Use a third party modem with eircom EFibre connection instead of bridging

Configuring a modem that Eircom haven’t supplied to work with your EFibre connection isn’t actually that difficult but if you look at the Eircom website or you talk to their support team you will only find the settings for the ADSL connection. The reason that I needed to configure a new modem for an Eircom EFibre connection is the Eircom FT2000 router that the supplied to one of our customers has a defect. The bridging mode does not work. It should disable the NAT, DHCP, wireless, firewall and VOIP features of the modem. When you enable bridge mode by going to Internet>VDSL>Edit and change the connection type to Bridging, some of the options on the page such as NAT become disabled however when you save your settings you will still be natted, DHCP is still enabled and so too are all the other features that should be disabled once bridging is enabled. In my opinion this was disabled or broken intentionally. My investigation shows that in the past few months a lot of users of bridging functionality have encountered serious bugs such as a rebooting loop and bridging being disabled after power is disconnected from the device. My personal experience is that ISP’s don’t want you to use bridging so it wouldn’t surprise me if this was a very low priority bug to fix. The problem is, I have spent at least six hours working on the bridging problem and a further eight hours working on trying to source, collect, install and configure a replacement router. All while a busy office has no Internet connection. So if you have...

Windows 10

At computer support services we have really fallen in love with Windows 10! With the truck load of fixes and improvements, you will really notice the benefits when moving from both Windows 7 and 8.1. Take the new start menu.  Gone is the start screen from Windows 8 when you are using a standard keyboard and mouse.  Disconnect the keyboard and mouse to use a touch screen and an updated and cleaner start screen returns to make touch first access more efficient. The new start menu shows a list of your most commonly used or most needed applications and utilities on the left.  On the right it shows a few live tiles for quick access to weather, news, music, the Windows store, search and photos.  At a glance seems to be the main objective here. Speaking of at a glance, we just love the new quick access view in Windows explorer.  It shows commonly used files on the bottom of the screen and commonly used folders at the top.  It’s the largest time saver to come to windows since search came to the start menu in Windows Vista. When notification centres came to mobile phones we wondered how we ever kept track of everything without them.  With notifications in Windows 10 you’ll think the same.  Jump to them quickly by pressing windows and A or swipe / drag in from the right of your screen. Another great time saver is virtual desktops.  By far our favourite feature.  This has been available in Gnome in Linux for example for at least ten years or more.  We are delighted that this...

Upgrading or adding a server in a small office.

We don’t sell workstations, servers, printers, scanners, network equipment, keyboards, mice, monitors, CCTV systems, door access control systems, tablets, phones or two way radios. We don’t see it as being the best use of our time and resources. Instead, we advise our customers on what they should buy based on a good understanding of their current needs and future plans. Every new customer we speak to without fail isn’t happy with their computer manufacturer or their IT services provider. That’s not necessarily because the IT services provider or computer manufacturer has done something wrong. It’s generally because the expectations that the customer had weren’t properly communicated or understood. For example: we spoke to a very nice gentleman from Kilkenny on Thursday who felt that he was being over charged for web hosting. We spoke to him by phone for two hours to determine exactly what he was charged for and by what companies. He was very frustrated at the beginning of the conversation because his perception was that he was finding it very difficult to get straight answers out of anyone. 30 minutes into our conversation, we started to understand what was wrong. His web hosting fees had moved between companies because of mergers or company closures. To cut a long story short, it turns out that this person was paying for hosting that he wasn’t using but he was also getting hosting from a very nice company that hadn’t ever charged him. When I asked why, they said that he was a nice man that was just confused and they just wanted to help him out. The outcome...

Competition time

A full Windows 8.1 tablet with Office 2013 professional that fits in your hand. This is what we are giving away when we reach 500 followers on Facebook. When we reach 350 followers we will also give away a €50 iTunes voucher. Just share our Facebook page or tweet about us using the daily tech tip and you will be in with a chance to win this very thin, light and powerful Windows 8 tablet. Look at the end of this post for the tech tip! There’s more. When Windows 10 comes out later this year, we will upgrade the tablet for you for free. OSX – Change the Facetime / hand off ring tone. Start Facetime, open Preferences Panel. Now pick a ring tone in the drop down at the...

Do you have backups at home and at work?

If you don’t, now is the time to start getting organized. A local company in Drogheda called me in a panic a few months ago.  They had a type of virus called a crypto locker.  This infection sits silently on your computer, encrypting all the files you save and open.  Quietly preparing to block access to every file you are likely to open. If you get this virus, or as they are more commonly known as scamware, you have two choices.  Either pay using a potentially dodgy pay method to have the decryption key sent to you to allow you to unlock the files or restore your files using a previous backup. The real problem comes when you don’t have a backup and you’ve paid to have the decryption key but it either doesn’t work, or worse, you pay over the money and no key is sent. You absolutely must have a backup.  It isn’t just best practise, it’s vital. Please don’t think that this infection is only caught by a minority of Internet users.  It is far too prevalent to be taken lightly. To make matters worse, this company had a central file share so when one person infected with the virus accessed a file on the shared directory, that file became encrypted so even if another computer on the network didn’t have the virus, on the day that the virus cut off access to the files it had encrypted, no user could access the file from any computer. This was having a major impact on the business and for five days they were unable to find someone...