Network+

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of those items is the problem, you say, “Oh, DUH!” Almost everyone can agree on a few items that fall into this category:


■    Correct login procedure and rights


■    Link lights/collision lights


■    Power switch


■    Operator error


Real World Scenario



Can the Problem Be Reproduced?



The first question to ask anyone who reports a network or computer problem is «Can you show me what ‘not working’ looks like?» If you can reproduce the problem, you can identify the conditions under which it occurs. And if you can identify the conditions, you can start to determine the source.


Unfortunately, not every problem can be reproduced. The hardest problems to solve are those that can’t be reproduced, but instead appear randomly.


The Correct Login Procedure and Rights


To gain access to the network, users must follow the correct login procedure exactly. If they don’t, they will be denied access. Considering everything that must be done correctly and in the correct order, it’s a miracle that anyone logs in to a network correctly at all. There are so many opportunities for making a mistake.


First, a user must enter the username and password correctly. As easy as this sounds, users frequently enter this information incorrectly, don’t realize it, and report to the network administrator that the network is broken or that they can’t log in. The most common problem is accidentally typing the wrong username or password incorrectly. In some operating systems, this can happen when you accidentally leave the Caps Lock key pressed. An example of this is Unix, in which passwords are case-sensitive; the user will not be able to log in, unless his or her password is in all capital letters.

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