazy programming will cost us all eventually. Here is a link to the bbc article https://www.bbc.co.uk/news/technology-28582479
11th August 2014 Today I helped one of my regular customers as I replaced their 3 pc network running Windows XP on which they run their networked Accounts and Payroll. I replaced it with a 3 pc network running Windows 7. I hear you asking, Why Windows 7? Why not Windows 8? Its the latest version of Windows and must be the better choice. Well you are right it is the latest version of Windows but when it comes down to user functionality I still think Windows 7 has the edge. Its familiar interface is much easier to use for users transferring from XP. Its also still a very resilient and secure operating system. XP lasted over 10 years in use and i think Windows 7 will do the same. So if there is anyone out there who has Windows 7 and is thinking its time to upgrade to Windows 8, I would say hang on and think about what you would gain from Windows 8 before you upgrade. If you think you need the extra functions of Windows 8 then go for it, if not then stick with Windows 7 its a good work horse. If you are still on XP then it may be time to upgrade to either Windows 7 or 8 depending on your situation. If you want to talk about your choices then give me a ring.
12th August 2014 Today I helped a customer by removing lots of malware from their pc they had installed a program that would convert WMA to MP3. Unfortunately they had just typed convert mp3 into google and clicked on the first thing they saw. This resulted in the pc becoming filled with malware programs that changed the home page, search settings and installed software that popped up repeatedly annoying the user and slowing the pc. This is a good warning to all to be very careful what software you download, If you can try and find a review of the software or the website you will download it from. You need to be careful because many malicious people are packaging their own malware inside legitimate software and bundling it on the internet then paying for google ads so they appear at the top of a google search.
15th August 2014 Yesterday and today I had two customers with the same problem. Both had Norton 360 anti virus. Both systems had tried to update themselves and failed. The worrying thing was that neither Norton 360 gave an indication that they had failed and were not protecting the pc any more. My solution was to remove Norton on both pc because the subscription only had a few months to run. On one I installed AVG Free and on the other I installed Avira. Both these anti virus are very good and free to use. This could potentially save them up to £70 per year on the cost of Norton. If you have Norton 360 check that it is working properly if its not give me a call and I can help get it working again or put you on a better solution.
20th August 2014 Yesterday i helped a customer who had no internet, it was a problem with their router and wifi settings in their pc. Once both problems were corrected they were back online. If you are experiencing similar problems then give me a call.
20th February 2015 Today i helped a customer who had their home page and search hijacked by some software that downloaded from the internet. The customer was looking for some software to help them open PDF documents. So they typed something into google to help them open files and downloaded the first thing they saw. The software they installed then installed several other pieces of software which included the file viewer but also a browser hijack and pc speed up software. You need to be very careful when searching for software using a search engine. A good PDF viewer is foxit reader, its better than adobe because its smaller and doesn't have to be updated so often.
12th July 2015 It's time to talk about upgrading to Windows 10. It will be available for download from the 29th of July. It will be a free upgrade available to anyone with Windows 7, 8, or 8.1 on their machine. Is it worth upgrading? In a word Yes. There are many reasons why its worth upgrading. Microsoft have said the upgrade is free for one year and Windows 10 will remain free for the life of your machine. The User Interface is much better than that of Windows 8 or 8.1 Windows 8.1 will be the last version of Windows with a built in lifespan, Microsoft have always released a new version of Windows every 3 years or so making the previous versions obsolete. Windows 10 wont be like this, they will continue to improve it for many, many years. So if you upgrade to Windows 10 your version of Windows will effectively never be obsolete. There are some precautions everyone should take before upgrading to Windows 10. These precautions are not really to do with Windows 10 specifically they are more like precautions everyone should take before upgrading any software. Make sure you will not exceed your broadband data quota, the download of Windows 10 is somewhere in the region of 4GB, if you are unsure check with your broadband provider to find out if you have a quota and what the limit is. Make sure you have enough free space on your machine before installing Windows 10. Backup your data before you install Windows10. Just in case. The installation could take a few hours to complete, if you have a laptop make sure it is plugged into the mains. Make sure the power settings of your machine are set to stop it going to sleep while unattended (otherwise the installation may stop while you are away from the machine and take much longer to complete) If you have any questions or problems installing Windows 10 then please give me a call.
