The Eclectic

Time moves in one direction, memory in another. – William Gibson

Archive for October, 2005

Well at least the monitor is working

Posted by David Leslie on October 20, 2005

Update on yesterday post involving my DOA XPS 600.

Rather than wait for a call from Dell, I call them at lunch.

My options are to either return for credit or exchange. Problem with the exchange is twofold. First the clock is still running on my 21 day return policy in case something happens like this again (the rep told me that it would be fixed after 21 days rather than replaced) and I won’t be able to upgrade the system (I saw the new Creative Xi sound card is now available and I wanted to switch out the Audigy for it since it’s only $50 more).

So I opt for a credit but that means I have to wait for UPS to ship it back (they pick it up on fried), 10 to 15 days from the time its checked back into the system for credit to appear on my Dell account before I can start the order process just in time for the christen rush!

Yet I was able to get the monitor (which I’m paying $360 for while it lists by itself for $590 on sale this week) to work with my XPS B733r. So at least I now have a wonderful image while I wait for it to process.

Keeping this all in propective. Folks all over the gulf coast would love this problem rather than the ones their facing. So I gotta remember to be thankful for what I got and not care about what I don’t got…Got it?

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One unhappy geek

Posted by David Leslie on October 18, 2005

I am a unhappy geek.

UPS shows up at quarter to 5 so I have about an hour to get the the new rig, a XPS 600, unpacked before Jean needs to leave for her first client.

The box is frigging 75 pounds and the UPS guy struggled to get it up the drive way.

Unpack the monitor and see the first sign of trouble. The VGA cord that is already attached to the monitor has parts of the Styrofoam packing fused to it. Since Im going to run in DVI, I shake this off and put together the rest on the monitor.

Unpack the beast. Notice right away that the media card reader is three inches deep in the computers chassis. Since the box wasnt even nicked, this had to have been something at the factory.

Hook everything up and fire the beast up. Monitor is stunning. Notice the machine is running about the same as my P4 at work which is strange not because of the dual core but because the 1 Gig of RAM at work vs 2 GIG of DDR2 RAM in the beast. Oh and the DVD burner isnt working. But my does that screen look nice. John even thinks that the fish are real in the aquarium screensaver.

Since Jean has to work, I close the office door to avoid temptation and play with John till about 8:15 when its time to start getting him ready for bed. I first call Road Runner to double check the network settings so that I can bring the beast online. In the middle of rebooting I hear two beeps and the status light reads a solid 4. Time to call Dell tech.

As this is to be Dells primo system, its said to have its own dedicated support team. Hunting for the phone number, I snake my way into the Dell tech support queue and get a guy in India.

This goes about as well as could be expected. He has me unplug all the USB lines, nothin. He then has me unplug the monitor, nothin. Next we open the case

I want to stop here and mention that it was between Dell, Alienware and Velocity Micro for my business, Dells monitor deal plus this primo XPS support was what tipped the scales to Dell.

Now my worse boutique vendor fear has come true; the rig is on its side, case open and I\’m digging for something in the bowels because the stupid thing doesnt work.

We try about 10 different ways to reseat the RAM. One dim allows the system to boot while the other one doesn\’t. When I move the good dim to another slot on the board, nothin.

So now the tech places me on hold so that I can be transferred to the Customer Care team for a PC replacement.

The hold music is so bad it must be intentional to get the weak of will to hang up. 5 minutes and zip. The tech comes back to tell me hes on hold and that it will be just awhile longer. 5 more minutes and I\’m in full buyers regret mode, the hold music now taunting me. While this is going on I\’m repacking the system for what will be its now inevitable return trip to Round Rock Texas. Thoughts of even if I had gotten that HP from Best Buy, I would have the satisfaction of running it back there run thru my mind. .

The tech comes back. Customer Care is now closed. Theyll have to call me tomorrow.

So now Im back on my Dell Dimension XPS B733R. Can\’t even use the monitor since my video card can\’t push an LCD screen.

So if the Dell Customer Care person isn\’t willing to comp me something. After all the rig has already dropped $100 and their kicking in Office basic for free. Then I\’m just going to tell them to take it back.

I feel sick.

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Whinning for my new computer

Posted by David Leslie on October 14, 2005

Tom Petty may have said it best when he sang the waiting is the hardest part. Right now, somewhere in the bowels of the UPS network are two boxes containing my new rig. Like a monkey in a crack experiment, every half hour I’m hitting the UPS site. Where the monkey hits the button for a fix, I hit the button to see just where those boxes are at.

So far those boxes are at an undisclosed UPS location near the Dell warehouse in Texas but maybe that information will be updated the next time I hit the button. There is always Bloglines but until the boxes move, the RSS feed wont pick it u

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