Firsat of all, do take advantage of the help of wonderful and wise brother and sister in-laws. Saves many headaches and hundreds of dollars.
Do watch and learn when you don't understand. There are more levels to this stuff than put tab A in slot B.
Do not be ashamed of the dust in your computer case. No matter how bad it is, they've seen worse.
The wireless router will work much better if you plug in the modem. Also saves money on buying new routers that will also "fail".
Forget to put accesories (example: plug in cords) in to boxes being returned as defective, so that you have a reason to call the returning party home just before you figure out there may well be no problem with the device.
Martin's first rule- if you look up how to do a thing on the internet, and it seems hopelessly complicated, look in three or four other spots- usually you'll find a quicker, easier way that actually accomplishes what you want.
Go take a break! Go eat Chinese. Crack up waitress the third time you hear glasses crashing all over by offering to join their football game. Crack up the whole staff the fourth time by raising your arms and yelling, "Touhcdown!"
If you have multiple passwords to get a thing set up, (example- e-mail, since you've upgraded to Windows 7 and it no longer takes outlook express), Ask the experts which one goes where.
Nobody actually knows how to get the thin, needle-like object used to actually hit the reset. It's all dumb luck.
If you change one part of a process (example, the outgoing port # on your e-mail, because that's what the old computer is set on), and later on, that process does not work (as in receiving messages works, sending does not), avoid three calls to various 24/7 help lines and say to yourself, "Hmm, perhaps I shouldn't have changed that one part (as in set the port back to default)."
If you are a NON-24/7 helpline, and youtell a customer to call back during normal business hours, do the right thing- take a couple extra seconds and TELL THE CUSTOMER WHAT THE NORMAL BUSINESS HOURS ARE!!!
If you are a 24/7 helpline, and you don't feel qualified enough/interested enough to help with the question, please say so. Do NOT switch on the "wait time is more than ten minutes" recording in hopes customer will give up. At 10 PM on a Saturday night, you are fooling no one!
And most important, do NOT use sarcasm when you're angry, especially if your partner isn't especially adept at dealing with it when you're not. Saves the "you got upset over THAT?" moment.
This morning, I listened to Charles Stanley give a message on letting God handle the battle. Looking back on how many of these issues virtually solved themselves once we stopped trying to solve them, I wish I'd heard it ten minutes before we started setting things up. An angel made sure the directions to the router were 90% Japanese so we failed to remember to put the power cord back into the box that was being rerturned unnecessarily. An angel pointed out to us that the modem was running on a failing battery, and that might just be the problem with the router. An angel helped Scarppy remain uncharacteristically calm and well-behaved despite chaos and growing frustration. An angel made us forget about Mary and Jack taking dad's old computer just long enough for me to remember that we hadn't set up e-mail. An angel tapped me on the shoulder and reminded me about the port thing before I had to spend more time- and likely money- on talking to Microsoft "during regular business hours", whatever they may be. Long story short, things bound up when we took them into our own hands, and loosened when we stopped and let ourselves br guided. I know I have at least occasional readers who will say that "it's all coincidence". To them I say, "I'm sorry, but I think you give coincidence too much credit." Coincidence didn't create a universe out of expanding molecu-plasmic glop, and it didn't get this computer set up without wasted money, broken parts, or beaten dogs. Some things require a loving God.