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ARM Computer - my request for full refund and my apology for recommending them

BayHouse Credit Forum: Notebooks - (Cell) Phone Service - ISPs - Web Hosting - InterNIC: ARM Computer - my request for full refund and my apology for recommending them
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ARM Computer is selling ON-SITE warranties with NO intentions of providing ON-SITE service 3   02/02 08:42pm
My futile attempts to get the invoice for the 30i from ARM Computer 12   02/02 06:58pm

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Christine Baker (Admin)

Friday, April 21, 2000 - 03:56 pm Click here to edit this post
April 21, 2000

To: Management ARM Computer

Re: Demand for refund for lemon 30i ARM Computer and shortage of refund for returned computer and A/C adapter

This is my demand for $3,050, the full refund for the 30i notebook computer purchased from you in Feb. 1999 for $2,700, the $75 you charged for repair in Oct. 1999 while under warranty, the $200 credit shortage for the machine returned and the $75 TS 758 A/C adaptor, both returned when I ordered the 30i.

1) $2,700 for the 30i

Because I did NOT receive a receipt at the time of purchase, I will return the 30i once I receive your written promise that you will immediately refund the full price. Not only do I need to retain the 30i as it is my only proof of purchase, but of course I need to be able to show your funky repairs to the judge should you not refund my money.

The left hinge on the 30i recently broke, as shown in the attached picture.

A brief history on this lemon:

a) Within a couple of weeks from purchase a friend tried to give me a map via a floppy disk and I found out that the machine wasn't reading the a: drive.

Sometimes I got this error:

"ERROR Floppy configuration error - device disabled"

Sometimes the error message also involved LPT 1.

The only recommendation from tech support was to format the hard drive .... A very sad example of what you call tech support is attached below (correspondence with Salman Nasir and Ben Wang.)

I brought the ongoing port/drive/modem problems to your attention in October 1999 and you had the machine for about 10 days. You assured me nothing was wrong.

A few weeks later, after formatting a brand new drive, I encountered the floppy drive error AGAIN when Windows 98 restarted the machine during the installation.

Windows also didn't recognize the built-in modem anymore.

b) Sometimes the machine loses the time. It first happened after a few months, and I thought it was odd that the clock battery was dead already. For a while I had to set the clock every time I started the machine, then all of a sudden it worked again. It has since occasionally lost the time.

c) As I just reviewed my MANY E-mails with ARM support, I can't believe I put up with this lemon so long. Ongoing problems with ports and modems ....

d) You advertise the versatility of the 30i, including the optional 2nd hard drive. HOWEVER, since October I have been trying to purchase the 2nd hard drive case and it has never been available.

Instead of placing my order and shipping when available, I was told by Mr. Wong to check back in a few weeks. I did so, several times. Every time I was told the case was "not available yet."

During the time when I had my notebook.html up, recommending ARM Computer so highly, another one of your customers E-mailed ME because he couldn't get a replacement A/C adaptor from you. Every time I needed a drive or anything from you, there was a delay of at least several weeks.

Don't advertise what you can't deliver! If you don't have the capital to stock the parts for your computers, sell your new building!

e) the LCD hinges.

On my way to Alaska in June 99 I noticed the LCD being very loose and I stopped using the machine entirely, as I was sure it would break. After my return in October 99, I personally delivered the machine for repair to your office in San Jose, CA. I made a special trip from New Mexico just for this repair.

You then had the nerve to charge me $75 for repairing the hinge, while the machine was under your full parts and labor warranty. Instead of replacing the hinge, you just used oversized screws for a temporary fix.

After only ONE week, I brought the machine back because ALREADY the LCD was loose again.

Willy Wong said he would add a notation to my file so that future problems would be covered by you. Nothing was repaired.

2) In January 1999 I had purchased your "special" for about $1,100. After using it for a couple of weeks I decided to return it for a better machine.

Only $919 were credited back to my account. I sent two E-mails to Salman, but he didn't reply. When I spoke with Willie Wong in person in Oct. 99, he researched the matter, but could not arrange for the additional refund. He told me I needed to E-mail accounting. Why could he not take care of this matter while I was there?

3) Also in Feb. 1999, when I purchased the 30i, I returned the $75 A/C adaptor I had previously bought for the TS 758. It was still in your shipping box, and since I had planned on using the 30i from then on I didn't need a spare A/C adaptor for the TS 758. I got no credit back. Salman didn't respond to my E-mailed inquiry.

4) As a repeat customer (I had purchased from you the TS 753 prior to the TS 758) I had made the mistake of trusting Salman's verbal quote. Salman raised the quoted price for the 30i by $200 when I picked up the machine.

