SW Technologies

SW Technologies

Post by Mr John Shall » Fri, 07 Oct 1994 14:34:15



I'm a COMPUTER USER from HK. Generally I hate all those retailer who
cheat their customers for profit, selling buggy components...etc.
However, after following the recent thread of Jonathan's *LONG* complaint
about SW Technologies, strangely :-) I don't have much sympathy on the
customer. Rather, I'm not sure who's the victims... :-|.

Something from Jonathan saying that "...I'll keep reposting the message
until they admit their fault or out of business..." make me feel awkward.
I don't there is such big deal to justify forcing someone until they die
.. One thing that SW Technologies did wrong is they didn't have enought
money in bank, causing a bounced-cheque charge ($4) for Jonathan. I think
it's fair if SW Technologies pay him $4 and let the case settle...

Personally, I think the requirements from Jonathan is just too much.
Everyone in the Linux world know that Linux is provided "AS IS", you try
it at your own risk. There are numerous reports people trashing their
filesystem when using a new Kernel...etc.... I don't quite buy what
Jonathan says "... not counting the time that I spent on this
machine...". If Jonathan kept the PENTIUM machine for the 3 months, and
finally the deal was off, I think it's fair for him to at least pay for
half of the shipping. Moreover, even from Jonathan's statement, I can see
that Marvin has been trying hard to help by shipping replacements and
suggesting importments... Nothing in the world is perfect...

A final word, Jonathan, PLEASE DON"T periodically reposting your LONG
statement ( and the finely tunned correction/amandment... are we in the
California court?). Just try to think there are how many news server
around the world and your REPEATED posting may consume a few GB of disk
space :-)....

Just my personal opinion.

 
 
 

SW Technologies

Post by E. Robert Tisda » Sat, 08 Oct 1994 09:59:35





Quote:

>>I can see that Marvin has been trying hard to help by shipping replacements
>>and suggesting importments... Nothing in the world is perfect...

>Marvin tried, but he tried in an incompetent manner.  As I believe I said
>in my review, the fact that SWT tried hard to fix serious problems with the
>machine does not change the fact that the machine should not have had those
>problems when it was shipped to me.

>Would you consider it acceptable if you bought a new car and spent three
>months driving back to the dealership almost daily to get things fixed?
>There are new cars which don't cost much more than I paid for the computer
>from SWT, so I believe the analogy is completely reasonable.

Marvin Wu is a competent and conscientious Linux workstation vendor.  
He certainly believed your machine was in good working order
when he sent it to you and it has not failed since you sent it back.

Like a new car, you may have trouble with a new computer.  The problem is
that you can't just take it back to the dealer and tell him to fix it
if you bought it mail order.  You agreed to pay shipping back and forth
for warranty service and you agreed to ship your machine back to SWT
within 30 days for a full refund if you were not satisfied.  Marvin Wu
extended this money back guaranty to 60 days then 90 days at your request.

Since you have made no attempt to acquire another Linux workstation,
it is not clear that any PC-clone vendor would be able to provide you
with satisfactory service.  It might even appear that you decided that
you didn't really need or couldn't afford a new workstation sometime
after you made your deal with SWT and that you just strung Marvin Wu
along for three months then tried to beat him out of the shipping costs
as well.

It appears to me that Marvin Wu made an honest effort to live up to his part
of the agreement and was overly generous when he agreed to pay half of the
shipping costs to return the workstation.  I think that you should accept
the fact that you were bound to live up to your half of the agreement.
Bob Tisdale

 
 
 

SW Technologies

Post by Jonathan I. Kame » Sat, 08 Oct 1994 00:26:04



|> Something from Jonathan saying that "...I'll keep reposting the message
|> until they admit their fault or out of business..." make me feel awkward.
|> I don't there is such big deal to justify forcing someone until they die

That is not why I am posting my review periodically.  I am posting my review
periodically because there are constantly new people deciding to buy a system
and looking for a vendor to use, and those people often only start reading the
relevant newsgroups when they make the decision to buy, and I want to warn
them to avoid a vendor which I believe is not competent to sell and support
the systems they claim to be able to sell and support.

