Dell: Absolutely Free Vista Upgrade 70% Off

Brad bought his Dell on October 25th, the day before Dell announced that all future purchases would be eligible for a free upgrade to Vista. Brad called to cancel his order so he could reorder it and be eligible for Vista. Dell, ever the kind soul, told Brad not to bother; they would give him the upgrade for free.

Fat chance.

Join us as Brad tries to hold Dell to their promise.

The promise.
From: US_CAG_Customer_Care
To: Brad
Sent: Friday, December 1, 2006 3:29:05 PM
Subject: Re: Dell Support Request: MS Vista Upgrade #kptx# (KMM40092305I57L0KM)

Dear Bradly,

Thank you for your response.

I understand from your e-mail that you had a chat session where you were conveyed that you will get the free software.

I sincerely apologize for the inconvenience caused to you for the reason that I provided inadequate information to you regarding the Vista upgrade.

I appreciate the opportunity to assist a valued customer.

I appreciate your interest in the Express Upgrade Program and understand that you would like to proceed with upgrading your system from Windows XP to Windows Vista.

I assure you that I am here to help you and the resolution of your concern would be my highest priority today.

Bradly, based on the date that you ordered your system, you are outside the timeframe of the Microsoft Express Upgrade to Windows Vista eligibility period as outlined by Microsoft.

However, we value you as customer and we understand your desire to obtain the Upgrade to Windows Vista, In order to resolve your concern; we will place an order for the Vista upgrade DVD absolutely free of cost for you, once Microsoft launches it.

I would request you to reply us once Windows Vista is launched. The Windows Vista is estimated to be launched by February 2007. Please be informed that the anticipated availability date of February 2007 is determined by Microsoft, not by Dell.

Bradly, in order to know more about Windows Vista and to check the compatibility of your system with Windows Vista, you may use the following link:

You may also check the compatibility of your system with Windows Vista by contacting our Warranty support department at the toll free number 1- 800-624-9896 as we at customer care are not technically skilled. You may also chat with our Warranty support department by visiting the following link:

Thank you for giving me the opportunity to assist you. Your case number for this interaction is 147194654. Please keep this number for your records; it will help us keep track of this issue so we can better assist you if you have any further questions or concerns about your issue.

If you require further assistance, please feel free to visit our Online Customer Care Center at:

Thank you again for contacting Dell Online Customer Care.


Rep ID 134395
6.00PM to 3.00AM CST
Dell Online Customer Care

Sounds pretty clear. Let’s see how Dell can misconstrue “absolutely free of cost.”

