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Not A Graceful Recovery For HP Customers

timothy posted more than 12 years ago | from the you'd-better-be-good-and-crashed dept.

News 434

An alert reader named michael pointed out this article running at Infoworld on the policy instated by HP of supplying actual Windows XP backup media for their Pavilion only if owners really, really need them. While HP and other vendors have been moving to recovery partitions for a little while, it seems like HP customers have to jump through particular hoops to demonstrate they really need physical media, and aren't very happy about it. The article makes a good point too regarding the installation of Linux partitions. The banner ad on the page is for --guess what? -- Windows XP.

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fp1 (-1, Offtopic)

Anonymous Coward | more than 12 years ago | (#3019254)

Trolls don't like linux! (-1, Offtopic)

Anonymous Coward | more than 12 years ago | (#3019279)

this would tick me off (2, Insightful)

qubit64 (233602) | more than 12 years ago | (#3019255)

I love having my xp cd. I reinstall every few months at least (and now and again a few times in a week) and if I didn't get my cd with my computer I'd go nuts.

HP (-1)

Evil Inside (552726) | more than 12 years ago | (#3019257)

Hairy POST!

*yawn (1, Redundant)

b_pretender (105284) | more than 12 years ago | (#3019261)

This isn't news. We've known that they were going to do this for a while now. OEM's, especially HP have never been particularly friendly or supportave of things such as repartitioning and what not.

Every time I would call Dell Desktop tech-support, they would tell me to run a command from a boot floppy that would restore the computer to an as-recieved state.

That's not really *support* for the problem. IMHO it's a last resort. Not something that Dell, HP, home-user-OEM should be using all of the time.

Anyways, this rant lasted too long and I probably no longer have first post.

Re:*yawn (3, Informative)

jidar (83795) | more than 12 years ago | (#3019452)

"That's not really *support* for the problem. IMHO it's a last resort. Not something that Dell, HP, home-user-OEM should be using all of the time."

Unfortunately, a nuke and reinstall is about the only option in most cases. Typically a user calls and says "My computer is locking up..."

Oh boy, good luck figuring that out Mr. phone tech support guy. Even if you can trace it down to a single program over the phone, you're probably just fixing a symptom caused by another problem.

The truth of the matter is, a lot of problems can be solved eventually, but -very few- of them can be solved with less than having an on site tech working for a few hours, and that sort of support simply isn't reasonable to expect from consumer level equipment. If you want that sort of service then go to your local computer repair place and pay for it.

And I'll be honest here, I work in a computer repair shop, and more and more often we are seeing machines come in that simply can't be fixed short of a reinstall. It's gone from maybe 10% to i'd say around 40% in the past 3 years. Windows is just getting worse and worse all the time.

Re:*yawn (-1, Offtopic)

Anonymous Coward | more than 12 years ago | (#3019480)

What I feel is this: I am being attacked by psychic script kiddies. They are what I am trying to rid myself of - those who get everything
they have through hacking into port 31337 and who once they do this, believe themselves to be all-powerful and very, very cool.

I am taking a class in networking right now - and every single day in that class I think this: the entire world of network security seems to me to be an 'as above, so below - as below, so above' type of thing - with the whole scheme laying out in detail the manner in which demonic attacks are perpetrated and fought in the lower psychic realms, by those who have been traditionally called, 'stealers of souls', etc.

Those realms are just opening up these days I think, and many people are 'going online'. This presents the usual security problems.

It is not that the human entirety, the soul, etc are a machine that can be programmed and manipulated like a computer is - that is IMHO most definitely *not* the case, but... the verbal mind - that portion of the mind that most modern people are by and large concerned with to the exclusion of anything else these days - *is* very binary and so probably can be dealt with by those who know how to do these things, in ways much like a computer is dealt with.

So the method of attack of teenage ego-bound hackers, is very much a reflection of the method of attack of spiritually backward, demonic attackers of the human mindspace. This is what I think. And while these things cannot hurt anything that really matters (read: all that is
non-binary within you), they *can* hack into your verbal mind and do all the stuff there that they are able to do using binary techniques.

If you don't know how to deal with that and you place your entiresense of what you are squarely in the realm of your verbal mind, then such a hack can really fuck you up if you do not know how to deal with it. Trojan horses, macro viruses, worms, 'back orifice', etc. - all reflections of methods of demonic attack in the psychic realms waged by those who place all worth in the verbal mindspace and who pride themselves on being able to manipulate that mindspace.

I see myself as being engaged in an almost perpetual struggle *against* this stuff trying to hack into my personal mindspace these days and in
this life since 1995. I don't think this struggle will end until I die 40 years from now or so. It is what I directly struggle against every day - and have since 1995.

So I am by no means any kind of 'script kiddie'.

Sad News - guy DEAD (-1, Offtopic)

Anonymous Coward | more than 12 years ago | (#3019264)

I just heard the sad news on CBC radio. Web entreprenuer/pioneer guy was found dead in his home this morning. Even if you never admired his work [] , you can appreciate what he did for the 'last frontier' of the internet.

Reports are that he died from complications resulting from having sex with goats. Truly a internet icon.

He will be missed :(

straight from the factory to you... (1, Flamebait)

spacefem (443435) | more than 12 years ago | (#3019272)

I never would have bought an HP anyway, sometimes I think anyone who isn't building their own computer isn't smart enough to know to re-install their OS every so often just to keep their system clean.

Re:straight from the factory to you... (1)

AKA da JET (280057) | more than 12 years ago | (#3019328)

"sometimes I think anyone who isn't building their own computer isn't smart enough to know to re-install their OS every so often just to keep their system clean."

Now thats a false assumption. I didn't build my computer and I format the drive and re-install my OS once every couple of weeks. Mainly because my little brother screws things up on it, but thats another story.

Re:straight from the factory to you... (2)

sconeu (64226) | more than 12 years ago | (#3019382)

Good point. I didn't build my current machine. I've been there, done that with my previous machine. I decided to pay a little extra to have my local shop build it from my specs. Doesn't mean I'm stupid, doesn't mean I don't know my way around the innards of a machine. I'd just rather spend that little extra time playing with my kids.

Re:straight from the factory to you... (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 12 years ago | (#3019392)

Why dont you install all the shit you want, then make a disk image and hide it on cd or another hard disk.

Faster than watching the every so slow Windows 4-hour install routine.

Re:straight from the factory to you... (-1, Offtopic)

Anonymous Coward | more than 12 years ago | (#3019418)

Wow, that must mean if you didn't build your own car you're too stupid to know the oil must be changed every so often. And if you didn't build your house yourself you'd be too stupid to know the windows have to be replaced sometimes. More annoying nerd arrogance; God how I tire of it!

Re:straight from the factory to you... (1)

Jucius Maximus (229128) | more than 12 years ago | (#3019497)

The only way I feel comfortable using a computer for my own work and enjoyment is to build it myself from quality parts or to have it built by a trusted supplier ( NOT a big company.) Then I set up all partitions, OSs, etc by hand.

