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I was looking for a netbook for my daughter to do her homework without hogging our main computer and also with an option of storing digital photos/video from my TZ10 camera via the SDHC memory card reader. Also, access to the internet on the move when there is free Wi-Fi available.
Eventually I bought a Toshiba NB250-107 netbook for £249 with some vouchers under the Big Tesco ClubCard voucher exchange scheme to help reducing some of the costs, without checking on the web about Toshiba's after sales reputation.
With a bit of a hindsight, this was a mistake.
Problems after the purchase:
The netbook itself is okay and serves my intended use --> hardware is okay. The problem lies with the software.
1. It comes with Windows 7 starter. The battery lasted just after two hours (not 4 hours as claimed at all, may be with XP) with the default settings. By default, the graphical environment of Windows 7 is very power hungry and drains the battery rapidly.
Personal solution: change the settings to 'best performance' rather than 'best appearance'.
2. It comes with lots of Toshiba bloatwares and other un-necessary pre-installed softwares. perhaps as a standard procedure for all laptops and netbooks so that their IT staff can work like robots - do one installation with all types of machines. They consumes a lot of system resources too --> battery drainer.
Nero 10 Essentials (not really essential, no CD/DVD drive with this machine). Microsoft SQL server (There is no Microsoft Access installed, redundant). McAfee (evaluation for a month, useless) Microsoft 2010 trial (crippled software with only Word and Excel, 60 days evaluation, useless)
Toshiba non-essential wares: ReelTime (resource and battery drainer). Bulletin Board --> consume resources to communicate back to base. Toshiba service center - Toshiba will store your data in their server for 7 years!!! Beware! Toshiba Tempro - useless and resource hogging. Toshiba Online Support information - useless Toshiba value added package --> redundant, use Windows 7 instead.
Personal solution: Get rid of all the non-essential and crippled/evaluation software and most of the Tosh-ware. Keeps only the webcam and Flash card (reader) support softwares.
3. Since it comes with Windows 7 starter pre-installed, there is no CD-ROM in the box for emergency rescue because there is no CD/DVD drive. To obtain a CD-ROM, you have to apply to Toshiba with a valid serial number to get one for £29.99 + purchase a CD/DVD drive.
However there is an option to create your own recovery media using a USB stick, or NOT!!!!! The Toshiba Recovery Media Creater programme does not work, even worse than a bloatware - a malware!
It corrupted my 8GB pen drive that I have specifically bought for the emergency recovery of this netbook. This programme failed to format my pen drive and after the error messages, my pen drive was reduced to 0 byte capacity. Thereafter the pen drive can not be accessed or reformatted.
Prior to this I have tested the pen drive extensively on my PC and the netbook by transferring ~8GB files to and from it and reformatted it without any issue. It is obviously the software!
I have made a complaint to Toshiba with all the details since November and they have acknowledged it by automated email. I am still waiting for a proper response.
They don't even deserve on star.
Appalling after sales service with either of these tactics:
1. Playing it long - not respond properly so that I may forget the complaint.
2. They are still scratching their head (one month on) to find a way to deal with it, even with the error messages that I have presented to them, without telling me.
3. They are working on a bug fix for their software - with a few more months/years to go, without telling me.
I'm with Andy, I'm afraid. There's more here about the product than there is about the customer service provided (or not!) by Toshiba, which is the category in question.
Andy.mack 28.12.2010 13:34
I've changed my mind on my rating of this review a couple of times now. It is a helpful review of the issues you have experienced with your product from Toshiba but as a review of their company or Customer Services you only really mention them towards the end of the review and I get the feeing this might be better served as part of a review of the product you have purchased rather than the company in general