Windows Guru Has Problems With His Dell

Discussion in 'Current Events' started by iPost, Dec 24, 2004.

  1. iPost macrumors regular

    Joined:
    Sep 28, 2003
    #1
    Jeff Prosise, a well-known author of Windows programming books and founder of Wintellect (one of the top Windows training/consulting companies) has had some major problems with his Dell PC and an even worse time getting them fixed.

    Quote:
    "Several years ago, when I worked for PC Magazine, I met Michael Dell. He impressed me as a heck of a nice guy. I wonder if he has any earthly idea how difficult his company makes it to get a defective product fixed? How could a company that once set the standard for customer service sink so low?"

    Full story available at his blog, "Dell Hell": http://wintellect.com/WEBLOGS/wintellect/archive/2004/12/23/694.aspx

    Dude, are you sure you want to be getting that Dell?
     
  2. PlaceofDis macrumors Core

    Joined:
    Jan 6, 2004
    #2
    how could they sink so low? because the only care about profit
    when did dell set the standard for customer service? i have never EVER heard anything good about their customer service, even before they got to be so huge, all they care about making is cheap PCs to sell in mass quantities
     
  3. ltgator333 macrumors member

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    Jul 6, 2003
    Location:
    Albion, MI
    #3
    I have no doubt in my mind I will never own a Dell, of the ones I've seen I've been very unimpressed. But I think the reason why Dell will continue to be a major player in the playing feild of PC manufacturers is because I don't believe there's another PC maker equipped to take Dell's spot from them. Compaq has had a bad name from about the time they came about, HP is (and by becoming a little closer to Apple, only sealed the deal) kinda a niche machine, and there's no way HP will let it's 'dog on a chain' partner Compaq show them up in sales. Sony is too expensive, IBM sold out and left, and just about any other PC maker I can think of is falling into the category or either maker of glorified toaster oven or not well known to the average consumer. So Dell it is unfortunately. Myself, and I tell a lot of people this, your better off just going to your local PC shop and buying a barebones or just totally building it yourself.
     
  4. iceTrX macrumors regular

    Joined:
    Aug 5, 2004
    Location:
    Outside of Detroit.
    #4
    HP owns Compaq, they are not partners. The only difference between them now is the logo on the black plastic box. At my work we have Compaq NX5000's but they actually say HP, and on the bottom it says Compaq. Weird.
     
  5. agentphish macrumors 65816

    agentphish

    Joined:
    Sep 7, 2004
    #5
    I have seen N O T H I N G good from dell in the last 6 years. I myself was a supervising PC tech at best buy for about 3 years so I of course always get called when friends family have problems.

    My friends parents bought a dell in 2000 or 2001, paid 3000.00 for it, cpu, monitor, printer. It was a 1.4ghz PIV with ONLY 128 RDRAM in it, on top of that it was loaded with WINDOWS ME!!!!! And had a sticker on the front of it that said it was deisgned for windows 2000/nt/xp. Like come on dell....

    Anyways it had problems right out of the box. after a couple months of them complainting i put win2k on it. That certainly solved a bunch of problems, b/c ME is a real Piece of crapola. So after a few more months, more problems began to arise.

    Long story short over the course of the next year and a half they had technicians to their house to replace EVERY SINGLE COMPONENT inside the PC EXCEPT the hard drive, all one at a time. first it was the power supply, then the mobo (twice) then the processor and memory, and finally the video card and processor AGAIN. After all that... one day it just stopped working.

    They called talked to 4 supervisors and dell agreed to send them a "new" pc... the new one came, and it was a Refurbished model with some worse componenets inside than what they had in their original computer, a lower end video card and slower RDRAM.

    Truely Shameful Dell. Truely Shameful. I hope I never experience anything like that from apple. (I by the way build all my/family's PC's and have never had problems aside from a crashed hard disk)

    Anyone else with horror stories?

    On a side note, 2 weeks ago I bought my sister a Compaq off the shelf from best buy simply because with being in college I dont have time to build one at the moment and she needed it because her old PC which i did build got hit by lightning when her college dorm suffered a driect hit... DURING FINALS WEEK! Upon opening up the compaq i was impressed to find how expandable and well laid out it was. Compaq/HP seem to have come a long way since i had worked on them back at best buy. While everything was built in, stock, There was still AGP slots, 3 open memory banks and 4 PCI slots, 2 spots for a hard drive... So if the onboard components fail i can at least replace what need to be replaced.
     
