General Troubleshooting Strategies

SKU: C-847Duration: 13 Minutes

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Language:  English

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Course Details


Training Time: 13 minutes

Compatibility: Desktop, Tablet, Phone

Based on: Industry Standards and Best Practices

Languages: English

Troubleshooting is the process of discovering and fixing a problem. Troubleshooting should be approached in a structured manner following three basic steps: 1. Statement of the problem. 2. Problem analysis. 3. Solution implementation. While the specifics of troubleshooting a given problem will change somewhat with the nature of the problem, this module will cover some basic techniques that are always applicable, as well as techniques to avoid. These are demonstrated with a simple example.

Learning Objectives

  • Differentiate between "troubleshooting" and "problem solving"
  • List the three steps used in troubleshooting
  • Describe a troubleshooting decision tree
  • List techniques for reducing the duration of the troubleshooting process
  • Describe the importance of troubleshooting verification

Key Questions

The following key questions are answered in this module:

What is the difference between troubleshooting and problem solving?
There is certainly some overlap between the terms, but troubleshooting is generally applied to the quick resolution of immediate problems. Problem solving tends to refer to the resolution of problems that have developed over a period of time and may require a more complex solution process.

What are the iterative steps used in the analysis portion of troubleshooting?
Troubleshooting analysis involves first hypothesizing a possible cause of an observed problem, and then determining the state of the cause. This is repeated for multiple possible causes until a solution is found.

What is a tool that can be very useful during the analysis portion of the troubleshooting process?
A decision tree is very helpful tool. A decision tree is a flowchart developed by a person with system-specific knowledge and experience that helps a troubleshooter by presenting meaningful questions and offering corrective actions based on the answers to those questions.

What are two different isolation techniques that will simplify the troubleshooting process?
Troubleshooting can be simplified and expedited by; 1) isolating where in a system a problem occurs (spatial isolation); and 2) by isolating when the problem occurs (time isolation).

Once the root cause of a problem is determined, what is the final step of the troubleshooting process?
Unfortunately, there are situations where a failure is the result of multiple root causes, and resolving one cause does not necessarily resolve an overall problem. To successfully complete a troubleshooting effort, the proper operation of a system must be verified.

Sample Video Transcript

Below is a transcript of the video sample provided for this module:

Before a problem can be resolved, it needs to be clearly stated. A clearly defined problem is easier to solve than an ambiguous one. For example, if someone reports the problem, "I can't print," a troubleshooter might spend time trying to understand what is wrong with the printer, when the actual issue is that the user was unable to figure out where the print command was located within a new piece of software. A more useful and complete problem statement would be, "When I try to print a spreadsheet from my computer, no paper comes out of the printer."

Additional Resources

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