HRMC and Concentrix

Not that long ago we received a letter from Concentrix a company that we had never heard of before. Concentrix is an outsourced company that are working on behalf of HRMC. The overall aim is to investigate benefit claims and to try to cut how much is payed out in benefits by weeding out those that are either claiming fraudulently or incorrectly.

However the way they go about this isn’t very pleasant as the letters can be rather nasty and they work on a guilty until proven innocent basis which means dealing with them can be described as difficult. The letters ask for numerous bits of sensitive data depending on what they are accusing you off, and to top this off they give you a pretty short amount of time to get the documentation they demand sent to them. When you do this, due to the volume that they are receiving the chances of them even getting them on the system on time is remote let alone looked at. Calling them also often means holding for an hour only to be cut off automatically without ever speaking to a human.

This leads to perfectly innocent people being left without the money they are entitled to and a whole load of stress and aggro.

Fortunately and as we expected our claim was finally sorted and the result fell in our favor.

If you search online for concentrix you’ll find dozens of cases there are even newspaper articles about it

Independant

Mirror

There are plenty of places offering support and advice one such facebook group is called Concentrix Mums which has a lot of friendly and helpful people, Its also worth looking up mumsnet and netmums and of course your local Citizens Advice.

If you get one of these dreaded letters try not to panic and seek advice but most of all dont ignore it. Their is lots of help available and as long as you are claiming what you should things will get sorted.

I hope that this post helps and good luck.

 

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Update,News, Youtube and Minecraft

Its been a while since I last posted. It has been a busy few weeks the kids have gone back to school and I have had some drama with the car which fortunately is now working ok and has the MOT for the year. I still have manged for the most part to get videos up on my youtube channel and am keeping to my schedule of uploading something every Tuesday and Thursday. Despite an internet outage to two which meant that I was a little late on one or two of them.

I have also manged to do a few streams on twitch.tv  I stream when i can and when internet allows my latest uploads to YouTube are from a live steam that i did while playing lord of the rings online [lotro]  Part 1 Part 2 . There are more video’s on my channel and I would very much appreciate it if you would like and subscribe.

A few large pieces of news have happened since I last posted, Microsoft buying Minecraft is one. Personally on this I think that even and 2.5billion buying Mojang is a good deal for them however I do worry what it will mean for Minecraft especially on the Playstation format. I hope that Microsoft treat the community right and realise that having it on every platform known to man is a good thing.

As I type in the UK, Scotland are voting either yes or no to decide whether they want to stay part of the UK or if they want to go it alone. So far most of the polls have been very very close. I personally hope that Scotland stay as I do think that we are stronger together than we are apart. I am however getting fed up about all the coverage that there has been about it. As I live in England and am English I don’t get to have a say on the matter but its been all that has been talked about for the last few months. We should know by tomorrow morning either way.

I think that is all for now.

 

I would just like to thank my followers and subscribers and hope that you continue to enjoy my content.

 

Twitter @CTyxxxx

Youtube 

Twitch.tv

 

 

Let’s Plays for June

So June has been a pretty busy month, Had extra hours at work to deal with but saying that I have still managed to keep up to some kind of schedule.

I have decided to aim for at least 2 video’s a week aiming to release Tuesday and Thursday and I have done pretty pretty well in this.

Despite June being busy I still managed to publish 5 let’s Plays and one trailer the links for which I will post below. Hopefully I shall keep up the pace and the fact that I have posted so far this month 3 Let’s Plays its looking good.

Check out the videos at the links below and don’t forget to subscribe HERE

Let’s Play Hearthstone Arena Part 2 Jaina v Malfurion 

Let’s Play Hearthstone Arena Part 3 Jaina v Uther 

Let’s Play World of Guns Tutorial Parts 3 to 8

Let’s Play SubCommander Part 1 

Let’s Play SubCommander Part 2

 

These are the video’s so far for June

Let’s Play Toribash Free to Play

Let’s Play Breach and Clear Part 1 Team set up And Missions

Let’s Play SteamWorld Dig Part 1   

 

Subscribe to my videos 

SSD And My Experiance.

So I made the jump and forked out for a shiny new SSD hard drive as I was getting increasing frustrated with the amount of time that windows was taking to startup and I thought that the decrease in-game loading times would be nice.
So after doing some research on a couple of websites mainly SSDReview.com. I finally settled on the 120gb ocz Vertex 3 Which I purchased from Ebuyer.com now this ssd is sata 3 compatible and although I don’t at this time have a sata 3 port on my motherboard the price and performance the disk was showing was good and its also fully compatible with sata 2.

 

One of the Important things to rember about SSD’s contrary to more traditional hard drives is that the larger the storage capacity the faster they tend to be. There are cheaper options around with smaller capacity but the general consensus seems to be to go for no lower than 120GB.

