I have always used Dell PC's and accessories. I worked for the Federal Government (USAF) for 30 years as an Aerospace Engineer Technician. That's just a fancy title for a Systems Analyst for Aerospace Maintenance Testing at Edwards AFB in California. I retired in 1995 and that was the last I used Dell. The Air Force used Dell solely for any computer purchase, not just Edwards AFB.
Unfortunately, I was under the impression that Dell was still a highly regarded PC manufacturer. Not now!!!!! I don't know what has happened to them because I had superior support whenever I called with a PC related problem (whether it was software or hardware). Their support was excellent and they knew more than I did.
I'm not bragging that I'm a superior programmer or technician; but, I have several Microsoft Certifications (too many to list here -- because USAF paid for any of the tests I wanted to take -- so took all of them). I'm also certified by ORACLE. I also have a Masters in Computer Science (paid for my USAF) and presently finishing work on my PhD at University of Arkansas (paid for by me).
I purchased a new XPS 8300, Windows 7, MS Outlook 2011, etc. and it arrived October 9th, 2011. That was my first mistake. I won't bore you with any of the details. In short, I spent over 35 hours in the past 37 days on the phone with Dell (either XPS Technical Spt; a XPS supervisor of Tech Spt Personnel); a Financial Services person; a Financial Services supervisor). Many times I was hung up on (by supervisors or others & I was even polite through the ordeal).
Some of the problems:
1) Kept getting connected to IYOGI whenever I called Dell. Finally figured out they contracted with Dell and had to look up numbers online for Dell -- by passing IYOGI. Believe me if you're more frustrated than I am with Dell you should also try using the IYOGI support staff. Hopefully you'll get someone that understands English. They spent 4 hours on speaker phone with me and took control of my PC and found the trojan horses, but wanted me to pay another $300 for their software. When I reasoned I had just spent over $2000 with Dell and would not waste another $300 they hung up on me.
2) They loaded McAffee --- I had 19 trojan horses and McAffee said no viruses. Of course Dell couldn't do anything until I purchased their Software & Hardware Service Contracts for xx number of years. Then after purchasing the warranties they still couldn't correct the errors.
3) They shipped my Display Monitor with the wrong cable and my monitor blew up (no, I wasn't hurt but it scared me when it started to smoke). After several phone calls explaining they sent the wrong cable and walking them through what cable I needed (to the point of taking a pic with my camera and uploading it for them) they finally understood. They mailed me a new monitor and I received it Tuesday. It DID NOT come with a new cable. The instructions said: "We are not sending a new cable with this monitor and please retain the old cable from your broken monitor." Another call to Dell and getting run around (again). Had to send them picture of my old cable and picture of new cable needed and a lengthy discussion on why do you need a cable when we sent you a converter kit. The converter kid did not fit the end of the cable --- the converter had 12 pins and the cable has 18 pins and the cable I needed has 24 pins. They never did understand what I wanted, even with pictures --- so I gave up and went online and ordered the cable I needed myself --$16.99 plus shipping. I haven't received it yet.
4) Have asked repeatedly to return 10 pieces of equipment (tower, two monitors, one keyboard, two speakers, two useless warranties for s/w and hardware, a mouse, McAffee software, Outlook 2011 s/w). I filled out 10 different emails with order numbers, descriptions, customer number, and reason for returning product; at https://support.dell.com/support/topics ... l=en&s=biz I'm still waiting and waiting and waiting.
I'm fearing that I'll eventually have to pack everything back in the original boxes (which are saved in my garage) and take them to FedEx and ship them myself at my expense. Last time I sent something back to Dell I received a phone call 3-1/2 years later asking why I hadn't paid for my laptop.
AND, I said at the start of this message I wasn't going to go into detail. Sorry for my ranting.
Any suggestions would help if it doesn't mean talking to Dell or IYOGI. I am sending PC back so will not have internet access until Dell coughs up my refund (another joke right?). So will be driving to the library for internet access because I gave my old PC to a High School student.