The extended warranty was supposed to be included in the $2,700 price. Salman KNEW that I was on a schedule and only waiting around town to pick up the machine. Informing me at the time of pickup gave me no choice but to accept the NEW price.

Don't you agree he should have notified me IMMEDIATELY via E-mail?

5) Support has been VERY poor. Only a few month after I purchased the TS 758 I checked for drivers on your web site and the TS 758 was NOT listed anymore. Both phone and E-mail support have been incredibly bad since 1999.

In closing, all I can say is that I am EXTREMELY sorry that I so highly recommended ARM Computer on my web site for several years. This E-mail is posted at my forum at, as will be future correspondence, legal actions, etc.

It looks like everything went to hell as you moved to your new building in Jan. 1999. I see all the indications of a company who overextended itself (the purchase and move to your new building) and is on the way OUT OF BUSINESS.

My hope is to resolve this matter without any further hassles, I do have MANY other things to do. At this point all I want is a refund, I am not YET demanding compensation for the TREMENDOUS amount of time I wasted on your 30i and what you call "tech support."

However, be assured that I will take any action I deem necessary, including complaints with the appropriate California agencies (FRAUD!) and legal action in addition to publication on the web.

I'm going to hold off on further actions until May 5, 2000, so your management has two full weeks to review the facts and arrange for the refund.

Please respond via E-mail to as I travel extensively.


Christine Baker

My complaint to Salman on 3/25/99, he didn't respond:

Hi Salman,

It looks like ARM has just gotten too big and I've been having nothing but problems.

1) After I didn't receive a credit at all until I inquired, I now got a $919 credit. I was charged over $1,100, PLUS I had returned the A/C adapter unopened and that was another $75 or so. So where's the other $300? SHIPPING CHARGES??????

2) Support has absolutely SUCKED! Below is my E-mail with Ben. I'm sure my readers can tell that except for his final E-mail, he didn't spend more than a minute on my problems. He's talking about the CD instead of the a drive, and worried about viruses when I clearly stated that I ran the latest McAfee Friday. I don't think he's that stupid, he just doesn't give a shit!

FYI, his failure to mention that I'd have to reconfigure the modem after loading BIOS default caused me to spend 6 hours reinstalling windows, and I could NOT get a VIP mail on Tuesday night.

He didn't even READ my E-mails. I had spent a LOT of time to tell him EXACTLY what my problems were. What an insult and WASTE OF MY TIME.

Jerry fixed the modem problem yesterday on the phone, however, we continued to have the same problems with the A drive. He could NOT get it working. He said he would have to do some testing and research, and he said he would call me back by yesterday evening.

No message by this afternoon. I call again, he doesn't even know who I am and what my problem is. Eventually he tells me I can send it in for service if I want to. It actually did read the drive today.

Well, it would have been easy enough to ship me a new drive, that would be one way to find out for sure what the problem is. But no, I have to ship my machine ...

I have NOT been able to actually do any work on this machine. I haven't even been able to get much work done on the old machine, because I'm busy moving files and formatting and reinstalling windows for the 55th time here.

I definitely can NOT recommend ARM any longer.

I guess there's always a slight chance that the problem fixed itself, and if not, I'll just have to bring it in next time I'm in the Bay Area.

Very disappointed,


From: "Ben Wang"
To: Christine Baker
Date: Tue, 23 Mar 1999 11:54:58 -0800
Subject: Re: Attn Ben: problems with a: drive and serial port 30i
Priority: normal
X-mailer: Pegasus Mail for Win32 (v3.01b)


I hope you can test your cd-rom/dvd-rom without any anti virus
1. CHeck the cd-rom/fdd is in the bay, make sure the lock latch is
100% on the left side. Otherwise reconnect the cd-rom.
2. Turn on the notebook, press F2 go into cmos setup, move
highlight to exit, scroll down to get default volume. Move back to
system devices to enable the modem. Then save and exit.
3. After the notebook boot to windows, open mycomputer check if
it has cd-rom icon. If the cd-rom can read any cd.


Date sent: Mon, 22 Mar 1999 18:35:01 -0700
From: Christine Baker
Subject: Re: Attn Ben: problems with a: drive and serial port 30i

