Q: We are looking for what I loosely call a “tech concierge.” By this I mean someone who might be able to help us with a variety of technical issues related to operating computers, cameras, our TV, and so forth. Even our cars can get past us, sometimes!
We suppose the only alternative is going to the source for each item (a computer store, camera store, etc.) but that seems unwieldy for what could be simple solves.
By analogy we have a great “handyman” who can diagnose and repair a bunch of different things around the house — electrical, plumbing, carpentry, etc.
Any thoughts you have would be appreciated. It just seems reasonable there is a good tech “handyman” out there somewhere.
— Jon Fox, Mercer Island
A: I’ve seen an increasing number of businesses offering just that kind of support. Just as with other service providers, however, don’t be surprised if you have to try a few before you find the right fit.
In your web browser just search for “Seattle tech support” and you’ll find a number of options. And for what it’s worth, two sites — Yelp and Hello Tech — offer customer ratings. And Hello Tech has features that lead you to just the kind of specialized tech support you might be looking for.
Q: Do you have any answers or hints why Windows 10 upgrade hangs at 46 percent? I’ve tried waiting over 24 hours, no change. Getting help through Microsoft help desk is not helpful. I am running Win7, which is now unsupported. I’m at my wits end and about to just get a Mac instead.
— Cheryl Bourdreau
A: The first thing I’d do (if you haven’t done it already) is to make sure that your computer is compatible with Windows 10. Your manufacturer’s website will tell you that.
If it is compatible, a number of things could be preventing the upgrade, including a lack of free space on your drive, your anti-virus program, or incompatible peripherals.
Here’s a link to an article that details steps you can take to increase the chances of a successful upgrade: groovypost.com/howto/prepare-computer-windows-10-creators-update-version-1703/
If you’re still unable to get the upgrade to work you can try upgrading manually using the Media Creation Tool or the Windows 10 ISO file. You’ll find instructions for downloading the ISO files here: https://answers.microsoft.com/en-us/windows/forum/windows_10-windows_install-winpc/how-to-download-official-windows-10-iso-files/35cde7ec-5b6f-481c-a02d-dadf465df326
Q: I run Windows 10 on a PC and keep getting an error message related to Microsoft Office 365. It’s an orange box that pops up and says “Updating Office, please wait a moment” but it stalls and nothing happens, so I have to shut down and restart. Happens all the time. I would be grateful for a fix.
— Susan Eggleton
A: There are a number of possible causes of this problem, ranging from an interrupted Office process to a misbehaving Office add-in.
First, I’d try manually ending any Office processes you can find in the Task Manager. Right-click in the System bar at the bottom of the screen and launch Task Manager. Then click on the Processes tab and scroll down the list. Highlight any Office-related processes and then click on the End Task button.
If the problem persists, try repairing Office. To do so, go to the Control Panel and launch the Programs and Features utility. Find Office in the list of programs and highlight it, then click on Change. Finally, click on Repair.
If that doesn’t fix things, start the Office program in safe mode. It’s possible that an add-in is causing the problem. Starting in safe mode will prevent add-ins from loading. To start in safe mode, hold down the Ctrl key and double-click the program shortcut. Click Yes when a window appears asking if you want to start the program in safe mode.
Last but not least, if the problem is still occurring it’s time to uninstall and then reinstall Office.