Sent: Friday, February 2, 2007 2:34:21 PM
Your session ID for this incident is 9105806.
Time Details
01:41:28PM System: “Your chat session will begin shortly.”
01:42:38PM System: “An agent will be with you shortly.”
01:55:38PM Session Started with Agent (Singh S Karandeep)
01:55:40PM Agent (Singh S Karandeep): “Thank you for contacting Dell Customer Service Chat. My name is Karan. How may I help you?”
01:55:47PM Agent (Singh S Karandeep): “Hello, Bradly.”
01:55:57PM BRADLY : “I truly hope you can help me.”
01:56:05PM Agent (Singh S Karandeep): “Good Afternoon.”
01:56:16PM Agent (Singh S Karandeep): “I will surely help you.”
01:56:16PM BRADLY : “Can you access case# 147194654?”
01:56:25PM Agent (Singh S Karandeep): “Sure.”
01:56:39PM BRADLY : “In it, I was assured that I would be quickly taken care of by simply referencing this case#.”
01:56:49PM BRADLY : “Yet I find that I am still being sent from one department to another”
01:56:58PM BRADLY : “and having to reexplain my situation every time.”
01:57:01PM BRADLY : “and I grow weary.”
01:57:48PM Agent (Singh S Karandeep): “May I please know the zip code as on the account?”
01:57:53PM BRADLY : “75219”
01:59:47PM Agent (Singh S Karandeep): “Thank you.”
02:00:34PM Agent (Singh S Karandeep): “Is ***@***.com your current e-mail address?”
02:00:44PM BRADLY : “yes.”
02:01:30PM Agent (Singh S Karandeep): “Thank you.”
02:01:43PM Agent (Singh S Karandeep): “Have you registered for the Vista upgrade?”
02:02:59PM Agent (Singh S Karandeep): “I have not received a response in over a minute. To ensure that I address all your questions or concerns, please respond within the next two minutes to allow me to continue our chat.”
02:03:02PM BRADLY : “hmmm.”
02:03:22PM BRADLY : “I tried registering, but it said I wasn’t eligible for the free upgrade”
02:03:29PM Agent (Singh S Karandeep): “Okay.”
02:03:35PM BRADLY : “this was back in November.”
02:03:54PM Agent (Singh S Karandeep): “I would suggest you to buy the retail version for the Vista.”
02:04:03PM BRADLY : “excuse me???”
02:04:09PM BRADLY : “that is not an appropriate answer.”
02:04:43PM BRADLY : “Why would I buy the retail version when I’ve already been promised the free upgrade in case# 147194654???”
02:05:15PM Agent (Singh S Karandeep): “Please allow me 2-3 minutes while I check my records for this.”
02:05:35PM BRADLY : “Please do…because once again I have found myself having to start all over again with a new person.”
02:06:14PM BRADLY : “I’ve been promised a free upgrade (see case 147194654). If you are unable to help me, I would like the phone number of someone in the Texas location.”
02:08:25PM Agent (Singh S Karandeep): “Thank you for staying online. I appreciate your patience.”
02:09:07PM Agent (Singh S Karandeep): “Do you have a Vista capable PC?”
02:09:17PM BRADLY : “Yes”
02:09:32PM BRADLY : “I bought my laptop 12 hours before Dell announced free upgrades to Vista”
02:09:53PM BRADLY : “this should all be in case 147194654…is it not?!?!”
02:10:01PM Agent (Singh S Karandeep): “Okay.”
02:10:12PM BRADLY : “The laptop has plenty of harddrive space, RAM, has a duo-core processor and a good graphics carsd.”
02:10:15PM BRADLY : “card, I mean.”
02:10:29PM BRADLY : “it is definitely compatible.”
02:11:07PM Agent (Singh S Karandeep): “As I see from the records, the last representative is already following your case as we have not yet started shipping the DVD’s for Vista.”
02:11:33PM BRADLY : “how are they following? The last time I contacted Dell I was told to call Customer Service”
02:11:40PM Agent (Singh S Karandeep): “You will get a call back on 2/5/2007 between 1 pm to 3 pm.”
02:11:48PM BRADLY : “I called Customer Service and was told I was ineligible.”
02:11:50PM BRADLY : “who will be calling me?”
02:11:53PM BRADLY : “and at what number?”
02:12:15PM Agent (Singh S Karandeep): “The telephone number with us is.”
02:12:33PM BRADLY : “Please have them call. This is my work number, where I will be at that time.”
02:13:31PM Agent (Singh S Karandeep): “Please allow me 2-3 minutes while I check my records for this.”
02:16:03PM Agent (Singh S Karandeep): “Thank you for staying online. I appreciate your patience.”
02:16:47PM BRADLY : “You’re welcome”
02:17:59PM Agent (Singh S Karandeep): “We appreciate your interest in the Express Upgrade Program and understand that you would like to proceed with upgrading your system from Windows XP to Windows Vista.”
02:18:27PM BRADLY : “Who will be calling me on Monday the 5th?”
02:18:32PM Agent (Singh S Karandeep): “We understand your desire to obtain the Upgrade to Windows Vista, when available, and therefore are making the retail version of the Windows Vista Upgrade available to you at 50% of the normal price and fully covered by technical support from Microsoft.”
02:18:48PM BRADLY : “No….that is unacceptable.”
02:19:00PM BRADLY : “I have already been promised the upgrade at “absolutely no cost””
02:19:08PM Agent (Singh S Karandeep): “Your Retail Upgrade to Windows Vista will ship once Vista is available which is anticipated to be February 2007. Would you like me to go ahead and place that order for you?”
02:19:09PM BRADLY : “anything less than that is completely unacceptable.”
02:20:12PM Agent (Singh S Karandeep): “Okay, let me confirm it again.”
02:21:03PM BRADLY : “Did you not read the notes on case# 147194654?”
02:21:14PM Agent (Singh S Karandeep): “Yes, I did.”
02:22:30PM Agent (Singh S Karandeep): “Please allow me 2-3 minutes while I check my records.”
02:24:02PM BRADLY : “I have an e-mail from one of your customer service reps that says, and I quote, “In order to resolve your concern; we will place an order for the Vista upgrade DVD absolutely free of cost for you, once Microsoft launches it.””
02:25:12PM Agent (Singh S Karandeep): “Thank you for staying online. I appreciate your patience.”
02:26:36PM Agent (Singh S Karandeep): “The best and the last deal we can offer you is, we will pay 70% and you pay 30%.”
02:27:35PM BRADLY : “Absolutely not! I have an e-mail from Premlekha on December 1st, clearly stating I was to get the upgrade free of charge.”
02:27:41PM BRADLY : “I am not here to negotiate.”
02:28:04PM BRADLY : “If you will not provide the upgrade as previously promised I want a phone number of someone in Austin, Texas, and I will resolve it with them.”
02:29:01PM Agent (Singh S Karandeep): “I am sorry however I don’t have any information about the direct lines to Austin team as the chat/calls are routed globally.”
02:29:42PM BRADLY : “And you are unwilling to fulfill the promise of your customer service rep Premlekha?”
02:31:00PM Agent (Singh S Karandeep): “I understand your concern, that you were informed that you will get Vista upgrade for free, however, this won’t be possible.”
02:31:12PM BRADLY : “How do I get in touch with Premlekha? her Rep ID is 134395”
02:31:18PM Agent (Singh S Karandeep): “I am sorry that you were misinformed.”
02:31:39PM BRADLY : “and why is it not possible?!?!? I bought the laptop exactly 12 hours before the promotion started, and tried to cancel the order but it was too late.”
02:31:46PM BRADLY : “i have purchased FOUR computers from Dell,”
02:32:03PM BRADLY : “and if you’re willing to lose my future business over a DVD you’re selling for $10 shipping, that is a TERRIBLE business decision.”
02/02/2007 02:33:47PM Session Ended

It just keeps getting better.