> At 05:07 PM 3/22/99 -0800, you wrote:
> >Christine,
> >
> >If you do have the cd-rom, can you test with cd-rom?
> test what? how? yes, got CD, and yes, ran the latest McAfee on Friday.
> So what do I test and how? Is that anywhere on the web?
> Thanks, Christine
> If you do not
> >have the cd-rom, make sure the dvd is in the bay, connect
> >properly. Turn on the notebook press F2 go into cmos setup, move
> >exit to load setup default. Then check the cmos setting to match
> >you want. After save and exit, to check whether you still have
> >same error. Do you have any anti virus program?
> >
> >ben
> >Date sent: Sun, 21 Mar 1999 16:51:24 -0700
> >To:
> >From: Christine Baker
> >Subject: Re: Attn Ben: problems with a: drive and serial port 30i
> >
> >> Ben,
> >>
> >> I've formatted the drive, reinstalled win98 and during the installation
> >> reboot I got this msg:
> >>
> >>
> >> DVD-ROM: ...
> >> ERROR
> >> Floppy configuration error - device disabled
> >>
> >> Press F1 to resume or F2 to setup
> >>
> >>
> >> This has been an ongoing problem, but it's not consistent. I usually NEVER
> >> get the message after I shut off the power, and the boot disks work, but
> >> ctr alt del and restart often get me that error.
> >>
> >> Strange enough, while I installed a few programs and I rebooted I didn't
> >> get the message for a while. However, the drive DID have a few problems
> >> reading, and was spinning a lot. Then I reinstalled windows, because I got
> >> a serial port error (slow uart or something) while searching for new
> hardware.
> >>
> >> While it looks like a software problems since the boot disks work, I don't
> >> know why if fails on a formatted drive with ONLY the Win98 installation
> >> running.
> >>
> >> Used the same Win98 CD and software on my 758 and have NO problems.
> >>
> >> What should I reconfigure?
> >>
> >> Thanks, Christine
> >>
> >>
> >>
> >> At 11:57 AM 3/20/99 -0800, you wrote:
> >> >CHristine,
> >> >
> >> >Does the 758 use the win98. I know 758 and 30i donot have big
> >> >differenc.
> >> >I recommand to do format or back up, get fresh win98 try.
> >> >
> >> >ben
> >> >
> >> >Date sent: Wed, 17 Mar 1999 15:29:56 -0700
> >> >To:
> >> >From: Christine Baker
> >> >Subject: Attn Ben: problems with a: drive and serial port 30i
> >> >
> >> >> Hi Ben,
> >> >>
> >> >> I've yet to be able to actually USE the machine to get some work done.
> >> >> Finally reinstalled everything and the CD is working. However, spent
> the
> >> >> last 3 days reinstalling win98 because the Nokia installation is with
> 3.5
> >> >> disks and I got nothing but problems with the drive.
> >> >>
> >> >> It will read boot disks, especially if I turn the machine off. Often I
> >> >> got a BIOS error when doing a CTR ALT DEL and it disabled the a: drive.
> >> >>
> >> >> I moved all files from c:^#92; and renamed my old windows dir so I got a new
> >> >> installation. It didn't work most of the times. One time I got the
> Nokia
> >> >> software installed, but serial port would not communicate.
> >> >>
> >> >> Then, I started getting error msgs about the serial not working
> properly.
> >> >> I've removed from the devices, reinstalled it. NOTHING! I can no
> longer
> >> >> use any of my external modems, even the Ricochet which I've never had a
> >> >> problem with is no longer installing.
> >> >>
> >> >> I thought maybe the Nokia software screwed things up, but it works just
> >> >> fine on the 758.
> >> >>
> >> >> I then downloaded McAfee's latest virus checker, found no virus.
> >> >>
> >> >> I'm beginning to think that there is a problem with the mother board or
> >> >> something. What do you suggest I do?
> >> >>
> >> >> Thanks, Christine
> >> >>
> >> >>
> >> >
> >> >
> >> >Ben Wang
> >> >Technical Support
> >> >ARM Computer, Inc.
> >> >
> >> >
> >>
> >
> >
> >Ben Wang
> >Technical Support
> >ARM Computer, Inc.
> >
> >

Ben Wang
Technical Support
ARM Computer, Inc.

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Christine Baker (Admin)

Friday, April 21, 2000 - 04:07 pm Click here to edit this post
Just want to add here that I am SOOOOO sorry I so highly recommended ARM Computer on my notebook.html for several years.

Apparently ARM Computer has gone the way of Fry's and CompUSA as they expanded.

I want to make it very clear that I have NEVER received any payments whatsoever from ARM. I declined their invitation to become a reseller.

My notebook.html was up only because I was truly impressed with their prices, products, warranty, service and tech support. Again, I am very sorry I recommended them.

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Anonymous (Anonymouse)

Friday, April 21, 2000 - 04:14 pm Click here to edit this post
Wow. I thought i was the only one who had a bad time with Fry's. I bought CD-R media there ONCE. None of it would burn, it was all defective, and they refused to take it back. They said it was my machine. I told them I had tried it in 3 different machines. They didn't care. They also never got another penny of my business.

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Christine Baker (Admin)

Sunday, February 04, 2001 - 04:46 pm Click here to edit this post
Now continued in Arizona Small Claims Court

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