I no longer believe that I have much of a chance to get back any of the money
I've asked SWT to refund.  I am no longer posting my review to get back money.
I am posting my review to prevent other people from being damaged as I was by
SWT.

|> Personally, I think the requirements from Jonathan is just too much.
|> Everyone in the Linux world know that Linux is provided "AS IS", you try
|> it at your own risk.

A number of people have made this point to me, in postings and in E-mail.
However, I think the people who make this point are missing the major thrust
of my complaints about SWT.  If the problems I'd had with the machine they'd
sold me had been only with Linux, I wouldn't be complaining at all.  I'm aware
that Linux is "AS IS" software and that most Linux installations have rough
edges; in fact, that's one of the reasons I want to run Linux -- to play with
smoothing those rough edges (and, in fact, in the time I had the machine from
SWT, I made a number of fixes to the Linux kernel and submitted them to Linus).

The problems which prompted me to return the machine, and which prompt me to
believe that SWT is not competent to sell Pentium PCs (I can't speak directly
to their competence to sell other PCs, but the anecdotal evidence I've seen
seems to suggest that they're slightly better at 386's and 486's than at
Pentium machines), were all related to HARDWARE and SERVICE.  The hardware I
got from SWT was faulty when I got it and was faulty when I returned it three
months later.  SWT's attempts to fix the faults were feeble and incompetent.
The hardware would have been faulty whether I was running Linux, MS-DOS,
Windows or OS/2.

I mention in my review problems with the software that SWT installed only to
make the point that they were part of a larger series of problems.  In and of
themselves, they would not have prompted me to return the machine.

|> I can see
|> that Marvin has been trying hard to help by shipping replacements and
|> suggesting importments... Nothing in the world is perfect...

Marvin tried, but he tried in an incompetent manner.  As I believe I said in
my review, the fact that SWT tried hard to fix serious problems with the
machine does not change the fact that the machine should not have had those
problems when it was shipped to me.

Would you consider it acceptable if you bought a new car and spent three
months driving back to the dealership almost daily to get things fixed?  There
are new cars which don't cost much more than I paid for the computer from SWT,
so I believe the analogy is completely reasonable.

|> A final word, Jonathan, PLEASE DON"T periodically reposting your LONG
|> statement ( and the finely tunned correction/amandment... are we in the
|> California court?). Just try to think there are how many news server
|> around the world and your REPEATED posting may consume a few GB of disk
|> space :-)....

I've already explained above why I repost my review.  If you don't want to see
it, then put its Subject line in your KILL file.  Somehow, I don't think that
my posting of a 26Kb article to a few newsgroups every three months is going
to swamp the net.  I'll leave to the reader the proof that the resources taken
up by such posting are negligible (read "in the noise").

--

 
 
 

SW Technologies

Post by E. Robert Tisda » Sun, 09 Oct 1994 03:24:56




>If someone is going to try to make a business out of shipping
>pre-configured Linux workstations, then they assume QA headaches.
>Otherwise, what makes their 'preconfigured' system worth the extra money
>versus my going out and building a machine out of parts and a Linux CD-ROM???

It proves that Linux can be installed on the system you bought
and ensures that Linux will support every component.
If you build your own machine, you may waste hours trying to install
and configure Linux before you discover that you made a mistake
and bought a component that Linux will not support.  Hardware vendors
usually charge a restocking fee (typically 15%) on returned components
unless you can prove that the parts were defective.

Linux workstation vendors are competitive with ordinary PC-clone vendors.
You might try getting a quote for a Linux workstation from SWT and compare
it with quotes for equivalent machines from some of the major mail order
PC-clone vendors.  I think you will find that Marvin Wu can match or beat
any other vendor's price.  This means that you get Linux installed and
configured essentially for free.

The problem with mail order Linux workstations is that it is a pain to get
warranty service through the mail.  This is why I recommend buying a Linux
workstation from one of your local PC-clone vendors.  There are half a dozen
vendors in my neighborhood who have promised to install Linux in the systems
they sell if the customer requests them to do so.  I see no reason why you
shouldn't be able to convince at least one of your local area vendors to do
the same.

Hope this helps, Bob Tisdale.

