Today's release of security updates for Windows XP, Windows 8 and Windows 8.1 signals an about-face by Microsoft. In the wake of the WannaCry outbreak, the intention was to stem the spread of a virulent and damaging ransomware attack. But should the company keep patching an operating system that has been out of mainstream support for over eight years and extended support for three?
Tagged With support
We've talked about using the public to motivate you before, but a recent meta-analysis of 138 different studies and experiments suggests it may, in fact, be the best method for making any real progress toward your goals.
Working in the IT department is often a thankless job. You're like the invisible behind-the-scenes worker who is only noticed when something breaks -- and then you're blamed for it. Here are seven misconceptions about tech support reps and the IT department you should know so you can work better with the IT guy or gal.
We all know those people who run into technical trouble with their devices and just want them fixed. They're not interested in learning to help themselves, and you don't have time to help every time they get an error message. Luckily, there are ways to get them help they can turn to -- help that isn't you. Here's how.
Between call centres and endless phone menus, it's no surprise more of us turn to social media when we need customer service. Some companies are responsive . . . others, not so much. Getting the best, fastest help over social media is part art and part science. Here are some tips to get the best results, from someone who helps people over social media for a living.
We've all been there: You call customer service, get bounced around, transferred, and dropped. Or worse, your issue never gets resolved even after you talk to someone. You probably know you can escalate to a manager, or even higher, to "executive" support. But at that level, there's an art to getting what you want. Here's what you need to know.
Support roles often pay peanuts, but in tech companies they do expose you to the workings of your product in a way that's hard to replicate elsewhere. That seems to be one of the key reasons Facebook makes all its senior engineers perform "oncall duty", where they fix urgent problems with the site, for a two-week period multiple times a year.
The picture above shows a display in the Qantas Club lounge in Sydney which has crashed and become stuck on the Windows XP loading screen. These sorts of sights aren't uncommon, but it would be a mistake to blame this particular problem on the OS itself. Instead, the question should be: why is an OS which ends all support in just over nine months still running in a prominent public location for a major company?
While I think it's safe to assume that the average Lifehacker reader has memorised their hpme Wi-Fi password, the same can probably not be said for most of our friends and family members. When you visit someone a little less tech-savvy, make a point of finding their Wi-Fi password and write it on a piece of masking tape.
Google's free offerings understandably only provide best-effort online support, but that's not acceptable if you're actually paying for the product or relying on it to build your own products. Google has revamped its support offering for its developer-oriented cloud products to include enhanced options, but getting the higher-level options isn't cheap.
If something goes wrong, you're going to want to get hold of your phone company or ISP as quickly as possible, but that can be tricky if the support number is hidden on an obstinate webpage, or you're not sure what the exact Twitter support account is. Planhacker rounds up what's on offer for individual customers.
There's no longer a free option; if you want to use Google Apps for Business, you have to pay for it. Under those circumstances, it seems only reasonable that Google has improved its support options by redesigning its support site.