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takeahike
Premium
join:2005-01-07
Woodland Hills, CA

1 edit
reply to H_T_R_N

Re: Fuck Dell

People are constantly comparing your charge to the deals they've seen in the paper or on-line. Yes, if you educate them about their data (as I pointed out before as a way to get jobs) you can collect more. But with everything that you're adding on the total is often going to chase them away. I usually try to make the price in a range that I can get them to justify to themselves.

I'll tell you, after 22 years and selling lots of systems, I really prefer to concentrate on repairs (and the market has changed such that that is the reality). Like I said I used to sell a lot more systems, and while it was definitely more money in my pocket the stress level from the expectations the client subsequently has of you was really almost more than I could take, particularly with laptops that you may have to depend on someone other than yourself, i.e., the manufacturer, to fix.
--
"The best laid schemes of mice and men often go awry . . . " --Robert Burns



takeahike
Premium
join:2005-01-07
Woodland Hills, CA
reply to AsherN

Re: F**k Dell

said by AsherN:

Side accessible HDD takes 2.5 inches of space. For an item that most users will never have to remove.

Well, this one was more or less in the same space in the lower right-hand corner as a side accessible drive. All it was missing was the accessibility, so I don't see how it would have taken up any more space if they just had placed a handle there to pull it out. The user may not remove it but--especially with all the software problems that are bound to occur--removing the drive is far and away the most common device that will need this access.
--
"The best laid schemes of mice and men often go awry . . . " --Robert Burns


Wily_One
Premium
join:2002-11-24
San Jose, CA
Reviews:
·AT&T U-Verse

1 recommendation

reply to takeahike

Re: Fuck Dell

said by takeahike:

This is my full-time "job."

And thus not Enterprise IT related. Your post is about the hassles of fixing people's #@$!! computers, when the very NAME of this forum is "No, I Will Not Fix Your #@$!! Computer!"

I used to do side work along these lines, and for me it was more trouble than it was worth. (and I charged $90-100/hr) I only work for family now.

Bottom line is if you choose to do jobs like this, then you choose to work on all the craptastic low-end Dells, HPs, etc. no matter how cheaply made or hard to work on they are. As others have said, most companies have a standard model or set of models, which I guarantee their tech support staff have learned how to work on with their eyes closed.


BK3

join:2001-04-10
Geneva, IL
Reviews:
·AT&T Yahoo
reply to takeahike

said by takeahike:

said by BK3:

said by takeahike:

Wow, you charge twice the amount I do for the same work.

Well, if I was doing this just for beer and pizza half the amount would be fine. Do you have a "day" job that pays the mortgage? Do you just work out of your house?

Yes, Global corp IT support.
Yes
If anyone tried to charge the prices you do here in my neck of the woods, my side work would jump to such an amount that I would not be able to keep up, nor would I try. I try to limit myself to 1 or 2 a week, that's all I want. I don't sell systems, software or add-ons, and only the occasional repair part (not marked up).

95% of the computers people bring to me to work on are Dell, (mostly software issues) plus where I work is a Dell shop. So all day and into the night it is Dell, Dell, Dell. So, I have gotten quite proficient at working with Dells of all models.
--
Learn from the past and look to the future.


takeahike
Premium
join:2005-01-07
Woodland Hills, CA

4 edits
reply to Wily_One

said by Wily_One:

said by takeahike:

This is my full-time "job."

And thus not Enterprise IT related. Your post is about the hassles of fixing people's #@$!! computers, when the very NAME of this forum is "No, I Will Not Fix Your #@$!! Computer!"

Well, where's the right forum? I haven't seen anything close except this one for this type of discussion. "Choosing" a line of work is not quite as simple as deciding what to eat for dinner. I have to avoid starving to death during any career changes to a cushy corporate job.
--
"The best laid schemes of mice and men often go awry . . . " --Robert Burns


takeahike
Premium
join:2005-01-07
Woodland Hills, CA
reply to BK3

I guess different parts of the country have different rates. What are major retailers--for example, Geek Squad or Staples--or small independent shops in your area charging?
--
"The best laid schemes of mice and men often go awry . . . " --Robert Burns



Wily_One
Premium
join:2002-11-24
San Jose, CA
reply to takeahike

I'd say the »Computer Hardware Help forum.



takeahike
Premium
join:2005-01-07
Woodland Hills, CA

I wanted opinions from those who work on systems, not from potential customers trying to do it themselves. Looks like there really is no forum for my line of work.
--
"The best laid schemes of mice and men often go awry . . . " --Robert Burns



BK3

join:2001-04-10
Geneva, IL
Reviews:
·AT&T Yahoo

1 edit
reply to takeahike

said by takeahike:

I guess different parts of the country have different rates. What are major retailers--for example, Geek Squad or Staples--or small independent shops in your area charging?