This way, I know that if anything goes wrong, I know exactly what is in the computer and how everything was built, and that if the house of cards should fall, I have the knowledge and parts to build it again.

It makes me uncomfortable to work on a system where someone else built part of the house of cards in a way that I do not know or understand. If it breaks, I am dependent on that party of rebuild that part for me, and they may not be available or want to do it.

This is probably the root of what bugs us about not having recovery CDs, the Windows Product Activation, etc. The crucial part of the fragile house of cards that is your computer setup cannot be rebuilt by you alone. You need something from the manufacturer or a product activation key from someone who, when you need it, can do whatever they want to you because you need what they have.

As soon as any computer user realises this reality, it will be another goal against ignorance, and will reduce the number of hassles in their computing lives.

Re:straight from the factory to you... (2)

matthewg (6374) | more than 12 years ago | (#3019330)

Someone who's smart enough to build their own computer should be smart enough to use an OS that doesn't have to be reinstalled every so often just to function properly.</troll>

Re:straight from the factory to you... (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 12 years ago | (#3019347)

amen. there's more to life than wiping out your machine just to ensure you have the correct dlls and registry settings. Also, while I'm typing this, there's a banner ad for Microsoft Visual Studio .NET. Yo - Taco - just cause you're getting married, does that mean you can't pay a little attention to whom you all are selling ad space?


Anonymous Coward | more than 12 years ago | (#3019365)

indeed :)

Won't affect corporate customers much (4, Insightful)

jACL (75401) | more than 12 years ago | (#3019273)

Any large corporation builds a standard image and ghosts it down to workstations anyway. Most places don't want the end-user to get their hands on the original install media due to the support issues that arise.

Re:Won't affect corporate customers much (2, Insightful)

Wesley Felter (138342) | more than 12 years ago | (#3019380)

Large companies don't buy Pavillions, so I don't see the point.

Re:Won't affect corporate customers much (1)

my_second_fish (559508) | more than 12 years ago | (#3019439)

Particularly in the case of HP. That was the whole reason for their line of computers like the Vectra, the ePC, and the Brio. In fact, HP Product Specialists aren't even allowed to mention HP Pavillions to business customers. The mentality is that, the "business" desktops come with software bundled/installed to allow the use of HP's desktop auditing software.

Also the ePC and Brio's have incredibly small cases, and I can even come floppy-less for that "added security"

Borrow one (1)

spt (557979) | more than 12 years ago | (#3019277)

Just borrow a CD from a friend.
It's owning a valid product and activation code that makes the operating system legal now, right?

This is Slashdot. They dont HAVE friends. (-1, Flamebait)

Anonymous Coward | more than 12 years ago | (#3019286)

Keep in mind who you are talking to. These are long haired GNU hippie freaks. They dont have friends (DUH)

Re:This is Slashdot. They dont HAVE friends. (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 12 years ago | (#3019517)

Au contraire, mon ami. ;-P

You know what's funny about these people who contribute to free (i.e., costless) software?

They'll do it just for the kicks, just for a song... you ask a question and there comes guru Mr. X and really solves your problem.

You may think that it is the search for fame, but I have the impression that they want to be this way.

Call them idiots and they keep being helpful, because this *is their nature* -- really very Zen.

This is, the way I understand, the definition of a good person.

You can call this "a neighbour". Or "friend".

Money (-1, Offtopic)

Anonymous Coward | more than 12 years ago | (#3019281)

Does some stupid ass things to companies

Who's to say Linux would be any different? (5, Insightful)

Starship Trooper (523907) | more than 12 years ago | (#3019282)

The hardware companies are eager to cut corners wherever possible to save a buck in producing their increasingly shotty, slipshod products. In the end, the removal of recovery media in favour of "recovery partitions" conveniently eating away at the consumer's free hard drive space is just another way of putting more cash into the company's greedy coffers. This has nothing to do with Microsoft's licencing or Windows XP or anything like that.

You can rest assured that, even if they were shipping Linux on these machines, they would probably still opt for providing as little actual installation media as they can get away with. Gateway has always tried to take advantage of consumer ignorance to push their below-average workmanship, which is why they're slowly slipping down the tubes. All the more reason to buy a decent system from Dell, or even better, Apple. You get what you pay for.

Re:Who's to say Linux would be any different? (1)

feldsteins (313201) | more than 12 years ago | (#3019395)

I'm old school: I want a CD containing the same thing I would have gotten if I'd bought it in the store, period. Alas, I can't think of any OEM that does this nowadays.

This has nothing to do with Microsoft's licencing

Actually I think the part where HP wouldn't let someone just call and order the CD, but rather had to quiz them on why they needed it speaks directly to this. It does have something to do with MS agreements.

...or even better, Apple

Amen, brother. Actually I happened to notice the other day that the Mac OS X 10.1.2 CD that came with an iMac at work is actually the same CD you'd get at a computer store. But even they do not do this reliably, making OS CDs machine-specific.

Re:Who's to say Linux would be any different? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 12 years ago | (#3019462)

You're right, it does have something to do with MS. MS sells OEMs a reduced cost version with additional limitations. These are things like "not for resale", "can only install on one computer ever", etc. An OEM version typically costs less than 1/4 of a retail. It's generally cheaper than even the best bulk discount on the retail version. If you wanted a less limited version (retail) the OEM would have to pay more for that and it would cut into their profit margin. But the OEM figures most people won't know the difference and gives you the cheap crap instead without any choice.

Re:Who's to say Linux would be any different? (1)

Gameshow Bob (31940) | more than 12 years ago | (#3019404)

just another way of putting more cash into the company's greedy coffers.

Hardly adding money to their coffers. HP is LOSING money in their PC division. They are trying anything and everything to keep that business afloat so they don't have to completely drop PCs. The entire PC market has almost no product differentiation anymore so companies that can shave off the most production cost win; the others fall by the wayside.

Re:Who's to say Linux would be any different? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 12 years ago | (#3019435)

The entire PC market has almost no product differentiation anymore so companies that can shave off the most production cost win; the others fall by the wayside.

Which is why Dell and Apple, both of which provide full installation media and great support, are the only remaining profitable hardware companies, mm?

You get what you pay for. (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 12 years ago | (#3019440)


It is not so.

This is widespread to fool people into paying more money for little added benefits.

For some money you get some benefits. Put more and you get more. Keep adding money and you reach a point of "decreasing returns", where you must actually shove a lot of dough to get very little additional benefit.

In fact, the only thing you'll sure get is a sense of having an "exclusive" thing, which nobody else can or want to have.

So, please, don't fall in this trap.

Some inexpensive things in life are indeed very precious, and some expensive toys are - ha! - just plain stupid.

Not necessary (-1, Troll)

Chester Abecrombe (549881) | more than 12 years ago | (#3019288)

Restore CDs have become obsolete with the introduction of the System Restore feature in Windows Me. Using System Restore, it is possible to restore the hard drive to it's factory default state in just a few minutes, without needing any additional discs. Why would you WANT a Restore disc?