4th August 2015 It seems there are some unsavoury types targeting inverness, cold calling and pretending to either be from Microsoft or TalkTalk. They basically are very convincing to the uninitiated and want access to your pc, once given access to your pc by asking you to go to a website and clicking on a link. They then proceed to password protect your pc so you cannot gain access to it again unless you pay them money. I have successfully removed these passwords for some of my new customers but the best defence is to not allow these unsavoury types access to your pc in the first place. No matter who rings you and asks you to type things on your pc, do not do it. Microsoft wont do this, neither will TalkTalk, no reputable company will ask you to do this unless of course you have first contacted them for help.
24th December 2015 I would like to wish all my past and future customers a Very Happy Christmas and I hope we can all have a profitable and healthy 2016. Cheers
24th May 2016 Well it seems that Windows 10 is now being forced on to us. In the last week i have had many customers report that Windows 10 has started installing on to their computers without their consent. I have customers who do not want or require Windows 10, this is because they have software that will not work in Windows 10. If you are like them and you neither want nor need Windows 10 and would like to stay on Windows 7, 8 or 8.1 then let me know I have a fix which can stop Windows 10 from installing and also remove the downloaded files associated with Windows 10.
12th July 2016 Pc Scams - I think we all know there are always people out there on the internet trying to scam us but one of my customers experienced a scam recently and I thought I would bring it to your attention. He was doing a search on the web and a screen popped up explaining that British Telecom had detected suspicious activity on his IP address, it also stated that some spy-ware may have breached his network and he should call a free phone number to resolve the problem. They stated that 60% of services on the pc were turned off, well that’s quite normal, many services on windows PC's are not required to be on all the time and in fact many should not be on all the time. They stated that his security system was turned off, this was a lie as it was on. They stated that his data was corrupt, another lie, it wasn't. They stated he had no anti virus, another lie, he did have anti virus and it was active. They stated his browser was corrupt, another lie, the only thing wrong with his browser (he was using chrome) was that they had somehow locked it so he could not close it or open another website. If he had used another browser he would have found that they still worked, in fact in one of their messages they actually asked him to open internet explorer to check that their company was legit. Now the only reason my customer engaged with these scammers is that the screen look legit (he is a BT customer) and he could not close the browser and the messages panicked him. I would advise anyone who gets any messages on screen while surfing the web to treat them with caution, obviously if your anti virus is telling you that you have a problem then you should pay attention. But otherwise you should try to close the browser, if that fails try to shut-down the pc, if that fails then call me. But the bottom line is don’t call the numbers on screen and don’t engage with these people.
20th September 2016 Ransomware - These very nasty viruses are becoming much more common on the internet so I thought I would explain what these viruses are for those who have not come across them and also explain how to avoid them. Ransomware is the latest in a long line of viruses; basically what it does is search your computer for your files and encrypts them with very strong encryption, effectively making your files unreadable. The files are encrypted with a special key known only to the person who created the virus. The files can only be decrypted and returned to normal with this key. The virus then places instructions in with your encrypted files on how you can decrypt your files, returning them to normal. These instructions usually require you to access a website and pay a fee in bitcoins to be able to get the decryption key. Now, this is all done anonymously so you have no idea who you are dealing with and of course there is no guarantee that they will give you the decryption key. My advice is do not pay these people, the only reason they do this is to make money and if people do not pay them, then hopefully there will be no incentive for these people to create these viruses. Most Ransomware viruses are spread via email, once the virus infects a computer it then sets about encrypting all the documents, pictures, videos and music files it can find (they also encrypt other files as well but these are the typical ones). The virus looks at all the drives it can see on the computer, so C: drive obviously but also any external drives that you may have plugged in at the time of the infection, so if you leave an external usb hard drive plugged in or a usb stick to do backups automatically, then these files are at risk from the virus. It also looks at any network drives that are accessible from the computer, so if you have a Network Attached Storage device (NAS) then any drives that you have automatically attached to your computer are also at risk from the virus. The virus can act very quickly, it is possible for the virus to encrypt 1500 files in 3 minutes, but on a faster computer this could be much faster. To avoid this type of virus requires a few levels of protection. As I said most of these viruses arrive by email attachment, so the first level of protection is you, always treat attachments with caution. If you don’t trust an email delete it. The next level of protection is a good anti virus, if your first level of protection does not stop the virus then hopefully the anti virus will. The final level of protection is your backup, you will need an external drive that you will connect to the computer to do the backup and then disconnect from the computer when the backup is finished. This external drive can be a usb stick or a usb hard drive. I would recommend backing up at least once a week or more often if your data changes often and is very precious. With these three levels of protection in place, the worst case scenario would be that you accidentally open an attachment that had a virus and your anti virus did not stop it but you could restore your files from your backup. If your computer has been infected with a virus and you need help with the virus removal or need help setting up a backup procedure to protect you from this or any other types of catastrophe then get in touch and I can help.
