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When the computer wheel keeps spinning, or the blue screen of death pops up, many people want to tear their hair out in frustration, but not Jeff Schrader. This local computer expert loves taking on a technical problem.
“I just like fixing problems. That’s all I’ve done all of my life,” Schrader said.
Schrader spent 27 years working for corporations and traveling across the country to fix hardware, software and other networking problems. He started doing independent computer work on the side with the help of his father, Jack, in 2002. Jeff opened his own business in 2006 with his wife, Lynda. Their daughters, Amanda “Mandy” Friend and Bethany Bates, have helped periodically. They specialize in providing support for local businesses.
Schrader Computer also has a large base of residential customers as well. They try to educate local computer users, especially seniors, about the myriad scams circulating. Customers have called Schrader Computer after they got a pop-up window from “Microsoft” stating that their computer was infected with a virus and to call a number and fork over hundreds of dollars as well as access to their computer and personal documents.
“Don’t let anyone in your PC unless you know them,” Jeff said. “If you see a pop-up window with a number, just shut your computer down and call me. It’s a scam. Microsoft does not contact you. If you call them, pay them, and let them in your computer, you’ve opened the door to hackers.”
Computer users of all ages can occasionally fall for the latest phishing ploy. “I’ve had people come in and say, ‘I know better.’ But crooks are creative,” he noted.
Schrader Computer has an office at 685 Delaware Ave. They also offer free pick-up and drop-off of personal computers in Marion. They don’t mind doing a little extra. They pride themselves on good customer service.
“We try to get it right the first time and try to make the customer happy,” Jeff said.
With decades of experience and a cost much lower than the big box stores with young techs, Schrader Computer is a local value with deep Marion roots. Jeff’s mother, Joyce Schrader, graduated from Caledonia. Jeff graduated from River Valley and was proud to be in the first two-year graduating class from Tri-Rivers Career Center. Lynda graduated from Harding.
The young couple met while shooting the loop in 1975. They married four years later and have celebrated 43 years of marriage. Their daughters graduated from River Valley. They have five grandchildren and two “pretty good son-in-laws.” Family is important to the Schraders.
“We’ve been blessed. I like living in a small town,” Lynda said. “I wanted to stay near family. The cost of living is good. I love seeing the downtown grow. I would love to see Marion keep growing.”
Lynda also worked for local corporations for 20 years. She serves as the office manager and scheduler while still finding time to garden, volunteer at her church, and spend time with her grandchildren.
The Schraders work to provide the tech needs to local businesses. They offer a discount to local nonprofits.
“I enjoy working with all of my businesses. It’s a pleasure. I have the most fun with servers, networking and business computers,” Jeff said.
With the COVID-19 pandemic triggering more remote work, online video calls, and with new security challenges, Schrader Computer has been very busy.
For young people, Jeff says IT is a great field to enter. “If you get CISCO certifications, you can pretty much write your own ticket!” Jeff stated.
Local customers can stop into Schrader Computer and pick up Malwarebytes, a program to protect your computer from malware, for just $25 through them instead of a higher cost elsewhere.
Since Schrader Computer is an on-site service, they do recommend that customers call first to make sure someone is in the office. They usually can meet someone within 20 to 30 minutes if they are out of the office.
For more on Schrader Computer, visit their website at SchraderComputer.com or call 740-251-9335.