Tuesday, May 30, 2006

Potential Happiness...

I'm not quite happy yet, though I've finally managed to get someone to acknowlege my problem via email. If the problem is fixed, then I will be happy again. But in the future, the webmasters of the Symantec site would do well to bear in mind that navigating the site can be a pain in the butt if you don't know exactly which page to look for, and the Search function doesn't take me to a page that is helpful for my specific problem.

Saturday, May 27, 2006

Symantec's Last Chance To Make Me Happy

[First two paragraphs deleted. I'll just stick to one topic in this post.]

Anyway: I quite dislike calling people on the telephone I don't know. Fortunately this doesn't come up very often. However, recently I decided to upgrade all our Norton utilities and internet security to the latest versions. I opted for them to send me the physical CDs so I could easily install them on all the computers we have at home. It cost a little more than the download version after shipping, but (in theory) it was worth it. Norton Systemworks installed fine. But my Norton Internet Security is a bad disc.

Now let me explain something to you: my biological father is a Senior Systems Architect*. Unless you are in Computer Sciences Corporation yourself, you probably don't know exactly what that means, so let me spell it out for you: if he was a Catholic preist, he'd be a Cardinal. And I'm his son. I had my own personal computer when I was 5, no exaggeration. I remember when EGA graphics was cutting edge. I was using the Internet back in 1990 when most Internet users weren't even using the friggin' World Wide Web. I understood, and found very funny, all the lyrics to Weird Al's "All about the Pentiums" when I first heard it. I KNOW WHEN A DISC IS CORRUPT.

Now, going to the Symantec website, it seems that the only was to get a replacement CD for Norton Internet Security is to call up tech support myself. The last time I did so, I ended up with the old Internet Security 2004 uninstalled and nothing much else. So, yes as I type this, viruses are almost certainly munching away on my system.

Anyway, yes, I actually did call tech support a few weeks ago, despite the fact that I don't personally know them. But I was desperate. They didn't help me, but I didn't call them back. Why? Not because of my phobia, because I've been working 50+ hours a week.

I don't have the time to call them up and spend a few more hours uninstalling more things and getting no good results. But it seems there's no way to get a damn replacement disc without persuading a poor guy from India that I know exactly what I'm talking about and I have already tried everything else. I understand why tech support would be reluctant to send me a replacement disc. If I'm some guy who isn't the son of a monstrously intelligent engineer who makes giant networks from scratch and they send me a replacement disc and it doesn't work because I've ignorantly installed some software that's actually causing the problem, then no one is happy.

But that's not what it is. The disc itself is faulty. It was faulty when it got to me. No scratches, no bumps. It's just a bad copy. A bad copy that I only have a couple chances per week to replace because the only way I can do so is by talking with another guy for several hours because he doesn't know me. I know it's a bad copy. Windows keeps telling me it's a bad copy via various error messages such as "Cannot read from source". I know it's a bad copy. A bad copy that I was sent, not a disc that I broke.

Then, as I'm about to call them again today, I notice this little clause: "Symantec guarantees the media on which its products are distributed for a period of sixty (60) days from the date of delivery of the software to you. "

I don't remember exactly how long it's been, but if I can't get a working copy of Internet Security just because I've been busy making sandwiches for other people, I will be pissed. And I'm not going to take it out on the poor tech support guy. No, I will simply get my virus protection elsewhere. This is Symantec's last chance. I'm making one last call to tech support and then I'm not wasting any more time or money on this project. All because they don't have a decent and efficient way of replacing faulty discs.

In fact, I've already run out of time today and I won't have another opportunity to waste my time talking to tech support until next Friday evening at the latest. So my righteous indignation will simply have to simmer for another week. In the meantime, this post is up and if someone can help me out, I would be quite grateful.

*Or he was a Senior Systems Architect. He probably got promoted again since we last spoke. I could never keep track of his proper title.