The only big box near me is Best Buy - The rates are set by the BB corp. I don't track them. They don't have a sign out displaying the rates. Several people have come to me after GS really messed up their computer. The GS reputation around here is very low. People seem to like me when I do the service work.

OOOps - forgot - There is a Staples near me, but I have never seen or heard of anyone getting a computer serviced there. I don't remember a sign or advertisement telling the rates.

There used to be a CompUSA near here. They were charging $100.00 up front to look at a machine, then applying that to the labor if you accepted the estimate. They are now out of business - need I say more?

Edit - spelling
--
Learn from the past and look to the future.


takeahike
Premium
join:2005-01-07
Woodland Hills, CA

Thanks! The big box stores are out-of-business more because of on-line pricing of components. Probably their service kept them in business as long as it could, similar to car dealerships who often have to sell their inventory at cut-rate prices. I'm sure you've noticed in the business news that Best Buy is in deep trouble and is making it into articles discussing brands that may no longer be here at the end of 2013.
--
"The best laid schemes of mice and men often go awry . . . " --Robert Burns



elwoodblues
Elwood Blues
Premium
join:2006-08-30
Somewhere in
kudos:2
Reviews:
·VMedia
reply to BK3

said by BK3:

said by takeahike:

This one is an Inspiron N5030.

This is your problem. The Inspiron line are the "consumer level" machines, designed to be inexpensive. This often equates to "difficult to work on"

I work with Latitudes on a daily basis (D620, D630, E6400, E6410, E6420 and E6220 and soon the new E6430 and E6230). The HDDs in these are simple to pull and replace.
Plus the Lats are far better built than the Inspirons. Yes, they cost more but are worth it.

They are all pretty much the same product with a different label on them.
--
No, I didn't. Honest... I ran out of gas. I... I had a flat tire. I didn't have enough money for cab fare. My tux didn't come back from the cleaners. An old friend came in from out of town. Someone stole my car. There was an earthquake.......


dfrandin
Premium
join:2002-06-14
Las Vegas, NV
Reviews:
·Virpus.com
reply to nonymous

said by nonymous:

I bought one of those cheap Dells then found out about the hard drive...

There's your mistake..Buying one of those "cheap Dells".. A retired 20+ year laptop tech/10+ years on Dells.. Dell laptops are fabulous IF you stay with the corporate models, namely Latitude and Precision, and Optiplex/Precision on desktops.. These laptop models are the "two screws to remove harddrive" types.. The "home user" Inspirons? not so much... And pricewise? Since I'm retired, I do a fair amount of consulting on computer issues, and I swear by the Dell Outlet.. I've lost track of how many people I've steered to purchasing a corporate model laptop (or desktop) from the Outlet.. The systems are current model, come with 3 year warantees, US-based support, are factory-refurbished, and come with a serious discount, from 10% to 25%, depending on which of the three condition tiers you buy from. Never had a client come back and say "Hey.. that Dell I bought was $@#%#$%43"... Not once..
Just my .02..

LVDave

Oedipus

join:2005-05-09
kudos:1
reply to elwoodblues

said by elwoodblues:

said by BK3:

said by takeahike:

This one is an Inspiron N5030.

This is your problem. The Inspiron line are the "consumer level" machines, designed to be inexpensive. This often equates to "difficult to work on"

I work with Latitudes on a daily basis (D620, D630, E6400, E6410, E6420 and E6220 and soon the new E6430 and E6230). The HDDs in these are simple to pull and replace.
Plus the Lats are far better built than the Inspirons. Yes, they cost more but are worth it.

They are all pretty much the same product with a different label on them.

No they're not.


BK3

join:2001-04-10
Geneva, IL

Agreed, they are certainly NOT the same.



BronsCon

join:2003-10-24
Walnut Creek, CA
Reviews:
·SONIC.NET
reply to ilikeme

said by ilikeme:

said by Max_War:

They are just following Apple's exterior case designs. Unlike Apple, at least you can open a PC laptop to do repairs.

