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(Pocket-lint) - How does someone review a computer repair service, you might wonder. The task becomes a lot easier when your computer dies at precisely the time you hear of a new service, because it's obviously going to require some serious work in order to get it up and running.

My Sony Vaio kicked the bucket one afternoon after fair warning – grinding noises all weekend, several crashes, and then finally, multiple blue screens of death. It was painful and slow, both the computer, and the death.

So it was Geeks on Wheels to the rescue, only I live outside the home visit area, which extends to London and Sussex at the moment, so I had to courier my ailing machine to them. However, this was only done as a special favour, as ordinarily the Geeks don't accepted laptops by mail.

However, if you do live within the service area, Geeks on Wheels promise to arrange a time that's convenient to you to come and sort out your IT issues.

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The news was not good on my computer. It needed a full hard drive replacement, and that was the bottom line.

Thankfully, the staff are professional and efficient, so you can banish thoughts of unfriendly youths turning up at your doorstep to poke at your processor. They're friendly and seem to know what they're doing, but you do have to pay a premium for this sort of bespoke service.

The work that was done on my laptop including diagnosing the memory and hard drive, installing of a new hard drive and Windows XP SP2, securing the PC with AVG Antivirus, MS Defender and Ccleaner, and restoring data from the old machine. For my problem, the labour costs came to £200, and that's without a call-out charge, remember. However, the replacement part was a very reasonable £62 for a brand-new 80GB hard drive.

The PC came back to me at full health, but it was a bit of a shock to have all the previously-installed programs wiped off. It is a reminder to always make sure you keep the installation discs of software you buy, as you might need to do a complete re-install. However, all my data was transferred safely, as the engineers managed to rescue my files from the faulty hard drive.

It's a shame that Geeks on Wheels doesn't have more coverage across the country, but they're planning to expand nationally next year. They offer a 10% discount for OAPs, students and nurses from their usual prices, which start at £75 call-out charge for the first hour, £37.50 for every half hour thereafter in London, and £60 for the first hour and £30 per 30 minutes thereafter in Sussex.

Telephone support is available from 0800 to 2100 Monday to Friday, and between 0900 and 1700 Saturday and Sunday.

The company also offers a range of service for home users that includes a System Tune-up, Data Transfer, Wireless Network Setup, and Basic Home Training. Businesses are also welcome to call up the Geeks on Wheels if they're having difficulties.


If you live in the coverage areas of London and Sussex, you should keep the number for Geeks on Wheels handy, because you never know when you'll need a geek to come calling.

Writing by Amber Maitland. Originally published on 15 December 2006.