A coworker’s mother had her PC crash. She talked to someone on the phone at HP Support and was told that she needed a new motherboard. HP would be glad to repair it for the sum of $339 plus shipping. It would take approximately 6 weeks. Jonesing for a PC, mom went ahead and just bought a new one. But she still wanted to fix this one.
The coworker came and asked for my advice on where to get a motherboard. I searched around a few places on the net and found them for this PC from $225 to $325, but from no place that I had ever heard of, so I was skeptical. I asked her to bring me the CPU and I’d look at it. Maybe it was just a toasted power supply or bad hard drive. When I got it and opened it up, nothing obvious was wrong, so I turned it on. Non system disk! I was going to do a system recover, but I better ask if there was any valuable data on the drive first.
The next day I asked the coworker, who asked her mother, who said, “No. Just make it work.” So that night I tired the system recover option. It got part way through and asked for recovery disc #3.
The next day I asked if her mom had any recovery discs. Mom did indeed have the disks, she had ordered them from HP over the phone.
Today I got the disks. There are 10 CDs, what could be on all them discs? I’ll never know. When I attempted to boot to disc #1, the system told me, “These discs are not for this series of Pavilion PCs.” Dang, I guess I’ll try and see if the hard drive is any good. I got out my WinXP CD and loaded it on the Pavilion. Seemed to take a real long time to format the hard drive, but after that Windows loaded right up. I plugged in my network cable and was on the net.
I went over to the HP support page and entered the PC’s information to see if perhaps she got the wrong recovery discs. I went through the order process until I got a part number – 34naheblu2 – and found it would cost $16.93 to mail them. The only thing on the plastic wrap around the 10 CDs I had was 5069-6299. That’s helpful.
There was a link for online chat support, so I thought I’d give it a whirl to see if they could tell me if I had the right CDs. After 30 minutes of waltzing around, I was informed that the discs I had were the correct discs. The trouble is that the PC was old and would need tattooing to accept the discs (ever hear of this?) and I had 2 options; A) return the PC and get HP to fix it or B) take it to an authorized service center. When I asked what these would cost I was told that the HP option would be $339 (where have I heard that number before?) and that the cost from the authorized service center would be up to them. The closest center is a Best Buy in Augusta, good luck with that….
Nice. HP sells you recovery discs for $17 and they are worthless unless you spend another $350 to get them to make your PC able to use them.
If the PC were mine I think it would be time to load Linux, but if I was her, I’d head out to the flea market this weekend and see about finding a pirated copy of XP (or maybe even Vista) for $20.
Started up, still up.
Miata Top Transitions since 01/01/07: 23
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