Karma is the concept of “action” or “deed” in Indian religions understood as that which causes the entire cycle of cause and effect described in some philosophies. You have all heard of someone that has done something good and mentioned karma coming back on them and rewarding them. After you read this, you will have a story about someone that karma hates –> me!
Friends and family that know me are aware that I’m not a super hero, but if I were my super power would be sarcasm. No, I’m not that good, but since it’s one of my more noticable traits it’s often looked upon as one of my strengths. Of course, this only helped me to find people that disliked me in school (they were stupid anyway, that’s why they were in school – which is where I was).
In order to get some good karma (just in case.. you never know when you may need it) I decided to buy a new computer for a family member. Since this someone that doesn’t necessarily need a high end computer system, I decided to avoid buying an Alienware computer and instead bought a Dell. Looking back, I should have bought some Taiwanese made HP or Gateway (are they still in business?).
Since I bought the computer, I was somehow volunteered to hook it up. I removed the old computer and figured that within minutes I would be finished… nope. Karma really dislikes me and everything I do. I must have been re-incarnated from an animal-abusing, child-hating, hippy-loving, homophobic or something else really bad. The computer powered on, but the hard disk was not seen by the BIOS. Here comes the wrath of good deads back upon me and up my ass sideways with a ping pong paddle.
I spent a few minutes diagnosing the problem. I opened the case removed the SATA cables from all three devices, two optical units and the HDD (hard disk drive). Then I removed the devices power cables and ran one of the power cables from the BIOS recognized optical unit to the HDD. Then placed one of the SATA cables from optical onto the HDD and into the SATA slot 0 on the motherboard. Still no recognition in the BIOS. I plugged everything back in, putting all connections back into the way the computer was sent and pulled out a SATA laptop HDD, plugging it into the desktop’s HDD cables. The BIOS was happy and wanted to boot into Windows. I’ve diagnosed the problem, and only spent like 4 minutes doing it. Now comes the pain…
I called Dell tech support (800-624-9896) and waited on hold for 19 minutes before getting a hold of someone I usually buy Slurpee’s from, I should have just headed down to 7/11 and picked up a Big Gulp while I was there. After being given a series of useless questions about power cables and USB devices, I got transferred to someone in the laptop support department (800-624-9897), who told me that I would need to speak with someone in the desktop support department. No sh*t Sherlock, thanks!
Of course I was disconnected, because the phone transferring for the Indians (dots, not feathers) is too difficult. I called back and waited on hold for another 13 minutes, which was quicker most likely due to the disconnecting phone callers. I started speaking with someone that was able to give me a case number which I would later be asked for, later, when I was disconnected again because manuals aren’t available in India and putting someone on hold is too hard for the computer support department in Nepal.
I called back, a third time, and waited about 9 minutes until my cell phone battery started giving up on me (Motorola V557 cell phones suck the ball-sweat between a marathon runners legs). It wouldn’t be until the next day that I got to speak with someone from “Dell”.
One Day Later
I’ve decided that getting Dell on the phone might not be enough, so I decided that I would call Dell and also communicate with someone online (http://www.dell.com/chat) and see if either one would maintain an open line of communication throughout the process. If both ways worked, I would be able to write a post about the double-teaming of Dell. You’ll notice that this post isn’t about that though.
I called Dell and started out with giving my case number. That didn’t do any good for the support tech that told me nothing was listed in my case except my name. Wonderful. After speaking for about 30 more seconds the rep on the phone asked my name. What? Didn’t he just tell me that my name was the only information on file? Great start Habib!
Simultaneously I started a chat session with Kanhaya_148312 (funny, they have so many Kanhaya’s that they give them numbers – India must not have many unique names available, though I’ve heard a comedian mention that in order spell the name of an Indian you would need to periodic chart of elements to show (the sign of boron).
Well.. as I’m writing this post I realize that it’s about to be as long as my support time from Dell so I’m going to start shortening it from here.
Phone support asked me to do crazy things with the computer (thankfully I have no shame and felt lonely), including unplugging all cables externally and holding the power button down for 30 seconds. Eventually (after about 30 minutes of ridiculous and time wasting steps and lots of hold times) phone support came through the victor, as they were going to send a replacement hard disk!
As for the chat support.. it ended like my first phone calls. I was hung up on through chat. Here’s the chat log for those of you interested though, it ended with me being hung up on through chat.. I’m telling you, karma just isn’t something I think that I’ll be worrying about anymore.
7:02:07 AM System You are now being connected to an agent. Thank you for using Dell Chat
7:02:07 AM System Connected with Kanhaya_148312 :
7:02:07 AM Kanhaya_148312 : Thank you for contacting Dell Technical Chat Support. My name is Kanhaya and my rep ID number is 148312. How may I assist you?
7:02:29 AM Michael : I bought a new computer. The hard dik is not recognized.
7:03:00 AM Kanhaya_148312 : Michael, I apolozise for the inconvenience caused to you.
7:03:35 AM Michael : The computer is an Inspiron 530.
