Update Dell rant
Of course I feel better! Except for the $10 CD that I could have gotten for free :) I'm not disappointed by the system performance (did I say that?).
I've learned to accept that no computer manufacturer would provide perfect support from all of its reps. Today I had a situation that was kind of mind-boggling. I had ordered a laptop and...
Had my first experience with Dell "tech" support yesterday. I have no idea where the call center was located, but the accent of the girl I spoke with had an East Indian flavour. She wasn't terribly good at her job, but did end up pointing me in the right direction eventually. It sounded very much like she was reading a script...I guess I shouldn't be surprised. She kept putting me on 'hold', although I could hear what sounded like a muffled party going on in the background.
Dell rant 1586
1. I agree with both of you. I picked the system, and I got what I paid for. Software aside, I knew what I was paying (or not...
Dell rant 1587
Whups. I read somewhere that the 'tone' of an email (or post) is misread in about 50% of cases. Let's revisit. I'm not bitter, and perhaps...
The problem was that the DVD drive "ate" one of the Dell-provided driver CD's. I put it in, and the whole computer started to vibrate as the drive spun-up. That was followed by a horrible scrunching sound. I couldn't stop the drive, but after a few seconds it automatically ceased rotation. Ejecting the disk, it appeared to suffer some damage around the central ring, but was still readable.
After a number of scripted 'tests', I repeated the audible demonstration to the Dell tech, who finally conceded that something was wrong with the drive. She indicated that I needed to call Dell customer care to receive a new replacement, because it was within 30 days of purchase. She informed me that any repairs-replacements made after the 30 days are typically refurbished products (just to inform let anyone who is unaware of Dell's policy).
Eventually I got through to Dell customer care, who brought up the case number. This time I got a very helpful individual, who indicated that a replacement drive (and CD) would be on the way. She was confused as to why tech support didn't simply replace the drive.
Overall, despite the bad drive and 50% poor service, I consider the end result favourable. Time will tell if the drive shows up in a week or so...