Dell Thinks That Second Hard Drive Bay Is Just A Big Hole

Spencer’s Dell laptop has two hard drive bays. That’s pretty cool, and he decided to take advantage of this by using it to install a hard drive. But no one at Dell has ever heard of such a crazy thing, and you can’t order any of the parts needed to actually hold or connect the drive from Dell’s site. Because that would be simple and easy.

If you’re not technically inclined, scroll to the bottom of this entry to see the handy summary chart that Spencer made.

My laptop (a Studio 1749) came with two hard drive bays. I figured I could actually use both hard drive bays and bought a second drive. Turns out, the empty bay doesn’t come with a caddy, connector, or screws. No big deal, I’ll just order those parts from Dell, I thought.

Unfortunately, Dell doesn’t seem to understand the concept of a “second hard drive”. Their Web site doesn’t let you order caddys or connectors at all, just the hard drives. When I called customer support and explained what I needed, the customer representative put me on hold for about 10 minutes to figure out what I was talking about. I don’t fault him for not knowing what a caddy is. What comes next is what I’m writing about.

The representative found a caddy, but couldn’t figure out what the connector was. I explained that it is a small plastic part with a few contacts on it. He put me on hold for another 20 minutes, then added a connector to the order.

After accomplishing this feat, the representative decided to try and sell me a printer. He took almost the same amount of time to do this as he had to figure out what I wanted to buy. I already have a printer that works perfectly fine, but he insisted that it was overpriced and I should buy a new one, claiming I was getting a great deal – for only $80! Eventually, he gave up – then decided to sell me an antivirus subscription instead. This alone is absolutely horrible customer service that no company should employ.

When I actually got an e-mail showing my order, I discovered absolutely nothing the representative ordered for me was correct. The caddy (item 1F40K), it turns out, was for the FIRST hard drive bay, whereas I needed a caddy for the SECOND bay. I stressed this when ordering, and the representative said that the caddy was indeed for the second bay. Furthermore, even if I did need the first caddy, I couldn’t use it because the caddy doesn’t come with screws to attach it to the computer. The “connector” the representative sold me (item A1260986) turned out to be a full cable, which is absolutely useless for a laptop computer. Note that the representative had my service tag, yet still thought that the cable in question was what I needed, despite being for a desktop.

To top this off, I’m not the only person who’s had this problem before. This forum thread features other customers who have had a problem finding this caddy, which is apparently an “obsolete part”. Dear Dell: if you don’t stock a part anymore, please just say so; don’t put me on hold for 30 minutes, sell me crap I have no use for, and try to sell me other crap I have no use for.

By the way, remember that printer?

$60 online.

Thanks Dell.

Here’s that chart:

dell.jpg