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Basic Rates


In-Shop
Service

$36 /hr.*

 * 3hr maximum cost

     Many of our in-shop services are flat-rate so you can know what you're paying ahead of time.

     These flat rate prices are based on our $36/hr guideline for standard priority service.
    


On-Site
Service

$48 /hr.

 

 

 

Your Needs Come First

     You decide whether service is done at your location or ours based on your needs for speed or savings. Most computer services can be done just as easily in either place. The final price of service is generally lower when performed at our location. But service can generally be finished the quickest when performed at your location.

     Also, you can further specify the balance between money and time by choosing the service priority that meets your needs. Use the table below as a general guideline. You may contact us for further details, or consult the pricing tables that we use for putting the bill together. Please note that if you need multiple services, we may discount the extra services in order to keep them affordable for you.

Virus and Data Recovery Notes

     Virus removal and data recovery are more easily finished when done in our workshop. Both of the services usually take at least a few days, depending on the severity of the problem. If faster completion is needed when recovering from severe virus infections, we recommend a fresh start by having us create a data backup and reinstall Windows. This can usually be done the same day with Express priority service. With this option, most programs will need reinstalled after Windows has been reinstalled.

 

Service Comparison
Based on
location and priority

Priority of service

Value Priority
Service Benefit
Standard Priority
Service Price
Express Priority
Service Benefit

At Our Place

(3hr maximum cost)

Save 25% $36 /hr. Same Day Service1
At Your Place Save 15% $48 /hr. Same Day Service1

Remotely,
From Our Place to Yours

Save 15% $40 /hr. Same Day Service1

1. Express Service Note: with the Express Service level, same day service is possible in most cases.  If service is requested late in the day but still needs to be completed on the same day, this can be done for a flat $30 upgrade to After Hours Express Service. For PC Pickups this upgrade charge will only be applied once (i.e. you wouldn't have to pay the upgrade charge on pickup and in-shop service, just one).



Free Diagnostics

Your device is on the fritz and you are not sure what is wrong with it. It's okay, we can help. If you decide not to have us fix it at your location, we will bring it back to our workshop to run a round of diagnostics on it.

Diagnosis comes free with Standard and Value priority service. Diagnostics should be finished within 2 days, and often after just 1 day. Same day Diagnostics are available with Express priority service for a $15 upgrade.

Free

 

 


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click here for prices and more info

 

 

Backup Services

We can help you and give you tips on how to keep your important information safe. Based on your specific needs, we can help to set up an automatic backup at your location, an automatic remote backup, a one time backup, or any combination of these.

 

Prices & More Info...
   
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In-Shop
Backup
Service

$36


On-Site
Automated
Backup
Set up

$48

 

 

In the best-case scenario you already have an automated backup in place before a catastrophe strikes. However, life with computers usually does not conform to best case scenarios.

Storage drives are always going to fail eventually, and many times sooner than later. So you must keep a backup if you plan on keeping your data.

Have us come to your location to set up an automatic backup. This is typically a 1-2hr service. We can help you determine the type and size of backup that you need. Depending on how important your information is, you may consider keeping an off-site backup and even multiple backup locations.

  • Local backup: This will protect you from accidental deletions, corruptions, failed hard drives, and maybe viruses (depending on how you maintain your backup).
  • Off-site backup: This protects from theft, flood, fire, other destruction, and more certainly from viruses

Local

The easiest, fastest, and most accessible backup solution is a local backup. This requires having an extra hard drive and some form of software that performs the backup (preferably on a schedule). We can help you choose a drive type and method of backup. Many free automated backup programs perform the task very well. Windows also has an integrated backup option but it lacks features.

Off-Site

Off-site backup is the safest form of backup. One simple solution is to make a regular local backup and take it with you to keep it located off-site. Another good option for home users is an online backup service. We list some options on our helpful links page, and we can help you get these set up. Also, if you already have an off-site server we can help you set up a backup via FTP.


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Inside of a hard disk drive



Data Recovery

We have a specialty in effective and affordable data recovery. We can recover lost or deleted data from hard disk drives, USB flash drives, SD cards and other solid state media, scratched CDs and DVDs, and old floppy diskettes. We have a collection of specialized tools to recover deleted or corrupted data and data from failing hard drives.

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In-Shop Data
Recovery
Service

$96

 

Recovery Situations

In case your data is lost and you do not have a backup, you need to decide which of the categories below applies to your data situation.

a. Critically important, the information is priceless...

