Category Archives: Miscellany

A 500 Character Limit On A Customer Service Form Is Terrible.

Dearest NewEgg,
Since I can’t place more than 500 characters in in your customer service form, here it is.

My recent purchase seems to be lost somewhere, apparently between Newegg and UPS. Instead of an immediate refund or replacement, I’m forced to wait for 3-5 business days for a claim before I can get either a refund or a replacement order. With the replacement order, there’s still the shipping time on top of the 3-5 days to process the claim. I was expecting to have the item in hand today.

In my view, proper Customer Service on NewEgg’s part would have been to immediately ship a replacement with the highest shipping priority possible to make things right, without me having to request it. Denying this even upon request just adds insult to injury.

This transaction has left me with a fairly bad taste in my mouth, and I expect that I’ll be taking my business elsewhere in the future unless corrective action is taken on NewEgg’s part.

Context: I purchased an item on Newegg on 11/7. Newegg order status shows item shipped that day. UPS tracking info shows nothing past “billing information received.” Inquired with NewEgg regarding the status of the order today (11/12), and they (almost immeditately) reply that I need to file a claim for a replacement order or a refund. Both the replacement order and the refund come with a 3-5 business day processing time for the claim, then whatever additional time is required to refund the purchase or ship the replacement order.

NewEgg refused requests for immediate reshipment, and they also refused requests to increase the shipping priority of the replacement order.

So in other words, my money is in their hands, they lost the item in shipping, and instead of doing their best to right the situation, they pushed it into a pile of red tape. Customer Service fail.

Overkill

One awesome thing about my job is I get to play with things like this.

[root@box ~]# cat /proc/cpuinfo | grep "model name"
model name : AMD Opteron(TM) Processor 6272
model name : AMD Opteron(TM) Processor 6272
model name : AMD Opteron(TM) Processor 6272
model name : AMD Opteron(TM) Processor 6272
model name : AMD Opteron(TM) Processor 6272
model name : AMD Opteron(TM) Processor 6272
model name : AMD Opteron(TM) Processor 6272
model name : AMD Opteron(TM) Processor 6272
model name : AMD Opteron(TM) Processor 6272
model name : AMD Opteron(TM) Processor 6272
model name : AMD Opteron(TM) Processor 6272
model name : AMD Opteron(TM) Processor 6272
model name : AMD Opteron(TM) Processor 6272
model name : AMD Opteron(TM) Processor 6272
model name : AMD Opteron(TM) Processor 6272
model name : AMD Opteron(TM) Processor 6272
model name : AMD Opteron(TM) Processor 6272
model name : AMD Opteron(TM) Processor 6272
model name : AMD Opteron(TM) Processor 6272
model name : AMD Opteron(TM) Processor 6272
model name : AMD Opteron(TM) Processor 6272
model name : AMD Opteron(TM) Processor 6272
model name : AMD Opteron(TM) Processor 6272
model name : AMD Opteron(TM) Processor 6272
model name : AMD Opteron(TM) Processor 6272
model name : AMD Opteron(TM) Processor 6272
model name : AMD Opteron(TM) Processor 6272
model name : AMD Opteron(TM) Processor 6272
model name : AMD Opteron(TM) Processor 6272
model name : AMD Opteron(TM) Processor 6272
model name : AMD Opteron(TM) Processor 6272
model name : AMD Opteron(TM) Processor 6272
model name : AMD Opteron(TM) Processor 6272
model name : AMD Opteron(TM) Processor 6272
model name : AMD Opteron(TM) Processor 6272
model name : AMD Opteron(TM) Processor 6272
model name : AMD Opteron(TM) Processor 6272
model name : AMD Opteron(TM) Processor 6272
model name : AMD Opteron(TM) Processor 6272
model name : AMD Opteron(TM) Processor 6272
model name : AMD Opteron(TM) Processor 6272
model name : AMD Opteron(TM) Processor 6272
model name : AMD Opteron(TM) Processor 6272
model name : AMD Opteron(TM) Processor 6272
model name : AMD Opteron(TM) Processor 6272
model name : AMD Opteron(TM) Processor 6272
model name : AMD Opteron(TM) Processor 6272
model name : AMD Opteron(TM) Processor 6272
model name : AMD Opteron(TM) Processor 6272
model name : AMD Opteron(TM) Processor 6272
model name : AMD Opteron(TM) Processor 6272
model name : AMD Opteron(TM) Processor 6272
model name : AMD Opteron(TM) Processor 6272
model name : AMD Opteron(TM) Processor 6272
model name : AMD Opteron(TM) Processor 6272
model name : AMD Opteron(TM) Processor 6272
model name : AMD Opteron(TM) Processor 6272
model name : AMD Opteron(TM) Processor 6272
model name : AMD Opteron(TM) Processor 6272
model name : AMD Opteron(TM) Processor 6272
model name : AMD Opteron(TM) Processor 6272
model name : AMD Opteron(TM) Processor 6272
model name : AMD Opteron(TM) Processor 6272
model name : AMD Opteron(TM) Processor 6272
[root@box ~]# cat /proc/cpuinfo | grep "model name" | wc -l
64
[root@box ~]# free -g
total used free shared buffers cached
Mem: 504 5 499 0 0 0
-/+ buffers/cache: 5 499
Swap: 179 0 179

Capacitor Plague

As part of our completely overkill home network, I’ve got a couple of managed Linksys business-class switches (one SRW2016 and one SRW2048). They allow for me to do helpful things like VLANs, spanning tree, pretty graphs from SNMP data, and the like. Their web interfaces are crap, but aside from that, they’re fairly capable devices, and work well for the most part.

Well, let’s just say I had two switches. Now I’ve got, say, 1.25 switches. The SRW2048 has recently descended into uselessness, spending a good 20% of its time rebooting, locked up, and in other states where packets are not properly forwarded. It started occurring last week, and has accelerated in the past two days:

# zcat messages.1.gz | grep dist1 | grep "Cold Startup" | wc -l
6
# cat /messages | grep dist1 |  grep "Cold Startup" | wc -l
13

This makes me mildly annoyed, to put it mildly. The affected switch provides connectivity to most of my house. It services pretty much everything except for the server gear, which utilizes the SRW2016. Thinking that the switch might have been having issues with dust/animal hair clogging things up, making it overheat, or perhaps shorting something out, I opened the case up to see if I could give it a good cleaning. I was somewhat surprised to see a generally clean interior (nothing in our house is free of pet hair). What I did see was a fair number of bulging capacitors, and at least three or four that had visible signs of leaking dielectric compound. Lame.

If I had to guess, I’d say that my switch is infected by the capacitor plague, a rash of electronics issues caused by poor-quality components from a set of capacitor manufacturers. It’s been a general pain in the butt for almost a decade now, and it seems as though it’s now affected me as well.

The switch is valuable enough to me that I am thinking about purchasing a whole new set of the various capacitors present in the switch and attempting to replace them. They’re all fairly large, so I may actually be able to pull it off without melting the board or any other components attached to it.

EDIT: Of capacitors displayed in the following picture, 13 are either visibly leaking dielectric or have bulged. There are 33 capacitors visible on the board.

Capacitor ICU