 
 
 

SW Technologies

Post by Jeff Kesselm » Sat, 08 Oct 1994 04:17:01




Quote:

>Personally, I think the requirements from Jonathan is just too much.
>Everyone in the Linux world know that Linux is provided "AS IS", you try
>it at your own risk.

This is your one point i strongly disagree with.  FI someone is going to
try to make a business out oif shipping pre-configured Linux statiuons,
then they assume QA headaches.  Otherwise, what makes their
'preconfigured' system worth the extra money v. my going out and building
a machine out of parts and a Linux CD-ROM???
 
 
 

SW Technologies

Post by Jonathan I. Kame » Sun, 09 Oct 1994 01:06:54



|> Marvin Wu is a competent and conscientious Linux workstation vendor.  

That may be your opinion.  It is not mine.

|> He certainly believed your machine was in good working order
|> when he sent it to you and it has not failed since you sent it back.

Really?  Did the keyboard suddenly magically start generating the Alt-Shift->
sequence that it couldn't generate for the whole time I had it?

Has Marvin Wu actually tried to use it as strenuously as I used it while I had
it?  Has he used it to do compute-intensive things for prolonged periods of
time in a 72-degree room?  That's what I was doing with it, and that's the
environment in which it was failing (I did, incidentally, ask Wu if the room
was too hot for the machine, and he said that it wasn't).  I seriously doubt
that he has done this kind of testing on the machine.

|> and you agreed to ship your machine back to SWT
|> within 30 days for a full refund if you were not satisfied.  Marvin Wu
|> extended this money back guaranty to 60 days then 90 days at your request.

Wu extended the warrantee because the machine never worked properly and I told
him that if he didn't extend the warrantee, I was going to ship the machine
back immediately because I was not satisfied.  He had the option of choosing
to extend the warrantee or have me return the machine, and he chose the
former.  That's his problem, not mine.

|> Since you have made no attempt to acquire another Linux workstation,
|> it is not clear that any PC-clone vendor would be able to provide you
|> with satisfactory service.

As I told you in E-mail, it is not necessary to experience good service in
order to know when one is experiencing bad service.

I've had a number of people contact me and tell me they had similar problems
with SWT (including someone else who got a machine that didn't work, spent
months installing replacement parts from SWT to try to get it to work, and
then finally returned it, only to have the refund check bounce just like mine
did!).  I've read first-hand accounts from a number of people who bought
Pentium systems from other vendors who were extraordinarily pleased with the
service they received and who had no hardware problems with the systems at
all, for a long time after they purchased them.  That is as it should be.
When a vendor ships a machine, the machine should work.  If it doesn't, the
vendor has done something wrong.  If that vendor ships machines that don't
work with some frequency, then there is something wrong with the vendor.

|> It might even appear that you decided that
|> you didn't really need or couldn't afford a new workstation sometime
|> after you made your deal with SWT and that you just strung Marvin Wu
|> along for three months then tried to beat him out of the shipping costs
|> as well.

This accusation is offensive and baseless, notwithstanding the fact that you
prefix it with "might".  I have not bought another machine because I have not
had time.  That's what I told you in E-mail, and I even provided an extensive
explanation of why I have not had time.  Getting married, going on a
honeymoon, moving into a new apartment, missing almost two work weeks (all of
which had to be made up) for Jewish holidays, and working sixty- and
seventy-hour work weeks can eliminate most of a person's free time, you know.
If anyone seriously believes that I returned the machine to SWT because I
decided I "didn't really need or couldn't afford a new workstation," I will be
glad to provide any number of character references -- people who know that I
would never do what is being suggested, and people who know that I had
continuous problems with the machine for three months and finally returned it
only as a last resort.

|> It appears to me that Marvin Wu made an honest effort to live up to his part
|> of the agreement

He may have made an effort, honest or otherwise, but he never succeeded.  My
machine never worked.

Bob, are you speaking from the point of view of a satisfied customer of SWT or
something more?  Are you and Wu acquaintenaces, perhaps, or even friends?  You
did tell me in E-mail that you are "on reasonably good terms with Marvin Wu."
What exactly does that mean?
--

 
 
 

SW Technologies

Post by Jeff Kesselm » Mon, 10 Oct 1994 17:27:05




Not that I particularly want to get cuaght up in this mess, but i felt i
aught to say something in Jonathan's defense.  Bob said somethign in his
post on the order of "so Martin didn't have enough money to cover the
check.  he evntually made good. Is that a crime?"

