You know when you’ve pissed-off the gods of entropy, when you are hit by a series of dysfunctions, failures, and other annoyances and you only can blame it on the law of series. Or as Jacques Chirac said: “Les emmerdes, ça vole toujours en escadrille.”. A couple of weeks ago one of my NASes died, shortly followed by my workstation. Finally, this week, one of our iPhone’s battery swell making it unsafe to use. Not too shabby for a black series, right! To keep a positive attitude, I thought it will be a great opportunity to compare how Western Digital, Microsoft and Apple supports their paying customers and to share this experience with you.

The Best in Class

Apple is the winner hands down. In 20 minutes tops, the support team identified and explained the issue’s root cause. For a reasonable ~$80$, they swap exchange and setup the new phone! What a delight. For an initial investment on ~$600, ~$80 and 20 minutes of our time later, the problem was solved! Although it is not essential – but always appreciated –, the support team was professional, friendly and made us feel worthy of their attention. Thank you!

Improvements Required

Microsoft support team was professional and compassionate. However, they could not root cause or solve my problem, and let me with limited options and a useless computer. The PC failed to boot after a minor SW update, following a successful upgrade to Windows 10 Creator’s Update. One positive note: I could request the support to call me back, so I avoided listening elevator music for eons or messaging with a stubborn chat bot. Thank you very much. What sucks with Microsoft, is their inability to deviate from their troubleshooting scripts and their failure to understand when they should escalate a ticket to the next level. Indeed, the support technician latched on the error message (INNACESSIBLE BOOT DEVICE), and could not say anything else than “contact your drive manufacturer for help”. I tried to explain that a new SSD is unlikely to fail because of a minor SW update, and that no issues were found by chkdsk run via the special boot menu of Windows 10. I even tried humor at some point to unlock the situation asking if “I should call Intel’s offices in Santa Clara next and ask them to help me with Windows 10”. You won’t believe it, I obtained a “yes, exactly Sir.”. For an initial investment of ~$200, and after an hour or so on the phone, my $5K workstation was left unusable. I finally solved the problem – if you have the similar issue – by reverting to the previous version of Windows from the boot menu. I will wait until Microsoft solves his problems with the Creators’ Update before attempting the adventure again.

Death is Sweeter Than You WD!

Western Digital’s customer support barely deserves an F. The support technician was disdainful and totally incompetent. He could not identify the problem or solve it. As a result, I lost all the stored data after I’ve spent ~$1600 for this SMB-class NAS. Cherry on the cake, WD made a ridiculous compensation offer! More on his later. But first the issue. As you may read it the post linked below, both network interfaces of a Sentinel DX4000 died the same day. After reading similar posts on the web, I’ve requested an RMA for the unit. And the nightmare started. After two weeks of mail exchanges, I finally received via mail: ”Based on the information provided, it seems like the network card on the device is defective. I’ve made a research in the case and the warranty status on this product WUDxxxxxxxx is already expired on 4/10/2016. Due to the time elapsed since the warranty expiration date of this product, we are unable to replace it through our RMA Services. However, we can provide you with a 25% discount coupon to order a WD drive. The coupon can only be redeemed at our WD Online Store.”. Really WD?! Let me use an analogy here, so you can understand why you barely deserve an F. It is like if an entire family perished in a car crash imputable to the manufacturer, and their relatives were offered a coupon for a free tire if they decide to buy a new set from the online store! WD, you should know by now that customer’s data is precious, and yes, you have the moral responsibility to do your utmost to ensure data safety. Since I am let alone to solve the problem, I will try to replace the NICs and see where I go from there. What I definitively do know, is that I will stop spending my money on WD products.

Dead WD NAS: https://plus.google.com/u/0/+JamelTayeb/posts/Z1sMg2dZs7C.

Windows 10 Creators’ Update: https://plus.google.com/u/0/+JamelTayeb/posts/a5iNRjHHS4E.

#Western #Digital #WD #Microsoft #Apple #Customer #Support