Background: Computer is at extremely rural 2nd home in High Sierra - winters are severe.
December, 2011: Alienware Area 51 is having video problems and RAID issue. Contact Your_Tech_Team_Blue ... two promised callbacks are never made. Winter closes in and realize I must wait until spring.
June, 2012: Contact Your_Tech_Team_Yellow. After tests, it is decided to replace coolant system, motherboard, and hard drives. I am impressed.
Note: To be in-place for in-home repair requires a ten hour drive in all the following.
Repair technician arrives but with wrong parts.
Ten days later, repair technician arrives and makes swaps. Immediately, fans are noisy. Contact Your_Tech_Team_Yellow (to be referred to as Dell from here forward). Coolant system is down.
Several days later, coolant system is replaced but system will not boot, contact Dell and it is agreed bios chip is bad.
Several days later, return for motherboard swap, repair technician is delayed by over one week - one week of work and personal time lost. Motherboard is replaced. Upon booting, computer immediately announces thermal system failure.
Contact Dell, technician decides only route in to replace entire computer - after ten days, supervisors say no.
Several days later, motherboard, cooling system and fans are replaced. Again, immediately, video failure, various warnings upon booting, etc. Contact Dell, working with technician for two-to-three hours, cannot remain operational. I am ask to reinstall Windows and begin process on my own. Multiple tries are required as computer continuously shuts down. Still erratic behavior. Re-contact Dell. Senior technician begins reading background as system again crashes and shuts down. Technician realizes all is a lost cause and computer must be replaced.
Aurora R4 arrives and upon first booting receive thermal warnings, etc. Contact Dell. When technician cannot get system running a supervisor comes online and promises to escalate if I will work with technician and physically disassemble and reassemble parts. No success. Multiple technicians declare computer needs to be replaced and one actually remains after shift ends awaiting confirmation from supervisor.
Supervisor contacts me and wants to send repair technician, it appears to be of absolutely no concern I will be required to make another ten hour drive and I am on standby to be in Germany in seventy-two hours. Frustrated, I play the only card I have left and tell supervisor I will pay to have the Area 51 repaired by an independent source and please return my $249.00 I have been paying to Your-Tech_Team on an annual basis. I box and return the Aurora R4.
At this point, I must say, the technicians I have dealt with are of the highest caliber - if only their superiors and Dell Corporate were as concerned and competent.
Couple weeks later, Dell technicians have gone beyond the call of duty and have actually secured another replacement Aurora R4.
It arrives and barely boots. I contact Alienware technical support and it is quickly discerned the video cards are not properly installed. Further tests are run and CPU is found to have errors. It is decided motherboard and cooling system need to be replaced.
Several days later, swap is made. Computer fans scream. Immediately mention as much to repair technician and am assured all I need do is update bios. Doesn't help. Contact Alienware, coolant system is inoperative despite multiple software re-installs, etc.
I take Aurora R4 to Southern California in hopes another set of hands might have better luck but parts are never sent. Return computer to mountains and am currently awaiting repair technician, now delayed for six days. More time from work and life lost.
Additional: Your_Tech_Team supervisor(s) had promised I would receive a replacement computer that was equal to or superior to original. After running tests, learn replacement computer is inferior to original Area 51 in EVERY category save for RAM speed. Replacement computer did not arrive with promised top-end Sound Blaster card nor card readers. Area 51 had three hard drives, replacement arrives with one.
Replacement computer fans are so loud (cooling pump often fails) one cannot hear audio or speak on telephone and conference calls are a necessity.
Question: Where does it end? Five months later, I am financially out far more than the price of a new computer and if a value could be placed on frustration....
I have documentation and all records ... if it matters.
Above has been hastily written as I truly do not expect a reply (resolution appears beyond Dell's capability); multiple e-mails to customer support and unresolved resolutions and yet to ever receive a reply.
Sad. I have been a Dell customer since before they began selling to the public, back when the motto was "fix or replace in one working day." Currently five Dell computers in household ... I must be a slow learner.
i hear you man, i have maybe somewhere in the 600 dells registered in my name, and a simple warranty issue that if someone at dell would just SIT DOWN AND READ THE NOTES from other techs, i could be on my marry way!
Sadly you can have all the records like me and it does not seem to help!
best luck on your issue other dell satisfied customer!