 

Installation

Now this particular ssd is a 2.5″ drive but thankfully comes with an adaptor that allows it to fit into desktop cases. The drive just screws in to the adaptor with the screws that are provided and that adaptor is screwed into the case.

This is where I hit a slight snag.

The drive fitted into the adaptor absolutely fine as you would expect however, I have a Antec Nine Hundred Two and the screws to fit the adaptor to the case were too small for the thick walls of the drive bay. The adaptor has rather small bolt holes that have a fine thread and I was unable to find any that were over an inch long that were thin enough and had the correct thread.

I ended up screwing a couple of the screws from the inside out and for the ones that were too tight using some sandwich bag ties to make sure it was secure. Not ideal but it works and because the ties are plastic coated perfectly insulated.

That minor problem out-of-the-way the rest of the installation of the SSD went fine and it was onto installing windows and restoring backups.

 

Performance Tweaking AKA Getting The Best From The SSD

Thankfully installation of windows went pretty well as did the restoration of backups the next job on the list of things to do was to see what the windows experience score was the first run was  7.1 up from its previous 5.9 however the score was still limited by the hard drive score. So I googled to see if I could optimise the windows installation a bit more and prehaps clear some space off my already filling SSD.

I came across this Guide [Click Here]  From a forum post at this website surreystore.com

The first step was to turn on ahci mode on as i had installed windows already the first thing i had to do was to make some registry changes and then change the setting the bios Next parts were reasonably simple and consisted of;

Disabling System restore,

Disabling Drive Indexing,

Disabling Defragmentaion,

Turning off / moving  the page file to save space,

turning of hibernation again to save space,

Enabling faster booting and adjusting power settings.

Now I actually discovered that windows had actually done some of these steps itself which was nice, but I would suggest going through them anyway to check. I also skipped some of the steps listed on the website as I didn’t think that they met my requirements, for instance disabling recycle bin don’t be afraid to use your own judgements of your needs

I reran the windows experience test and received a new score of 7.3 the lowest score now being my graphics card the hard drive score had actually move to 7.4 so by just doing those steps id increased performance by .3 who knows what that actually means in real terms but an improvement is an improvement.

My final job was to move My Documents off of the SSD and onto the other Hard Drive another google search and a couple of rather complicated solutions later I actually found this [Click Here] posted by a guy called Headstrongfarm And discovered that its much easier than you would have thought. Windows does all the hard work for you all you have to do is tell it where you want to move the files too and it will move them to the folder you specify.

 

Conclusion

So overall the installation and setting up was pretty simple and problem free. Windows definitely starts faster and the computer is more responsive, Time will tell how worthwhile it was and we will see if the speed keeps up especially as the windows install gets older.

If your thinking about going the route of SSD I would definitely recommend it spend what you can afford but don’t go lower than a 120gb and as a friend of mine suggested don’t go by the specs the manufacture says go by what the benchmarks have to say a quick google search will bring up lots of review sites and most retail sites now also have a review system in place.

Good luck

 

 

 

Game Streaming: Amnesia Dark Decent

I have recently discoved the world of streaming gameplay footage.
I know it’s not something that’s particuly new its just not something I have been particuly interested in. I have been recording my gameplay footage and uploading it to YouTube for a few years now.

Just check out my YouTube channel http://www.youtube.com/user/yxxxx I now have over 200 vids on it.

Anyhow I Know their are several streaming sites out there but i have chosen Justin.tv Not for any particular reason other than a i have seen several people on there and i was watching a xcom stream and created an account to comment.

The stream is this one

Click Here

well worth watching its pretty funny in places.

Anyway back to the title of the blog I decided to play Amnesia: Dark Decent so people could hear me scream at the scary bits
the steam is

Click Here

Be aware its in 2 parts due to the length.

I don’t think i did to badly really and i was very much enjoying it. Thanks to the couple of people who were watching and commenting and to char who was assisting via msn

I have done a couple more since amnesia and im hoping to do some more. I’m just in need of some streaming software preferably free as the one im using is only a trial version. If you have any suggestions leave me a comment.

Watch and enjoy and tell me what you think.

Oh and The link to my profile is http://www.justin.tv/yxxxx

Combat Testing

Now some of you may or may not know that I am a member of a beta testing group called Combat Testing We are currently looking for Xbox 360 owners

Combat Testing, a division of Combat Studios LLC. is currently looking for you, the hard-core Xbox player, to help test and improve some upcoming Xbox 360 titles. If your interested in playing and working on the latest, before any public release, games and software titles please consider joining Combat Testing. We have some exciting new products coming soon. If you do not already know, we in the past, have been involved with such titles as BF2, BF2142, BF1943, BF|BC2 and are currently testing MoH for the Xbox 360. So if you would like to participate, AND are at least 18 years old (Required for NDA) please click here and submit an application. Combat Testing

We are currently testing MoH for the Xbox 360 If you are 18 or over and would like to sign up please visit the site by clicking the link Here