I've posted about Dell's issues recently on my blog at: http://wp.me/pWckD-D
. But to summarize the latest annoyance--it was again evident to me that Dell management have little to no respect for the consumer,and only care about making another sale and their own corporate profits. I'm a computer technician running my own business and getting into servers, so I picked up some Server 2003-based systems to refurbish at a surplus dealer in Calgary. Good systems from a hardware point of view, but the fools over at Dell have decided some time ago to get rid of all their Windows Server 2003 installation media! At least this is the case at Dell Canada, and Dell's US office won't touch the system simply because it was purchased in Canada (what dorks, especially considering it was probably manufactured in the US with their other servers). This is a problem because I am trying to get Windows reinstalled but my generic Server 2003 Standard Edition (32-bit) OEM discs won't work with Dell's product key.
I was expecting something better of Dell, especially consider this was enterprise hardware (a PowerEdge 800 server), but I was surprised that they were as negligent as they are. Server 2003 is still being used on the majority of Windows Servers worldwide I do believe and has more than 3 years of extended support left in it from Microsoft. It was not like I was asking for outdated Server 2000 discs (which has been retired from extended Microsoft support) although they should even had some of these around. Anyways, it was shocking incompetence as far as I am concerned, and a real insult to the consumer. I hope Dell is eventually crushed by a better company providing genuine-quality technical support and customer service or bought out by such a company and completely revamped, with most of the executives fired! Just like they caused many good tech support people in Canada to loose their jobs so they could outsource to crappy call centers in places like India, so too do they desire to be laid off and be out of a job. The bottom line as far as I am concerned is that a different and better philosophy of business is needed which does away with treating the customer poorly and outsourcing overseas. Yes, we would get more expensive products, but it would be worth it because of the much better service and support we would get.
Anytime a company destroys old data (in the case of these Server 2003 discs) it is generally detrimental and harmful to the consumer. I'm hoping some hackers get into their corporate networks and do a real number on them sometime... would be great!
As far as I am concerned, at least as long as a product is supported by Microsoft it is my right as a consumer to be able to get recovery discs for them. It was not like I was asking them to send them for free--I was willing to pay a reasonable price to cover S&H to get the media out to me, but they were unreasonable and unable to fulfill this basic business requirement. And as a courtesy, they should even be able to provide recovery media to anyone who needs it for any older systems they might be working on.
Bottom line--Dell's customer service is crap and they deserve to be punished in some substantive way for it, such as continued loss of company image and loss of customers. I'm still hoping to get my Dell recovery discs so that I can succeed in refurbishing this Server using the original Dell Product key--I'm going to solve this one way or another. But it is just sad that the people running the show are so filled with greed and evil as to let something like this happen. I hate greed and it always destroys. I suspect that this is a result of their greed--not only so that they can "reduce costs" by not having their server 2003 discs around (but you have to wonder how much that would really cost) but also to increase revenues by trying to make more sales of Server 2008... those sneaky little bastards! It would be one thing if it was just on new systems (this would be understandable, as I don't think MS is selling 2K3 anymore) but on older systems that already included a valid license (Windows was already purchased, no need to buy again!), there is no excuse. So what can I say? We are dealing with evil and incompetent people who deserve to be removed and replaced by better people who are worthy to be leaders in the computer industry.