Apple’s Repair Extension Program
Welcome Back to another month of the Starting Line via My Mac. Greetings to all the new users and readers out there. This month I would like to take the opportunity to talk about the Performa 5xxx-6xxx series and the “Repair Extension Program” offer available from Apple Computers, and my experience with this problem.
If you did not know, I own a Performa 6300CD. Since my purchase in February I have have had several problems with the reliability of my Peforma. In the beginning it was maybe one freeze a week, here and there. Since then it has done nothing but get worse. It freezes constantly and I’m lucky if it takes less than two attempts to start up in the morning. Now, I know you are all thinking this guy don’t know jack, it’s just an extension / software conflict or whatever. Well thats what I thought also. So I got rid of every unecessary extension I could think of such as ~Aaron, Jeff’s Pointer, and Decor. But I still had Problems , and getting mad and beating up the computer desk or swearing at the screen was getting me nowhere. (And angering my wife, which is not good.) I finally gave in and called 1-800-SOS-APPL. When you usually need help right then and there, it’s never available. So I called the number, and after navigating through an annoyingly loud voice mail menu, I was on my way to the Performa Hotline! Of course, soon as I get there I’m in line and the voice mail announcement says “please hold, blah, blah, blah…..”
“Hello this is Bob”. (different name used to protect the rights of the support staff) “How can I help you?” I actually got a human in less than four minutes! So I explained to the technician all the problems I was having with my Performa and that I wanted a repair guy to come out and look at it ASAP! You have to remember that I was just in the middle of doing some real damn important web surfing when it froze up this time and by gosh I wanted service now! Bob told me he would love to send out the repair man but first we needed to do some research and testing to narrow down the problem. “Well …..ok” I said, and sat down in front of my Performa. First he had me get out the back up CD and start up from that by restarting and holding down the “C” key. Next stop was to verify my hard disk and then perform a repair. “Now let’s restart holding down the space bar and this will bring up your extensions manager so you can click on and off which extensions/control panels you would want to use.” Here is where Bob had me basically turn off every damn extension and control panel in my possesion and then restart. The start up screen which used to have at least two rows of icons upon loading now had about five or six.
“Ok, try that and if you have any more problems, call us back!” says Bob before giving me a case number and letting me go. Everything seemed to be working just fine so I was happy. I was going to wait and document the performance for one week before calling back.
Over the next week I had a few freezes here and there. It just got worse and always seemed to do it right in the middle of something important. Some days it would take three to four attempts at just starting up!! This is also about the time that I found the 5xxx-6xxx Tester, a piece of software available from Apple that checks out your logic board for a KNOWN problem on these models made within a certain time frame. I downloaded the software and ran it simply by clicking on the icon. Here is exactly what the message says after running it.
“The logic board has been tested and a potential issue has been found. Please
contact Apple customer support or an Apple authorized service provider to
have the logic board replaced as part of the repair extension program.”
As soon as I read this and gathered all of my ammunition. (the case number + my weekly report) I called !-800-SOS-APPL again to find out what the next step was. This time it took a little longer than the last call, but was still under ten minutes, which is not bad.
This time I spoke with a female. Let’s call her Marge for the time being. I quickly rambled out all about my dealings with Bob and the tester all in one breath before she could sidetrack me. ” Ok.” says Marge, “Let’s see what we can do.” She then proceeded to call the maintenance department, I believe, and explained the situation and then had them take over. Another lady takes over (Let’s call her Jill) “Hello, Mr. Roberts, how can we help you?” Once again I ramble on about the whole procedure I had been through. But before I could finish she interrupted, saying “Okay, sir, here’s what we are going to do.” I listened eagerly awaiting the outcome, hoping someone would help me fix this thing! “I’m going to double check all of your info here with you then write up a dispatch order for someone to come out and replace the part in question.”
“Someone is going to come to my house and replace the Logic board?” I asked.
“Yep.” says Jill.
Yahoo!!! This is sooooooo coooool!!! (But of course you must know I have the worse luck in the world.)
“So how soon can someone come out here?” I asked Jill.
“Oh, sometime this summer due to the high demand for the board.” was her reply.
Sometime this summer? That could be anytime with in the next three months! Now you’re thinking “Bummer for Dustin” eh? But wait, there’s more! I should be moving to Cincinnati in the next month. So you know what will happen, don’t you? The day after I move from Tacoma, the Apple representative will come knocking on my door! Then when I get to Cincinnati I will have to start waiting all over again!! YES!!
I never win:-(
If you have a Performa 5XXX or 6XXX I highly recommend getting the tester software and trying it out. You might not even know you have a bad board! The tester came bundled last month with the My Mac Deluxe Package and can be downloaded from numerous sites online, including my own! See the bio below for more information on how to get there.
Thats about all for my Performa woes this month. Hopefully next month I will have happy news about a quick, super fast, jamming, non- freezing Mac that’s got a new logic board!