Did I Check All Of The Computer Connections?

Did I Check All Of The Connections?

Preventative maintenance…

While doing recent tune-up and preventative maintenance on my truck, I replaced all of the spark plugs and my entire spark plug wire set.  Considering that this was the type of work that I done many times over many years, with various vehicles, I was not expecting any unusual issues.

On road testing the vehicle, everything seemed OK.  The following morning the vehicle started normally, however, as I started to drive, I noticed that acceleration seemed really poor.  I considered this strange, especially since I had just replaced all of the plugs and the wires.  After about 10 miles of driving the dreaded "Check Engine" light came on.  After safely stopping the vehicle, and turning it off, I then proceeded to physically recheck all of the connections that I had been working with the previous day. Even after rechecking everything several times, I was still unable to find anything wrong. Not having a engine code reader with me at the time, I could only guess that issue was related to something other than what had been working on.

Based on the sluggish engine response, and decades of experience working on vehicles, I concluded that the issue was most likely due to the something related to the vacuum system, possibly a bad sensor, bad valve, or leak in the system.  So I immediately started checking hose connections.  Apparently, in my struggle to get a one of the rear spark plugs out, I had nudged out a nearby electrical connector to that is supposed to be attached to the Vacuum Pressure Sensor.

Calling in the Calvary…

Even after reconnecting the sensor, and restarting the vehicle, the "Check Engine" light was still on.  Not wanting to take any chances, considering that there could be something else wrong, I called the local dealership service department and explained what happened. They indicated that as long as there was nothing else physically wrong, the vehicles computer would automatically turn off the indicator light after about 10 restart cycles of the engine. Had I not made this call, resolving this issue would have meant taking the vehicle in to have the trouble codes checked and reset. This in turn, would have my wasted time, meant leaving the vehicle at the service center. It may have cost me a car rental fee, and some unnecessary service charges.

So what does all of this have to do with computers?

Over the years, I have seen similar things happen with computer systems and networks.

Here are few examples:

  • A user just tripped over a power cord, disconnecting the power to a network switch.  However, the staff was sure that no one had moved any equipment around.  This had the added result of kicking the user out of the software, causing data loss.
  • Users moved registers and peripherals around on the counter-top, disconnecting multiple devices, such as power cables, data cables.
  • Users cleaned under the counters, shoving things back against computer wiring, which resulting in disconnecting them.
  • A power cord to the printer being unplugged.
  • Peripheral Cables re-inserted into the wrong ports.

Depending on what was happening at the time, there could have been other issues and follow-up items that the users were not aware of.

So when in doubt, save yourself a lot of aggravation, time and money.  Check the connections first, and then call the CCS Retail Systems Support Department to confirm if anything else needs to be done. 


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