  6. MattG macrumors 68040

    MattG

    Joined:
    May 27, 2003
    Location:
    Fletcher, NC
    #6
    Yeah...I deal with Dells all day at work. I'd never buy one.

    I left a comment at the end of the article. It'll probably be deleted :)
     
  7. mkrishnan Moderator emeritus

    mkrishnan

    Joined:
    Jan 9, 2004
    Location:
    Grand Rapids, MI, USA
    #7
    I kind of feel for him but I think it's also just a part of backlashing against call center outsourcing to India...I mean come on...doesn't anyone remember awful tech support from people you called who were here in the US? It wasn't like it was any good before, either. :p It's just that now the terrible CSR has an Indian accent and a fake western name, and suddenly he/she is a scapegoat.

    I think part of it too is just things like extended warranty services and care/protection packages becoming just like the rest of the insurance industry. No one really wants to pay for anything. Selling someone an on-site service package and then refusing to come onsite is a lot to me like getting auto insurance which covers comprehensive damage like people bumping your car in the parking lot, but then being afraid to ever use it because your premium gets raised by even more than the value of the damage they reimburse you for....

    That kind of thing is just sad in all cases....

    ltgator, I wonder, what do you think about Lenovo? They are *not* well known here yet, but they shot up out of nowhere onto the top 10 list, and their growth I believe already beats Dell. Give them a year, give them a chance to try to leverage the IBM brand identity in the US....But I would be shocked if they don't give Dell a run for its money globally within two years from now.
     
  8. FriarTuck macrumors 6502

    FriarTuck

    Joined:
    May 26, 2003
    Location:
    Chicago area
    #8
    I also have a Dell purchased in 2000-01 that came with Windows ME loaded with a sticker on the front telling everyone it was built for XP.

    ME was terrible, of course.

    But I was able to load XP on it when it was issued a few months after my purchase, and I haven't had an ounce of trouble with it since then.

    Of course, I only use it to play games and do some online transactions with folks who are not Mac friendly, so it's not my workhorse.

    I also use a Dell of about the same vintage at work. Video card, hard drive, and keyboard have been replaced, but it's made the upgrade journey from NT 4.0 for Workstations to Windows 2000 to XP Pro without much trouble.

    I guess I've just been lucky.
     
  9. jaw04005 macrumors 601

    jaw04005

    Joined:
    Aug 19, 2003
    Location:
    AR
    #9
    I purchased a Dell Desktop a few years back, and have not had any problems. Great price, great performance, and one of the only OEMs to actually include the O/S installation discs.

    I owned a Compaq Presario back when the HP merger took place, you talk about customer support hell.
     
  10. dsharits macrumors 68000

    dsharits

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    #10
    Hehe, I left one too, but I bet mine will be deleted faster!

    Daniel
     
  11. Sun Baked macrumors G5

    Sun Baked

    Joined:
    May 19, 2002
    #11
    I think it's rather funny that they treat a Windows Guru the same as any PC using newbie.

    And force them to follow the same script and jump through the same hoops, in hopes of frustrating the crap out of them until they stop calling. :p

    Doesn't really sound like the people he was dealing with in India could have even help him get on-site service even if he did everything they wanted. [​IMG]
     
  12. dubbz macrumors 68020

    dubbz

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    Sep 3, 2003
    Location:
    Alta, Norway
    #12
    Well... there are people who *are* Windows Guru's... and there are people who *think* they are Windows Guru's ;)
     
  13. zimv20 macrumors 601

    zimv20

    Joined:
    Jul 18, 2002
    Location:
    toronto
    #13
    at one of my clients, i support about 2 dozen PCs. two are dells. the desktop had a hard drive problem, which dell fixed after a couple dozen phonecalls. some techs were good, some sucked.

    the server, running Windows 2000 Server, is one of the most stable machines i've seen. i added a second (SCSI) hard drive to it and found it to be the best non-mac design i've seen. adding the drive was a snap.

    in over two years, the machine hasn't crashed.
     
  14. absolut_mac macrumors 6502a

    absolut_mac

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    Oct 30, 2003
    Location:
    Dallas, Texas
    #14
    I'm no fan of Dell, but as far as I know the slowest RDRAM (Rambus DRAM) is almost twice as fast as the fastest DDRAM viz. 800MHz vs 533MHz (DDR2 PC2-4300 DIMM).

    And yes, Windows ME was the worst OS that MS introduced in the past decade.
     
  15. Sun Baked macrumors G5

    Sun Baked

    Joined:
    May 19, 2002
    #15
    But you're using the PC-weenie math, which says the fastest clock cycle is always fastest.

