Wednesday, November 26, 2003

The tech boys of Dell completed the destruction of my computer last night. It took over three hours and ended a process that began almost a month ago with the deletion of a small sub file under Device Managers that I was assured would end all my instability problems. There followed twice or thrice weekly sessions--all over two hours when you add in the time required just to get a technician to answer--during which I followed all the instructions and the machine became progressively more destabilized to the point where wiping the hard drive clean was said to be the only way to repair "my" problem.

Fortunately, I have a dear and generous friend who had talked me through saving to disc my address books and bookmarks and I saved all my personal files as well just after the original deletion of the sub file. I had a gut feeling that I should protect myself as much as possible. If I had waited a second longer, the desktop would have become inaccessible and I would have lost everything when the hard drive was erased. But the reinstall CD for the operating system (Windows xp) failed to work and was declared defective by the tech. A new one was sent and we went through elaborate and ultimately unsuccessfully debugging procedures three times last night. Then the attempt to reinstall Windows failed twice, ending in the Blue Screen of Death and another in the inteminable chain of error messages that there was a fatal system error and my system had been shut down to prevent damage to the computer. Well, it couldn't have been any more damaged than it already is. The tech declared my hard drive damaged. I told him in no uncertain terms that a Dell technician with all his tools and resources has to come to my house and put the machine in full working condition. He agreed and said he would call back in ten minutes with all the info to facilitate the service call. It was 11PM and we had been working on the machine since 8:30.

So after forty five minutes, no call. I called tech support, got a technician, told him the story briefly and demanded he arrange all the details then and there, which he did. I got to bed just after midnight and at quarter to one the first tech called, waking me out of a deep sleep cycle with the info on the service call--an hour and a half or so after he was supposed to have been back to me. He was quite put out that I had gotten the information through other channels--apparently Dell expects us to hang onto their every delay with gratitude. I now have to wait until a day when I can take off from work--it should be at least two weeks--and then begin the process of recovering the use of my computer. If you are thinking of getting a Dell, be warned.

nice story thank you
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