Sent: Wednesday, February 7, 2007 8:34:04 AM
This is an automated email sent from Dell Chat. The following information is a log of your session. Please save the log for your records.
Your session ID for this incident is 9203575.
Time Details
07:50:53AM System: “Your chat session will begin shortly.”
07:50:54AM Session Started with Agent (Harvinder Kaur)
07:50:57AM Agent (Harvinder Kaur): “Thank you for contacting Dell Customer Service Chat. My name is Harvinder. How may I help you?”
07:51:08AM BRADLY : “I need the status of case number 147194654”
07:51:23AM Agent (Harvinder Kaur): “I will be glad to assist you with this concern.”
07:51:23AM BRADLY : “I was told to wait 24 hours, which I have done.”
07:51:25AM Agent (Harvinder Kaur): “May I have the complete name as it appears on our records?”
07:51:28AM BRADLY : “I am expecting an e-mail from Rahmel.”
07:51:31AM BRADLY : “Bradly “
07:51:41AM Agent (Harvinder Kaur): “Thank you.”
07:51:51AM Agent (Harvinder Kaur): “Your e-mail address in our records is ***@***.com. Is this correct?”
07:52:55AM BRADLY : “yes”
07:53:24AM Agent (Harvinder Kaur): “Thank you for giving me this information.”
07:53:27AM Agent (Harvinder Kaur): “Please allow me 2 minutes to pull up your account. Your patience in this matter is highly appreciated.”
07:53:33AM BRADLY : “okay”
07:55:05AM Agent (Harvinder Kaur): “Thank you for staying online, I appreciate your patience.”
07:55:17AM BRADLY : “you’re welcome”
07:56:02AM Agent (Harvinder Kaur): “Bradly, is it that you were to receive a call from Rahmel and you have not received any call?”
07:57:00AM BRADLY : “I am waiting on an e-mail. Rahmel called me once (though your notes say he called three times). He left me a voicemail, indicating he would send me an e-mail, and he didn’t leave me a return phone number.”
07:57:17AM BRADLY : “What I can tell you is that his name is Rahmel and he’s in British Columbia, in the Special Case Department.”
07:57:52AM Agent (Harvinder Kaur): “I apologize for any inconvenience, however, If you give me your concern, I would be glad to assist you.”
07:58:38AM BRADLY : “My concern is that I have yet to receive an e-mail!”
07:59:18AM BRADLY : “That’s my main concern…aside from the fact that Rahmel says he called me three times, though he only called once.”
08:00:10AM Agent (Harvinder Kaur): “Please allow me 2-3 minutes while I check my records.”
08:01:25AM BRADLY : “Give me 2-3 minutes as well….I have to step away for a quick moment.”
08:03:03AM BRADLY : “I have returned.”
08:03:52AM Agent (Harvinder Kaur): “Thank you for staying online, I appreciate your patience.”
08:03:54AM Agent (Harvinder Kaur): “Please bear with me for 2-3 more minutes while I continue researching this issue.”
08:04:05AM BRADLY : “okay”
08:07:17AM Agent (Harvinder Kaur): “Thank you for staying online, I appreciate your patience.”
08:07:42AM BRADLY : “you’re welcome”
08:08:40AM Agent (Harvinder Kaur): “Bradly, as per the details, I understand that your were having an issue regarding your vista upgrade. Is that correct?”
08:08:48AM BRADLY : “Yes”
08:10:20AM Agent (Harvinder Kaur): “Is it that you do not want to pay the shipping charges for the Vista DVD?”
08:10:40AM BRADLY : “I WILL pay the shipping charges, if you guys will allow me to get the upgrade!”
08:10:56AM BRADLY : “My problem has been that every time I try to get it, I’m told different things.”
08:11:03AM BRADLY : “one time I’m told I can’t get the upgrade at all”
08:11:16AM BRADLY : “another time I’m told I get it at absolutely no cost (this was back in November)”
08:11:24AM BRADLY : “another time I’m told I can get it 50% off retail”
08:11:34AM BRADLY : “another time I’m told I can get it 30%”
08:11:44AM BRADLY : “another time I’m told to just go out and buy the retail version”
08:12:05AM BRADLY : “So let me tell you that I am getting angry at the lack of cohesiveness with Dell’s handling of this matter.”
08:12:32AM Agent (Harvinder Kaur): “Bradly, I understand your concern.”
08:12:59AM BRADLY : “I hope you do, because this is very disappointing”
08:13:13AM BRADLY : “So what can YOU do for me? The last time I contacted you guys, I was assured I would get an e-mail.”
08:13:16AM Agent (Harvinder Kaur): “I apologize for any inconvenience, however, please allow me 2-3 minutes while I check my records.”
08:13:26AM BRADLY : “another 2 to 3 minutes??? are you serious?”
08:13:39AM BRADLY : “All I want is the e-mail from Rahmel”
08:13:44AM BRADLY : “I have no way of contacting him”
08:14:17AM Agent (Harvinder Kaur): “Thank you for staying online, I appreciate your patience.”
08:14:34AM BRADLY : “Unless you can process my order for the Vista upgrade.”
08:15:18AM Agent (Harvinder Kaur): “Bradly, as you have placed the order on 10/25/06 and Vista started on 10/26/2006, your system is not eligible for the free vista upgrade.”
08:15:43AM BRADLY : “I am going to say this one more time.”
08:15:54AM BRADLY : “I expect a response from Rahmel in SPECIAL CASES DEPARTMENT!”
08:15:56AM Agent (Harvinder Kaur): “We at Dell, value our customers, so we would be glad to give you the vista upgrade.”
08:16:26AM Agent (Harvinder Kaur): “We advice you to contact our Customer Care Department at 1-800 -624 -9897, Monday through Friday, between 7 AM to 9 PM CST and a customer care representative will be glad to help you.”
