It was not enough for the GeekSquad to pirate software, they had to mess with my family. Even though being Tech Support is not one of my hobbies, I enjoy doing it for my family and friends… just not friends of friends that I don’t even know. This weekend I played Tech Support to my family after one of my Great Uncles got his computer technically molested by a member of the GeekSquad.
I am not sure what the standard operating procedure for fixing computers in their manual is, but I hope that they don’t just routinely wipe out harddrives. Lucky for my uncle he did not have any data that needed to be recovered. The GeekSquad charged him $229.00 for an “Operating System Service” which was supposed to “If your PC is infected with viruses, infiltrated with spyware, reacting sluggishly or if it has crashed — Agents can fix the damage to your operating system.” After 2 hours the guy just formatted the harddrive and asked my uncle for the recovery disks… which my uncle had no clue about. The guy just took off and said that he could come back. After missing an appointment my uncle got frustrated and just called me.
My family is actually pretty understanding when it comes to Tech Support, they don’t expect me to fix their computer every single time it breaks. That was the reason they did not call me first, but I think after this experience they will. I don’t mind fixing their computers when they need it; I just want to be appreciated for it. And believe me this weekend they did.
My uncles computer was an easy fix. The hard drive was already trashed beyond recognition. After partitoning it properly and installing the Operating System again it worked like it should have. I am not sure what the problem was originally but I am sure that a good virus scan would have worked… maybe even a scandisk. My uncle has subscribed to Norton since he bought the computer, so I am sure that it was a combination of his DSL dropping and his virus software not being updated while a virus might have done some damage. It was a shame that they had to pay that much money and not even get their computer working again that day. While I don’t blame the GeekSquad for my uncle not knowing what his recovery disks were, I do blame them for trashing the partitions and doing a bad format on a computer before they knew they could leave it operational.
While in Chicago I had the chance to do a couple of other Tech Support calls for my family. These ones were a little easier. Both of them had to do with hard drive failures and I was able to save the data (mostly pictures) with not much trouble. Even got to use the freeze a hard drive trick. While they had not called the Geek Squad I still call them as victories over them. They are now the enemy, unless they refund my uncle the money they charged him for a service they did not perform.