The answer is yes, actually it is.  Knowingly writing a check without the
funds to cover it in the bank at the time of writing is referred to as
'kiting'.  It is not only considered VERY unethical business practices,
but is actually illegal in a great many states (here in CA, ANYONE
writing a bad check can be fined something like $200 or 10% of the check,
whichever is greater.)  I actually had an Uncle (I never met the man
himself) sent to federal prison for repeatingly and knowingly writing bad
checks (he was *-*.)

So the answer is yes.  This action on the aprt of someone puporting to be
involved in legitimate business IS both highly unethical and a crime. The
fact that Jonathan says he has had others contact him who have had thier
refunds bounce (and i at the moment don't see a good reason to doubt his
sincerity) I woudl consider very disturbing.  Actually if he had a
documented pattern of this behavior and were REALLY vindictive, he could
probobly contact the DA in whatever state the firm is doing business.
(Actually, considering its cross state lines, its probobly in federal
jurisdiction...)

 
 
 

SW Technologies

Post by E. Robert Tisda » Wed, 12 Oct 1994 15:28:13







>Not that I particularly want to get cuaght up in this mess, but i felt i
>aught to say something in Jonathan's defense.  Bob said somethign in his
>post on the order of "so Martin didn't have enough money to cover the
>check.  he evntually made good. Is that a crime?"

I never said any such thing.  I have sent Jeff three email messages attempting
to get him to retract this statement but he can't remember who may have said it
and apparently doesn't even remember what he said in his article.  He just
doesn't get it.  Bob Tisdale
 
 
 

SW Technologies

Post by E. Robert Tisda » Fri, 14 Oct 1994 03:14:06



>The originator of this thread DID indeed say that all that was required
>for it to be fine was that Martin return the $5.00 bounce fee.  However,
>that original poster may not have been Bob at all.  I did not remember
>referencing Bob by name is this post, and he refused to provide me with a
>copy.
>Having now seen the post again, I realize this might well have been an
>error and I apologize.

I accept your apology.  I suppose that your arrogant and condescending
remarks are consistent with your apparent contempt for your readers.
It seems that you believe your frequent and windy postings are important
beyond any requirement to check whether or not you got any of the facts
right.  If you can't remember what you said in your own articles, I suggest
that you concentrate on posting fewer, more memorable, articles.  At least
you could take the trouble to run your article through a spelling checker
before posting.  Bob Tisdale
 
 
 

SW Technologies

Post by Jonathan I. Kame » Fri, 14 Oct 1994 04:13:15



|> I accept your apology.  I suppose that your arrogant and condescending
|> remarks are consistent with your apparent contempt for your readers.
|> It seems that you believe your frequent and windy postings are important
|> beyond any requirement to check whether or not you got any of the facts
|> right.  If you can't remember what you said in your own articles, I suggest
|> that you concentrate on posting fewer, more memorable, articles.  At least
|> you could take the trouble to run your article through a spelling checker
|> before posting.  Bob Tisdale

All these insults are very nice, Bob, but they don't answer Jeff's question --
"The question I am left with here is DOES Bob feel Mr. Wu acted improperly in
bouncing this refund check, and not as a repsonsible vendor? Comments , Bob?"

Well, Bob?  Comments?
--

 
 
 

SW Technologies

Post by Tim Bass (Network Systems Engine » Fri, 14 Oct 1994 06:41:40



: All these insults are very nice, Bob, but they don't answer Jeff's question --
: "The question I am left with here is DOES Bob feel Mr. Wu acted improperly in
: bouncing this refund check, and not as a repsonsible vendor? Comments , Bob?"
              --------------------^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^ ????

Well if you consider this to be NOT RESPONSIBLE then....

Selling merchandise at the lowest possible cost,
Having very little profit margin,
Working to insure linux runs on the platform,
Trying hard to please every customer.

THEN

: Well, Bob?  Comments?
: --

 
 
 

SW Technologies

Post by E. Robert Tisda » Fri, 14 Oct 1994 10:30:23




Quote:>"The question I am left with here is DOES Bob feel Mr. Wu acted improperly in
>bouncing this refund check, and not as a repsonsible vendor? Comments , Bob?"