08:16:26AM BRADLY : “Excuse me? First you say I am not eligible”
08:16:41AM BRADLY : “No! I tried that, and was told I’m not eligible!!!!”
08:16:50AM BRADLY : “That is why this was upgraded to the SPECIAL CASES DEPARTMENT!”
08:17:08AM Agent (Harvinder Kaur): “We advise that you pay 50% charges for the upgrade and we will bare 50% charges for the upgrade.”
08:17:09AM BRADLY : “I need Rahmel to contact me.”
08:17:15AM BRADLY : “NO NO NO!”
08:17:25AM BRADLY : “DO you not understand?!?!?!”
08:17:48AM BRADLY : “Dell will bare 100% of the charges for the upgrade, and I will pay the shipping.”
08:17:58AM BRADLY : “which was what was originally agreed upon”
08:18:08AM BRADLY : “If you are unable to help me I expect this to be upgraded to a manager”
08:18:17AM BRADLY : “or preferably to Rahmel in the SPECIAL CASES DEPARTMENT”
08:18:22AM BRADLY : “Confirm that you understand what I am saying”
08:18:27AM Agent (Harvinder Kaur): “I apologize, I would not be able to guarantee that you would be receiving and e-mail from Rahmel, however, if he has promised you an e-mail , he will send you one.”
08:18:51AM BRADLY : “I am doubting I will get an e-mail Harvinder. He said he called three times, but only called one.”
08:19:07AM BRADLY : “So I want this resent to the SPECIAL CASES DEPARTMENT”
08:19:13AM BRADLY : “I have been MORE than patient with you people”
08:19:31AM BRADLY : “and each time I’m given the same load of crap.”
08:20:31AM Agent (Harvinder Kaur): “Bradly, please stay online, I will transfer the chat to my manager.”
08:20:44AM Session Transferred to Agent (Sup Sukriti Sukhija)
08:20:47AM Session Started with Agent (Sup Sukriti Sukhija)
08:20:59AM Agent (Sup Sukriti Sukhija): “Hi Bradly.”
08:21:02AM BRADLY : “Good morning, Sup Sukriti Sukhija”
08:21:04AM BRADLY : “Hello.”
08:21:08AM Agent (Sup Sukriti Sukhija): “I am Sukriti, the manger on duty.”
08:21:18AM BRADLY : “Thank you for speaking with me.”
08:21:22AM Agent (Sup Sukriti Sukhija): “Please brief me on issue to assist you in a better manner?”
08:21:27AM Agent (Sup Sukriti Sukhija): “You are most welcome.”
08:21:49AM BRADLY : “I am frustrated by the lack of cohesion with your customer service department. I have been promised the Vista Upgrade (even though I ordered my laptop 12 hours too early).”
08:22:03AM BRADLY : “But each time I attempt to get the upgrade, I’m being told different things.”
08:22:13AM BRADLY : “First I’m told I’m ineligible.”
08:22:29AM BRADLY : “Then I’m told I can get it for 50% off”
08:22:48AM Agent (Sup Sukriti Sukhija): “Bradly, I do apologize for the inconvenience first of all. I will provide you all the details right away.”
08:23:44AM Agent (Sup Sukriti Sukhija): “Your order was placed on 10-25-06 and we started the promotion for Vista upgrade on 10-25-06, hence your order is not eligible.”
08:24:06AM BRADLY : “And AGAIN, I contacted Dell, explained this and was told I would be able to get the Vista Upgrade!”
08:24:15AM BRADLY : “This was before Vista was available.”
08:24:17AM Agent (Sup Sukriti Sukhija): “We do understand that you were short by just one day, so we have decided to send you the upgrade.”
08:24:44AM Agent (Sup Sukriti Sukhija): “However, you will have to bear half of the charge.”
08:24:53AM BRADLY : “NO NO NO!”
08:24:56AM BRADLY : “This is unacceptable.”
08:25:12AM BRADLY : “I have messages from other people, indicating that I will get it for free, and only have to pay the $10.”
08:25:13AM Agent (Sup Sukriti Sukhija): “In that case, we are unable to send you the Vista Upgrade.”
08:25:23AM BRADLY : “I was short by 12 hours!”
08:25:34AM BRADLY : “I called to cancel the order so I could place my order the next day”
08:25:49AM BRADLY : “and was told at that time to keep the order in queue, and they’d allow me to upgrade.”
08:25:52AM BRADLY : “This is ridiculous!”
08:26:11AM BRADLY : “I want this upgraded to the Special Case Department.”
08:26:18AM BRADLY : “I need to get in touch with a Special Case Manager”
08:27:08AM Agent (Sup Sukriti Sukhija): “Bradly, let me check what we can do in this regard.”
08:27:17AM BRADLY : “Thank you”
08:29:04AM Agent (Sup Sukriti Sukhija): “Please bear with me for 2-3 minutes.”
08:31:06AM Agent (Sup Sukriti Sukhija): “Thank you for your patience.”
08:31:14AM Agent (Sup Sukriti Sukhija): “I am escalating this issue for consideration to our special escalation team and will get back to you with an e-mail within next 48 business hours.”
08:31:14AM BRADLY : “okay”
08:31:24AM BRADLY : “48 hours from right now?”
08:31:29AM Agent (Sup Sukriti Sukhija): “I will e-mail you at: ***@***.com”
08:31:34AM BRADLY : “Who can I contact if I don’t hear from someone?”
08:31:44AM Agent (Sup Sukriti Sukhija): “That is correct. I will get back you once I get an reply from them.”
08:31:58AM BRADLY : “but how do I contact YOU?”
08:32:02AM Agent (Sup Sukriti Sukhija): “You can e-mail me at:”
08:32:41AM BRADLY : “I just sent you a test e-mail.”
08:33:08AM BRADLY : “Thank you for your time this morning…I look forward to your response within 48 hours.”
08:33:12AM Agent (Sup Sukriti Sukhija): “Will let you know once I receive it.”
08:33:18AM Agent (Sup Sukriti Sukhija): “You are most welcome.”
08:33:25AM BRADLY : “Good day to you.”
02/07/2007 08:33:28AM Session Ended