If, for some reason, your system becomes so horribly corrupted that you can't even boot into Safe Mode to access System Restore, THEN you might need a CD with the OS on it, but the chances of that happening on a modern version of Windows are almost zero.

In modern versions of Windows, Recovery CDs are unnecessary and obsolete.

Re:Not necessary (-1, Offtopic)

Anonymous Coward | more than 12 years ago | (#3019329)

This isn't a's just plain STOOOPID!

Re:Not necessary (1)

jabberw0k (62554) | more than 12 years ago | (#3019331)

What if your hard disk crashes?

What if a rogue program wipes the partition table?

What if you install Linux, wipe the disk, and later decide (why, I can't imagine) to revert to XP?

...Client of mine just bought a new HP and when it got to the Product Activation part, he had me wipe the whole mess and install one of the many (new, boxed, shrink-wrapped) Windows 98's he bought as "insurance" last year when the BSA was rattling its sabre.

Re:Not necessary (-1, Troll)

Anonymous Coward | more than 12 years ago | (#3019385)

god, get some taste
you can't design worth shit.

Re:Not necessary (1)

AKA da JET (280057) | more than 12 years ago | (#3019389)

"What if a rogue program wipes the partition table?

What if you install Linux, wipe the disk, and later decide (why, I can't imagine) to revert to XP?
LOL, thats exactly what happend [] to me. I didn't mention it in my previous post, but I also needed the OS CD to revert back from Linux :)

Troll is an unfair moderation for this... (-1, Offtopic)

Lethyos (408045) | more than 12 years ago | (#3019463)

He is not a troll... this needs moderated to -1, retard, stupid, or idiot.

Why not CD's (3, Interesting)

quantaman (517394) | more than 12 years ago | (#3019291)

I don't see their problem with shipping half a dozen or more CDs. When I got my computer it came with 6 cds just for MS worksuite (none of which I use since I got staroffice;). Cds are much cheaper than hard drive space and i'd rather just have them give me a bunch of image files and rip the cds off that. I wonder if the recovery cds could be used to pirate windows XP, if so I suspect that is the real reason for their reluctance.

Re:Why not CD's (1)

PoiBoy (525770) | more than 12 years ago | (#3019489)

From my experience recovery CD's aren't very useful for pirating.

I downloaded an evaluation copy of VMWare and planned on using my Dell recovery CD to install NT. The system complained that this copy of Windows could only be used on Dell computers. I tried a friend's WinXP recovery CD's for her Compaq laptop, and got the same error message. I guess recovery CD's are manufacturer specific.

What do you expect? (1, Troll)

the eric conspiracy (20178) | more than 12 years ago | (#3019293)

A last year the company I work for bought a couple of Presarios with 4 GB drives. 1.5 of that rather limited space was set up as a recovery partion. While you did get a recovery CD, the first thing that the CD did was to install that recovery partition.

The fact is that Microsoft has a monopoly, and one of the first things that this means is that Microsoft can do whatever it wants to crew their customers.

Re:What do you expect? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 12 years ago | (#3019323)

Um, hello? Did you buy a Microsoft Presario? It sounds like Compaq bent you over and now you want sympathy on /. for it by complaining about M$.

Re:What do you expect? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 12 years ago | (#3019394)

Rather, it sounds like its Compaq that's bending over, and handing vaseline(R) to Microsoft. In other words, MS is most likely forcing this on the OEMs.

Short comments zone... (1)

dozing (111230) | more than 12 years ago | (#3019296)

Forgive me for being blunt, and I realize I'm only saying the same thing everyone else is thinking, but:

This sucks!

HP Bites (4, Interesting)

Inthewire (521207) | more than 12 years ago | (#3019299)

This past November, my father's computer crashed with multiple hardware failures.
We took it to Best Buy and spent two months going back and forth with them over the problems. They'd send it out for repair and it would come back broken.
In January the decided to just give him another machine. They settled on a HP...can't remember the the shelf.
I set it up for him, and booted it. And it hung. Tried everything I could think of. No good. I called tech support, and was told to restore the thing from the partition. No good.
Next day, I went with him to the store to get it fixed. The desk techs tried to boot it, restore it, etc. No good.
After an hour or two of futzing with it, they grabbed another one for him.
Wiser now, he asked them to check it to be sure it ran.
It didn't.

Hours later, they had pulled the entire stock (4 of that model, + the one we had returned) and tried to run them. Nothing. Defective shipment? Who knows.

They gave him a similar Compaq and sent us on our merry way.

views from an Ex-HP support technician (5, Interesting)

Anonymous Coward | more than 12 years ago | (#3019306)

"For many years, one of the primary reasons for support calls have been people who have lost their recovery CDs," says Bruce Greenwood, North American marketing manager for HP's Pavilion line.

Absolute bullshit - i worked on the HP Pavilion support line (thru an outsourcer - for 3 years - the majority of calls were due to crappy inferior integrated hardware(onboard sound/shared video memory), dodgy OEM drivers, and general windows flakiness due to sub-standard componenets.
For example, the 88xx series had major DVD playback issues - software decoder was a HP customised OEM'd piece of shit.
Researching this issue, i got a 'warezed' copy of the decoder that was sold directly via the vendors web site - no problems...
And the 31xx series (3 years ago)had a WD hard drive that was "guaranteed" to fail after 8 months of use. And would WD take them back? Would they fuck.... we had to let them fail, then replace them. Of course when the new hdd failed, you were SOL as they were outta warranty.
And for the rumor that returned Pavilions were cannibalized for new and/or repaired Pavilions.....

It's a good thing (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 12 years ago | (#3019313)

I think it's a good thing they're trying not to provide the winxp cd. Perhaps they're tryin' to get people off that sucky os called xp!!

Moral Idiots? (1, Troll)

Alien54 (180860) | more than 12 years ago | (#3019325)

That is what I first thought.

I suspect that they do not want to have all that extra XP media out there. especially when there are tools that apparently can generate XP activation keys oby the dozen on a daily basis. [See this report on the Register [] for Details]

What I suspect is happening is that MS is muscling in on IP Ringhts in some way on HP via various aggreements, as seen by example here with Sony [] .

Linux? Who needs it!! (-1)

Serial Troller (556155) | more than 12 years ago | (#3019334)

Linux. You know what? NO ONE CARES. Linux is a gigantic piece of SLOP. It's like a LOG OF DOGSHIT floating in cat urine. A stinking LOG OF DOGSHIT covered in maggots floating in cat urine. It crashes. It OOPSES. It locks up, it hangs, it randomly corrupts my FUCKING filesystem. I'd rather have my TESTICLES TORN OFF with a hot pair of serrated pliers than run Linux on my FUCKING computer again! It's an absolute pile of SLOP dribbled out of LINUS TURDBALLS's and ANAL COX's cocks during one of their HOMOSEXUAL FAGGOT ORGIES.

