Archive of UserLand's first discussion group, started October 5, 1998.

Compaq DOA, Microsoft NT setup cruel and unusual punishment

Author:Dave Winer
Posted:8/25/1999; 2:54:59 PM
Topic:Next clonemaker, Compaq
Msg #:9880 (In response to 9720)
Prev/Next:9879 / 9881

The saga continues!

The Compaq arrived this morning a couple of days late, and I happily cleared off the desk space for it and started the install, but it got tripped up when it started to install Windows NT networking. It would loop over a dialog saying certain files were missing on the hard drive, it asked me to click on OK, but when I clicked on OK it just brought the dialog back up again.

So I called Compaq. We spent 1.5 hours wasting time because the service tech didn't listen to me explain what was going on. Another 1.5 hours later my wireless phone ran out of batteries and we got disconnected and I had to start over with another tech.

We pulled the networking card and did the setup and this time NT completed the install. We waited while NT restarted no less than six times during the setup, each time getting slightly closer to a running system. Finally the system was up, but there was no networking. We went to Compaq's FTP site and downloaded a 7 megabyte file, which doesn't fit onto a floppy of course, so I had to do a makedisk and move it across to the other machine. Choose Properties from Network Neighborhood, yes I have the disk, install, bad disk, go back and make another disk, try again, it installs, but still no network.

I called my credit card company and cancelled payment. I lost the best part of a day on this bullshit. I have two complaints, one for Compaq, who can't take an order (the first screwup) and can't deliver hardware that works.

The second complaint is with Microsoft. I finally figured out that they don't produce an operating system that a mortal human being can set up. I have some advice for Microsoft. Every executive should buy a machine for themselves, from one of the clone vendors, and struggle thru the process your users have to go thru. You're horribly vulnerable. Compared to this process, setting up Linux was a breeze. If you really want to be humbled, go buy a Mac. Turn the mother on, click on a few control panels, and you're on the net.

Where do I want to go today? I want to be able to spend $2000 and get a computer that works! None of the clone vendors can do this. They all point the finger back at Microsoft. You want to know what? I think they're right.

Why I wrote this now

I always forget how humiliating the NT setup process is. I always fail to write it up. I wanted to do this now, while the experience is totally fresh, so I won't forget.

Thanks for listening.

There are responses to this message:

This page was archived on 6/13/2001; 4:52:05 PM.

© Copyright 1998-2001 UserLand Software, Inc.