jueves, 14 de abril de 2011
Windows and Technicians: A Win-Win Combination!
Last Tuesday, one of my students asked me "Professor, where do you get that other OS?"
He meant GNU/Linux, of course. It turns out that his laptop is refusing to start. Well, not his laptop; it was the OS on his laptop that didn't want to work. The laptop did all it could.
I thought it was another damaged XP but when I asked about the Windows version on the computer, he replied "It's Windows Seven." That made me remember the episode of my former student and his brand-new Win 7 Starter netbook. Really, I thought Windows 7 was built more strongly.
I asked my current student if he had downloaded SP-1 (it was released that very day) but he told me his problem had happened before, so he could not use his computer presently.
Then, the Windows Epiphany came to him. He said "I'll take my computer to a technician."
That also transported me to the old times in which techies used to milk good money out of my broken OSs.
I realized that technicians have a series of personal approaches. Some of them are harsh, some of them are not very ethical, and some of them seem almost illegal:
1. Some techies refuse to work with old (prior to XP) Windows versions.
2. Some techies refuse to work with Vista (I don't blame them! :P)
3. Some techies charge more to fix a Vista PC (that sounds fair to me).
4. Some techies refuse to solve the specific problem and instead opt for the "nuke & reinstall" approach.
5. Some techies blame OS failures on hardware without a proper check-up.
6. Some techies make their customers believe number five and trick them into thinking some hardware was replaced to charge more.
7. Some techies actually replace hardware (good hardware) with spare, lower-quality hardware they had somewhere during the "fixing" session.
Bottom Line: When you take your Windows system somewhere to get it fixed, you'd better be willing to pay good money regardless of what they do. If you dislike that, take your computer to Microsoft headquarters so that they honor their "support from Microsoft" motto. You can't do that? Then look for a trustworthy technician. If you don't trust the techie, then label and register every single part of your hardware...or feel comfortable with a dying battery, a faulty CD/DVD unit, or who knows what else.
There's another possible solution: learn to fix your Windows problems yourself. That's what I did and I can say it saves you money (but not time!) After some years doing that, I finally got tired of it and installed Linux. Now, instead of fixing OS problems, I use my free time checking out other distros...provided that my brother doesn't do it before. Wanna take a look at Mageia?