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General Chat Thread, ICT Noob - In at the deep end in General; As others have said use Edugeek and Google! Countless times ive been saved from these....
  1. #16
    hardtailstar's Avatar
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    As others have said use Edugeek and Google!

    Countless times ive been saved from these.

  2. Thanks to hardtailstar from:

    samepassword (13th October 2013)

  3. #17
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    Hi all,


    Firstly, thank you for the number of responses! I'll work my way through your questions.


    @ elesiegee40 - I'm based in a secondary school in Gloucestershire.


    @ Miscbrah - Thanks for sharing Comptia A+, seems very good on first impressions, I have also secured a old PC and will "experiment to hell" with it!
    I do have a network manager, he's a really nice guy, but continuously busy dealing external companies and internal problems (sound familiar?). Naturally, I have my reservations about bothering him with basic questions and petty problems.


    @ mjs_mjs - From what I've picked up, were currently using Windows server 2008 (once affiliated with RM). Other technical words spring to mind: LightSpeed, Iris camera, Equitrac, Imperio and more.
    Following your advice, I have started to document everything for future reference. I find the process of document is in itself, very helpful in committing information to memory.


    @witch - I suppose I landed the job through luck and being honest about my severe lack of IT knowledge. Active Directory, I recently started using this for managing user profiles, would that be correct?


    @ DrPerception - I've got myself an account, cheers.


    @ Danp - Used to be RM, although I think management decided that we would have less involvement with them, so I'm not entirely sure at this moment.


    @ tmcd35 - My line manger is the network manager, but due to his work load, I have to be slightly more self-sufficient getting answers (google)!


    @ Garacesh - Thanks in general, I've already experienced plenty of those "oh.. wait a minute" moments.


    @Griff - Not sure that we have any contacts with 3rd part companies, possibly Microsoft, I'm sure that the NM has been on the blower to them once or twice.

    Any more advice - keeping it flowing like a river. It's been incredibly helpful.
    Last edited by samepassword; 13th October 2013 at 10:57 PM.

  4. #18

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    Yeah - AD creates and authenticates all users and computers on a network.
    I'm not too happy that you are in a situation where you have no one to ask - if your NM is that busy, how are you supposed to learn? Learning on the job from someone who knows is generally the best way to go if possible; But we are here to help

  5. #19

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    ICT Noob - In at the deep end

    Sorry if it seems like I'm giving really simple advice here but from our latest technician mistakes a few really simple things would help him do more than printers etc.

    1. Seem interested.
    2. Make notes, people don't mind showing you a few times but there gets a point where it gets silly.
    3. Read error messages, sounds Silly but our tech was stuck for 30 mins trying to setup server 2008 r2 at the password page. He didn't read the bit about needing a secure password that was displayed every time he typed in a too simple one.
    4. Learn to google, it's every techs friend. Unfortunately I can't say how you can get this wrong but he manages it.
    5. Check the simple things, things like checking both ends of a cable and if there's a red error button, press it.

    Never done any server training or anything. Just learnt from setting up my own servers before getting my job. Defiantly recommend this, you don't get any papers but it gives you the confidence and knowledge to talk about the different roles in the server.
    You should have some time in your job to improve your skills, ask to do this in that time. If you ask actually do it though and use guides on the net, our techy asked. I then spent a hour getting a server out and all the software etc and it's still sat there.

    This is what I did to get onto the servers within a week. Try and find something that the network could benefit from, research into it so you know how to do it. Explain to them how to do it and probably the first few times they will sit you down and you'll have to tell the other tech how to do it. It seems a waste of your your time but in my case they just said go for it after a few times as they then knew I wouldn't do something very stupid.

    If they trust you they will let you do more, I don't trust our techy becease of the points above so until his contract expires unless something changes he's not getting on the servers.
    Last edited by dany2010; 14th October 2013 at 01:16 AM.

  6. #20

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    Quote Originally Posted by samepassword View Post
    @ tmcd35 - My line manger is the network manager, but due to his work load, I have to be slightly more self-sufficient getting answers (google)!
    While I don't doubt that for one minute, if you are struggling then he should be the first to know. Even if it's only for a pep talk. At the end of the day, if he has a heavy work load then it's in his best interest to make sure you have all the tools you need to work as efficently and autonomously as possible.

    One my techs here, reasonably new to the job, has just found a NVQ Level 2/3 course he can do during work time that I'm happy to support him in (about an hour of my time each month). Maybe it's something to look into?

