Do you have an issue with your computer acting up, but you're not sure what to do to fix it? Here are some ways that you can troubleshoot common problems on your own.
Boot Drive Failure
Is your computer not starting up, and you suspect that it is the hard drive that has failed? Know that you can always boot your computer from an external disk to see if it bypasses the failing drive and starts up the computer. It can take a bit of work with another computer to create that external boot drive, but if you can get the computer to boot up from the new drive, you know that the problem is with the internal boot drive.
Your RAM can fail over time, which is going to cause problems with your computer's overall operation. The best way to test the RAM is to take out all of the RAM and try booting the computer with the bare minimum amount of RAM necessary. You can keep swapping out the RAM until you find a combination of RAM that doesn't work, and then replace that bad RAM with new RAM. Just make sure you are putting the RAM into the proper positions. You may need to put in a minimum of a pair of RAM sticks in certain slots or put a single stick of RAM in a specific slot.
Ethernet Port Failure
Are you not getting an Internet signal? It could be due to the Ethernet port going bad. If your computer doesn't have an alternate port, it leaves you without many options when it comes to diagnosing it. Consider buying a USB Ethernet adapter to see if that allows you to get Internet into your computer again. If it works, you know that the port itself is bad and that it's not something else involving the cable or wiring.
Is your computer working slowly, and you are not sure why? It could be due to a lack of hard drive space. Your OS may be putting extra data that doesn't fit in the RAM onto the computer's hard drive to access it, and it is struggling to find room. Try to remove extra data that you don't need to free up additional space, and see if that fixes the problem.
Not sure what's wrong with your computer? Take it to a computer repair shop for more information.