ColdFusion Troubleshooting Services

If you're a CF shop, admin, or developer with any server troubleshooting challenges, do you ever feel alone and stumped to resolve the problems?

Would you like someone to look over your shoulder (either remotely or on-site), who can solve many common CF server (and ColdFusion Builder) problems, often in less than an hour?

Experienced CF server troubleshooter Charlie Arehart is available and interested in helping, and may well be able to help you immediately, remotely, and quickly, therefore cost-effectively. More than just a solution, you also get an education, understanding how to better understand and resolve such problems, as previous clients have attested.

(If you're at all uncomfortable about or reluctant to even consider remote support, please see the discussion on this below, as it may not involve what you think it does.)

Troubleshooting Consulting - Short-term, On-demand, Remote

With 15+ years experience working with ColdFusion shops and helping developers and admins solve nagging problems, Charlie Arehart can help:
  • solve nagging crashes, restarts, etc
  • tune poorly performing systems
  • install, administer, and/or configure servers
  • troubleshoot code and configuration
  • recommend coding/config techniques
  • he can even help solve problems working with CFBuilder, other resources, and more
The rest of this page helps answer many of the common questions one may have in contemplating using Charlie's troubelshooting services in understanding: If you can spare a few moments before contacting him, the information that follows can help ensure he's a good fit for resolving your problem. Otherwise, feel free to contact him to discuss your needs:

Email: support (at) carehart.org
Phone: (1) 678 825 8630
Address: 405 Red Jacket Way, Alpharetta GA 30005 USA

You can also find Charlie on:
Bottom line: if you have a problem related to CF (or Railo, BlueDragon, or other JEE servers), Charlie may be able to help, quickly, or perhaps can point you to someone else or other resources to get you going. He's available for short-term (hours, days) problem-solving, whether remote or on-site, at the hourly rate below (with discounts for prepaid hours, extended hours within a week's time, and more).

Contact him using any of the means above for a initial referral session to determine how he can help solve your most pressing challenges. Often he can be available to begin helping right away, via a secure, unintrusive remote connection. (He's open to completing whatever confidentiality/NDA agreements you may have.)

He can also help with training, whether custom or packaged, including Adobe CF training and more, as discussed elsewhere.

Of course, Charlie also contributes his knowledge and experience freely to many mailing lists, forums, and user groups, for those who prefer to use those avenues to seek help from the community.  

Remote Consulting: Looking Over Your Shoulder (Show/hide details)

What if we need help and are in another country? (Show/hide details)

What is the typical approach used? How is time spent? (Show/hide details)

Technical Background (Show/hide details)

Rates (Show/hide details)

Charlie offers the following options:
TypeRateMinimum TimeComments
All rates include problem-solving AND training, combined
Short-term/hourly:US$250/hr15-minute minimum time incrementsSatisfaction Guaranteed: you won't pay for time you don't feel is valuable1. Invoiced weekly, after engagement. 25% surcharge may be charged for emergency work (less than 4 hours advanced notice) or for work outside of 9am-8pm US ET
10-hour prepaid block:US$200010 hours, 200/hr, prepaid, no minimum time per sessionInvoiced in advance, but see Engagement/Payment below for considerations before proceeding to buy the block. Can be used over 12 months2. 25% surcharge may be charged for emergency work (less than 4 hours advanced notice) or for work outside of 9am-8pm US ET
Multi-day engagement/hourly:US$250/hrRate for extended short-term (remote or on-site) engagements3, plus expenses and travel time4. Invoiced weekly, after engagement.
CFBuilder fixed fee/single problem: (applies only to ColdFusion Builder, the IDE/editor, not ColdFusion server)US$75 fixedN/ARefund offered if a single CF Builder (ColdFusion editor/IDE) problem is not solved in 2 hours5. For more on this service, see below. Can be prepaid or invoiced after engagement.

In considering these rates, note that Charlie's generally helping you solve a problem in an immediate (and generally very short) term. Also, where many troubleshooting consultants require a minimum number of hours (if not days), Charlie's happy to help in as little time as is needed. And he tends to be available within 4 hours of your request to start, if not sooner. Finally, you may be more used to lower rates for development consultants, but consider that you tend to hire them for weeks or months, not hours as with Charlie.

Most important, his goal is to help make you self-sufficient, so he's doing as much sharing of knowledge and educating as solving your problem, so you get more than just a solution, but an education as well. Indeed, because of this approach, Charlie tends to work himself out of the situations where he's brought in, as folks become more self-sufficient. Of course, he hopes you'll ask him back for more help on new problems when needed.

