D630 & D420 - Double Dell Problems

Discussion in 'Dell Latitude, Vostro, and Precision' started by offbase, Dec 22, 2008.

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  1. offbase

    offbase Notebook Evangelist

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    This is just fabulous. Dell has essentially shut down my business indefinately. On Wednesday, my D630's (my primary machine) hard drive failed. They sent me a "new" hard drive on Thursday. Great. But, it was a "refurbished" drive of a different brand, and something wrong with the bracket fitting left the sharp corner of the bracket sticking out of the side of my computer. Ok, I get yet another on Friday -- same thing. They promise to send me a new bracket assembly along with it, in case the one on the other drive is bad, too. Got the "new" refurb in today. As expected, they didn't include the new bracket hardware, this one has the same problem and, in addition, the thing is a cheapee Fugitsu (my original was an 18 month old Seagate) that is scraped up on the sides and seems to have some of the connectors broke off! Their only options are -- wait for it -- to send me another POS,non-fitting refurb drive, or send it to the depot, where they'll keep my computer for two weeks and send it with the jagged edges of the refurb drive hardware sticking out the side of my lappy. No Thanks.

    So, lucky me, I can't play their "refurbished" drive game any more, and I had to pay to order a new one from New Egg. So, now the computer will be out at least a week after the drive failure, and I'll still be faced after a week's down time with rebuilding the programs and data.

    But wait, it gets better. I've been working on my refurb (purchased 10/2007) D420 with 2 years of warranty left on it since my D630 went down. As "luck" would have it, the thing is suddenly getting scalding hot on the bottom near the vent, and my PC Card slot has failed, so that I can't get on my mobile broadband. Looks like the darned motherboard on this one is going, and I have to send it into the depot, where I'll likely get more of their "refurbished" (read, "used") parts. 7-10 business days for this one, and now I have no computer, can't use my primary programs, and I've lost tons of data.

    Thanks, Dell. And thanks for your fabulous "warranty." Over $3,000 down the toilet to use a D630 for 18 months and a D420 for 14 months. Couldn't even rely on the back up to spell me a few weeks while the main was down, and I'm out of income for the better part of two weeks. What a bargain.
     
  2. Bog

    Bog Losing it...

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    You should fight a little more for your money; ie, call up Dell, speak to a manager and complain about the inadequate support, etc.
     
  3. Lack

    Lack Notebook Consultant

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    I can imagine how mad you are and try to find someone to blame, but mechanical errors do happen. If you relay on computers as your primary income source you should be prepared - have a spare drive/parts, keep backup etc. Saving the 99$ on depot to NBD warranty upgrade also is something to avoid in the future. Also ordering online rather then picking up locally at bestbuy/whatever might save you a couple $, but not time.

    I'm not sure what to think about the the non-fitting bracket - it's not really needed for the drive to work properly so you should be up and working without it.
     
  4. offbase

    offbase Notebook Evangelist

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    Thanks for the suggestion, but actually I did just that (about 5 or 6 times), and got nowhere.
     
  5. offbase

    offbase Notebook Evangelist

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    I have 3 year mail-in depot, but this is simply a PARTS warranty issue. They should simply send me a non-defective, NEW hard drive that fits. The problem is Dell pawning off used hard drives as a warranty "replacement." I've never heard of such a thing? Just what is a "dell refurbished" hard drive, anyway? B.S. is what it is. They take the used drives out of junked pc's, reformat them and call them "refurbished." What kind of company thinks a solution to an $1,800, 18 month old machine's sudden hard drive failure is to replace it with a junk hard drive? That's a warranty???

    Just how does Bestbuy fit into this? I don't have a clue what you're trying to imply, but if it's that Geek Squad would get it up and running properly and faster, I wouldn't think so. They would just tell me to send it to Dell because their hideously-overpriced extended warranty obligations wouldn't begin until the 3 year Dell warranty expired. Besides, even if that wasn't the case, just where do you think they would get the parts from???

