My PC is Dead

:sad: ... :mad: I just used my PC yesterday to burn a bunch of PDF's to disc for a friend of mine. Well today it is frozen at the screen saver. Moving the mouse and keyboard does nothing. So I restart it. That was the last thing I saw on my PC. That little Windows XP logo screen saver. Because now I get no video at all, the monitor light stays amber. It appears that the HD spins up though. I was on the phone with Alienware tech. support for at least an hour. The tech. had me take the video, sound and all ram chips out, and reseat them. Wow that was so fun! They sure pack stuff in there. Not much room to work inside these things at all (in comparison to the G3, G4, and now G5 cases/boards I have worked on). I reseated everything and still nothing. No video, just sounds like it normally does when I turn on my PC. The next step is to try with only one RAM chip. That did not do anything. Next I took ALL the RAM chips out. Now the mobo should beep telling me there is no RAM on the board. The mobo didn't do that. I was put on hold for a few seconds, and the tech. said they will have to service the machine. So I now have a FedEx postage paid label to print out. So it will not cost me anything to ship it. That's good. Fine. All I gotta say is I am glad that I moved all my essential files over to my Mac a month or so ago. I have one problem with Alienware though. They will not, not even for a fee, back up data on the HD (Alienware, like other vendors, just format the drive and reinstall the OS). And since my system will not boot up in the first place, I am going to have to take the HD out and put it in another computer. One of Panther's new features is that it will read NTFS formatted drives (it will read, not write). So I am going to have to take my PC to work with me and plug in my IDE drive into on of the Macs at work to salvage my data. I cannot remember what exactly I have on the drive that I absolutely need, but I know I have work files on the drive, and those are important. I just cannot believe that Alienware does not offer this service. I know when I sent my first TiBook into Apple I had the option to pay them to transfer the files. I know Best Buy will also perform the service. I am more then happy with Alienware tech. support, I just don't get why they will not transfer files. So we will see what is wrong with my PC. I am told it take 7 to 10 day to service a computer, then 3 days shipping, so I should have my PC back in 2 weeks. First I need to get the data off the drive though. How fun this is. I am really glad I am not doing work on my PC anymore. I just bought Max Payne 2 and did not get a chance to install it yet. Oh well. At least I am lucky enough to have 2 computers!

Comments (5)

You are lucky indeed. I suppose at least they're paying for the delivery, and the only took the computer in because it was absolutely necessary - I've heard scare stories where computer manufacturers take computers in (at the customer's expense) for *any* problems they may have, including the most trivial things. What was worse is that the boneheads at their tech support department would often reformat the HD (losing their customer's priceless data) for some relatively minor software issues that could be fixed. They were exposed by a consumer organisation, who bought several computers, made minor faults with them (like deleted a couple of system files or something) and then sent them off - many came back in their default state with any user documents wiped. I wish I could remember which company it was.

It would be nice if Alienware would back up your HD though - for a company with that kind of reputation you'd expect it.

yes, one would think, witth the reputation they have as a high end gaming botique and all. like i said, oh well.

i get the idea from talking to the tech that Alienware just formats the HD period, no matter what. But I have to agree with that. If the problem goes far enough to send it in, it just takes software issues out of the picture.

but since vendors do that on principal, they should offer the service of backing up the data.

Coop:

Well, Ken, welcome to the world of a PC owner. I back my PC up at least once a week, just in case something like this happens. Usually when things happen to a PC, it's always something on the HDD and then, the only solution is to flash the drive and start over.

The scary thing is that most PC users don't back up the HDD so they are just screwed. And I have had, on more than one occasion, a HDD that just stops spinning completely.

Let's just hope that the motherboard isn't fried, but from the sounds of it your video card fried out the motherboard. Good luck having that repaired! They might as well send you a new computer!

Hi Ken... Sorry to hear the bad news... you're fortunate that you can have it repaired at no cost... I was recently on vacation back home in Maui and was cleaning out my dad's custom built computer (by me) with one of those carbon monoxide spray cans (I had never used one before). It was really neat until I restarted the computer, and Windows booted up with all kinds of problems. Within 1 hour almost nothing was working, and luckily since my dad was able to go down to Office Max and buy an extra hard drive, I was able to save most of his import stuff. Soon after that the hard drive just stopped spinning altogether.

Later on we figured it definately had something to do with the spray can, and spraying the dust off the hard drive somehow (we think) fried it.

I own a Mac now and am so happy for the tech service since soon after I got it the hard drive died on me. I was able to get it replace in less than a week at no charge. I think in the future when getting a new computer I'll get one with warrenty, or a service program of some kind. (^_^)

m0m:

g0t b33r?!? ill come up and 'service' yer 'stuff' ;-)

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