11th October 2017 Scams, Phone or Pc - I thought I would post about this today as it is a constant problem and we all need to be forever vigilant. Hopefully this information will allow you to check if the phone number that called is a fake or not. I had a call from this number 01618503593 today. It was an automated call instructing me that it was from the HMRC and that they had been trying to contact me for some time. They then proceeded to tell me that because they had been unable to contact me HMRC were going to sue me and to press 1 to speak to a representative. Now I've seen enough of these types for scams to know it was exactly that. The important thing to remember is that HMRC would not contact you this way, it would be via a written letter and it would not be a single letter at that, But what you may not know is that there is a very easy way to check if the number calling you is a fake and that is to simply type the number into google. If you do this then usually the top website is who- called.co.uk and clicking on that website will take you to a page where people who have been contacted by that number are discussing the call. This can usually instantly put your mind at rest and confirm that it is a fake call. I hope this information has been helpful and remember never let anyone you do not trust have access to your computer.
14th June 2018 Hello Everyone, Windows 10 bi-annual update 1803 is now installing on most windows machines. And it's causing a few problems. I have seen at least 7 pc's in the last few weeks all with different problems related to this most recent update. For those of you who do not know, Windows 10 has two major updates a year. One in March and one in September. This along with the year is how we know which version of windows 10 we are using. So for instance the current Windows 10 version is 1803, year 2018, month march 03. Some of you may have 1709 or 1703. These bi-annual updates are huge, sometimes up to 4GB in size. This can cause problems if you don't have enough space. It uses a lot of internet bandwidth and takes a long time to download. My advice is if you see your machine doing any updates is to leave it to do the updates and not put it to sleep or shut it down. These updates also can take a long time to install, again my advice is to just leave the machine on and let it finish. Even if you think its stuck and not doing anything, be patient and leave it as long as you possibly can. Some customers have thought that the machine was stuck doing the update and turned it off during the update, this unfortunately caused further problems because the machine was in the middle of the update and when turned back on could not complete or rollback the update, causing windows to be unusable. These problems were corrected but if you leave the machine to finish its updates corrective action may not be necessary. If you have any questions or problems then please get in touch. Ian
27th June 2018 Hello Everyone, Windows 10 strikes again! The latest Windows 10 update 1803 is causing users some more problems. I've seen a few customers over the last two weeks with a new problem. It's the @ symbol, you will probably only notice this if you type an email address, but what is happening is the @ and the " symbols are swapping places, so when you type an email address like sales"ambercomputersolutons.co.uk you get the quotes symbol " instead of the @ at symbol. So what is causing this? keyboard language. The latest update to windows 10 is replacing the English UK keyboard with the English US keyboard. Yes I know, how helpful is that? If you are suffering from this issue or any other computer issue then please get in touch and I can help you put this right. I wonder what fun will be in the next update to windows 10.
5th August 2014 I helped a customer today who was having problems after their email account was hacked. We helped them reset some passwords and removed malware from their pc.  The best defense against email hacking is complex passwords.  What I mean by complex passwords is long passwords, the longer the better, the minimum length now is usually 8 characters but its usually best to use 12 characters now  using Upper and Lowercase letters mixed with numbers and if the email system allows, the use of symbols (£$) as well.
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