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[personal profile] leticia
Thanksgiving: I take a four day weekend, the first time in months I've had anything besides my regular weekend, given that I work almost all holidays.

The motherboard on my desktop gives up. I pull the drive, back some stuff off to the laptop, and fail over to the laptop - it's only a year old, and almost as good as the desktop.

Just after Christmas: I take a slightly long weekend...

You know where this is going, right? My laptop starts bluescreening; within 24 hours, bluescreen turns into 'can't boot into any OS because of hardware errors'. The laptop that's now just a few months OVER a year old... and out of warranty.

Called up ASUS, and let me give ASUS serious props here: they gave me an RMA number without ever asking about the warranty status of the laptop. They gave me a shipping label. I had to buy packaging because the laptop box had vanished in the move, for a grand total of 8 bucks.

BUT, apparently it's using some Interesting Proprietary partitioning on the drive, because I couldn't read it on any of the computers in the house with a USB-sata adapter - they all saw it as a single unformated volume instead of three partitions - recovery, OS, and DATA. So to back it up, I had to wait for when Brian wasn't using his computer and physically install the drive into his computer, directly connected to the ASUS motherboard. (Which fortunately could interpret the ASUS proprietary partitioning!) Clonezilla, as always, is awesome.

So it took me over a week after getting my RMA to get the laptop to fedex. In two days on 1/9, it had arrived at the ASUS facility in CA; their RMA tracking page changed to show repair in progress, estimated completion (which everything warned me was just a total guess based on averages and had nothing to do with my particular situation) of 1/12. On 1/12, nothing changed, but the estimated completed time vanished.

On 1/15, I talked to ASUS's livechat support in the afternoon - I was worried about the warranty issue and whether they were trying to bill me for repairs and I'd missed the email or something. The guy I talked to told me that his records showed that repair had only begun 1/11 and that average repair time was 10 days. Okay, I thought, the tracking system they have isn't really good. But okay. I can wait if they'll repair it for free.

That evening, when I came home, I found a fedex 'could not deliver, need signature' form on the door. Neither Brian nor I had any idea what it was for.

1/16, Brian was home when fedex came calling. It was a box from ASUS...

Yep, before I even talked to the representative who told me it could be another week before they even shipped my laptop, fedex had already tried to deliver it.

So: ASUS customer service, mixed bag. Most important thing is mad props for fixing my laptop and fixing it free and fixing it relatively fast - just over a week total including shipping time, had we been home to get it when Fedex first tried to deliver it. On the props side, it's also worth noting that the guy I first spoke to on the phone listened when I told him I'd already tried safe mode and etc, and didn't walk me slowly through all those same tests again, and was able to issue the RMA on the very first person I talked to, no transferring me to other support levels because it wasn't a software problem or etc.

But their internal tracking system WHAT? How could their rep think it was just STARTED on the day it was COMPLETED? (Though since it was definitely dead parts - CPU and GFX got replaced they might have just slapped out the old ones and tossed in the new ones in an hour or two.) Also, for no reason I can discern, they replaced my harddrive and restored it to factory defaults. When the blue screens started I'd done a complete sector scan and found nothing wrong. All I can say is I love clonezilla, but I feel really sorry for ASUS users who find themselves in a similar situation and AREN'T comfortable pulling 20 screws out of a laptop and then installing the drive in a desktop to back it up. And have large external harddrives sitting around empty. And...

So to take away from that: Would and will buy ASUS again. Getting repairs free is great, even if I'm disappointed that it croaked in just over a year (and it's worth noting the dead motherboard in my desktop is also ASUS but that was over three years old). But if I ever need ASUS service? BACK IT ALL UP.

And I have a decent computer again, even if my desktop is still dead. Sigh.
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April 2017

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