Dell Hell

I recently had the opportunity to purchase a large amount (for our business at any rate) of kit, including six laptops and five servers. Having bought Dell kit previously and had no problems we elected to do so again. It was a tourturous experience that I would not wish upon anyone, friend and foe alike.

Once the kit had finally arrived I set about building it to our specification. We had elected to take the laptops with Windows XP PRO pre-installed. What I hadn’t bargained for was all the other things that were also installed. For example FOUR ISPs on offer from BT, Tiscali, AOL and something called ARTEuro. Also there were trials of Paint Shop Pro and software from McAfee and Norton.

Now, we are a small business (12 employees) but even at this size we are quite capable of making choices on security software and have licences to cover these additional machines. Given that these were business machines bought from the Dell business web site why do Dell feel it is necessary to include all this additional software?

I suspect that if I were to put that question to Dell and were to get an answer it would be that by partnering with these companies and including their software it keeps the costs down. I wonder by how much it reduces the price and I also wonder if this amount is more than the cost of my time to remove it all. If I am on chargeable time I can earn the business £100/hour. It took me 30 minutes to remove all the Dell pre-installed software so a cost to the business of £50 – I can’t see the price dropping by that amount.

So the choices are accept this additional software, buy a bare box and supply your own O/S or purchase elsewhere. I’ll leave you to make you own choice just as I have.

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