Special escalation team sounds very formal. What eloquent answer did Dell’s customer service ninjas offer?


Thank you for contacting Dell!

We appreciate the opportunity to help. Let me first apologize for the delay in our response and inconvenience caused to you. Your patience is very much appreciated. Please be adviced you will have to purcahse the retails version of Vista.

Please feel free to revert in case of any clarifications/suggestions!

Thank you again for choosing Dell!

Vishal Kaul
Dell Consumer Care

Well, at least it’s not a form letter.


Thank you for contacting Dell!

We appreciate the opportunity to help. Let me first apologize for the delay in our response and inconvenience caused to you. Your patience is very much appreciated. Please be adviced as you are a valued customer I can place a request for $25.00 coupon and you may use that to place an order for the retail Vista.
I apologize for the inconvenience.

Please feel free to revert in case of any clarifications/suggestions!

Thank you again for choosing Dell!

Vishal Kaul
Dell Consumer Care

Maybe it is a form letter. How does this maddening roller-coaster of crossed lines resolve itself?

Just an FYI that Dell has agreed to send me the Vista for free.

I wrote an e-mail directly to Michael Dell (CEO) and got a call from a “resolver” in their Executive office…they’re sending it at no charge.

See, getting Dell to keep a promises isn’t that difficult. — CAREY GREENBERG-BERGER


Edit Your Comment

  1. Addison says:

    This guy lives in the middle of Cedar Springs in Dallas….I’m sure that he could have hopped a quick Southwest flight down to Austin for a Texas ass whooping on some Dell reps. We have ordered Dell for a long time, aside from the Compaq that we used for a while and have had great service from them. I hate to hear this story, but hope it’s an isolated incident.

  2. xdabomb911 says:

    Wow that’s terrible. I’ve dealt with Dell’s Technical Support for the past 4 years as I oversee over 200 Dell Optiplex’s and the Tech Support has gotten MUCH better in the last year- they don’t hassle me anymore on their shitty power supplies and just send them out.

    But I see customer service has much to improve upon.

