[rescue] comapq or dell??

Phil Stracchino alaric at caerllewys.net
Wed Jul 16 15:20:00 CDT 2003

On Wed, Jul 16, 2003 at 03:01:33PM -0500, Eric Dittman wrote:
> > > We're supposed to buy Dell stuff. I think Compaq is better if one is
> > > *forced* to buy non-server servers.
> > 
> > I disagree.  Dell will bite you in the ass on "special" parts (like
> > drive brackets, and little OEM-invented FRUs) far less often than
> > HewletDECompaqard.  Compaq also likes to make lots of their own parts,
> > which makes compatibility a hell once Compaq thinks you need to upgrade.
> > Dell mainly just rebadges stuff.
> Don't forget the Dell ATX motherboards and power supplies have a non-
> standard pinout.  The connector is the same, so if you plug a regular
> ATX motherboard into a Dell "ATX" power supply, you'll toast the board.

Consider also that Compaq has historically (during my experience with
them, at least) been very bad about returns.  If you have a machine with
a problem, they'll burn up your time forever replacing parts on a
swap-and-hope basis rather than replace the machine under warranty.
Once a box goes out the door, they don't EVER want to see it come back

At a former employer for whom I ran IS, we had a problem with a lemon
Compaq box on which, over the course of about six months, Compaq field
service technicians swapped out literally every component except the
case and the keyboard, some of them twice, and the machine STILL didn't
work right.  Symptoms included that you could start the machine with
either of two provided Compaq memory modules (same size, same speed,
same part number) in either of the two available slots, and it would
work, provided you only installed one module.  It didn't care which
module or where it was installed, so long as there was only one.  If you
installed both, the machine tossed its cookies.  Even with only one
module, the machine crashed randomly, usually within a few hours of
powering it up.

I finally got my hands on a copy of Compaq's own hardware diagnostic
software and faxed them 45 pages of diagnostics, at which point they
finally conceded that the machine was broken and authorized our vendor
to replace it.  Even then, it still took our vendor another 8 months to
get an actual RMA number out of Compaq to finally return the accursed[1]

Granted, this is probably an exceptional Compaq-warranty horror-story,
but still ....

[1] And I did not choose that word idly.

 .*********  Fight Back!  It may not be just YOUR life at risk.  *********.
 : phil stracchino : unix ronin : renaissance man : mystic zen biker geek :
 :  alaric at caerllewys.net : alaric-ruthven at earthlink.net : phil at latt.net  :
 :   2000 CBR929RR, 1991 VFR750F3 (foully murdered), 1986 VF500F (sold)   :
 :    Linux Now!   ...Because friends don't let friends use Microsoft.    :

More information about the rescue mailing list