Henry Poon's Blog

My Laptop is Kaputt

Day 136

After almost four years of using my Inspiron 1520, its age finally caught up with it and its light literally went out.  The backlight refuses to turn on now.  I came back from Berlin last Monday and found my computer in this state.  I left it off during that time too.  During this time, I had trouble doing any blogging and uploading any photos.

Google told me that the problem lay with either a loose connection, the inverter or the lamp.  I tried to check this out myself and open the computer case, but the screws refused to budge.  People online somehow got theirs open, but I couldn’t.

Unfortunately, my warranty expired so I’d have to pay to get this computer fixed.  I looked at my options on the Dell site and the North American Dell Support refused to help me and kept referring me to the European side even though I bought my computer in Canada (I really don’t know what these guys at the call centers are doing).  After about three calls to the support line, I finally found someone helpful and she told me that I had to change my laptop registration such that it showed a European location before I could get it fixed.  An alternative option would have been to send the computer back to Canada to get it fixed.

What I did instead was just buy a new laptop.  My laptop is already super old and already can’t really keep up with my tasks anyway, so I suppose it’s time for an upgrade.  What surprised me was that laptops in Germany (from their Best Buy/Future Shop equivalents anyway) cost so much more than in North America.  In fact, it was cheaper for me to buy my computer in Canada and get my parents to ship it to me rather than buying it locally.  I’m sure there are cheaper places, but I don’t exactly know how to look through all these German websites.  Another added advantage in buying from Canada is that I’d have a computer with the US Keyboard layout rather than the German one.  And in the future when my laptop needs repairs, it’ll be easy.

In the meantime, I’m using a 17 inch LCD screen that I borrowed from a friend.  This will suffice until my new computer arrives.  No more shining a lamp at my computer screen and squinting my eyes to see the screen anymore.  I also don’t need to be using my phone to go on the internet at home either.

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