I have a Toshiba Satellite laptop. While on vacation in Sonoma California, the laptop started getting stuck at the BIOS page. After returning home, the problem got progressively worse every day.
We weren't sure what was wrong because it would just lock up for no reason, and when it restarted, it didn't give me any messages about any problems, ie. Windows was turned off improperly, or however that is normally worded, and the computer would work with no problems until the next time it decided to lock up.
Finally, a couple weeks after returning home from vacation, the laptop got to the point where when it locked up, the intervals between when restarted it would progress past the BIOS screen varied between a couple attempts in a 5 minute period, on again off again attempts ... (around 5 at a time) in an time period of upwards of 10 - 12 hours.
I got online and chatted with the service operator at City Assure, on the online chat. I explained the problem and he suggested I send it in. They sent me a box and a shipping label, and I send the laptop to their facilities in Texas. A little more than a week later, the laptop was back. The report stated that they flashed the BIOS. The hard drive was also wiped.
Less than 3 days later, the problems started up again. I had just re-loaded all the service packs for windows, and hadn't even put any of the files I was able to back up before sending it out. So I got online again, and the service agent I chatted with told me I would have to send it back out.
A few days later, I went to Circuit City to the FireDog Desk, to show them what the problem was. I figured maybe I wasn't clear enough in describing the problem I was having, and maybe they would be able to better state what was wrong, so the computer would be fixed correctly this time. He started to flash the BIOS and show me how to do it. He saw that this step had already been taken, and said I probably needed a new motherboard.
Now for some reason, while he was getting ready to flash the BIOS, I asked him if it would wipe the hard drive. He looked at me like I was nuts and told me no it would not. I told him that when I sent the computer out to Texas, they had flashed it and wiped the Hard Drive, and the Firedog tech told me he had no idea why they would have done that.
He wrote a note describing the problem with the laptop, and added his suggestion for a new motherboard, and sent the laptop out from the store. This time the repairs took three weeks.
When I got the laptop back this time, the report came back that they replaced the motherboard, and this time, the hard drive was NOT wiped. I find/found it strange that they needed to wipe the hard drive to flash the BIOS, but were able to replace the motherboard without feeling the need to wipe it again.
When the computer came back, I went in with the original receipt and all the disks/papers/warranty/access codes and whatnot that I got when I originally bought the laptop. I pointed out that I had paid for Circuit City to install Spy Sweeper and MSOFFICE 2003(?) Student and Teacher Edition .. and I had lost both, when the hard drive got wiped for what I was told ... 'no good reason'. I told them I wanted everything I paid for reloaded onto the laptop.
Unfortunately this could not happen, because for some reason, *and this could be my fault* I had a disc for MSOFFICE but no access code. I put everything into a large ziplock bag when I came home with the laptop the day I bought it, so nothing would get lost, but admittedly I may have missed something, a paper or backing of a CD-ROM that had the access code for OFFICE on it.
In conclusion, City Assure had to fix my laptop twice, and wiped my hard drive for no reason. Through a mistake by either Circuit City or myself, I no longer have MSOFFICE which is a decent sized chunk of change to replace if I decide to.
Tonight, I noticed that even though the computer isn't freezing up, I have been loading music CDs back onto my laptop, and rebooted after running a defrag. It got stuck at the BIOS screen twice before finally booting correctly.
So there is a chance that after them flashing the BIOS, wiping my hard drive needlessly, and replacing the motherboard, the same problem is still present on it
Anonymous in chicago
U.S.A. Click here to read other Rip Off Reports on Circuit City