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geoff (2013)

  reversethis-{gro ... om} {ta} {ffoeg}

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Journal of geoff (2013)

Wednesday December 05, 2001
08:17 AM

customer service

[ #1495 ]
I had a hard drive failure the other night on my home firewall which, along with various @home problems, is making life difficult. this particular hard drive is really getting on my nerves though...

some years ago, when I was running solely on that other OS, I had a drive failure and lost all of my data - old college papers, years of TurboTax, MSMoney records, the works. After the cursing subsided, I received a replacement drive from Western Digital. Well, that old Pentium 120 with 32MB RAM has become my Linux firewall (with backups) and has behaved rather nicely - except that the replacement drive Western Digital provided just failed. Ugh.

Can these people actually make hardware that works? Granted, hard drives fail, but the drives I use from other companies like quantum, maxtor, and seagate seem to go on forever. not WD.

So, I email Western Digital asking that, even though my drive is out of warranty by a few months, can they please replace it with one that works. They basically say 'No, we can't, but we'll give you $15 toward a new drive.' Why would I want to buy a product from a company that can't seem to get it right and doesn't stand behind their product when they mess up?

I find this type of customer service staggering. How many more drives will I buy in my lifetime? How many will I buy for computer-illiterate friends and family? Now, how many of these are likely to be WD drives if they piss me off? To Western Digital, the cost of all of this business is one hard drive, which probably costs less than $5 to manufacture, and about the same to ship. $10 for a happy consumer.

I was once in a McDonalds and dropped my drink on the floor. Not only did they clean it up (I helped :) but they brought me a new drink. for free. $0.05 cents for a cup, some carbonated beverage, and a straw and you get a happy customer.
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  • You can't buy Hitachi drives, generally, unless you're an OEM. Unfortunately the OEM's tend to buy them a lot. They must be cheap. I've had two Hitachi drives fail on me now, after about the same length of time too (both 2.5" laptop drives). So... if you're in the market for a laptop, check what type of HD it is.

    Customer service seems to be a dying art (or maybe it was never alive). We strive where I work to always get it right regarding customer service (we won two awards for it), but I don't think most