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Notes to myself that I should have already know, did know, and forgot, variously... - A Suburbs Boy Living a Country Life [My Flickr Photos]
August 27th, 2004
10:06 pm

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Notes to myself that I should have already know, did know, and forgot, variously...
  1. When you call Dell for tech support on your unstable system, that you are fairly certain is hardware-related, don't forget to laugh in their face when they suggest your repair install with media of a lower service pack than you currently have installed.
  2. When you fail to laugh in their faces, be prepared to have your system be very, very, very dead...Like low-level registry corruption dead.
  3. Luckily, I did know this one: When they say "Well, your OS is corrupted, you'll have to reformat your hard drive." Laugh in their face.
  4. Remember, the Microsoft "Knowledge Base" has substantial holes, but can sometimes point you on the right path.
  5. Don't lose track of which registry files are the old, the new, the bad, the suspect, etc.
  6. Database files and their transaction logs must, in general, be moved as a unit.
  7. When in doubt, a fully commited database without a log file is your safest bet. Note: hey, doofus--XP and 2K store a full, consistent set of these with each System Restore Point snapshot
  8. I suppose I could use a Mac or UNIX platform--but think of all the fun I'd miss!

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[User Picture]
From:cz_unit
Date:August 27th, 2004 07:08 pm (UTC)
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Also remember that you bought the cheapest computer possible when choosing a Dell, and the support & driver quality reflects this.

CZ

Buys IBM.
[User Picture]
From:happypete
Date:August 27th, 2004 07:33 pm (UTC)

there are some things about Dell..

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...and Dells...

that I love; but the lack-luster "gee, why don't we get you off the phone even if it means days or weeks of lost time for you--and/or loss of irreplaceable data."

that gets old..
[User Picture]
From:cz_unit
Date:August 27th, 2004 07:51 pm (UTC)

Re: there are some things about Dell..

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They.... don't.... care....

CZ
:-)
[User Picture]
From:happypete
Date:August 28th, 2004 04:43 am (UTC)

Re: there are some things about Dell..

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exactly...sort of makes their "CompleteCare" warranty a little less meaningful.

And beyond that when you do get a technician, it's someone from BancTec who's getting paid a flat $25 - $35 fee plus travel money to take care of you.

Their incentive to engage in extensive problem isolation or troubleshooting?
[User Picture]
From:cz_unit
Date:August 28th, 2004 06:46 am (UTC)

Re: there are some things about Dell..

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The sad part is....

Way back in 1986 at my first job we had Compaq 386/20's, and a number of "PC Limited" systems that we bought from this guy named Dell. When he came out with the Dell 210, we bought a bunch of them.

What a nice computer! Well designed, low profile, and it had a VGA and sound built into it. 3 slots, one was filled either by the StarLan card or the Synoptics pre-10baset Lattisnet card. 286/10 CPU.

But the really nice thing was the service: Dell contracted with Xerox, and they would send out their copier repair people to fix them. The copier service techs were *TRAINED* in how to listen to customers, make them feel loved, and all that. I sent some of my techs to copier repair school; they spent about 1 day on actually fixing the product and a week in how to deal with hysterical customers and make them love you.

It was Dell's greatest strength, and they deserved to make money. BanTec on the other hand gets people off the gutters, and sends them out with a flowchart and a list of excuses.

Yuck.
CZ


[User Picture]
From:flyingwolf
Date:August 27th, 2004 07:09 pm (UTC)
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suppose I could use a Mac

yeah... you'd miss so much fun
[User Picture]
From:cz_unit
Date:August 27th, 2004 07:52 pm (UTC)
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*nod* I just blew a hole in the boat at work when the new macintosh locking software totally wrecked production for a day.

Oh how I love macs.

CZ
[User Picture]
From:happypete
Date:August 28th, 2004 04:41 am (UTC)

"blew a hole in the boat?"

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nice image....
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From:puzzledance
Date:August 28th, 2004 07:00 am (UTC)
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When you call Dell for tech support

That was your first mistake. I would never, ever, ever do such a thing. The standard answer from just about any PC tech support person I've ever spoken to, once they've discovered that the problem can't be fixed in 5 seconds or less, is either "Reinstall the operating system," or "Reformat the hard drive." Wrong answer. So why waste the time talking to them?
[User Picture]
From:happypete
Date:August 28th, 2004 08:06 am (UTC)

I always have this false hope...

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that someone else has run into the problem, and they have the answer ready to go...

doesn't often happen, though...
[User Picture]
From:puzzledance
Date:August 28th, 2004 08:27 am (UTC)

Re: I always have this false hope...

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Such an optimist... about 99.44% of the time, I could get better tech support from my cat. At the very least, she's comforting. Also, she doesn't come up with boneheaded suggestions.
[User Picture]
From:happypete
Date:August 28th, 2004 11:31 am (UTC)

Re: I always have this false hope...

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true...* sigh *
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From:wolfger
Date:August 28th, 2004 07:58 pm (UTC)
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I suggest making the switch to Linux, and leave the headaches behind (in favor of all new headaches!). At least when you make the switch, you can find good tech support. Just not from the manufacturer... :-)
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