Remote Support and Monitoring

Tier 1 Monitoring

Iowa PC Services is proud to announce:  Affordable Continuous health monitoring and protection of your computer.

antivirus webprotection updates remote checksmaintenance

Pricing:

  • Tier 1 Monitoring 9.00 Month + Tax
  • Includes: Remote Support, Managed Antivirus
NOTE:  Pricing is Per Computer

This service includes:

How to get started?  Just give us a call at 515-299-4555.

 

antivirusMANAGED ANTIVIRUS

The antivirus that is available with this monitoring system is tightly integrated into this monitoring service in a way that allows us to monitor whether it has been updated properly with the latest virus definitions.  We are also able to see what viruses it may have encountered, and whether these were completely removed or not.  Any anomalies in this managed antivirus system will raise a red flag, which allows us to be pro-active when problems arise.

If you use a different antivirus program, it’s possible that we will be able to monitor that program in place of the managed antivirus provided by Tier 1 Monitoring.  Other antivirus programs are not as tightly integrated as the managed antivirus, and we will not be able to see what viruses these antivirus programs have encountered on your computer, however we are often able to monitor the state of the a-v definitions for this different antivirus.

webprotectionMALICIOUS WEB SITE BLOCKING

Most viruses come through the web, and our web blocking system is able to prevent stumbling on sites that can cause serious difficulty on your computer.  These blocking rules can be customized for your needs, and for some people, we have disabled this altogether.

 

updatesREGULAR UPDATES

Every Monday, Wednesday and Friday we run scheduled checks to ensure that common software on your computer is up-to-date.  These updates are crucial to ensure that known vulnerabilities that have been fixed do not become your problem, by checking for updates from the software vendors.

 

remoteREMOTE SUPPORT

We use a remote support tool that allows us to remote-control your computer when you need help.  We charge our regular hourly fee for this time – it’s not covered by the monthly fee for Tier 1 Monitoring.  But we have use this many times to remote into a computer and fix problems for our customers on a more timely basis.

These are the various services available under the umbrella we call “IPCS Tier 1 Monitoring”.  And all this for far less than the cost of a cappuccino!

checksmaintenanceDAILY MONITORING

With our remote monitoring service, we don’t hang around waiting for you to call when something goes wrong. Instead, we’ll check your system around the clock, day and night, for any problems that might interfere with your ability to do business. And when we spot trouble, we’ll fix it right away – probably before you even know about it.

With the Conventional Process…

  • A problem occurs and you deal with it in growing frustration.
  • You eventually call us when you can’t make any progress.
  • You describe the problem to us so we can either assign the right person or fix it over the phone.
  • Once we have a clear picture of the problem, we act to fix it.

Using Round-the-Clock 24×7 Alerts

  • We receive an alert within 15 minutes on average.
  • We’re told the exact cause of the problem (e.g. Windows service has failed)
  • We fix it remotely or dispatch someone to the site.  Instantly.

The Benefits

A faster, more accurate, less frustrating IT support experience. For less than the price of a cup of coffee, we’ll conduct a thorough check each and every morning before you start work. We’ll check:
  • Your backup is complete to make sure your data is safe
  • Your antivirus pattern file to make sure your protection is always up-to-date
  • Your disk space to ensure your system won’t crash and your workers aren’t left unproductive while you recover
  • Your hard disk and memory health to ensure your system is always in peak operating condition
  • Your Critical Event Logs to spot other developing problems that could cause downtime during the day
This service is performed automatically – so it’s guaranteed to happen even if staff are sick or on holiday.  If we find problems, we’ll immediately alert an engineer so he can act fast to cut potential downtime.  We’ll even send you a short note to confirm the checks carried out and their results.

REGULAR HARD DRIVE MAINTENANCE

We schedule a weekly temp file deletion and hard drive defragmentation.  Other regular maintenance tasks are possible as needed.

Speed Up Slow Computers

My computer is running slowly!  Can you fix it?

Yes, we can. The slowness is often caused when too many programs are running at the same time. These can be promotional programs installed by the manufacturer, and even viruses or spyware. There are several categories of software that we eliminate during this step.

Unnecessary programs can be simply uninstalled, however we go a step further, carefully removing parts of the program that are left behind by the uninstall process so that your computer is as “clean” as possible.

But viruses and spyware often must be removed with a different method, to ensure that they’re really gone and don’t come back.

While we are cleaning up your computer, we like to also provide information about how to avoid the kinds of problems that caused the slowness in the first place, so your presence and participation can help us to do a better job for you.  This also can be an opportunity for you to ask questions or receive training.