I never did and do not now have any comment on this subject.

Have you never bounced a check?

You needn't answer.  I don't think anyone actually cares whether your
self-righteous indignation justified or hypocritical.  Bob Tisdale

 
 
 

SW Technologies

Post by E. Robert Tisda » Sat, 15 Oct 1994 03:49:25




Quote:>Furthermore, my bank was *thought* I've bounced checks a number of times since
>then (because of errors on their part, not on mine),

It seems that SWT is not the only business with which you have disagreements.

Quote:>3) My bank pays checks that they think I've bounced, even when they're large,
>because they know I'm good for the money (I do, after all, have a savings
>account with them with enough money in it to cover the checks, and I've never
>written a check I didn't have enough money to cover from my combined
>accounts), and because they can charge me the $20 bouncing fee even if they
>pay the check.  SWT's bank refused to pay their * check (implying,
>perhaps, that the bank doesn't have faith in their ability to cover it?).

Apparently, you are suggesting that Marvin Wu switch to an account or a bank
that offers overdraft protection.

Quote:>I might still be angry at SWT about wasting my time and making me pay
>shipping, but if they had apologized for bouncing the check and offered to pay
>the $4 charge my bank charged me, my opinion of them would be many notches
>higher than it is now.

This disturbs me.  It is one thing to use the net to warn people and tell
them about a bad experience that you had.  It is quite another thing to use
the net to extort money from people even if it is just $4.  If you think
that you have a legitimate claim against SWT, you should take Mr. Wu to
small claims court.  Just contact the County Court Clerk in Richardson,
Texas.  If you get a judgement against Marvin Wu, you can recover all of
your expenses as well as the $4.  My personal opinion is that you don't
have a prayer unless Marvin fails to show up in court.  The simple fact
is that Marvin never agreed to pay for any of your banking fees and that
you did agree to pay for all shipping charges.  He doesn't owe you anything.

You needn't reply but I'm sure you can't resist having the last word.
Bob Tisdale

 
 
 

SW Technologies

Post by Jeff Kesselm » Thu, 13 Oct 1994 15:51:20









>>Not that I particularly want to get cuaght up in this mess, but i felt i
>>aught to say something in Jonathan's defense.  Bob said somethign in his
>>post on the order of "so Martin didn't have enough money to cover the
>>check.  he evntually made good. Is that a crime?"

>I never said any such thing.  I have sent Jeff three email messages attempting
>to get him to retract this statement but he can't remember who may have said it
>and apparently doesn't even remember what he said in his article.  He just
>doesn't get it.  Bob Tisdale

Ah. Bob has finally deigned to provide the copy of the post I asked him
for for reference.

The originator of this thread DID indeed say that all that was required
for it to be fine was that Martin return the $5.00 bounce fee.  However,
that original poster may not have been Bob at all.  I did not remember
referencing Bob by name is this post, and he refused to provide me with a
copy.

Having now seen the post again, I realize this might well have been an
error and I apologize.

(Now, wasn't that easier then ranting at me through email?)

The question I am left with here is DOES Bob feel Mr. Wu acted improperly
in bouncing this refund check, and not as a repsonsible vendor?  
Comments , Bob?

Jeff Kesselman

 
 
 

SW Technologies

Post by Jonathan I. Kame » Sat, 15 Oct 1994 05:44:32



|> It seems that SWT is not the only business with which you have disagreements.

You're trying to use the fact that in the seven+ years I've had an account
with BayBank, they have on occasion made errors which caused checks to be
bounced from my account, as proof that my complaints against SWT have no
merit?  Oh, *please*.

I've played the game by your rules until now, Bob, but no more.  You accused
me of returning the machine to SWT because I changed my mind about wanting it,
and I explained in excruciating detail why I have not yet had time to do the
research necessary to buy a new machine.  You ignored my explanations.  Now,
you're once again making completely unfounded accusations (i.e., that any
problems I've had with BayBank were my fault).  You have no more proof this
time than you had the last time.

You say it's so.  I say it's not.  I don't see the point in trying to prove
that, because you'll ignore anything I say.