Long overdue (3, Interesting)

whereiswaldo (459052) | more than 12 years ago | (#3019340)

Unfortunately, I have a Packard Bell computer. It's the same old tune in this story, except with HP. I didn't get an original Windows 98 CD with my machine which really ticked me off, but fortunately I had access to a real Win98 CD so I didn't bother making a huge fuss.

The first thing I did with my new computer, fortunately, was try out my new CD burner and burn the folder they had on there with all the Packard Bell drivers on it. I reformatted my machine (I hate default installs), then installed with an original Win98 CD. The drivers weren't there! So, I pulled out my trusty CDR which I'd just burned and found the drivers in there after some searching.

To make a long story short, not providing the original CDs is hardly a solution for most customers. Many questions are left unanswered:

- What if the hard disk crashes?
- What if I decide to install another OS on my machine and then want to put back the OS which came with my system?
- What if my partition table gets corrupted?
- What if I want to configure the hard disk into a RAID?
- If Windows really comes bundled with the computer, why don't I get the original retail CDs? Almost gives an illegal or unjust feel to the whole deal.

Anyway, '98 is long gone on that computer and I'm happily running Linux on it today. I'll never buy from Packard Bell again (for the CD issue, and for the absolutely poor tech support), and the chance of my buying from HP is pretty slim as well, at least till they get this mess straightened out.

Actually, I'm more of a Dell fan, but they've been getting under my skin, too. When configuring the options for your new computer (online store), you don't get to pick "I DO NOT want Windows or MS Office/Works bundled with this computer" as an option. I am forced to pay for something I probably won't use. This practice has got to stop. Hopefully the DOJ can give us a hand on that one.

Re:Long overdue (4, Funny)

Anonymous Coward | more than 12 years ago | (#3019368)

"I have a Packard Bell computer"

I would never admit that.

Re:Long overdue (2)

Graymalkin (13732) | more than 12 years ago | (#3019411)

Your "what ifs" are answered simply by: your OEM doesn't want you doing anything with your computer that doesn't in some way involve software they put there. The reason is they don't support this third party software and thus make no money selling support contracts for it. PC manufacturers make their money from selling services to people, not hardware. If you buy hardware from them with no service contract (which in reality many people don't do) they would rather not have your business. This pertains to restore disks in that don't let you do a "fresh" install of an OS. Looking to the DOJ to try to put PC OEMs out of business is ridiculous. No matter what software they stick on their systems be in Linux or Windows they are not interested in just selling you cheap pre-assembled hardware. If this practice stops expect many hardware vendors to close their doors pretty quickly. You don't remove a profit point from products in a low margin market without screwing yourself over badly. If you just want hardware build a system yourself or buy a bare bones system from a local vendor (or any vendor selling bare bones systems).

ummm, this is a non issue for desktops (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 12 years ago | (#3019343)

WTF buys an HP desktop

good lord, grandma can't ger her geriatric porn.

Computers are tools (1)

spt (557979) | more than 12 years ago | (#3019348)

I dislike this attitude that computers have 'supported' and 'unsupported' configurations. I come across this more with software than hardware, but the idea is the same.

HP don't want people using the computers that they paid good money for. They want people to look at the pretty box, and not fiddle with anything. That way, if something does go wrong, the support is easier - press this button and it will all be alright.

With the software, it is mainly to do with combinations of software. A customer asks if they can use our product with product X; support says "no - QA hasn't tested that configuration so we can't help you". That's nonsense - my computer is a tool, I want to use it for X and Y and if either don't work then I want to know why.

Re:Computers are tools (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 12 years ago | (#3019423)

Bullocks. If I rewire my electric drill and it stops working, the manufacturer won't replace it. If I put rocks in the blender and it shreds the blades, that's too bad. You can use a screwdriver to cut glass but Craftsman doesn't have a support number you can call to ask them how. Everything has a "supported" configuration and if you do something to violate that, you're usually on your own.

Computer manufacturers have sold you some hardware and a bunch of third-party software. As long as the hardware works, why should they have to tell you how to use the hardware to do something? There's no entitlement to have your hand held. Software manufacturers warrant their products for doing specific tasks in specific environments and if you want a specific warranty for your needs, you can go and ask them for one. Otherwise, you shouldn't be required to have recourse beyond getting a refund (which most of them try to weasal out of).

Re:Computers are tools (1)

spt (557979) | more than 12 years ago | (#3019477)

I don't want to put rocks in it [] . I want to use it for boring everyday things.
For example, install Norton antivirus [] (if you dare) and Microsoft Office XP [] . Now try getting support from either company if something goes wrong ... ha! you can't!

What right does an antivirus company have to say which word processor I can use. What right does a word processor company have to say what AV I can use?
If they don't want their products to be used together then they should be up front about it.

I actually work for HP... (5, Informative)

tonhe (35552) | more than 12 years ago | (#3019349)

and I really dont like their policy on this topic at all.

Yes, I do work for HP Pavilion support. I lost my job at a Linux based router company, moved, and took the first job I could find. anyway...

HP's policy is that we included a copy, on a hidden partition with the computer, the specs state the fact, and so does an insert in the manual. The software (including hp learning adventure, which the recovery cds that are now available for purchase DO NOT include) would be 17 cds long (why the didnt use a dvd, i dont know). 7 of those cds are available now, and the only thign you have to do is call 208.323.2551 option 1 and give your info on the computer, get it registered and tell them that you deleted the recovery partition and need some recovery cds. They will charge tho though (which is the kicker) $9.95 for standard shipping (overnight is only 16) for the CDs.

All in all it sucks.. and I know a lot of the customers hate the policy, but most of them dont mind paying for them because they did get a copy when they bought the computer, and most of the realize that they did agree to the license in the manual, and they did have 14 days to return the pc if they wernt happy.

Please dont hate me because i work for hp, i dont like it any more than you do... *sighs*

Anyone know of any good IT jobs in the lexington, KY area ?? Email me [mailto] if you do.

Re:I actually work for HP... (1)

spt (557979) | more than 12 years ago | (#3019369)

would be 17 cds long

So about 10Gb of the disk consists of a hidden partition containing software I will hopefully never need to use? And worse, containing software I don't want. Most of the software bundled with computers nowadays is pretty useless.

The product specs [] don't make this clear. it says "Huge 80Gb disk"; is this a 90Gb disk with the 10Gb missing. Or is it a 80Gb disk with only 70Gb actually available?

Re:I actually work for HP... (2, Informative)

tonhe (35552) | more than 12 years ago | (#3019399)

what really sucks is.. its a 80gb disk, but only 7 of those cds are in the recovery partition.

If you do a "destructive recovery" ie, Format and Recover, you lose the other 10 cds which are on the user partition. (The HP Learning Adventure Crap, tis demo Sw from The Learning Center)


Re:I actually work for HP... (2, Informative)

my_second_fish (559508) | more than 12 years ago | (#3019401)

I used to work with tonhe, albeit in a different department, the customer information section. i know with the business pc, and netserver line of products, the harddrive stated, is the harddrive issued. if its saying its 80gb, then thats what it is, and any bit of space yoinked for recovery purposes, is yoinked.

so yeah, yet gettin screwed.