Very infrequently, we perform a “clean install” of your operating system when there’s a virus that cannot be removed with faster methods. This multi-step process includes the following:

  1. First, we survey what software is used on the computer, noting any that have data that needs to be backed up, such as accounting software, software used to run a business, ancestry data, picture libraries, music, etc.  We like to find out from you which of these programs are currently used, and note any that are no longer used.
  2. We first save the important documents on your computer. This includes My Documents, Pictures, Music, files on the Desktop, Internet Favorites, as well as email messages and addresses.  We’re careful to learn from you how you use your computer, and what we should save before moving to the next step.
  3. Next, we erase everything on the hard drive, and reinstall the operating system and drivers. This wiping process ensures that the bad software is completely eliminated.
  4. Next, we perform all necessary operating system updates, such as Windows updates.  For older operating systems, this can take longer than for current versions.
  5. We then put your files back in place, making sure that your documents are accessible and that your email works correctly.
  6. Printers and other peripherals are re-installed, and any networking configurations that have been customized are completed.
  7. Next, we ensure that the security software is complete. We recommend NOD32 Antivirus from eset.com.
  8. Depending on your particular setup, additional steps may be needed. We’re careful to make sure your computer is ready for you to use right away. If you have questions, need training, or just want to be sure that we didn’t miss anything, we’ll be there.

The amount of time it takes depends on the amount of data and the number of programs in use.  Some systems can be done in as little as 2 hours, while some in business settings or with lots of data can take as long as 4 hours or more.  The time also depends on the speed of your computer, and occasionally the speed of your internet connection, although we try to depend on that as little as possible.

We would love to help you with your computer.  If you would like to make an appointment, please call us at 515-299-4555.

Data Recovery

The Problem

When your computer crashes, makes unusual sounds, or won’t boot up, often the problem is caused by a hard drive that has crashed, or is in the process of failing. This can leave you without access to your documents, pictures, music or other important data.

You may be working on taxes, trying to finish that important report or wanting to listen to your music. Even our pictures are now stored on our hard drive, and may be unavailable. These can be serious problems – this data is often irreplaceable, and you need it back, now!

We also recover files from Compact Disc, DVDs, flash drives (also known as Jump Drives or Thumb Drives), camera cards, and floppy disks.

The Solution

We provide professional data recovery services. We recover what you can’t replace. We carefully rescue your documents, pictures, music, accounting data such as QuickBooks, Peachtree, etc. We’ll deliver them back to you, and put them back on your computer so you’re ready to use them again.

We provide fast turnaround, and depending on the state of your hard drive, can sometimes deliver your data back to you one or two days. Some drives, however, present a bigger challenge, and can take as long as a week to recover.

How We Work

First, we need to get your hard drive. You can bring it to us, or we can pick it up at your location – there is no extra charge.

Next, we connect your hard drive to our data recovery machine. We’re careful not to write anything to your drive, so that we don’t erase any of the data on it.

Then we make a complete copy of your drive onto another hard drive. This step is often the most crucial, and is done so as to make the least impact possible. Often the surface has been damaged or the controller is failing. This is sometimes indicated by a clicking sound coming from the drive when it is turned on. This can make it much more difficult to recover the files, but it’s not always impossible.

After making a copy of your drive, we then set about to repair the “file system” that has been copied to the new drive. Often this file system has been damaged, preventing Windows from booting up, or preventing access to other important files. We rebuild the directories and files by using backup file tables and other system components, so that we can move to the next step.

We then can browse through the files, selecting the files that are needed and saving them to yet another hard drive. After this step, the files can be burned to a CD or DVD, or even copied directly to your computer. We provide this service as a part of the entire data recovery package.

Our Guarantee

Iowa PC Services can recover your data, or you don’t pay!

Let us help you!

If you find yourself in need of our services, give us a call at 515-299-4555. We understand what it means when you can’t access your important data. That’s why we rescue what you can’t replace!

Wired & Wireless Networking

We can help with a variety of networking projects and problems.  From wiring a new business location to setting up wi-fi in a home, we provide simplicity and reliability when it comes to connecting your computers to the internet, to each other, and to other devices on your network.

We determine the requirements of the network in your home or business.  These can vary from a simple network that simply uses a DSL modem as the central hub of the network to more complex systems that require more robust equipment.  Small and medium businesses often  often fall into this category.

Homes and businesses where there are many wireless devices, such as phones, tablets, laptops, as well as those sometimes classified as part of the “internet of things” often need special attention when it comes to wireless routers and access points that can handle greater numbers of connections, as well as the accompanying higher network traffic.

If you need help with your network, or want to build a speedy and reliable one, give us a call… We’d love to help!

Training That’s Just Right

People often ask us where they can take a class to learn to use their computer better, and we tell them, “We do training!”  We hear stories of the person who went to a class where there was an instructor and 5 students.  One of the students ended up asking all the questions, and the instructor basically spent all the available time answering that person’s questions, and very few of the questions for anyone else. We offer one-on-one training that is customized to your needs.

Another common problem we hear about is that the class they took was actually about a set of topics that were not necessarily what they needed to know about most – or they didn’t have their own computer and software to use when taking the class.  We sit beside you with your computer, printer, scanner and whatever else you have, and show you how to use them to do what you want to do.

We charge our regular hourly rate for all training that we do.  We often find that 60 or 90 minutes is about the amount of time that people are able to spend learning new things effectively, so we suggest that is the amount of time you plan to spend for a training session.

We don’t know everything, and we’re not afraid to say so.  But with 40 combined years of experience working in the industry, Dan and Jason can help you get the most from your computer. Give us a call to schedule your training!