Bits from Bill

Technology thoughts leaking from the brain of "Bill Pytlovany"

Saturday, April 21, 2007

Dell Offers Windows XP As Choice

Responding to overwhelming customer feedback, Dell has announce it will begin allowing more systems to be configured with Windows XP.  When shopping online for Inspiron Laptops and/or Dimension Desktops look for the Windows XP option on the right side of the screen.

Windows XP still available from Dell

Dell is still promoting Windows Vista but allowing this choice is a huge concession. Obviously, the folks in Redmond can’t be happy. According to Dell, the change was the result of user feedback on their Dell Idea Storm customer web site.  Idea Storm is like a Digg/SlashDot system for customer feedback. The topic “Don't eliminate XP just yet" has received over 12,000 votes.

Two months ago, disgruntled, I wrote “Dell says No to XP, Recommend Virtual PC” and since that time, three family members have purchased new Dell laptops with Vista installed.  As it turns out, they’re all pretty happy with Vista.

My brother John (Inspiron 6400)  says, “The more I use Vista, the more I really like it”.

My daughter Erica (Inspiron E1505) says, “Vista wasn’t as disruptive as I had expected”. She also had this to say about Office 2007, “At first the new Office 2007 interface annoyed me, but within 20 minutes I realized this was how it should have always been done”.

And lastly, my sister Mary (Inspiron E1405) who had problems that I wrote about titled, “Great New Dell Vista Laptop but No Internet”  now says, “I would have gotten XP, but I’m now glad I was forced to get Vista”.


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Anonymous Anonymous said...

Bill P.
Your family members love Vista OS because if they have a problem they can run to you or you are highly connected with others who can help get you answers quickly. For others help is at best hard to get if you don't know alot about computer and rely on help from others who may or may not know what they are doing and then you run the risk of screwing up the computer.
I'll stick with XP cause I've been using it for years now and it has not failed me yet. I'm glad Dell is now realizing people like me will now upgrade to a new computer and have my time tested XP OS system running in it for a few more years.
If I was very knowlegeable on computers I too would try out Vista. Maybe I'll get a second system to learn Vista's OS but for now I depend on my computer to do all my daily work, bills, buying and etc. When you are not computer savy you stay with what works for you and experiment on another machine.
The last time I tried to get help from the M.S. help line I spent 2 hours on the phone and could not understand the guy I was talking to who sounded like he was from India! See Bill if I had your clout one call to M.S. could get me answers. For some people choice is better and Dell has recognized that.


1:33 PM  
Blogger zeelimer said...

An Interesting Dell WinXP/Vista Experience:

Saturday, my husband's new Dell XPS 410 with Vista Home Premium was delivered. It was on line for 1-2 hours yesterday (Sunday) before connectivity issues started intermittently and soon led to no connectivity at all.

He phoned Dell and was transferred to an "upper level" technician part way through the 2½ hour call. Finally, he asked me to speak with the tech and D/L a driver to put on the flash drive using my computer so he could install it. The driver was the cure.

His Vista installation was shipped with a WinXP network driver. Explanations were vague, especially second-hand, but included mention of the Service Tag number. Parts of the documentation refer to the OS as XP, which seemed odd but caused no problem.

It sure looks like Dell upgraded WinXP boxes to Vista in-house (except for at least one driver & the paperwork we received). That must point to a business situation of some kind when combined with making XP available again just 2 days after our ‘puter was ordered. ~mj

2:37 PM  
Blogger zeelimer said...

Follow up: That driver cure was short-lived. After another 4.5 hours on the phone tonight with Dell and our own ISP (who confirms the good connection my computer is using), the new computer still can't connect to the Internet. Bill cited various connectivity issues among his relatives, too.

Dell techs seemed to believe there are additional incompatibilities in the machine and demonstrated a less than respectful attitude toward Vista in casual comments made to my husband during reboots.

Tomorrow, I'll call Sales/Customer Service and demand a replacement (a new box, same model, with WinXP) or a refund. We'll dispute the charge if it comes through on the card before the matter is resolved. ~mj

2:10 AM  
Blogger zeelimer said...

Addendum to “Follow up,” above:

It turned out that the XPS 410 isn’t one of the models currently available with WinXP. We decided to return the entire system for refund/credit, ending that transaction with a clean break. We’ll buy another (likely a Dimension E520) that IS available with WinXP. Satisfaction with my Dimension 2350 and its support since 2003 is the only reason for considering another Dell.

“Tina” said Dell would pay the return shipping costs IF the tech who was currently looking at “our case” elsewhere while communicating with her determined we were sending it back due to hardware problems. The technicians my husband spoke with for hours on end didn’t know whether hardware, software, or both were messed up.

They decided the return is due to software (Vista) problems and are sticking us with $150 they say it will cost to return the system via UPS: we’re paying a penalty for returning a non-functional Vista box. Software or hardware, the problem is Dell’s and/or M$N’s; it’s nothing we did. At least I got a return authorization number by the call’s end, despite their best efforts to avoid reaching that point.

Dell has buried the PCs they’re offering with WinXP in a sub-group, “View All Promotions,” under a side category called “Dell Deals” at their site.

Above those models, there’s a huge chart comparing features of WinXP and Vista. Vista’s circles for the rated items are completely filled in while WinXP’s are less than half-filled or empty. Gotta smile at the obvious deception in their effort to “prove” Vista is the superior O/S.

Beyond that, there’s nothing amusing about what Dell is doing. Even if M$N is figuratively twisting their corporate arm, it doesn’t excuse how they’re treating their customers. ~mj

10:36 PM  
Anonymous Lesley said...

We run 2 pc's here, an XP lappie and a Vista desktop. I have to say I really like the Vista Home Premium OS, more progs are becoming compatible and the system seems very forgiving tbh. The speed of it is amazing. We still tend to keep all the important stuff on the XP lappie (which is backed up regularly) whilst we learn about this pc and it's capabilities. The Windows Live Onecare all-in-one security suite (on a free 90 day trial) seems to be doing it's job and keeps things running quietly and smoothly (we still have Scotty sitting obediently in the taskbar just to be sure). All in all things are moving quickly, and Vista is on the whole very good. On a note of irony, I still use an external floppy drive connected to the XP lappie coz I believe it has a longer shelf life than a flash drive for storing documents - I got fed up 'flashing up' Nero just to store/change a document, it's so much quicker by floppy (and the floppy discs are so cheap now too!!)

1:42 PM  
Blogger nobody said...

serious not offending but i disagree at vista it is a big mistake from MS and i shall tell why if you install vista clean do notice the hi usage of the ram i think wtf why i would optimized the page file system if i was them but that's me ow by the wy i love xp more flexible

and for the note i have 4 xp systems 2 server2003 enterprise 2 Linux servers 1 solaris10 system 1 freebsd and 1 Linux workstation so you will notice that i know what i talk about again this is not in an offending way meant

7:20 PM  

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