What the hell is wrong with Dell/Microsoft/McAffee?


I get a call from my aunt today. She is pretty distressed over her machine.

The story goes: She bought a Dell system and it’s still under warranty. She was using Windows Messenger and decided to click on the ‘learn more'(Mistake #1 “If it ain’t broke, don’t fix it”). Well, it all went downhill from there. Next thing she’s into setting up Windows Live, have to install more programs get a new password and then after all that, it doesn’t work. So, she did what any other sane person would do….she went to uninstall it. Well, wouldn’t you know it….it won’t uninstall.

Again, being the sane person that she is, she calls Dell for help (mistake #2 “Dell tech support doesn’t hire technicians”). They try everything it it seems that this ‘tech’ (and I use that term is the LEAST possible sense but still feel offended in using it to describe them) can’t get it to uninstall. He tells my aunt to back up her data and arranged to call her back when she has done so. (Oh, you now where this is going…). My aunt goes out to buy a USB key, plugs it
in and the Dell doesn’t recognize it. She can’t back up to USB. So, the ever-so-bright ‘Dell rep on the other end of the phone'(that’s it, I can’t use the term tech for them any more!) says they’ll just ‘restore the system to an earlier time’. (Mistake #3, listening to a Dell person…)

This is a handy feature in Windows because when something breaks, and a _real_ technician can’t fix it, System Restore is an option. This should not be used regularly because this means that anything between the last ‘system restore point(date)’ and now will be undone.  Programs removed, settings undone, updates uninstalled. Can be a real
pain but on occasion it has to be done. The problem here is that if the solution isn’t obvious, Dell reps will recklessly use it.

So my aunt, being the ever attentive person, follows the instructions…but wait, now McAffee won’t let system restore turn back the settings to last month!

So, to make sure we’ll all keeping track of what is wrong so far, my aunt can’t:

– remove Windows Live
– backup to her USB drive
– restore Windows XP to an earlier time

The Dell technician tells her to call McAfee (Mistake #4, using McAfee). Again, being the attentive, if somewhat stressed out, person that she is, she calls McAfee. They tell her that she only had 5 days of warranty. Well, there goes $90 down the drain and zero help from McAfee.

My aunt speak with Dell again and what do they get her to do? Well, let’s restore the system back to factory defaults! My aunt follows direction, being the ever respectful lady that she is, and voila! The system is like new! Yup, just like she pulled it out of the box.   That’s right folks, none of her documents, pictures, movies or programs are on the drive any more!

Well, chalk another one up for a ‘properly supported client’ from Dell!

You know, it breaks my heart when I hear such things. I know for a fact that I could have backup her files, and most likely could have fixed everything but it is too late. While RCMP and FBI agencies have tools for recovering ‘erased data’ from formatted drives, such tools are not publically available. The ones that are are in the $1000s and very few people would pay that kind of money. (I did have one client that cost them$1500 to recover their drive but that was 3 years of financial data that would have been lost. Backup, Backup, Backup!)

Moral of the story, call a local technician, get references from businesses/other people. Do NOT use your neighbours kid who ‘knows about computers’. Playing XBox does not make him an expert!

Neither does putting a guy in front of a script make him telephone tech support!

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2 Responses to “What the hell is wrong with Dell/Microsoft/McAffee?”

  1. Greenjah Says:

    Sad about your aunty…Sux for her, but I guess it was a baad lesson for her… Never use the freaking retards “Support department”, cause most of them are… And then they will make you fill like one.

    Waaahaha, that’s funny man. I agree Dell has Pro workers on extreme rare occasions, same as MDG and all those co-called “pro-built-computer-services-&-BS”. They can’t even find where CMOS is at, not that they can fix comp properly them self LMFAO. Btw not only MSN on PC can cause troubles as well, it’s MS Win Media Player another garbage that built to mess your comp up. Starting with CD-rom and further…

  2. Greenjah Says:

    Oh yes and other thing, most of them can’t even speak proper English. It’ll be some kind of mumbling variation of it… With some pigeon gurgling…

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