One more note onto that. (1, Offtopic)

tonhe (35552) | more than 12 years ago | (#3019376)

The company that laid me off did me a wonderfull job.

twas ImageStream Internet Solutions [] .

email [mailto] the president
email [mailto] the guy who laid me off (CTO)

They laid me off the day I came back from vacation, and 2 days after my birthday, with no warning, What do you normally do on vacation ? Spend all your money, THANKS A LOT !

Ok, my gripe is over,


That company does linux? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 12 years ago | (#3019516)

Their site doesn't work in konqueror.

It forwards me to " 0;"

Why, I don't know. I do know that if companies think they know Linux but can't make a website standards compliant, the company sucks.

And ONE more note about the CDs (2, Informative)

tonhe (35552) | more than 12 years ago | (#3019453)

The reason you can only get them if you need them is, They dont have them..

They're still imaging the CDs, they didnt actually start offering them until this january 18th. We just don't have enough CDs to send to everyone.

I still dont agree with the charge for them. But all you have to do is call in and say you deleted the recovery partition.

So in other words... (1)

The Pi-Guy (529892) | more than 12 years ago | (#3019350)

...when I repartition for Linux, I've gotta wait a couple of weeks for HP to decide that my hard drive really is dead, and then another few weeks to get the discs out here. Smart HP. Time to go pull out the newsgroups, or otherwise... out of curiousity, anyone with a newish Pavilion and a DVD Burner? I'd pay ya $5+media for a DVD with the reco partition on it... ;)


Is this really news? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 12 years ago | (#3019356)

Big HP chooses not to ship legit copies of XP CDs with your PC. Just go to your friendly local pirate. He'll have a copy of XP, ME, SE, in addition to a wide varity of games and applications to make your computing experience more enjoyable.

Re:Is this really news? (2)

Harumuka (219713) | more than 12 years ago | (#3019377)

MS ain't waiters, we don't tip 'em
Treat XPs like Windows take 'em hope and rip 'em
Scan the back cover, do the quality inspection
Put an ad in the paper in the classified section

Re:Is this really news? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 12 years ago | (#3019379)

Ironically, this person is right.

HP and MS have conspired to make pirated software not only cheaper (always was), but now they make pirated software more convenient than the real thing.

They had to work at that.

Re:Is this really news? (2)

Harumuka (219713) | more than 12 years ago | (#3019438)

I second that. Here in Kiev, illict discs overshadow legal copies. Most consumers, including myself, find it cheaper and easier to buy a pirated CD. HP's move is only good new for the pirates here.

(Of course it's not like we ever needed any help. The only competition ever was when Universal released the "Women" cassette and reasonably priced it at $2.)

Think about it for a minute - Kiev has five CD factories. We produce polycarbonates (CD-Rs are nowhere to be found - this is the real thing) 24/7. The process is highly streamlined. We sell XP for $2.50 and make an immense profit. If Microsoft did this, they would too, and they would be competeting directly against US.

HCF (3, Interesting)

Graymalkin (13732) | more than 12 years ago | (#3019360)

If you're a vendor it makes sense not to package installation media along with your product. While two slashdotters shit themselves at the suggestion just now it is true. Selling a low margin product doesn't make you a whole lot of money thus you need to sell the extras like a support contract, you know the thing a saleman tries to forcibly ram up your ass? If you give a customer the ability to fix their computer qualms with little hassle you are asking to be put in operational red. There's a percentage of people who can fix a computer at least marginally, statistically people who don't know how to fix their computer know at least one person they can bother because their "printer got a virus and the power light doesn't come on anymore", the sort of people who inspire ever so funny Tech Support from Hell banter. These people often work for free or at least for much less than it costs to pay a "professional" (sic) to fix their problem. This ain't no good for suppliers of service contracts like OEMs. If Grandma decides the pie chart of her disk space has too much blue on it she is going to start hitting the delete key, nevermind she just deleted all the DLL files her favourite program needed to run. The purple wedge got bigger. If she can call up grandson/daughter to come over to fix her now useless program that comes up with twenty missing file errors who merely inserts an install disk and is done with the whole mess the OEMs just lost out on some lucrative nickel and diming. A recovery partition or special recovery disk can at least obfuscate things just enough to garner a couple extra support contracts from people. OEMs also want to get software back on systems they spent a pretty penny for to put there in the first place. This might be useless crap but they just want some eyeball time on it.

I'm not a big fan of "recovery cd"s (2, Informative)

AKA da JET (280057) | more than 12 years ago | (#3019362)

I'm still 17 and don't have enough money for my own computer yet (sniff). But, my problem with new compouters is all the pre-installed junk thats on them.

Right now I'm running a 350MHz Compaq Presario. When I first got it, it had all sorts of pre-install crap-ola. Stuff like AOL, Prodigy, and a bunch of trial software I could care less about. And it didn't come with a OS cd, just a "recovery disk", so If I wanted to re-install the OS, I had to use the Recovery CD which would re-load the pre-installed software I worked hard to get rid of in the first place. Later on the disk mysteriously stopped working and my little brother got some virus on it that caused Windows not to work. I ended up borrowing a friend's OS CD he got with his computer and I've had no problems since then.

When I get enough money for a new PC, I'm gonna ask to make sure it comes with an full-install OS CD.

Re:I'm not a big fan of "recovery cd"s (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 12 years ago | (#3019466)

When I get enough money for a new PC, I'm gonna ask to make sure it comes with an full-install OS CD.

And they will kindly tell you to piss off.

Re:I'm not a big fan of "recovery cd"s (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 12 years ago | (#3019503)

And I will kindly piss on. (them)

Bloody hell, 4G worth of recovery data (2)

(H)elix1 (231155) | more than 12 years ago | (#3019370)

does not need to go on a hard drive. Last time I looked you could stuff 4.7G or so of data on a single DVD ROM, and I suspect most new boxes could read that DVD!

Oh wait, this is about saving the couple bucks it would take to include recovery disks. Most call centers cost the vendor a couple bucks every time you call. I understand a recovery disk that is tuned to the hardware from the store - not that a hardware junky like me cares for that, but whatever... the cost metrics will usually correct these issues.

network boot image (1)

maxwells daemon (105725) | more than 12 years ago | (#3019371)

I install Linux off the network. Maybe HP could make the same available for Windows XP.

Bastards! (1)

ncmusic (31531) | more than 12 years ago | (#3019378)

This article just made me angry. I'm not sure why. But quite simply comsumers are fucking morons, and HP and MS are taking advantage of them. There is NO reason what so ever that every HP computer shouldn't just come with a full version of XP on cd with the computer; and maybe another cd with the drivers for proprietary HP harware. *grr*

Damn recovery CDs (2) (321932) | more than 12 years ago | (#3019383)

Last year I spend several days to extract the drivers and utilities from the Sony Vaio CDs. Never do I want to get as angry as I got during this process.