    Looking at the bandwidth, which is the devices true ability to move data...

    A Kingston 800MHz ECC Rambus RDRAM = High Performance @ 1.6GB per second of peak bandwidth

    The slower clocked 533MHz DDR2 transfers data @ 4.3GB per second.

    Shucks that makes the fastest DDR2 ram more than twice as fast as the slowest RDRAM.

    So that fancy faster clocked crap is actually slower... and more expensive even at 1066MHz. :p

    ---

    Plus most of the newer Macs are coming on board using dual channel RAM -- so a PowerMac with that DDR2 would be moving 8.6GB/s
     
  16. absolut_mac macrumors 6502a

    absolut_mac

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    Oct 30, 2003
    Location:
    Dallas, Texas
    #16
    Umm, he was talking about the RAM in a DEll as far as I know, not a Mac. I just made that quick comparison, without looking at the actual bandwidth, but I doubt very much that his Dell came with the fastest DDR2 RAM.
     
  17. JeffTL macrumors 6502a

    Joined:
    Dec 18, 2003
    #17
    A couple years ago I bought a Dimension 8250 -- this was the high-end Dell at the time, which I (at that time a PC person) was buying because I had heard that Gateway had gone down the tubes.

    They sent me a castrated version of the Soundblaster Live that didn't support Soundfonts or Linux (had to complain to American Express and get $70 back to put towards an Audigy 2), a clicky fan (had others not had this problem I'd just blame UPS), and a noisy DVD-ROM. This was a $1300 computer + $700 flat panel (the monitor is fine). I sent in an Internet support complaint about the fan noise -- I got a letter back telling me to stick a screwdriver in the back of a running computer, so I decided not to try to get a real human if the company was trying to either kill me off or persuade me to destroy the merchandise.

    A few months later I was in the laptop market -- was looking at an Inspiron 1100 before all the problems surfaced, so I started looking at Gateway and realized the cheap Gateways wouldn't meet my needs battery-wise, so I decided to reassure myself that the midlevel ones were still cheaper than a Mac and went over to Apple's site. One problem: they weren't, and I got an iBook G3/800 that apart from one logic board monster incident (solved quickly through the logic board repair program) has given me no problems.

    Congratulations Dell, you're losing sales because of your low quality (even on high end machines!) and piss-poor support.
     
  18. ltgator333 macrumors member

    Joined:
    Jul 6, 2003
    Location:
    Albion, MI
    #18

    Yeah, they do find themselves in a position to shake up the market quite a bit. This I think anyway is just another example of the rise of Chinese global economic power I think though. I suppose I'm wouldn't be against it but it's just kind of an unknown as a non-US company has the opportunity to take the driver's seat in the US market, in a market typically dominated by US-based companies. Kinda like US auto makers losing their butts. I work, as it is right now, as a CNC machine operator in an obscure little job shop in a tiny city in southern Michigan, and in the last year we've probably tripled our business because the bigger shops that make parts for the big 3 are just losing their butts. And, we're having trouble with a lot of the new jobs coming in because we can't get the raw material to produce the parts- why? China is buying up all the scrap metal.
    So yeah, Lenovo can do some things but part of me hopes they don't. And yes, to those of you who read this that aren't from the USA, it does sound crazy but imagine watching your country fall apart in front of you.
    Also- sorry if this got a little off topic, but that's how I feel about the question posed to me.
     
  19. mkrishnan Moderator emeritus

    mkrishnan

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    Jan 9, 2004
    Location:
    Grand Rapids, MI, USA
    #19
    Oh, no, you raise really good points.... And I worked in the auto industry up there with plenty of those small tool and CNC shops, and I can see how this would raise those feelings....

    What I guess I meant was more specifically that Lenova *could* take on Dell and possibly even win...not that they necessarily *should*....

    But on the other hand, the PC industry is so global already, and most of my Mac gear is already made offshore... Even if Lenovo becomes strong in the US, they'll continue to use a lot of the same globally sourced components, won't they? But I guess the assembly would go offshore, vs. some Dell computers today possibly assembled here in the US?

    It's a complicated situation.... :(
     
  20. ltgator333 macrumors member

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    Albion, MI
    #20
    Yeah I hadn't thought of that, I'm not sure where the assembly for Dell is done, but if I was to guess it wouldn't be in North America. I know one of the Macs I've previously owned, specificly the PMac 6500/250 was assembled in Ireland, I think the plant is in Cork and if I'm not mistaken is still there.
     