If you have a hard disk drive that is damaged, and your data is critically important to you, then you should seriously consider Drive Savers and be sure to follow their data recovery precautions. Other companies provide similar professional data recovery services. Some are a little bit cheaper, but with a failing hard drive your first chance is your best so you'd better make it count.

b. Very important, but not critical

If you would love to have your data back but without an affordable solution you would rather abandon it, then you should consider our data recovery options.

We have taken pride in the effectiveness of our data recovery for over three years. If you find a better price for the data recovery services we offer we will match the price or try to beat it.

Please note: We offer free diagnostics on failing hard drives, so we will let you know what is wrong and whether we have a chance at recovering the data. In certain scenarios data recovery is not possible, and sometimes a white room data recovery service is the only option. These scenarios include:

  • A hard disk drive with a seized motor
  • A hard disk drive with damaged logic
  • Data is not just deleted but has been over-written one or more times

 

 



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Custom Building

We can help you build a computer to meet your specific needs. First, we can help you pick out the parts and brands that you need. Then, once decided, we can either build it for you, or, if you are interested in how the pieces go together, we can make an appointment to come to your location and help you assemble it and/or demonstrate the assembly.

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We can help you build your perfect PC

$36 - $72

(Parts priced/ordered separately)

Brand Name

Buying a brand name computer is not for everyone, but neither is owning a custom computer. Each comes with good and bad. Some people find comfort in the shelter of big companies, their large tech support centers, extended warranties, pretty websites, and formal scripted telephone greetings. Others find big companies a bit cold, outsourced tech support centers unhealthy, extended warranties legalistic, sales men petty, websites overwhelming, and scripted support impersonal and inefficient.

Custom-built

Custom-built computers strike their own balance. Many do-it-yourselfers have struggled with hardware incompatibility, the vast and confusing array of options on the market, poor-quality low-end products, lack of technical support, rip-offs, and damaging components during installation. On the other hand, many have experienced the joy and pride of accomplishment after wading through the options to find well-paired quality hardware and assembling it properly so that it never needs the quality tech support offered by the manufacturers of their new fancy hardware. And then they get to bask in the radiance of their super cool, methodically designed, personally assembled power house and revel in the joy of having saved hundreds of dollars while acquiring it.

 

Our Opinion

It is true, we have had good experiences with many models of brand name computers. Asus, Dell, Acer, and Toshiba have gained a good reputation with us through our experience. Each has produced a few series of laptops with design flaws that came to light a couple of years after production, but in our opinion they have had fewer such problems than other brands and have supported their computers better and put more thought into their design than some other brands.

That said, our recommendations are as follows. Read reviews before you buy, they can save you a lot of hassle. Stick to name brand laptops. The markup for name brand desktops is worth it for the warranty support if you keep your own backup (you should), if the warranty lasts long enough, and the idea of waiting weeks for free warranty service doesn't bother you.

We recommend well designed custom desktops for more specific applications. They are generally a better deal for performance. Because you can usually squeeze more performance out of them, they are useful for graphic design, video rendering, or for people who like to game. They allow more room for customizing and don't have built-in spyware or trial-ware applications. They may require more personal attention, but an occasional visit to your local computer repair shop is cheaper than an extended warranty.

Things to Watch Out For

Buying a branded computer comes with a higher price than buying comparable parts and assembling them yourself. In some cases the markup is reasonable ($50-$100), in others it is considerable ($300-$400). Often it is the mid range to higher end computers that have the higher markup. Also, sales people will try to push their high profit (i.e. excessive markup) items, such as extended warranties, extended customer support, software bundles/upgrades, printers, expensive virus protection, expensive mice, etc.

While many of these options sound good on the surface, you can usually get comparable services and items for a third of the price. Service under extended warranties often takes many weeks to replace what has broken. If the computer gets sent in, companies usually charge (lots) extra to backup your information (if you were not doing it yourself) and then give you the computer back with just a basic operating system and trial-ware installed, because their way of fixing problems is by starting over with a clean slate. In certain instances this is good and necessary, but not always.


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Tutorial Services

Have you ever wanted to do something seemingly simple on the computer, but instead you spent hours struggling with trying to find the answer? We are here to save you time and frustration. If you ask, you could have your question answered in a matter of minutes. We have wide knowledge of Microsoft Office, Windows, e-mail clients, Web browsers, hardware, and software in general.

So if you need a quick solution, contact us. You have nothing to lose. If we cannot answer it in the time you need it, you pay nothing.

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Simple Tech Question

Free


Remote Desktop Support

$40 /hr.

 

 

Expand your knowledge

Learn how to use new features and how to maintain your PC. Read our information, and check out our helpful links and Faithworks Geek's top software picks.

