I encountered a problem with my broadband stick last Sunday when, after attempting to set-up a WiFi using my crappy DSL, the set-up seemed to have changed some settings in my notebook. It was a frustrating experience considering my broadband stick was quite dependable almost anywhere that I traveled to given my job.
The first thing I did last Monday was to test the stick with another notebook computer at the office. This was to determine if there was something wrong with the stick rather than with my notebook. After all, it can be that the stick became defective and not the other way around. I made this assumption after repeatedly tinkering with my computer including a few rounds of uninstalling and re-installing the broadband service software. When it worked with the other computers at the office, including my old notebook, it became clear that something was wrong with the configuration of my notebook. I then decided to call for tech support considering that it was probably the drivers of the stick that became corrupted or had corrupted the system of my computer.
The call for tech support didn't go very well. The person on the other end of the line was kind enough and I have to give credit to what I perceived to be an eagerness to help. However, in cases such as mine, kindness and eagerness are not enough to provide solutions. I believe the other person didn't really know about computers and was probably hired by some call center and given a manual stating frequently asked questions. Sure, maybe she can handle basic questions like how to load the stick or how to install the thing but any knowledge or experience beyond that is probably nil or close to it. So, after practically telling me all that she knew, we came to the inevitable conclusion that I had to go to one of their wireless centers, a term they use for their sales/service branches usually located in malls.
The online fora that is also a common resource for many users like me of this trendy computer of mine were not much of help either. The information there was limited and was certainly not enough considering I did try some of the stuff recommended by other users. It just didn't work for me and I decided to go to the nearest branch of my broadband service to ask for help.
I actually expected a little more from the people at the service center considering they should be quite familiar with notebooks like mine given the current popularity of the brand. After tinkering with my computer for some time, I knew they couldn't help me with my problem. Again, the kindness and eagerness were there but these were not enough for serious problems like mine. I was already saying to myself in my mind that I already did what they did and I knew what they were trying to do. They also tested the stick on other computers there and it worked, even showing it had more than enough credits on it to eliminate the possibility that it simply ran out of load. So the conclusion was that there was probably something wrong with my computer's system, probably its registry. Problem is, they couldn't tell me what it was short of asking me to go across to the exclusive local distributor of my notebook.
An opportunity finally came up when the person handling my case casually mentioned they had a new stick for sale. She even demonstrated on their computer the interface for this new product. What caught my attention was her saying that the stick came from the same manufacturer of my old one. Inspiration came to me then and asked if I could test the new product and if it would run on my notebook. They agreed and let me borrow their demo unit. The moment I inserted the stick to the USB port of my notebook, it did what it would automatically do - it installed new software to my computer. The result was that it probably replaced and overrode the old files, including the drivers, of the old software. It worked on my computer and we tried my old stick again to see if it really did the trick. The outcome? My old stick worked but now it was running the new software for my broadband service.
The tech support people at the branch were happy to see the result and probably learned something new yesterday that they can share with future customers. It was probably one of the oldest solutions to computer problems - get an upgrade! An upgrade it was and with the new software and better interface, I was able to use my notebook again last night to chat with the Clairvoyant. She too was amused with my experience when I related it to her. Sometimes, it just takes some good old fashioned common sense in such cases to eventually make things work.