Summary: I purchased a top-of-the-line Dell XPS M1330 with Windows Vista Ultimate and all of the best options available including 3-year support. Within the first 30 days the system’s performance has degenerated to nearly unusable, and Dell’s promised “Premium Support” has been a bad joke.
Windows Reliability and Performance Monitor illustrates my laptop’s quick descent into Hell:
I will try to refrain from commentary, and just present the facts. I have only used the laptop for checking POP3 (Earthlink) email and composing MS Office documents (Excel and Word). I’ve installed two programs since purchase, both listed below:
9/26Ordered Dell XPS M1330 with Windows Vista Ultimate as a birthday present for myself.
9/29Laptop ships from Dell.
10/2Laptop arrives and I boot it up for the first time.
I install iTunes (with Quicktime). No problems.
I install LoJack for laptops. No problems.
Outlook crashes for the first time.
Windows has a fatal error and crashes for the first time.
Windows starts displaying winrnr.dll popup error at startup and intermittently during use. They are caused by the pre-installed Dell Support software running constantly in the background.
11/1Internet research reveals many others with windrnr.dll error. No solution found. I try reverting back to an earlier, error-free System Restore point. After that failed to stop the errors, I send an email to Dell Support.
11/230 Days after booting up my laptop, Outlook is crashing daily and I get constant popup winrnr.dll errors The system is nearly unusable.
Dell Support sent curt email telling me to run a "System Repair".
I call Dell Support and they tell me that this issue is not covered, then try to sell me a per-incident software help plan.
I calm down and call Dell Support again. This time the representative tells me the issue is covered and spends an hour looking around my desktop remotely. Finally they give up and tell me to call Microsoft.
I call Microsoft and they tell me that Dell should cover this issue since Windows Vista came pre-installed.
I emailed my Case manager from phone call #2 about my conversation with Microsoft, and someone else replies back that this issue is not covered, and they try to sell me a per-incident software help plan.
Reluctantly, I elect to try and run Windows System Repair. I get an error message that does not allow me to continue. I email Dell Support with one last impassioned plea for help. Dell responds saying to revert my system back to the Factory Settings. I will lose all of my data and restore my system to its original shipped state.
What to do now?
I’m extremely hesitant to revert my machine back to its original “pristine” condition. Not only will I lose all of my settings, but there is no guarantee I won’t just relive this situation all over again. I mean, I was getting errors right out of the box.
The culprits for most of the errors seem to be Google Desktop (pre-installed software), Google Toolbar (pre-installed software), and Dell Support (pre-installed software). Even though all of this software came pre-installed and I purchased every Dell Support planned purchased, Dell is unable or unwilling to help. Dell says Microsoft is to blame. Microsoft says Dell is to blame. The consumer gets screwed. It’s win-win for everyone!
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