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■    ID Ten T Error (written as ID10T)

Assuming that all problems are related to operator error, however, is a mistake. Before you attribute any problem to operator error, ask the user to reproduce the problem in your presence, and pay close attention. You may find out that the user is having a problem because he or she is using an incorrect procedure—for example, flipping the power switch without following proper shutdown procedures. You may also find out that the user was trained incorrectly, in which case you might want to see if others are having the same difficulty. If the problem and solution are not obvious, try the procedure yourself, or ask someone else at another workstation to do so.

This is only a partial list of simple stuff. You’ll come up with our own expanded list over time, as you troubleshoot more and more systems.

Is Hardware or Software Causing the Problem?

A hardware problem typically manifests itself as a device in your computer that fails to operate correctly. You can usually tell that a hardware failure has occurred because you will try to use that piece of hardware, and the computer will issue an error indicating that this has happened. Some failures, such as hard-disk failures, may give warning signs—for example, a Disk I/O error or something similar. Other components may just suddenly fail. The device will be operating fine and then simply fail.

The solution to hardware problems usually involves either changing hardware settings, updating device drivers, or replacing hardware. As we have discussed in previous chapters, I/O address, IRQ (interrupt requests), and DMA (direct memory access) conflicts can cause computers (including workstations and servers) to malfunction. Change the hardware settings to solve these types of problems.

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