HP is still the spawn of the devil…

but they’re the only game in town…
I shouldn’t complain too much as they fedex overnight shipped me a new hard drive for my laptop which arrived yesterday and I had time to put it in and start Windows installing from the original CDs before heading out bowling (we won 2 of 3 games and total pins, and only lost that 1 game by 4 pins) – and it was all set by the time I got home.. to them start upgrading the drivers and XP SP2 etc. My room looked very mad scientist last night with computer screens everywhere and network cabling stretched throughout.
My beef (*mmm* beef) comes from the fact that I asked, very clearly, if it was possible to send me a hard drive with the default HP Win XP image *already* on it. Why? So that I wouldn’t have to follow up and ask them for all the fun apps that came preinstalled on the machine (even though the HP picture thingy was kinda annoying). And in the e-mails and calls that followed, I was led to believe that my request had been read, paid attention to and was, in fact, possible. Alas no, they read all that and said “ship this guy a new hard drive” – but
not before calling me up and asking for a credit card number. Not telling me why, just saying “we have to have your number before we send you a replacement drive.” – I finally wrangled the explanation out of him, which as I expected, the credit card number’s just a deposit in case I’m trying to con them out of a free drive, but why not just SAY that. (I’m not even going to get into the language issues) So when the drive arrived, I popped it in, turned on the laptop and it just stared at me. Pulled it back out and reseated it before I realized that they’d sent me a blank. Thankfully I’m more than capable of doing a Windows install on my own, which saved me from having to call and speak to someone else with an “excellent” grasp of the English language and make death threats.
So my widdle waptop is all better for the time being, but seeing as how it’s needed 3 replacement/service calls since I bought it, I can’t recommend anyone else buy one from them (or Compaq). Customer service and Tech Support service is a nightmare. It amazes me that the companies can keep changing the names to things like “Customer Care”.
My new Media Center PC is faring pretty well, though the TV card was giving me pains and adamantly refused to take on updated drivers since they weren’t “digitally signed”, but I managed to work around that and now the TV picture doesn’t look as if everything’s been white washed. Watching cartoons was a pain. But the TiVo capabilities are VERY nice. It downloads my cable provider’s schedule, I can search, record a show or an entire series. And it *doesn’t* have the “perhaps you would also enjoy…” feature. Which will help me not watch too much telly, but I won’t have to worry about setting the DVR to record my usual shows when I can now do with with a few clicks. I now fully understand the cult of TiVo.

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