Hey, Bob, I'll tell you a secret.  I occasionally have disagreements with my
bank about the way they run my account.  I occasionally have disagreements
with the MBTA about the way they run the bus routes around here.  I
occasionally have disagreements with my landlord about the way he runs my
apartment building.  Heck, I occasionally have disagreements with my barber
about the way she cuts my hair!  Well, gee, I must be a horrible person whose
opinion doesn't count for anything; after all, honest, trustworthy people
never have disagreements with anybody, right?

|> Apparently, you are suggesting that Marvin Wu switch to an account or a bank
|> that offers overdraft protection.

No, I think you missed the point.  More likely, you ignored it and chose to
put an obnoxious slant on it and hoped people wouldn't notice.

I don't have overdraft protection.  Despite that fact, BayBank has paid checks
on my account when they thought I didn't have the money in my checking account
to cover them, and charged me the same fee they would have if they'd bounced
the check.  They're legally entitled to do that; in fact, most banks do it
when they think that the client is good for the money.

Therefore, one might conclude from the fact that SWT's bank bounced their
check that the bank was *not* sure that SWT was good for the money.

Incidentally, Bob, you still haven't told us why you feel qualified to make
unfounded accusations against me but you aren't willing to answer a simple
question: Is a company that bounces a refund check on more than one occasion
behaving in a professional, responsible manner?

You also still haven't answered this question: Bob, are you speaking from the
point of view of a satisfied customer of SWT or something more?  Are you and
Wu acquaintenaces, perhaps, or even friends?  You did tell me in E-mail that
you are `on reasonably good terms with Marvin Wu.' What exactly does that mean?

You seem to be awfully good at ignoring points to which you have to answer,
Bob.  I've answered every one of the points and accusations you've made, no
matter how absurd they are.  Put up or shut up.

|> >I might still be angry at SWT about wasting my time and making me pay
|> >shipping, but if they had apologized for bouncing the check and offered to pay
|> >the $4 charge my bank charged me, my opinion of them would be many notches
|> >higher than it is now.
|>
|> This disturbs me.  It is one thing to use the net to warn people and tell
|> them about a bad experience that you had.  It is quite another thing to use
|> the net to extort money from people even if it is just $4.

I didn't say that I would stop posting my review if SWT paid me the $4 or that
I wouldn't have started posting it if they had done so.  I won't stop posting
the review if they pay me the $4, and I would have started posting it even if
they had done so immediately when the check bounced.

|> If you think
|> that you have a legitimate claim against SWT, you should take Mr. Wu to
|> small claims court.

I do not believe that I have a strong enough legal claim against SWT for it to
be worth the effort to take them to court.  I would have to base my case on
convincing a judge that the machine SWT sold me was never in working order,
something which I find it highly unlikely I would be able to prove to a
computer-ignorant jurist (after all, you're a smart guy and you're
computer-literate, and *you* seem to have a lot of trouble understanding it!).

Regardless of whether or not I have a legal claim, or a legal claim that is
strong enough to bring to court, there are thinks that are more important than
legalities.  I believe that SWT should refund my shipping because I believe
that it is the "right thing to do."  Even more so, I believe that refunding a
check-bouncing charge which is there fault is the right thing to do.

|> The simple fact
|> is that Marvin never agreed to pay for any of your banking fees

Oh, I see.  So before signing the purchase agreement with SWT, I should have
made them put into it, "If we give you a refund check and it bounces, we'll
pay the charge your bank charges you for the bounce."  Yeah, right.

Here's a clue: When an honest, responsible person or organization bounces a
check and it's his own fault, he pays the payee whatever was lost because of
the bounce.  That's how honest, responsible people operate.

Most stores enforce this honesty by charging a returned-check fee.  You've
seen the signs in stores that accept checks, right, Bob?

A company which bounces a $5000 refund check and then refuses to reimburse the
payee for his losses because of that bounce, and refuses to even acknowledge
those losses, is not behaving in an honest, responsible, professional manner.

|> You needn't reply but I'm sure you can't resist having the last word.

Priceless, Bob.  Why don't you try sticking to the issues and answering the
very simple questions that I've asked, instead of attacking me over and over
again with innuendo like this?

--