I take it you have never actually opened a mac. Don't knock it until you actually have. I have, and they are quite easy to access everything (HDD, RAM, Disc Drive, ETC.) Easier than many PC laptops.

Replace the RAM in a Retina MBP, then come talk to me. Before those hit the market, I used to agree with you; if you actually still feel that way, you're a bit behind the times.


chip89
Premium
join:2012-07-05
Independence, OH
reply to takeahike

My inspiron 1545 has a panel for the hard drive and other major parts to get the hard drive out I believe you have to take out the heat sink first and then take out the hard drive.



takeahike
Premium
join:2005-01-07
Woodland Hills, CA

This model I was working on (n5030) and the other current ones are the next generation from the 1545, at least on the Inspiron line (I had a 1545 and now have a n5040, the n5040 also of the new generation).
--
"The best laid schemes of mice and men often go awry . . . " --Robert Burns



exocet_cm
Free at last, free at last
Premium
join:2003-03-23
New Orleans, LA
kudos:3
reply to chip89

said by chip89:

My inspiron 1545 has a panel for the hard drive and other major parts to get the hard drive out I believe you have to take out the heat sink first and then take out the hard drive.

I have three 1545 laptops and I love em. I bought my first one in 2009-ish from somebody here on BBR. Bought another one for my wife after my first one also from somebody here on BBR. Bought a third one on eBay for a family member.

They are super easy to upgrade. All three were base models and I bought the bluetooth 360 adapter, webcam, mini-WLAN card, and Intel turbo-memory mini-PCI cards and upgraded all three. I've upgraded the CPU on mine, maxed the ram, integrated a GPS receiver into the chassis, upgraded the HDD over time (about to put in an SSD), been through two keyboards, four touchpads/mice buttons, and on my second hi-cap battery.

By far the best Dell laptop I've ever purchased.
--
"I have measured out my life with coffee spoons..." - T.S Eliot
"I have often regretted my speech, never my silence." - Publilius Syrus
Ma blog: »www.johndball.com

Oedipus

join:2005-05-09
kudos:1

You've gone through two keyboards and four touchpads/mouse buttons in the last three years? That doesn't sound out of the ordinary to you?

Going back to the whole "Latitudes/Precisions are better" theme, I am on my E6410 for 8-12 hours a day, every day, and have been doing so since I got it back in early 2010. I have replaced absolutely nothing.



exocet_cm
Free at last, free at last
Premium
join:2003-03-23
New Orleans, LA
kudos:3

said by Oedipus:

You've gone through two keyboards and four touchpads/mouse buttons in the last three years? That doesn't sound out of the ordinary to you?

Going back to the whole "Latitudes/Precisions are better" theme, I am on my E6410 for 8-12 hours a day, every day, and have been doing so since I got it back in early 2010. I have replaced absolutely nothing.

Not when I use it all the time for work and personal use.
Edit: Make it 4 years, 2 months, 3 days, 14 hrs, and 54 minutes old. Bought it used from AbBaZaBbA See Profile.
--
"I have measured out my life with coffee spoons..." - T.S Eliot
"I have often regretted my speech, never my silence." - Publilius Syrus
Ma blog: »www.johndball.com


dennismurphy
Put me on hold? I'll put YOU on hold
Premium
join:2002-11-19
Parsippany, NJ
kudos:3
Reviews:
·Verizon FiOS

1 recommendation

reply to takeahike

$130 to copy data off, reformat, reload Wintendo, update all the drivers etc, patches, etc and all that frustration? That's a bargain if I've ever heard one!

No way would I do it for that little ... I'd have to charge at least 4x that just for my frustration factor!

Glad there are honest folks like you out there - no way could I deal with all that stress for $130.

People ask me all the time about working on their PC - my usual response is 'you can't afford me' and I usually mean it



Veloslave
Geek For God
Premium
join:2003-07-11
Martinez, CA
Reviews:
·Comcast
·PHONE POWER
reply to takeahike

Re: F**k Dell

Just had an Inspiron the other day... wanted to pull the HD to Ghost a backup before reimaging. @(*#*&^&$%#$$#@!&)*(&%^$

No need to excuse your language... Dell, whom I like in the business world with their Latitudes have really told the consumer to go f themselves. This Laptop requires complete and total motherboard removal just to get at the mobo. That is just plain wrong.
--
Mom was right.... I NEED fiber!