Feel free to teach us too if you have interesting info or a new fancy trick to share. Simply contact us and let us know.

Learn and ask questions one on one. Hire one a technician for a training session at one of the rates listed on the Service Comparison table at the top of this page.

Packages - standby tech tutor

Or buy a remote session package and feel free to contact us regularly with new questions. We can answer them via chat, through e-mail, over the phone, or we can work with you through a remote desktop session.

 
On-call Tutor
Remote Session Packages
Price

3 Months
(Up to 4 hours of one to one help)

That's 240 opportunities for 1 minute Q&A

$44
($11/hr.)

6 Months
(up to 8 hours of one to one help)

That's 480 opportunities for 1 minute Q&A

$72
Save $16
($9/hr.)

 

 

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Maintenance

Computer maintenance, much like automobile maintenance, is a commonly overlooked task. All computers need some maintenance. Excess files need cleaned up, the hard drive needs defragmented, junk programs (especially those running at start up) need weeded out, updates and patches need installed, and dust needs to be removed. We can perform regular maintenance for you or help you learn what your computer needs on a regular basis and how to do it.

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In-Shop
Essential Services

(We can maintain your PC and prevent certain problems)

$36

Some advances in automatic maintenance

Although Windows 7 has come a long way in automating some software maintenance, there are still many settings in Windows 7 that can be optimized. Notably, Windows 7 has improved its utility for defragmenting. It also has a built-in schedule to automatically run it as a service. However, this service is disabled by default in some computers and your stored files can become fragmented over time, making them slower to open. 

The latest versions of Apple OS X (since 2001) do not really require defragmenting due to the way the kernel is designed to store files. These newer OS versions offer "Disk Optimization" but Apple suggests that fragmentation is rarely the cause of performance degradation unless your hard drive is nearly full; there is usually something else to blame.
     || Information on defrag in OS 9 and earlier || Information on defrag in OS x ||

Windows Vista and 7 also frequently bug users to backup their files. This can be good, but in many cases Windows gets set up to merely make backups to a separate partition on the same hard drive which offers very little benefit and no protection from storage failure. Let us know if you need more information on how to fix this problem.

Maintain security

In order to keep your computer safe on the Web, Anti-virus software needs to be updated and maintained. Anti-spyware software also needs to be run occasionally in order to ensure safe and optimal PC operation. Together, these tools can keep your computer running clean and safe. Check out our Security section for more information.

In addition to anti-virus software, security patches are provided by Microsoft, Apple, and other software vendors in order to fix vulnerabilities in software once they have been identified. Without these patches, your computer is more vulnerable to attack, even if you do have anti-virus software up-to-date.

Due to some poorly designed websites, your Web browser's auto-complete functions can unintentionally store form data such as credit card numbers, answers to secret questions, pin numbers, etc.  This storage is insecure and can be a problem if an unauthorized person gains access to your computer, or if your computer is lost or stollen. There are a few simple solutions. Auto-complete can be disabled, you can clean out your browser's temporary storage regularly, or you can install software to automate this task.

Maintain healthy hardware

Computers produce heat that eventually causes them to die. Dust can amplify the effect of heat by clogging heat sinks, coating surfaces, and preventing air flow. Commercially available cans of compressed air are only somewhat effective. Many times they are not powerful enough to completely remove the dust. This is where high powered air compressors come in handy (when used carefully). We provide this cleaning service for free when we are doing other work on your computer in our shop. It is good to remove dust regularly (especially in dusty environments or if you have pets) in order to keep your hardware healthy.

You can keep an eye on the condition of your hardware by occasionally checking system monitoring data and statistics either through built-in utilities or 3rd party freeware (free software). Temperature information and storage statistics can help you change environmental factors to prevent problems and improve performance or predict and prepare for any possible failures in the near future.


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Repair

Since so many different things can go wrong with PCs it is usually best for us to diagnose them before you decide it is too expensive to fix (it is often an easy fix). Feel free to contact us, we can answer your questions if you are not sure what the problem is. We have wide experience in fixing software issues so feel free to pick our brains.

Also, you may check out some more details below by clicking on the "Show" link to the left of this paragraph.

 

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Software

Most software bugs can be worked out realitively quickly. Here is a list of some common software issues we deal with: Windows driver issues, Windows settings, odd behavior caused by corrupt/missing files, 3rd party software bugs (such as Web browsers, flash player, financial software, media editing software, etc.).

Generally, the only time we can't fix a problem is when it is a flaw built in to the software. Many tims, even in these cases, we can work around the problem or find a patch or "known issue" report stating that the developers are working on a solution.