  7. #21


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    While searching for how to resolve stuff yourself, remember not to spend too long doing it. Your Line Manager wants to see results, not that you are still working out how to reset something. Do a quick bit of research and if it looks like your not getting any closer to the solution speak to the NM, tell him what you have done and if he can point you in the right direction. Often you will find that there is some config you have missed which is specific to your setup, but that initial research you have done will help you understand the functionality of the system.

    Doing a little bit of research before going to the NM helps you in a couple of ways. 1 - it helps you understand what they will tell you & 2 - it shows that you are willing to work and get things done.

    Edit - the other thing to do is read posts on here whenever you get time (I tend to do it when I'm having a brew in the morning). The amount of information that can be taken in is huge even if you find you don't need something now, in a couple of months you may be tasked to set up a system which someone has already done on here and it can be a good starting point.
    Last edited by penfold; 14th October 2013 at 10:04 AM.

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  9. #23


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    Youtube is your friend. There are tutorials on just about every subject, the problem is sorting out the good from the bad. And as others have already mentioned, there's a wealth of knowledge on this site.

  10. #24

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    I was in the same situation as you a year back - had little IT knowledge, was capable of using a PC, but had never had to manage them.
    Was incredibly lucky to get the job as I was up against some very IT experienced people (degrees and the works :-/ )

    Have managed with the help of my team who are very helpful and will always show me how to do things, using edugeek and youtube/google.

    Please feel free to message me anytime for support, as I know how it feels!

  11. #25

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    Quote Originally Posted by samepassword View Post
    @ Miscbrah - Thanks for sharing Comptia A+, seems very good on first impressions, I have also secured a old PC and will "experiment to hell" with it!
    I do have a network manager, he's a really nice guy, but continuously busy dealing external companies and internal problems (sound familiar?). Naturally, I have my reservations about bothering him with basic questions and petty problems.
    No worries at all. Yes, do this, and also do the VM thing with Oracle's Virtual Box - it's useful even if only to have your head around the concept of a virtual machine - very useful technology that's been on the increase for years now. Comptia A+ sounds about where you're 'at' and although I don't think it'd be useful for me anymore, I WOULD recommend the training and resources for it as they seem less 'dry' than the Microsoft training out there I've seen/learned, though of course this is just from personal experience, you might find one as gripping as Game of Thrones to learn from who knows...

    Anyways, I'm also doing a Comptia Linux + cert at the moment, but don't worry about Linux for now if you've got a lot on your plate. DO put it on the 'to learn' list though as a Ubuntu CD sometime in the future will save your life. One day. Or maybe knock up a Linux VM for a play. Who knows, you might LOVE it!

    Cultivate a good working relationship with your NM also - it sounds by even that reply that you have a willingness to learn things, read these suggestions here well enough AND have an awareness of his role and the things keeping him busy. If you get chance, might be an idea to ask him how he sees your professional relationship and if he can offer any advice for you at work going forward. That'll be reassuring for you both I think; he knows you're serious and you find out what's what.

    I've had a tech before who would never research anything, disturb me in the middle of emergencies for really trivial things and blame mistakes on ANYTHING other than himself. He did not last long. I don't think you're anything like that guy, so all very the best.

    AND DO keep lettin us know how you're getting on out there!
    Last edited by Miscbrah; 14th October 2013 at 12:29 PM.

  12. #26

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    Quote Originally Posted by Miscbrah View Post
    I've had a tech before who would never research anything, disturb me in the middle of emergencies for really trivial things and blame mistakes on ANYTHING other than himself.
    Technicians... Teachers in disguise! [To the tune of the Transformers theme.]

  13. #27

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    Quote Originally Posted by X-13 View Post
    Technicians... Teachers in disguise! [To the tune of the Transformers theme.]
    AND the guy smelled.

  14. #28

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    If you get to make any decisions on purchasing machines try to bulk buy and get extended on site warranties if you can. You will pay more but you know the machines are going to last 3-5 years.

    If you have lots of machines look at FOG to image them, this is free software, it takes a bit of setting up and is quite technical but it is worth it to be able to totally restore a broken machine with all installed software packages in about 15 minutes.

    List of the most important people in a school (not in order)

    Caretakers
    Cleaners
    Receptionist
    Librarian

    These people know what is going on in the school, stay on their good side.
    Last edited by JJonas; 14th October 2013 at 03:02 PM.



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