    The issue on the ill-fitting of these junked drives may not be simply the bracket. The one on the original Seagate fits the drive perfectly, and it fits flawlessly into the drive compartment. They keep sending cheapo refurbed drives that may actually be a tad bigger than the Seagate (and, they all have different housings around the connectors), thus causing the problem -- I've tried the original bracket with all of them, and none will fit right, other than the Seagate. If that's not the case, then the motherboard has a break in it, and then the real fun begins, as on the D420.

    Regarding your suggestion of simply throwing in one of the used, reformatted drives and spending untold hours restoring the system, reinstalling office, adobe and my 5 or so other regular programs (not to mention what data I do have backed up), I would really find that funny if this wasn't such a serious situation. Outside of about 10 hours of work just to accomplish this, how would you suppose I travel with a laptop with no harddrive mounting hardware, and why on earth would I install a hard drive and "rely" on it when it's not even mounted or secured? I need a proper drive, wouldn't you think? I did, and that's why I just ordered a new Seagate drive from New Egg. I can have a proper drive in before I'd even finish with what you suggested I do.

    Sorry to seem mean-spirited, but I didn't see anything helpful in your post, and I take issue with your allegation that I'm trying to "find someone to blame." I don't blame dell for the failure, but I do blame them for not properly backing their product. I don't appreciate somone posting a reply just to basically rub salt into the wound ... would you?
     
  6. Lack

    Lack Notebook Consultant

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    Well, you should read the warranty contract then. If they guaranty new drives in it then you have a case.
    Otherwise, for a used non-working hard drive you get a used and working drive.

    I'm trying to imply driving to bestbuy and picking up a hard drive saves you time versus ordering online.

    Dealing with several dozen of Dell laptops (with different HD brands) never had a sizing problem, because that's an industry standard. Still, you don't the bracket to fit the drive properly in the bay.

    Well, if you rather spend 2 weeks without your work equipment then it's your call. But don't exaggerate the situation.
    And now I'm suspicious that you even had a look at the mounting system of the hard drive - there are two screws independent of the plastic bezel on the side. Even without them, for travel you might just pull the drive out and then plug in every time. Bit of a hassle, but gets the job done.

    I'm trying to help you take the matter into your own hands if you can't relay on someone else service (Dell).
     
  7. offbase

    offbase Notebook Evangelist

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    Thoroughly novel ideas, never would've thought of 'em. Still, since you've seen fit not only to rub salt into the wound but to have the last word, you can have it. My father always said, "You can't argue with ... "
     
  8. Lack

    Lack Notebook Consultant

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    Glad to help :)

    My mother thought me not to cry over spilled milk. I suggest you take this advice as well - in the future it could have you up and running your business in those 10h need for restore anyway rather then two weeks complaining (even if someone else is to blame) and rubbing wounds (although I know there are certain type of people that thrive in those situations, hope you're not one of them).
     
  9. offbase

    offbase Notebook Evangelist

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    UPDATE: Fedex came with my new Seagate and the Dell depot computer return box about an hour ago. Couldn't send the D420 off with the driver as I didn't want to keep her (delivery was over 6 hours late as it is, due to horrendous whether in the Chicago area), so that'll go out hopefully Friday.

    I allowed the new Seagate to thaw a bit, and installed the mounting bracket from the original drive. Fits (almost) perfectly. Sticks out a tad, but I can live with it. Vista business is currently installing, so the process begins. Looks like I can be back to work by Saturday, but I should start looking for a new (non-Dell) business machine. Any suggestions?
     
  10. yellowlt4

    yellowlt4 Notebook Consultant

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    As someone who rely's this heavily on your PC for business purposes I would suggest you looking at another means of back up and have a back up hard driver prepared for such situations. This situation was not caused by Dell. Most if not all vendors are going to use refurbished hard drives under warranty replacement. Having worked on many D630 systems I can say that the replacement hard drive would work perfectly with the same drive bracket that was in your original system. No need for a new bracket, also the Fujitsu drives are not "cheepo" they are exteremely reliable and well made hard drives.
     
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