  3. voodoodle says:

    why is it so hard to get moved up the chain in customer service calls? I called best buy once to prevent an online order from being cancelled due to a long delay, but since the order was under my mom’s name (since the item was for my sister), the CSR wouldn’t talk to me. I told him i wanted his manager, or his supervisor, somebody who has the priviledge to use their brain while on the job, but he flat out refused. I had the credit card in my hand, the email address was mine and i had all the confirmation numbers, but NO. i could not talk to anybody but him.

    “let me speak to your manager”
    “let me speak to your mother” *add indian accent*
    “let me speak to your MANAGER!”
    “let me speak to your mother”

    we never got the camera but they had already sent us a free memory card, so i guess it worked out in the end.

  4. Grrrrrrr, now with two buns made of bacon. says:

    “I sincerely apologize for the inconvenience to you, but we lied to you and now we’re taking back our promise. Thank you for being used by Dell!”

    I’m glad Bradly finally got his upgrade like he should have in the first place, but he shouldn’t have had to go through Dell-Hell to get it.

  5. missdona says:

    Dear god, that little girl in the picture looks exactly like my niece.

    But my niece doesn’t wear kerchiefs and yell at farm animals.

  6. willywinkie says:

    Bradly’s just trying to beat the system. What part of “He bought too early” doesn’t he understand? I buy a car for $25000 on a Tuesday. On Wednesday the exact same car is discounted $1000. Do I have a case with the dealership? No. The “sale” was Wednesday and I bought on Tuesday. Tough.

    He should shut up and pay the for the upgrade. Or better yet, buy a Mac.

  7. 5h17h34d says:

    And they wonder why people walk in businesses with weapons and a can of whoopass to open…

  8. FLConsumer says:

    Dell support depends greatly on the product class you’re in. If you’re Joe Consumer, forget it… both the product quality and support are at the regular consumer-level crap. Business & enterprise level is a whole other ballgame. Plenty of Americans to answer phones and get things done. Quality of the products goes up substantially as well.

  9. lindyman77 says:

    Absolutely maddening… now I’m angry and I use a Mac.

  10. Savage says:

    If I were that animal, I’d turn around and hoof it out of there. That little girl is as cute as she is wild! Great picture!

  11. LAGirl says:

    holy cr@p!! what a bunch of incompetent buffoons.

  12. If you want an American use this number. 800.624.9896 extension 7254339. That will get you to a representitave in Utah.

    Hey Ben. Anytime you get a tip from somebody that isnt getting something resolved with Dell, drop me a line. I have a little bit of pull over here. You might want to redact the case number. I was able to look up all of Bradley’s information with that case number.

    FLConsumer is right about the different classes of support.

  13. MoCo says:

    Ben’s situation is quite typical for Dell. I had a similar experience several years ago with them. Never buy a Dell.

  14. lonelymaytagguy says:

    “Please allow me 2-3 minutes while I check my records.”

    Every rep kept repeating that. Are they really checking records (on a very slow computer), or are they handling multiple customers?

  15. mconfoy says:

    There is a reason they are called Smell Computers

  16. jmw082 says:

    I emailed Dell support about an issue with my touchpagd (double-click speed kept resetting to the maximum). The first person sent me a replacement touchpad even though I questioned him to suggest it was a software issue rather than hardware.

    I have had Dell chat support diagnose my problem right away. It depends on what area the call is routed to, something like Clint Eastwood’s line: “Do you feel lucky?”

  17. kalikidtx says:

    I forwarded this story onto a guy at Dell in Austin Texas Tech support who has assisted me on a couple of issues like this before, hopefully he can help you as well. From one former Cedar Springs neighbor to another I hope it works out!

  18. brinkofacomplex says:

    I’ve got an HP, but customer service (especially with IM) is just as maddeningly slow, formal, and evasive, even when all you’re asking is “what’s wrong with my computer?” (Answer: “Locate the START button … reformat the harddrive.”)

  19. mikejanssen says:

    hehe, me being a gateway rep, this story makes me happy. we even got to retro it back 2 weeks, so if you bought a system starting october 11th, you still get free upgrade…no hassle…WOO FOR US!!
    will forward this article to co-workers tomorrow.

  20. billco says:

    The big problem with any tech support is usually the outsourcing. Unfortunately, when you’re calling the residential side of tech support, you always get tossed overseas, because for every one person with a legitimate problem, there’s a couple dozen dinks with dumb questions like “I want to install this burned copy of Windows Vista to this 8 year old out-of-warranty stolen refurb”.

    I used to work for a large PC manufacturer, which for sake of example we’ll call XYZ Inc. During one comical evening, I found myself calling tech support to get my notebook replaced (overheated battery, amazingly NOT a Sony). Sure enough I got some guy in India, and every time I spoke a sentence, he’d put me on hold for a couple minutes. After about a half hour of getting nowhere, he runs out of patience and starts giving me attitude. I jot down his ID and hang up.