AVD
Respice, Adspice, Prospice
Premium
join:2003-02-06
Onion, NJ
kudos:1

said by Veloslave:

This Laptop requires complete and total motherboard removal just to get at the mobo. That is just plain wrong.

why?
--
* seek help if having trouble coping
--Standard disclaimers apply.--


takeahike
Premium
join:2005-01-07
Woodland Hills, CA
reply to dennismurphy

Re: Fuck Dell

Thanks! There are opinions on the other side.


GroovyPhoenx

join:2006-05-22
Gloucester, ON
reply to takeahike

Re: F**k Dell

I have an older Inspiron, can't complain side slot HD mounted nd pull and change, have had to do it twice, 1st time due to failer (3 days before waranty expired!) and 2nd time wanted a bigger HD in it.

No fuss no muss.

and I charge about the same rates you do for HD replacement/rebuild since I don't try to make people believe I'm working for 4 hours on it (I might be clicking for 5 minutes) but the PC does the work itself.



Veloslave
Geek For God
Premium
join:2003-07-11
Martinez, CA
Reviews:
·Comcast
·PHONE POWER
reply to AVD

said by AVD:

said by Veloslave:

This Laptop requires complete and total motherboard removal just to get at the mobo. That is just plain wrong.

why?

That is what the thread is wondering and complaining about
--
Mom was right.... I NEED fiber!


AVD
Respice, Adspice, Prospice
Premium
join:2003-02-06
Onion, NJ
kudos:1

said by Veloslave:

said by AVD:

said by Veloslave:

This Laptop requires complete and total motherboard removal just to get at the mobo. That is just plain wrong.

why?

That is what the thread is wondering and complaining about

What computer does not need a motherboard removal to get to the mobo?
--
* seek help if having trouble coping
--Standard disclaimers apply.--

mikefxu

join:2004-10-05
Titusville, FL
reply to takeahike

Technology has become so disposable there is no concern for repairability. You have to adapt to change. I don't enjoy working on iDevices and Ultrabooks, but they are here to stay and will probably get increasingly difficult to repair.

The requirement to remove the motherboard to replace the hard drive on my wife's Dell 14R has discouraged me from replacing it with a SSD, even though I have one on hand for it. She only uses it once a week versus her smart phone.



Boricua
Premium
join:2002-01-26
Sacramuerto
reply to Oedipus

Re: Fuck Dell

said by Oedipus:

You've gone through two keyboards and four touchpads/mouse buttons in the last three years? That doesn't sound out of the ordinary to you?

Going back to the whole "Latitudes/Precisions are better" theme, I am on my E6410 for 8-12 hours a day, every day, and have been doing so since I got it back in early 2010. I have replaced absolutely nothing.

I thought the same thing. I used to have the Inspiron 1525 I got from Dell Outlet in 2009 but it developed a problem with charging. There is an issue with these, and I suspect it may be the DC port which I have no desire to mess with ATM. I decided to get a Latitude (as I did hear it was of better quality being they are for businesses) and got a D830 last spring. It is a bit on the heavier side, but she's doing fine, and it came with a bluetooth.
--
Illegal aliens have always been a problem in the United States. Ask any Indian. Robert Orben


J E F F
Whatta Ya Think About Dat?
Premium
join:2004-04-01
Kitchener, ON
kudos:1
Reviews:
·Rogers Portable ..
reply to BronsCon

said by BronsCon:

said by ilikeme:

said by Max_War:

They are just following Apple's exterior case designs. Unlike Apple, at least you can open a PC laptop to do repairs.

I take it you have never actually opened a mac. Don't knock it until you actually have. I have, and they are quite easy to access everything (HDD, RAM, Disc Drive, ETC.) Easier than many PC laptops.

Replace the RAM in a Retina MBP, then come talk to me. Before those hit the market, I used to agree with you; if you actually still feel that way, you're a bit behind the times.

The pre 2012 MacBooks were pretty easy. The pre 2010 MacBooks you could do blindfolded. Though it's true the new ones are not easy, and in many cases, not possible.

My last Windows machine, the hard drive was located underneath the keyboard, although the keyboard was pretty easy to remove. (about 5 minutes worth of work)
--
If you can't explain it simply, you don't understand it well enough. - Albert Einstein