Direct assistance

  lucky1 19:50 10 Jan 2004

I know one should not mention other mags on this forum (!) but, in the current addition of the Official Windows XP Magazine, there is a company highlighted who apparently, for the one off special fee of £30, will provide 24/7 computer help. According to the article their Microsoft accredited technicians will be able to remotely connect to the troubled PC and run diagnostics checks and 'usually' fix problems on line.

As a novice I am uncertain about the ins and outs of such a service. I presume their technician will be able to 'take over' the customer's PC. Is this not fraught with security problems ?

Any comments would be appreciated.


  bvw in bristol 20:29 10 Jan 2004

If you took your machine for repair they would have access anyway. Ask Gary Glitter :o)

  Forum Editor 23:20 10 Jan 2004

my clients' machines in exactly the same way - it's a feature that's only available with Windows XP and is very useful indeed.

You don't say how long this 24/7 help will be available for after you've paid your £30 fee, but I imagine it's for one year - it can't possibly be forever.

I can't comment about the service because I have no experience of it, but our forum costs nothing, is available more or less on a 24/7 basis, and can fix most problems. I would need to look at the terms and conditions of the service you mention before I can comment further.

There aren't too many security problems involved in using the Windows XP remote assistance facility. What happens is that you use MS Meessenger to ask a contact for assistance - there's a link that you click. That person gets a pop-up message, saying that you're requesting assistance, and he/she has to accept or decline to provide it. Once the request is accepted you'll see the process begin. You can lock the other person out of specific areas on your machine (data files for instance), and you can terminate the connection instantly, should you feel at all uncomfortable.

  powerless 01:05 11 Jan 2004

But you can't get "the feel" of the computer over RA.

There are a zillion forums, one forum member has got to know the answer.

For a "beginner" it would look appealing but you don't learn anything by watching someone else do the work ;-)) (well you do)

Be told and get ya hands dirty is what I say - If your not sure what to do; keep asking.

  lucky1 19:03 11 Jan 2004

Thank you FE and Powerless for your usual wisdom.

FE - apparently it's a 'one off' payment. Sounds too good to be true !


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