  21. Photorun macrumors 65816

    Photorun

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    Location:
    NYC
    #21
    Sadly the college where I work has a pushy, aggressive arrogant, sleazy suit wearing Dell rep, he made the college sign a contract that, for Wintel machines, they can only buy Dells. Come to find out the head of IT, an adamant Apple basher, gets a kickback for every Dell sold (Dell is full of dirty tricks like this). Since the college went from mostly Macs to mostly Dells, though the number of computers on campus didn't change, they've had to put on four times the IT to constantly deal with problems, and there are tons. They trimmed the Apple tech person down to only one, and because Macs are far more dependable in day to day and for their lifetime the Mac person was so bored, they're making her learn MSE/CE bullcrap and she says she hates it. Anyhoo the estimates are rough but almost 1/4th of all the Dell machines are either DOA or have major problems, in every office I deal with at least one is down, back when we had mostly Macs nobody complained, now everybody does, at lunch, at meetings "my POS machine is down again" or "got another virus" (despite in theory a super strong firewall at the school) or I'll be on the phone with another office and they'll be saying "whoops, um, okay, my system crashed, I need to reboot, can I call you back?" (while of course my G5 is just humming along, as it has been, only needing to restart for the Security or OS updates). Peecees are pathetic and Dell leads the heap, and I do mean heap as in stinking heap of ****. The worse example of Dell's sucktacular "quality" (note scare quoting) was this internet cafe that they, of course due to the IT/Dell sleaze kickback deal, got all Dell laptops (found out for more than they could have gotten iBooks, the whole "peecee cheaper than Macs" myth is long dead to me). Of the 20 Dell laptops they had problems right away with half, seven were sent back and, this is classic, the seven that they got in exchange all had issues, one when it was plugged in started melting (or part of it, I never got the whole story). The whole point being Dell sucks big time and it's not being said here from an Apple zealot peecee hater perspective, fact is they're the bottom dweller of quality in peecees, run by a soulless jock, with low bid parts built in sweat shops. Like Microsuck, they're simply all smoke and mirrors marketing (and boy howdy, can't turn on a tele without some BS ad of theirs) with absolutely zero substance, quality, or style.
     
  22. wrldwzrd89 macrumors G5

    wrldwzrd89

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    Solon, OH
    #22
    I've owned two Windows PCs so far.

    My first one was a Compaq desktop (bought before they merged with HP), and it wasn't all that great a machine. I decided to discontinue using that one and search for a better replacement. Of course I looked at Dell, and was appalled that they insisted on including something called "Dell Media Experience" which I don't want. Fortunately, Dell has now made that optional, but that still wasn't enough to convince me to buy a Dell PC. I then looked at HP/Compaq, and didn't find their offerings any more appealing. I decided on a PowerSpec PC (a Micro Center PC brand) that comes without all the garbage other PC manufacturers throw in there for a great price. So far, except one issue with the CPU cooling fan buzzing and a dead power supply that took 19 days to fix because of a goof-up at the hardware supplier, I'm happy with it, just like I'm happy with my little G4 iMac.
     
  23. aldo macrumors regular

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    Oct 26, 2003
    Location:
    England, UK
    #23
    All Dell desktops are assembled entirely in the US, and they employ thousands.

    BTW: While you are all at this dell hate-fest, let's remind ourselves what Dell really deals in - high volume, low price corp rollouts. I can phone Dell tommorrow and have 5,000 PCs for next week. Apple just can't do that.

    Dell is not a bad computer company at all. They sell decent quality hardware at very decent pricing, especially when they have their 50%-off rebates sometimes.
     
  24. wrldwzrd89 macrumors G5

    wrldwzrd89

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    #24
    Dell's sure got their corporate rollouts down to a science. If Apple hopes to make headway into corporations, they need to get this perfected too. Dell computers seem to be everywhere - the company I work for uses them exclusively (except the graphics department, which uses Macs).
     
  25. savar macrumors 68000

    savar

    Joined:
    Jun 6, 2003
    Location:
    District of Columbia
    #25
    I might be the only one here who says it, but Dell's aren't so bad. My mom has a Dell laptop that's pretty decent, and I bought a 6 y/o Dell over the summer to do embedded development. They are both pretty sturdy.

    Out of curiosity, what companies do you think *do* make a good PC? Gateway, Compaq, and HP are all totally repulsive to me. I know we're supposed to hate Dell because its such a good rival to Apple and all, but I think its one of the better PC companies.
     

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