Hardware

We can troubleshoot and repair nearly any hardware problem, most of these services are fairly straightforward.

Here are a couple of our specialties:

LCD Repair

The backlights in desktop LCD monitors and laptop LCDs have a tendency of going out and leaving your screen dark. 90% of the time, your LCD screen does NOT need replaced, it is simply a $20-$30 CCFL light bulb that is burned out or a similarly priced inverter board that needs replaced.

Laptop DC jack repair

Most laptops have a DC jack just waiting to get broken due to the way it was designed. Laptops expected to be portable and are designed to withstand some low level abuse. The achelies heal, in many cases, is where the power cord meets the laptop. A bit of abuse in this area, such as jerking the laptop away from the cord, or something may fall and hit the cord while it is plugged in.


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Security

At our location, we check and fix: Anti-virus presence and settings, the presence of malware, Web browser security settings, Windows security settings, Windows updates, file sharing settings, and non-password protected users and administrators.

At your location we can check all of the above, plus router/firewall security. We can set up OpenDNS (a non-software based solution) and other available parental controls. Check out our helpful links page for more resources on online family safety.

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In-Shop
Security Check & Fix

(Usually bundled with other essential services for no extra charge)

$36

Local security for online protection

Today's Internet is a dangerous place even to Mac and Linux users. You have to train yourself as to what is legitimate and what poses a risk to your kids, your computer, and the security of your personal information.

No Windows user should go online without good anti-virus protection. Anti-virus software monitors for suspicious activity and generally prevents malicious software from installing. At the very least it should warn you and help to clean up after the nasties have started installing. There is also anti-virus software available for Linux and Mac operating systems. It is not as necessary as PC anti-virus, but it can be helpful for added security.

Windows is more vulnerable to viruses than Linx and Mac. This is generally for the same reason that Windows based PCs are desirable to many people; because they have a wide range of compatibility, a large user base, and programs are easy to design for PCs.

Patches

Keep the latest security updates installed for Windows and other programs. These updates are released once security vulnerabilities are discovered and fixed. Vulnerabilities are a major reason for hi-jacks and infections, so you should keep your software up-to-date with the latest patches.

Securing ports

Even if you are cautious and have protection installed, your home network is still at risk if you do not have a router with a built-in firewall (a modem with an integrated router is also generally okay). Most routers have built-in firewalls that lock down ports (often misused for unauthorized remote access, file transfer, and vulnerability exploits) and create a division between the World Wide Web and your home network so that your network is not wide open to Internet prowlers. If you just have a basic one port modem you should address this issue.


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Performance Upgrade

Fix your performance! Although no "one thing" is to blame for a computer's slow performance, it is usually an easy fix. Many computers ran well when purchased but are slowing down after only a couple of years. This does not necessarily mean that you need a new one.

Most performance boosts are between $30 and $100. When properly applied these upgrades are very effective at improving performance in otherwise healthy machines. When paired with proper maintenance, this could reasonably extend the usefulness of your computer for another 2-3 years (or more).

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Most In-Shop
Performance Upgrades

$30 - $100

Common Performance Problems

Below is a list of common performance bottlenecks, upgrade options, and the estimated cost of the solution.

Reason Option

Price
At our location
(lower to upper range)

Not enough RAM

RAM is basically a high-speed temporary storage space that computers use to store currently open programs and their computations. When a system is running low on RAM it will fall back on the much slower permanent storage as an alternative temporary storage space. When the system must rely on a hard disk drive in this way, it greatly reduces performance.

Add RAM
(If other hardware supports it)

$30 - $200
($60 Average)

Slow Internet

Sometimes Internet connection speed is confused with computer speed. Fixing this issue can certainly make your PC feel faster.

Test Internet connection speed
or
contact the Internet Service Provider to have them test remotely

Free instructions

Replace faulty network hardware
(NIC, Router, Modem)

$20 - $100 for parts

Over-heating components

Heat is a computer's enemy. It reduces performance and the life of components. (This is why companies keep their expensive servers in very chilly air conditioned rooms.)

Clean out dust,
add, replace, or upgrade fans, thermal paste, or heat-sinks

$18 - $36
+ parts

Conflicting anti-virus software

Having more than one active anti-virus shield can cause serious performance issues. Even single anti-virus installations can be over-protective at times.

Essential Services

(Check anti-virus settings and or replace AV, remove unnecessary programs from startup, defragment HDD, defragment page file and system files, check and fix settings, update drivers, clean up temporary files)

$36 - $54

For software bundle fix

Too many programs running on startup

This affects performance because these background programs use system resources such as RAM, and available CPU processing power.