Combine the above with the fact that his expertise in solving problems helps him generally solve problems in far less time than folks who don't spend their days doing so (generally in less than an hour for most problems), and the rate actually becomes very good value. More important, keep in mind that since the approach used is to work with you, you're always in control of the time spent. No surprises.

Engagement/Payment (Show/hide details)

If after considering the approach and rates discussed above, you're ready to begin an engagement with Charlie, or just want to have an initial conversation to help decide, contact him either by phone or email. Since most of his engagements are very short term, it's nearly always possible that work could begin today if you're interested, or it can be scheduled in coming days.

If you're ready to pay for an engagement, note first that Charlie does not require prepayment (except technically for the "pre-paid 10-hour block" engagement type.) It's even optional for the fixed-fee CFBuilder assistance.

Even if you're considering the 10-hour prepaid block, please note that Charlie would prefer you not purchase a first block in advance of our engagement but wait until after an initial consultation by phone/web, to make sure that his services and approach are suited to your requirements. If, during that call, the decision is made to proceed, you can either make the purchase before proceeding, or make it after the fact, but the hours spent on that and any subsequent engagements will be deducted against the block once purchased. (In other words, you don't pay a penalty of the full rate for not "pre-paying" before deciding to go with the 10-hour block.)

For "short-term" or "multi-day" engagements, contact Charlie instead and after arranging the engagement, an invoice will be provided for services at the end of the engagement week. (See the previous section for more details on engagement types, rates, etc.)

Payment may be made either:
  • by credit card (via link provided in invoice sent via email, as just discussed)
  • by check (using contact details in invoice and above)
  • by electronic funds transfer (favored often by those overseas. SWIFT code, acct #, and other details available on request)

Footnotes (show/hide details)

1About Satisfaction Guarantee:
If you choose the "Short-term/hourly" consulting, Charlie understands that it's possible on rare occasions your problem may not be solved in the time spent together, or that some of the time may not fully meet your satisfaction, so he offers a satisfaction guarantee. If you don't feel that the time with him (some or all) was worthwhile, just indicate so either during the call (again, whereby you can control how much time is spent on any topic) or even after the fact, and the billing will be adjusted to your satisfaction. Fortunately this is something that rarely happens, but it has happened and the offer is sincere.

Note that the guarantee does not apply (generally) for the 10-hour prepaid blocks, multi-day engagements, or on-site engagements. These are all intended to be used by customers already familiar with and trusting in the value of Charlie's services, who are enjoying a discounted rate in exchange for their commitment to an extended block of his time at a lower cost. (Even then, Charlie will always reconsider any extenuating circumstances. He really wants your complete satisfaction.)

Finally, in the case of the "CFBuilder fixed fee/single problem" engagement type, the guarantee is different. In exchange for the lower (and fixed) fee, there is no prorating of the time if the problem is solved very fast, such as a few minutes. You're paying for the value of the solution, not Charlie's time with you. That's also why you won't pay for his normal rates for even up to 2 hours of time to solve a single CFBuilder problem. But if in fact the problem cannot be solved in 2 hours, then Charlie will refund your money (unless you feel that you got other value out of the call to justify the payment.)

2About pre-paid 10 hour block:
The 10 hours must be used within twelve months of purchase. In exchange for the discounted rate, there is no refund of unused time, though an extension of time may be offered in extenuating circumstances.)

3About extended short-term engagement:
While it may seem that the discounted 10 hour-block rate could/should be used for an extended short-term engagement, that block is really intended for use with small engagements (typically not more than a couple of hours in a day) used over an extended period of time (again, up to a year). When a single client requires an extended duration of help in a short time (several hours a day over a couple of days), that complicates serving other clients, so the discounted rate is not appropriate.

4About travel time rate:
Charlie must charge for travel time, since while he's traveling to work for you, he can't be helping others. Travel time is charged at a rate of 50% of the hourly rate, for the time spent getting from his home/office to the destination hotel/office, and returning. So for example, that might be typically about 2 hours from home/office until on boarding the plane, plus the time until landing, then about 45 minutes from landing to being in the hotel, and then the reverse returning to his home/office. Please contact Charlie to discuss challenges, concerns, or possible extenuating circumstances with respect to this travel policy. His first priority is to help you get your problem solved.

5About "CFBuilder fixed fee/single problem" support:
This option is for obtaining help in resolving any single problem with use of CFBuilder (such as getting step debugging or RDS to work, getting code insight to work, getting ctrl+hover hyperlinking to work, solving slow performance, etc.) This is a fixed fee option, whether the solution takes 2 minutes or 2 hours. You're paying for the value of the solution, not Charlie's time with you. But if after 2 hours the problem remains unresolved, you may choose to obtain a refund (unless you feel that you got other value out of the call to justify the payment.)




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