It was my understanding that we bought a machine INCLUDING an (albeith inferior) OS and a wild variety of software (we specifically needed the FireWire stuff). Well, apparently not so.

The pre-installed Win2K was installed on two partitions using FAT32. It was impossible to get a clean single NTFS partition with the recovery CD's. They simply created the same C: & D: FAT32 partitions. I mean WTF?! Why do they think we ordered the Win2K version for an extra $150??

Even better,- if you installed 2K from a full CD, allowing you to create an NTFS partition, the bundled Sony Viao utilities/programs wouldn't install anymore, claiming a corrupted configuration (and being so nice as to recommend to recover from the provided recovery CDs). So for example, the special utilities needed to get certain keys to work couldn't be installed. So here you bought a $4K piece of crap that you can't use the way you want it to.

I finally hacked my way around it, but I ain't touching a Viao with a ten feet pole anymore.

HP is feeeding them a line of...... (2)

Chanc_Gorkon (94133) | more than 12 years ago | (#3019384)

CRAP! That's right crap. I have not heard of anyone else doing this yet. XP has been out long enough that you'd think something would have been said if this was a Microsoft policy. No, this is something that the brain dead drones working for Carly Fiorina has thought up of. If this was the case HP, then how come I see all kinds of OEM CD's on pricewatch being sold ;).

This is why I would probably buy from the Powerspec line of PC's at Micro Center. AFAIK, they have and will continue to ship standard OEM CD's and they don't have restore CD's to begin with either. I was also told by a sales guy at Micro Center when I bought my last whole PC that I could upgrade anything I wanted during the warantee period. I didn't end up doing that but when I decided to upgrade a bunch of stuff and move to a new case, they had used hotglue on the IDE cables right where they go into the drives. No big deal but it did kind of suprise me a little. Micro Center also seems to have some decent hardware in their new machines. Not the lastest stuff, but not econo 15 dollar graphics cards either. They models I saw in the paper included Geforce 2 MX based cards, and some even had TV out. Their whole packages and even their external devices and acessories are decently priced, but I find their build it yerself stuff seems to be a bit higher then it should be.

Re:HP is feeeding them a line of...... (2)

(H)elix1 (231155) | more than 12 years ago | (#3019410)

I didn't end up doing that but when I decided to upgrade a bunch of stuff and move to a new case, they had used hotglue on the IDE cables right where they go into the drives. No big deal but it did kind of suprise me a little.

Gluing the IDE cables is pretty common really. When boxes get tossed about, they can come out. As a side note, it usually prevents the Vendor from returning defective drives when the customer RMA's a box. A (little) nod to the customer anyhow...

Re:HP is feeeding them a line of...... (2)

sconeu (64226) | more than 12 years ago | (#3019421)

they had used hotglue on the IDE cables right where they go into the drives.

And you're RECOMMENDING these guys??????

Re:HP is feeeding them a line of...... (2)

Chanc_Gorkon (94133) | more than 12 years ago | (#3019472)

Yes. If I had seen hot glue spread all over the cable and on the mainboard, then I would be concerned. No, there was just a teeny spot of hot glue on each side or the connector where it inserts into the drive. In fact, it looked like they used a special tip on the hot glue gun because the spots were smaller then you'd think they be.

In any case, I said yes I would reccomend them. They even included a manual for the mainboard they used. How many companies do that? Actually, there was documentation for every piece of hardware that came with the system, mainboard, zip drive, network card, dvd drive, modem, soundcard....documentation all there as well as standard OEM install CD's for all apps preinstalled on the machine. Granted, this could have change since I bought the machine, but I doubt it. In fact, I even mentioned Linux when I was buying it and he said oh yeah lots of folks are doing that....and really, the only few problems I had with Linux on this machine was the winmodem (lucent chip) and the soundcard (aureal and not their fault that aureal went out of business). Everything else pretty much worked. Sure, not as nice if you had built it yourself, (like what I have now) but nice all the same.

Powerspec is recovery CDs (2)

alexhmit01 (104757) | more than 12 years ago | (#3019513)

We own 5 of them now running Linux/OpenBSD. 1 is running NT 4 Terminal Server (testing it out for a project, looks like a failure).

You get a Win98 or WinME recovery CD.

Other than that, the hardware is relatively standard stuff. Good luck getting drivers, you need to figure out what each piece is, as the docs suck. Additionally, they stop "supporting" the model every few weeks when a faster processor comes out, and they don't put updated drivers.

However, when I need a Linux/BSD box quickly, they work great. I'd never put a production system on them, but for development and toy testing, they are cheap and easy to come by.


I wouldn't have a problem with this IF.... (2, Insightful)

extrarice (212683) | more than 12 years ago | (#3019390)

If the recovery partition is WRITE PROTECTED. My mother in law's computer got hit with SirCam, and by the time she realised there was a problem (she's new to PCs) all of the system files on D: (the restore partition) were infected. She had to order the restore CD from the manufacturer (for the record, it was Compaq) for $10US.
BYOB (buld your own box).

HA.. Looks like HP is adopting Compaq's evil ways! (1)

MrJerryNormandinSir (197432) | more than 12 years ago | (#3019393)

Most of my computers have been homebuilt. But.. my latest and greatest box, a Compaq 7000 series box
with 1.3GHZ AMD processor and 256MB DDR RAM is
an exeption. I bought it from Circuit City 2 years ago when they had a price posted at $850.00, and that's not with any MSN discount, that was the price. So I bought it since I was pricing out the parts to build a new box up.. and I was standing at $1400.00.

Well the Western Digital 60GB drives that ship with the box are JUNK! It turned out that it was
full of bad blocks. The problem reared it's head
when I decided to load Linux with the ReiserFS filesystem on a seperate partition.. well the box
failed after 1 week. No Install CD media. None at all from Compaq. Just an emergency CD that is lame. The Emergency CD is worthless if your drive is trashed. I had to purchase the media for $30.00. Also, Compaq sucks when it comes to marginal equipment, so.. I formated the drive and
marked the bad blocks. I also formatted the partion that had Linux and checked for bad blocks.
I had to use their lame install media.
HP is now adopting the same practice.. UGH!!!!!!!!
My next box is going to be a homebrew job again,
at least with a homebrew I can overclock. Comaq's

Nice try (2) (321932) | more than 12 years ago | (#3019405)

Readers who called HP to complain were told that XP was so big that half a dozen or more CDs would be required to deliver all the recovery files.

So they are giving up 4 GB of diskspace for a recovery partition. I really wonder if the marketing material mentions that when they list the size of the harddisk.

IBM do it too... (2, Informative)

mesagsx (413135) | more than 12 years ago | (#3019412)

Late last year, my company bought an high-end IBM workstation (dual CPU, PCI RAID, SCSI, 2 GB RAM etc...) to be a Windoze box (what a waste...).

Guess what? It shipped to us pre-built, but with no recovery CD or Windoze media at all. IBM wouldn't even sell me one. They told me I had to go to M$ and
buy direct.

I don't geddit. Anyone know why this is? I mean, I can't believe that on a $10k machine, they'd try a save the single buck (or less) that the CD cost....