7:03:52 AM Kanhaya_148312 : I understand your concern and I will personally attend to the issue. Please give me 2 to 3 minutes to pull up your account information.
7:04:17 AM Michael : case # *** *** 051
7:04:37 AM Michael : I’ve been somehow disconnected like 3 times from support over the last 12hours.
7:05:07 AM Kanhaya_148312 : I apolozise for the disconnects and inconvenience caused to you.
7:05:12 AM Kanhaya_148312 : As per our records you are using an Inspiron D 530 with Windows VISTA HOME PREM Edition installed on it. Is that correct?
7:05:37 AM Michael : I don’t know what OS is installed on the hard disk. The computer won’t boot into Windows. It’s suppose to have that OS though.
7:05:57 AM Kanhaya_148312 : How long have you been facing this issue?
7:06:15 AM Michael : The problem has been happening since last night when I unboxed it. Besides that it’s been great.
7:06:32 AM Kanhaya_148312 : I see.
7:06:57 AM Kanhaya_148312 : Michael, are you near to the system with which you are facing the issue?
7:07:16 AM Michael : I have the system here.
7:07:46 AM Michael : When I turn on the computer is shows “No boot device available, press Enter key to retry”
7:08:12 AM Kanhaya_148312 : Michael, please do not worry, we will perform some steps and we will surely fix the issue.
7:10:03 AM Kanhaya_148312 : Michael, please restart the system and press F2 key as the system is powering on.
7:10:31 AM Michael : Alright, I’m in the BIOS.
7:11:42 AM Kanhaya_148312 : Please let me know if you see a hard drive detected there.
7:12:14 AM Michael : There are no hard disks detected.
7:12:29 AM Kanhaya_148312 : I see.
7:13:10 AM Kanhaya_148312 : Michael, you will need to check the power connections of the hard drive with the system.
7:13:53 AM Kanhaya_148312 : You will need to remove the system cover and reseat the cables attached to the hard drive.
7:13:58 AM Kanhaya_148312 : I will provide you with the link to do that.
7:15:38 AM Kanhaya_148312 : http://support.dell.com/support/edocs/systems/inspd530/EN/OM/parts.htm#wp1508953
7:16:23 AM Kanhaya_148312 : Please open this link to remove the system cover.
7:16:53 AM Michael : I have unplugged the cables and plugged them back in.
7:17:11 AM Michael : I restarted the computer, the BIOS is not showing a HDD (hard disk drive).
7:17:12 AM Kanhaya_148312 : Great.
7:17:35 AM Kanhaya_148312 : Are you able to see the CD drive there?
7:18:01 AM Michael : I AM . Both CD drives are present (CD-RW and DVD-RW).
7:18:06 AM Michael : I’ve already attempted to switch SATA positions of the CD-ROM and the HDD, it did not work.
7:18:23 AM Kanhaya_148312 : I see.
7:18:31 AM Michael : I’ve also tried powering the HDD with the power cable from the CD-ROM, it did not work.
7:19:04 AM Michael : I then took the data cable from the CD-ROM and used that cable instead, that did not make a difference.
7:20:18 AM Kanhaya_148312 : I see.
7:20:33 AM Kanhaya_148312 : Michael : , we will need to replace the hard drive.
7:21:03 AM Kanhaya_148312 : May I know the address where you want me to send the hard drive?
7:21:56 AM Michael : (address removed to save me from getting more death threats in person)
7:22:31 AM Michael : When you send the new HDD, will it be pre-installed with whatever s/w was suppose to be installed upon this HDD?
7:22:43 AM Kanhaya_148312 : Yes, that is correct.
7:23:15 AM Kanhaya_148312 : may I send the service technician to replace the hard drive or can you do it yourself?
7:23:47 AM Michael : Whichever is easier for Dell. I’m fully capable of replacing the HDD myself.
7:24:43 AM Kanhaya_148312 : Michael, may I send the service technician to replace the hard drive or can you do it yourself
7:24:57 AM Michael : Umm.. Whichever is easier for Dell. I’m fully capable of replacing the HDD myself.
7:25:49 AM Kanhaya_148312 : Michael, I will send the service technician to your place to replace the hard drive for you.
7:26:10 AM Kanhaya_148312 : May I have the best number where the service technician can contact you?
7:27:33 AM Michael : If you send the hard disk, I can replace it myself. If you would rather have a technician do it, that’s fine with me but not necessary.
7:28:27 AM Michael : Replacing the HDD would only take a few minutes, seems unnecessary to have someone else do it.
7:28:58 AM Kanhaya_148312 : Al right, then I will send the hard drive to you and you will need to replace it yourself.
7:29:06 AM Michael : Understood.
7:29:28 AM Michael : Will you be including the means for me to return the failed HDD (like a return shipping sticker)?
7:29:29 AM Kanhaya_148312 : Kindly stay online for 2-3 minutes while I provide you the dispatch number for future reference.
7:29:42 AM Michael : ok
7:30:42 AM System The session has ended!
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