The usual method of identifying problems is to characterize the situation in which the problem occurs and then investigate which of the possible causes are actually responsible for the problem. Finding the cause is often sufficient to suggest the resolution of the problem. For example, assume that the problem is characterized as "the user is unable to open a line with the DSLINE command." A possible cause is that the user entered a command using incorrect syntax. You would resolve the problem by correcting the command and reissuing it. However, if the syntax was correct, you would have to look for another possible cause, such as an inactive link or a failure of the remote node.
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This job solves a software, hardware and network problem.