You got the software... (4, Insightful)

M_Talon (135587) | more than 12 years ago | (#3019424)

Most systems ship with a CD-R now (and if you don't get one, that's just silliness anymore), so why not just burn the recovery partition to CDs?Voila, instant recovery disks. Me personally, all I want is the OS and any hardware-specific software on CD. Screw the rest of's mostly marketing crap anyway that just cruds up the drive. I hate these companies that want to tell me I need all their "go to this site, they paid us" links and software. Sell me a computer with an OS, and that's it. Can't do that, then you don't get my money.

Cost of ownership (1)

pheph (234655) | more than 12 years ago | (#3019432)

Cost of ownership reports comparing Windows vs. Linux (and other OSs) often show that you spend less time keeping Windows running (I've never experienced this). Hence the saying "Linux is free if your time is worthless". However, the cost of ownership now needs to factor in many many more things.

- not having media directly at your fingertips when your system goes Tits Up(tm)
- Windows Product Activation
- .NET .nagging.

I'm surprised Microsoft has done ANYTHING to increase cost of ownership when research states thats their only advantage (compared against security, configurability, scalability, etc)

lunix (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 12 years ago | (#3019434)

You've heard all about it. It's the latest operating system to hit your local book store. Download it for "free" from your Windows based system (if you can bare to wait that long, otherwise you'll have to buy it). Red Hat Linux 7.2 Professional only $190.00! Install it on a hard disk you don't care much about! You will find that Linux sucks so bad that you are grateful I warned you!

Re:windoze (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 12 years ago | (#3019456)

You've heard all about it. It's the latest operating system to hit your appeals circuit court. Download it for "free" from your Linux based system (if you can bare to wait that long or find it on pir8 FTP servers running wu-FTP, otherwise you'll have to buy it). Microsoft Windows XP Professional only $290.00! Install it on a hard disk you don't care much about! You will find that Windows sucks so bad that you will be grateful I warned you!

God I wish I had moderator points for this parent.

Re:windoze (-1, Troll)

Anonymous Coward | more than 12 years ago | (#3019483)

oh shut it
XP has yet to crash, and it supports all my apps.

linux is a marginal server, BSD is much better. And windows is a good workstation.

charging $192 for a "free" product
especially one with the most exploits

Re:windoze (-1, Offtopic)

Anonymous Coward | more than 12 years ago | (#3019514)

LINUX SUCKS Because it is fundamentally a bad implementation, of a bad implementation
of a great idea.

No other source of online commentary produces such pompous, idiotic,
teenage-30-yr-old-with-kids-wannabes*, elitist remarks than Linux, with
the possible, if not hauntingly similar field of warez.

Fundamentally, Linux isn't the best OS you would want to use, it doesn't
function in a useable sense, user-friendly functionality is snubbed by
aforementioned teenage-30-yr-old-with-kids-wannabes, in favor of a more
'adaptable' system, in other words, they are a: unable to implement simple
computer functions into simple operations within an OS, due to their
limited understanding of how people would like to interface with such
functions, and b: they would rather see their knowledge kept in demand,
rather than dispel the myth, that user friendly OS cant be as powerful,
functional or reliable, without using anymore CPU time.

Linux user make many many claims to people why they should use Linux, I
haven't heard anyone press someone to use windows, it just happens...

Linux users say things like:

- It is free (think free speech, not free beer)

Why does Linux give you free speech? Lets unravel your misconception,
you obviously think by using a 'popular' and widely used OS that you are
in effect giving up your right to freedom of speech? Anyway...

- The open source model helps developers find and fix bugs faster

Thank goodness!! If there is a bug in a program, then whoever finds it
can quickly look through the source code, spot it and tada!! wow I am so
glad that no Linux software has any bugs in it now!! One thing I HEARD AN
ACTUAL LINUX 'BOFFIN' decree: 'Linux can never have a virus, because
everything is open source'. Now I am not judging anyone from the spoken
words of one individual, I understand how a CPU molding system, and Unix
security limit the effectiveness of viruses, that isn't the issue, its just
that people who use Linux are taken up in an ever growing hype. Imagine,
if Linux was Microsoft, and Windows 98 was an underdog, freely distributed
software, with multi-distributors, THE SAME people, would be chanting pro
Win98 BS about speed, effectiveness, power, and we all know the fallacy in

- Allows me to run in Console mode without wasting CPU power with a
windowing system, if I don't want one.

I fully appreciate this comment

- Allows older hardware to be useful again.

Yeah, I hate Microsoft for that to, why doesn't windows NT run on my
SX33? Why?? I am really really miffed! I want to run my SX33 as a server
for 200 computers on a LAN, so now I am going to have to install Linux on it
to make it able to do the job...

I am so glad Microsoft have recognized the need to fully implement and
take advantage of the hardware, and lead ahead, not be stuck developing
for the 386 and 486 spec computers, or indeed, P200 and below. And, might
I add, the P166 is still as powerful today as it was when it was released,
and thanks to Microsoft, and other companies, who share the same
aspirations, there is allot of software which fully implements the system,
because when it was released, they wrote software it could run.

- Provides all the utilities to write whatever software I need.

OK, Linux wins hands down there, damn, I really wish I could compile
programs under any language...*sniff*

- I supported on a variety of different CPUs (i386, Alpha, Sparc, etc)

Wow, if I had a Sparc that would make me feel so much better, I mean,
spending all my time being depressed in front of Solaris, and loving the
'user functionality' of having to mount and unmount my own floppy
disks...then I would install Linux. and hey, if your wondering, i have
used Linux, and liked some of the things, including GIMP, which I haven't
bothered to download for windows, because, I can, and am writing much
better software. Oh yes, I am fluent in 3 Languages, English, Greek and
German, as well as C, C++, PERL, Java, SQL, VB and even PASCAL *snigger*

- Can communicate with any other OS over networks (SMB, AppleTalk, IPX,
TCP/IP, etc)

Well, Linux does have better networking facilities. Only in my
experience, windows networking, and even the IE4 'catastrophe' of
network/OS integration (sure as hell made things powerful and flexible to
use...) was far easier and made me think of what I wanted to do, not what
the hell I, and the OS was currently trying to do...

- Is customizable.

Ambiguous definition, core dumped:
Depends what you want to configure... colors?! What?? you want to make
your own operating system?? OK, granted the ability to recompile the
kernel and implement any new features, and program your own windows GUI to
sit on top of the OS is very exciting and dandy, however, in this world,
some people like to walk from one job to another, and know what the hell
button X does, and where the 'recycle bin' is =]

- Is not limited to one distributor

Good point, I don't like Microsoft any more than you do, I admit their
operating systems and bland, unimaginative, and yes, buggy, i hate them on
a high plane of black vengeful anger, but I get by.
However, you haven't really explored the extent of advantages this gives
you have you? because I fail to see that many...

