A few years ago I purchased a Gateway laptop. This laptop came with a recovery partition on the hard drive, but no Windows XP setup disk. At boot-up it asked to create a set of recovery cd's so, I thought to myself, that's how they must be doing it now.
Fast forward to this week. My original hard drive has begun to give occasional write errors and seems to be on its last legs. All hard drives will fail eventually. So I bought a new hard drive at BestBuy and discovered just how wrong I was about those recovery cd's.
They aren't meant to be used on a new hard drive for the re-installation of the operating system. They are merely used for recreating the applications and drivers that came on the original install. They only work when Windows XP is already loaded onto the hard drive and the system is operational.
Without the Windows installation cd I was at an impasse, stuck. So I reinstalled the old hard drive and jumped online to Gateway support to ask them how I was supposed to put Windows onto my new hard drive and would they provide the missing cd?
If you've ever dealt with Gateway support before, you can probably guess the rest. If not, here's how it went. Gateway Online Technical Support: After verifying ... blah blah blah. After verifying ... blah blah blah blah, we see that your product is out of warranty. You [paraphrase] need to buy the cd.
I replied: No. You don't understand. I'm not purchasing something you were obligated to include in the original documentation and was found missing.
Gateway's unsupportive response: We are following the fixed process and policies of Gateway. We can't do anything against our policy.
I then asked for an escalation to someone with more decision-making authority. But even this small request was denied with, "As per our records your system is out of warranty. I am extremely sorry to inform you that as per Gateway policy we are unable to provide the RCD for customers who is purchasing the system before March 2006."
Gateway "customer support" is a misnomer and a farce -- they have hired semi-automated drones, whose sole purpose is to shut you down and blow you off in a most dismissive manner. As long as some bean counter at Gateway keeps signing their paychecks any problem of yours is not THEIR problem. You get an undeniable sense that what they really want to say to you is, "Go F**k yourself, dumb-a*s. You're a useless butt-licker. Can't you see we don't give a d**n?
Okay, so maybe that's a little over the top, but I'm bitter. I'm frustrated and I'm angry, stuck with a failing hard drive and no way to get the new one installed and running.
As consumers, we need to boycott companies with abysmal customer support, such as Gateway.
If we shop elsewhere, supporting, with our earned dollars, the companies that DO offer "genuine" support and DO treat their customers with appreciative respect and cooperation then, with luck, the indifferent ones and the worthless ones, like Gateway will fall off into deserved oblivion.
I will never buy another product manufactured by Gateway. My next computer will come with a logo that says Dxxx.
U.S.A. sorry, allowing you to give a competitors name would instigate others to just file against their competition, to only come back later to suggest their company your comments on this policy are welcome! CLICK here to see why Rip-off Report, as a matter of policy, deleted either a phone number, link or e-mail address from this Report. Click here to read other Rip Off Reports on Gateway Click here to read about the finance company for Gateway Computers