Dell shipment is async with shipping list

I bought a Dell desktop 3 years ago. It came with a re-installation CD and a driver CD. Everything worked nicely until recently when its performance is significantly down turned. I finally decided that it was time to reinstall the operation system, and that was the time when unexpected things started to happen.

First, I noticed that the version of my Windows XP had service pack 3, while the readme file indicated that it was service pack 2. That was fine for me because I knew I could always get it from Microsoft website. But more serious problem came after I started the installation process. In the middle of the process, it kept saying that it needed service pack 2 from the CD, but the CD I got from Dell does not have it. I downloaded it from Microsoft website. The installation process refused to take it. It wanted the one on the CD only. I know it was the time that I had to call Dell support.

The call started by talking to machine, which is pretty much standard nowadays. After I entered bunch of numbers that I was asked for, I was told that my warranty had expired and I needed to have my credit card number ready. I realized that they have my home phone number in their system which linked to this computer. I didn’t want to pay because it was not my fault. So, I hanged up the phone and called again with my cell phone. I finally was connected to a real person.

The tech support was nice and started helping me without bothering about a fee. He told me that I needed another CD and I had to pay. It was $20. Even though I didn’t think it was fair that I had to pay, I agreed. At this point, I just want my computer back online.

The CD arrived after a week or so. To my surprise, the description on this new CD is exactly the same as my old CD. Apparently, Dell gave me a wrong CD when they shipped me the computer at the first place. The new CD does contain service pack 2 and now I had my system back.

The headache was not over yet. After I turned on Windows, I immediately found that there were bunch of drivers missing. Dell did ship me a CD for drivers. Nevertheless, I couldn’t find any driver on it at all. So I called Dell tech support again. I was told that I had to download them from Dell website. That surprised me but I was able to get all of them. After I installed those drivers, my computer finally ran again.

Now, my computer is still running normally. I noticed, however, that there were changes here and there. For example, I was able to hibernate before, but I can not.

This was not the first time that I reinstall Windows, but it was definitely the most difficult one, and it was my first time with a Dell computer.

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