    So I called back into the queue, and this time I just asked for a manager right away, of course I had to argue with the tech for this… They train people to avoid escalations whenever possible, but if someone’s foaming at the mouth, they should just hunt down a friggin’ manager already. 5 minutes of hold music pass and finally a human voice is heard. Now I don’t know what their policies are overseas, but this “manager” sounded and acted pretty much like any other rookie. He asked me for each piece of info on the account, and when he got around to my email, so I gave him my work email. I casually spelled it out for him: He paused for a moment, then used the catchy line “Can I put you on hold for 2 minutes sir”… It was actually more like 10 minutes, I figure he read the previous tech’s call log, looked me up in the corporate directory, then probably contemplated just dropping the line because he already knew someone had screwed up.. but he came back, with a very different tone. Within a few minutes we came to the agreement that I needed my notebook replaced, and he was going to email me the shipping instructions.

    Well sure enough, he never did send me the info. The next Monday at work, I pulled up my notebook’s record. In it he wrote “Customer has damaged the battery. Not covered by warranty. Told customer to buy a new computer”.

    I did manage to get the guy fired after forwarding a few emails up the chain of command, but they never purged the fraudulent notes from the records. Needless to say, they still haven’t fixed my notebook. It sucks too, it was a nice notebook :)

    I don’t mean to direct any negative attention to India’s IT workforce, the problem is with the hiring companies, not the entry-level staff. They farm tech support out to the lowest bidder, and end up losing business because of it. They say that only 1-2% of customers ever call tech support, but everyone knows one unsatisfied customer will tell ten others. In a time where all PC’s are pretty much identical, the only thing they can really compete with is support.

  21. scribe54 says:

    Sadly, I’ve owned Dells for years…just another consumer using them at home. I’ve currently got four desktops on a home net plus a Latitude. I’ve probably owned a dozen over my lifetime. In the past, customer service was great; the last several years, Bradley’s situation is more the norm. Contrast that with the visit I made to Apple’s new flagship store in Manhattan, and the sterling service and care I got from a sales rep talking to me about the benifits of a Mac. Seems mighty compelling to switch than hassle with Dell’s call centers in the future.

  22. mrbill says:

    Obviously “give me 2-3 minutes to check records” is a preprogrammed macro used when they have to call someone else for help.

  23. snowpuff says:

    What Dell offers are very cheap computers. Do not expect any help with customer service. Ever.

  24. Looks like this article has been dugg and the extension I posted was reported as being shut off.

    I should clarify the hours for that extension as some have the misunderstanding that the extension is shut off due to overuse or overexposure. That extension closes at 12 midnight MST. Better than calling the regular number.

    After reading through the notes I noticed that Bradley had sent several threatening emails to Dell. I understand where he was coming from but on several occasions he did threaten legal action.

    I honestly didnt think that Vista was worth all that trouble. ALthough I do understand that if somebody gives you a certain expectation, you better well follow through with it.

  25. qlskydiver says:

    I have worked with corporate side of Dell many times. I myself supported dell by telling friends that dell machines were good. As a tech many people come to you for advice. All that changed about three years ago. We got 20 new laptops in and I was working on them to get them built and out to replace older machines. This was the first 20 out about 500 we were going to replace in our corp office. Out of the 20 I know at least 5 had bad mother boards. It took at least 2 hours of phone call to get them to send me a replacement machine. A think 3 out of the 5 they had a tech come on site and replace the mother board, the tech even wondered why they did not just reship the machine.
    Dell has not been a recommended machine for some time now. By HP / AMD and load Linux, or buy an Apple.

  26. cynon says:

    Since Dell was taking suggestions, I’d like to suggest they move their tech support back to the US. Of course, Dell, isn’t the only one using idiots in their call centers, I experienced the same thing with both Linksys and D-Link over the weekend.
    Once its clear that I know more than the person on the other end of the line, it’d be nice if they’d bump the support level up so I could speak to someone who might be able to do something besides read a script.

  27. Chairman-Meow says:


    As I always tell people, Dell once again puts the “K” in Quality.

  28. hjsimpson says:

    I’ve actually have a very similar experience with Dell Customer Service. After I purchased a Inspiron 6000, less than a week later I recieved their monthly flier and it quoted that all Inspiron laptops had a DVI port. This was not the case on mine since there was none on my laptop.

    I called Dell and explain the quoted text and the rep had me fax the flier to her for verification. By the end of the conversation she had spoken to her manager and promised that the DVI port was only available on the 9300 series and that my 6000 would be swapped for a 9300 replacement. They explained to me that a rep from the Special Cases Department would contact me with the week, they never did.

    It took over three weeks, 8 customer service reps from oversees to finally get a phone call from an American in the Special Cases Department. He wanted promptly resolve the issue so he ordered a 9300 for me. I received a package 3 days later and it was same laptop that i ordered originally (6000).

    Brad I feel your pain and aggravation.
    I made numerous calls to the man from the Special cases dept. and finally after a week he contacted me again. He apologized for the mishap and reordered for a 9300. I finally received the 9300 three days later.