- Has a wide choice of {applications, window managers, windowing systems, et. al.}

Not as big as mine *snigger*
Really this is a weak effort, I can think of more reasons why Linux is
good, and on the whole, I don't like the way it is going! Yes yes yes, I
know Microsoft suck the proverbial donkey, and some people would love to
have their own, unique, OS which does what they want, but I fear, as many
people diverge with ability to chop and change, the problem of actually
getting anything to work will get allot harder...

Easy. (1)

Heem (448667) | more than 12 years ago | (#3019437)

Step 1 - Return your HP (dell,gateway,compaq) to the store you bought it from, barring that, sell it for more than you paid for it on ebay.

Step 2 - Buy a motherboard,CPU,hard drive, case and power supply, floppy, etc. (substitue any spare parts you have laying around)

Step 3 - Purchase,Obtain legally for free, or Pirate the OS(es) of your choice. (i'm not the software police, i dont care what you do)

Step 4 - Put it all together. Enjoy. When it breaks, you have nobody to blame but yourself. Replace broken parts with ones of higher quality.

Step 5 - Notice all the extra money in your bank account, since you didnt pay for HP's advertising campaigns.

The point is, vote with your wallet. It sucks that HP does not include the CD of the OS you legally paid for. But guess what? Screw em. Every slashdot reader should have the technical skill to put a simple desktop system together on their own, and for the people who don't, if they are friends or people you care about, help them. Otherwise, screw them as well. Let the uninformed pay for what they don't know. We'll use our knowledge to better ourselves.

It's probably the best they can do.. (1)

David McBride (183571) | more than 12 years ago | (#3019474)

Let's face it - CDs are cheap. It costs very little to mass produce, and they take up little space. There's no practical reason not to ship disks with the PC.

Ideally, HP (and every other OEM) would just ship a regular copy of the OS on removable media, with any drivers or what-have-you that are required for the hardware involved. You could even go so far as to have it all on one DVD.

But instead, OEMs are only shipping 'recovery' images which nuke a prexisting installation. This is surely a Microsoft-imposed constraint, not an HP one.

HP are simply trying to make the best out of a difficult situation.

Everyone seems to agree (1)

hyyx (447405) | more than 12 years ago | (#3019476)

Everyone here seems to agree that the computer manufacturers should be shipping media with computers. Someone above says that IBM does this also. I have an IBM that needed to reinstall just one program. There is no media to do this with, IBM doesn't even have a copy (so they say), and so I am stuck with thier only solution: restore the recovery partition. I am not going to revert back to ground zero for the sake of one program; it doesn't even make any sense. When you buy a computer, you get licenses for your OS and all the programs, so why do the computer manufacturers have the right to control your usage of them? I own everything I paid for, and I should be able to do anything I want with it. If I get a Windows license with my computer then I should be able to reinstall the OS without the manufacturer modifications... very annoying.

At an install fest (1) (471768) | more than 12 years ago | (#3019486)

I was at an install fest helping someone put linux on a day old HP laptop. He was actually a lucky one and did get three recovery CD's. Because the partitioning tool we used, DiskDrake couldn't resize NTFS partitions without destroying them, we split the disk in half, and the used the recovery CD. It was actually well-behaved enough to stay in its half.

Step 1: Buy a Mac. (5, Informative)

nbvb (32836) | more than 12 years ago | (#3019492)

To solve the problem, buy a Mac.

It comes pre-loaded with everything you need, and *gasp* Apple includes ALL the software on CD's!

They include your standard "Click one icon to reload your whole disk back to its original configuration", AND standalone CD's of all the OS's and apps on the system! And gee, they don't seem to be going bankrupt from included $.60 worth of CD's.....

Software Included []

Everything is easier on a Mac. []

(This from a Sun admin... who woulda thunk it.. Apple in the Unix business?)

Brand-name PCs? Phooee! (3, Informative)

NewtonsLaw (409638) | more than 12 years ago | (#3019498)

Anyone who buys a brand-name PC needs their head read and deserves everything (every problem) they get.

I swore off buying "big name" PCs back in 1989 when I spent a huge amount of $ on an IBM PS/2 model 70. (20MHZ 386 CPU, 4MB RAM, 120MB HD)

Within 11 months the PSU failed but was replaced under warranty.

At 14 months the 120 MB HDD died (stiction) and IBM wanted an extortionate amount for one of their proprietory replacements. In the end I simply junked the PS/2 and, for less than they were going to charge me to replace the drive, I bought a no-name clone with twice the processing power, four times the memory and a 220MB HD.

Then there was a friend of mine who bought a DEC laptop and ended up having to pay nearly ten times as much for RAM as I paid for the same amount of extra memory on my no-name clone laptop. And when his LCD display crapped out, they took eight weeks to fix it and wouldn't even give him a loaner!

At the risk of generalizing, I have to say that a lot of the money you hand over when you buy a "big name" PC goes into advertising the brand and not into providing you with better quality or service.

These days I buy good, reliable no-name clones and I know that they are:

1. easily upgradable
2. easily repaired with readily available parts
3. great value for money
4. compatible with just about every OS/app I try

The shop I buy my machines from will even sell me a PC sans Windows -- and without bitching about it! But if I do buy a machine with Windows, I get a legit copy of the disk and certificate.

Caveat emptor folks!

Buy a Mac... (2, Informative)

spacedx (458227) | more than 12 years ago | (#3019510)

It really is too bad I'm missing out on all this fun... my Apple PowerMac G4, iBook, and G4 iMac came with not only a set of recovery CDs to return the computer to its original factory-fresh state, but they also came with the actual retail copies on CD of both OS X and OS 9. These "retail" CDs will boot, allow you to partition, and install on any Mac, not just the one listed on the label. No other computer retailer comes close to this level of flexability.

Restore to full "factory functionality," or start from scratch and customize with a brand spanking fresh retail copy of the OS? It's your choice... not the manufacturer's.

Think about it.

Then they want to crack down on pirated OS copies (1)

restive (542491) | more than 12 years ago | (#3019511)

There are supposedly a large percentage of Microsoft software installations that are not legit. Looking at policies like this, it's not that surprising...

Run Linux...then you can forget about MS licensing and HPs retarded policy.

Hey, HP...go back to doing what you do best...making printers.

this is good (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 12 years ago | (#3019518)

"HP had therefore decided instead to put it all on the hard drive in a protected partition, at least theoretically allowing the recovery program to be accessed even when there was damage to other parts of the hard drive"

1) why can not do this for data? You would no longer need to backups, HP has a new solution...

2) So if I buy a system and pay for an operating system, that I may or may not want, I no longer get a copy of it?

3) Have they changed the marketing on the system to reflect that you have an 80GB hard drive with 50GB usable?

Ha Ha (2, Informative)

Drizzit (18580) | more than 12 years ago | (#3019521)

Apple provides with the Power Mac G4

1 - OS 9.2.2 install for installing just OS 9.
1 - OS X install for installing just OS X.
the 4 restore CDs to make the computer like new.
1 - applications cd with individual application installers for the third party bundles.
plus two blank CD-Rs
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