Storage / data fragmentation

Fragmented files cause slower performance from your hard drive. This problem is minor at first but higher levels of fragmentation cause noticeable slowness.

Unhealthy system files

Corrupted and fragmented system files can reduce performance

Improperly configured settings

(e.g. Missing drivers, wrong drivers, HDD set to run in PIO mode, inefficient Windows settings, inefficient BIOS settings)

Not enough available system storage

Your operating system needs a reasonable amount of permanent storage available in order for normal temporary storage procedures to work properly and to keep fragmentation at a minimum.

Clean up temporary files or unneeded files

Add a hard drive,
or
clone and replace the hard drive

$36 - $54
+ hard drive

Failing hard disk drive

All things eventually wear out. Hard drives do too, and usually before you are done with them. Unfortunately they store, and sometimes lose, data which is many times very important. That is why we have acquired many tools and much experience in the area of data recovery.

Data backup only

$36
Hard drive only $50 - $100
Data backup
+ Windows Recovery
+ new hard drive
$63 - $96
+ hard drive

Spyware / Virus infection

Malware often uses much of your system resources and is one cause for a slow PC. It can also cause damaged system files, privacy invasion, and data loss. (Not to mention headaches.)

Clean up viruses and malware and repair damage in Windows $36 - $108
Data backup
+ Fresh start
$96

Slow CPU

By the time your CPU needs upgraded it is probably better to consider getting a new computer.

But sometimes your motherboard is compatible with a much faster CPU than the one you are using. In this case it may be reasonable to consider an upgrade.

Replace central processing unit
(if other hardware supports it)

$50 - $400
(and sometimes higher)


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Networking

Whatever your need for networking power, we can help.

For new networks, we do first-time wiring for rooms, houses, and offices. We also set up home and office Wi-Fi networks when preferred.

If you need network diagnostics, we troubleshoot slow performance, dropping connections, network failure, file sharing, excessive traffic, and other issues.

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On-Site
Wireless
Network
Set Up

$48

(Cost average + materials)

Networks

Today's networks are usually installed for the purpose of sharing an Internet connection between multiple computers. They can also help you share your documents, media, and printers between computers.

Wired networks

Wired networks are fast and more reliable than wireless. They generally require less maintenance and offer fewer dropped connections over the long term. Wired networks can be expanded to provide wireless coverage that is dedicated to portable devices and less accessable desktops that need it.

We run new cable (CAT5e usually) for wired networks via Ethernet connections. The cable is relatively cheap at about $0.15 per foot. Ethernet wall jacks cost about $2.00 each. Installation difficulty is varied based on building and network layout, building material, and access to crawl spaces.

Wireless networks

Wireless networks are usually cheaper to set up in locations where computer stations are spread out or where wiring is hard to run.

Advantages

The real advantage to wireless is its flexibility and convenience. Your device can get online anywhere within a reasonable distance from your wireless router (different routers provide different ranges). Setting up wireless cards and a wireless router usually takes about one hour for a small network with healthy computers. It also avoids unsightly wires in the cases where a wired installation would require a surface run.

Drawbacks

Wireless offers slower speeds than wired (usually only noticed with file-sharing or large downloads), and it can be less reliable, especially if signal is blocked by solid objects or heavy building materials.

Also, some care needs to be taken by the wirless owner to remember the network's security password that is needed when connecting new devices or when reconnecting old ones that have forgotten the password.


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Recycling Icon

 

 

Recycle it

We are trying to make a difference: We offer free pickup and recycling for all generally intact computers manufactured 2002 and after. We also follow a no-landfill policy regarding electronic waste, where we simply avoid placing any computer components in the garbage.

Call us today to arrange a pickup for your old electronic waste!
You won't even have to lift it! We'll do that for you.

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Other Resources

LexingtonKY.gov
Environmental Quality Services
- Division of Waste Management

If the useful life of your components has come to an end, it is far better to recycle them than toss them. Sometimes it is illegal to throw them out (old batteries in particular) because electronic devices are not generally very biodegradable, and they sometimes contain metals or chemicals that can pollute our groundwater. In some areas, solutions for effectively recycling these devices can be hard to find. Thankfully Lexington has many available resources for recycling.

The first step in recycling is trying to reuse a product in its current state. We will try to find a use for the parts, and we will refurbish and resell or donate the computers if we can. That which is unusable will get taken as scrap metal or otherwise recycled. If it is truly useless or broken, it can usually be turned into something more useful if given a little creative push.