Hilarious but horrifying tale of a misconfigured Dell workstation and dismal customer support

Originally published at: Hilarious but horrifying tale of a misconfigured Dell workstation and dismal customer support | Boing Boing


Do. Not. Read. The. Thread. Please. For. Your. Own. Sanity.

I stopped reading after a while. It boils down to someone who apparently has no clue about how a PC works, how to read an order form or a technical specification, can’t identify basic parts, has too much money, does not ask someone who has a clue and a lot of time on its hands.

I don’t understand how some ppl. survived that long.


Imagine reading “high performance” in a product description and thinking that must mean the product is capable of high performance.


I couldn’t make it far enough to figure out if Dell shipped him the wrong laptop, he didn’t know what he was actually buying, or it’s all satire.


This is where some place like a Best Buy could have helped. He’s not going to get a good deal, and they are going to try to attach a lot of accessories he doesn’t need, but at least chances are good he’d come home with a computer which did what he wanted it to do.

As he discovered the hard way - everything is proprietary in Dell’s. Normal stuff doesn’t really fit a lot of the time, by design. It’s OK if you are managing a fleet (some of those design decisions are really smart actually), but a home user noooo way.


Somewhere in there he mentions he bought a Precision 5820
Why he thought a machine obviously made for the business market would come with wi-fi built in? or would be ideal for video rendering? it’s beyond me.


No kidding. It was a hard read as I went full body cringe. Dell is awful as hell and I don’t like to blame the victim of things but damn he really should have asked somebody for advice early on. He has a large subscriber base for fuck sake.

I had a slight moment of confusion when I looked at his account name and icon and my first take was “Oh man, a furry? He could throw a stick and get somebody with a clue on tech…” but looking at his channel seems that side of very straight anime fandom with a furry name so that’s weird.


I bought a PC from Dell once. It was great. They set it up as credit payments, delivered it on time, never actually billed me a penny and it ran for years without any issues. Not the usual Dell story I know…


Of course his experience is pathetic and also comical (the way he writes it), but really, I would have returned it the same day.


from your link, it does say:

Your Precision 5820 Tower is ready for complex projects, including virtual reality and AI workflows, with the next generation AMD Radeon Pro™ and highest-performing NVIDIA® Quadro® RTX graphics. Your workstation supports up to 600W of graphics up to 300W per card (950W PSU required).

so, a very naive person might not notice it doesn’t mention any particular video card. especially since they say a particular power supply is needed, but not say: a video card

standard marketing speech is intentionally misleading.


Weirdly, of all of the companies I currently deal with the support departments from, Dell is probably the best and easiest, but I work in IT doing maintenance on a high end research cluster, so I call enterprise support, not home customer service, and when I’m calling them, I usually already know exactly what the problem is and have the diagnostic files to prove it.

On the other hand, a service rep from one of the other companies I’ve dealt with wanted me to fully disassemble an in-service 480 disk storage array and photograph the serial numbers of the internal components to prove we still had all original parts in the hardware before they would file a case for replacing a failed (hot swappable) hard disk.


contrary to what the general public might think, not every desktop comes with built in wifi.


I don’t tend to buy computers off the shelf. But I have used wifi cards integrated onto motherboards. Needless to say, I still buy wifi adapters.

Which by the way, you’d think they’d be crap for the way they cut corners, but I’ve been pretty pleased with the weird-ass wifi/bluetooth combo units which use the PCIe bus for power, and the internal USB pin headers for data.

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In which we learn that Twitter is a terrible platform for storytelling, and that some people shouldn’t be allowed credit cards.


standard marketing speech is intentionally misleading.

exactly! Who actually reads that stuff? Here you even have to scroll past the specifications to get to the fluff. Being clueless about computers is understandable, but trusting the company’s marketing babble is another kind of clueless.


Jesus, people… This is not what twitter is for.

Thread by @EyePatchWolf on Thread Reader App – Thread Reader App


Yep. I only got as far as “the system is slow” and I started asking myself “did you order it with SSD drives?” Sigh.

I’ve had great luck with Dells, and we use them in our Enterprise. I’ll grant him the customer service assistance on the back end was atrocious (they really need an “experts” hotline to call where you can get advice on what you should buy if you’re upgrading your system), but the initial problem was caused by his own unfortunate lack of knowledge. And yep, it can be quite frustrating. Twenty plus years of computer tech repair and I still find ordering new systems a bit overwhelming because everything changes so quickly.


Dell: all of the expensive proprietary lock-in of Apple, all of the arcane configuration frustrations (for non-techies) of Windows machines.

The guy should have returned it at the first sign of trouble and then should have taken some time and some advice from more knowledgeable people on how to order/build his own machine for less money. Or, failing that, he could have just given into the Jobs control-freak culture and bought a Mac.


I’ve generally had pretty good experience buying computers from Dell. And based on the Twitter thread, no way this guy should have been buying his own computer.

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expensive proprietary lock-in of Apple

What? No, not true. Fully customizable by the consumer if desired, like most PC’s. Buy whatever you like and install it. There’s nothing locked down about them and you aren’t limited to Dell parts and Dell repair techs to fix them (but if they’re under warrant, might as well use them).

The problem here was he didn’t know what HD to buy given the huge variety of hardware combinations that you can purchase for a PC. If you don’t buy the right one for the particular type of motherboard you have, you could be wasting your money. But that’s true of any system, not specific to Dell.