    I find Dell’s customer support deplorable, every time I talked to a rep they wanted the case number and then had to re-explain the situation. I must have done this a minimum of 8 times through the shuffle of departments. What is the use for case numbers if the conversation is not well documented? I can barely understand the rep when they speak and when I told them I wanted to speak with someone from the Special Cases Department they told me there was none.

    I am a small business owner and when I purchased a desktop they suggested I get the Gold Support. I asked the rep why and she said it would guaranty a person from the US. For a rep to say that to, it tells me they already know whats wrong in the company.

    I can only hope that Dell can regain the quality of service they used to provide to its costumers. If not, it looks as though i will be purchasing from another company.

  29. Mr. Gunn says:

    Nice to know Holden’s our Dell contact. Thanks, Bro. I agree that BRADLY’s a bit of an ass.

  30. niccernicus says:

    I had the same great experience with Dell. All I was looking for was a copy of MS Word, which I received with my computer, but lost the CD and had lost the program when re installing Windows. After about 100 calls/chats, 2 wrong CDs sent, and huge amounts of frustration, I finally got my Word CD, and in the process sweet talked them into giving me a free wireless keyboard/mouse combo.

    My advice, always use chat, as it is the simplest way to quote back verbatim what the reps have told you. There is NO dispute then. It is all black/white and eventualy they have to bend to your will.

  31. bigvicproton says:

    just cancelled my dell order, yeah whoever else i order them from probably wont be any better, but this is the kind of just complete contempt for customer service that puts me off a company for good.

  32. jjtalk says:

    Dell has realized the problem and they are slowly moving the tech. support from India to the U.S. and Canada. I have been to a talk given by the one of VPs of Dell and he has described that moving the tech support completely to India was “… a big mistake and a major disaster for the company …”

    I used to build computer for people and nowdays I just tell them to get a Dell if all they want to do is check emails and surf on the web. I surely hope that was still an honest and true advice.

  33. ne0shell says:

    I refuse to purchase anything from companies outsourcing tech support to India. Yeah I know it “supposedly” translates to lower prices but I’d prefer to pay a little more up front rather than have to deal with calling those support centers. No offense, I just feel that a lot of jobs formerly available to students, people with no college etc have been farmed out and you’re talking about a slice of the population who don’t have a lot of options when jobs vanish.
    It doesn’t help that every time I have to call India for support for any company it’s a nightmare and often results in me giving up, ie “not getting any results”.
    I’ve owned three Dell laptops and the build quality has gone downhill over the past 5 years. Rather than keep dealing with my company provided D600 needing service every 2 months I went out and purchased a Macbook. No problems at all now and it actually runs much faster than the Dell with less Ram.

  34. kalikidtx says:

    My Austin Dell guy responded to me today that he has forwarded this on to the dept that handles this. Here is his email to me, hopefully this will get you some resolution.


    Thanks for letting me in on it. We have a team that deals with situations such as this. I sent the link to them. There is a possibility that they will tell me to handle it. Otherwise I will monitor the case to make sure the right thing is done

    Thank you,

    GOOD LUCK! :-)

  35. TM says:

    Maybe Bradly should stop being such a prick. You would have gotten a lot further with this had you been more congenial instead of rude.

    I had a similar situation when I bought my XPS Laptop from the outlet while they were offering free Vista upgrades. I was told the outlet did not qualify for this promotion. I stated my case as I felt I should receive the upgrade and received a free $100 credit for Dell’s site. This was fine for me since I didn’t want Vista anyway.

  36. kalikidtx says:

    My Dell guy says Bradly got his free Vista Upgrade disc a couple of weeks ago…..


    When I escalated the matter to our specialist team, I was told that Bradly was sent the Vista upgrade at no charge on February 15. That explains the conclusion at the end of the chat, although I didn’t quite understand it when I read it.

    Anyway, I’m flattered that you thought enough of me to bring me this matter.

    Thank you,
    ***** @ Dell

  37. Blackburn says:

    My roommate used to be an Executive Support tech at Dell. When you write a letter to Michael Dell, threaten a lawsuit, or (no lie) mention you’re disabled and the support you are being offered is beyond your capabilities, you can get kicked upstairs to Executive Support/Resolutions who can actually resolve whatever issue you may have rather rapidly.

    You’ll also get them if you’re a bigwig with a large corporation with a Dell account, or if you’re a reporter for a news outlet.

    They’re the department tasked with making sure that lawsuits don’t get filed and negative press doesn’t come to pass.

    Generally the easiest way to cut through the bureaucracy is to overnight a letter to some member of senior management (Michael Dell is always a winner) in which you voice your displeasure and/or threaten a lawsuit. Executive Support will call you back ASAP and your issue will get resolved.

    Note that the tech may not want to do you any favors, but your issue will be resolved.

  38. palaste says:

    That picture is one of the best ones I’ve seen. I can imagine the girl and the horse yelling at each other. Does anyone know where it was taken?