To: Acer Support

SERIALNUMBER: ***********
PARTNUMBER: 6413WLMi (given by customer) / 64.20048.302 (taken from SN)
PN-DESCRIPTION:
PRODUCT: 1-Notebook
UKDEALER: Other
DAY: 01
MONTH: 06
YEAR: 2007
ADVANTAGE:
OPERATINGSYSTEM: Other
SERVICEPACK:
PROBLEM: There appears to be a bug in the BIOS regarding
the control of the CPU fan. When the system is resumed
from a suspend-to-ram state, it appears that the BIOS
sets the CPU fan to full speed. The ACPI DSDT provides no
method for the operating system to control the fan, as
the _ON and _OFF methods it presents are empty:

PowerResource (FN00, 0x00, 0x0000)
{
	Method (_ON, 0, Serialized)
	{
	}
	Method (_OFF, 0, Serialized)
	{
	}
}

The fan remains at full speed until the CPU temperature is
raised to 49C. Presumably at this temperature, a
trip-point is crossed and the BIOS resumes control of the
fan speed. There is further information available
regarding this bug at:
http://bugzilla.kernel.org/show_bug.cgi?id=13497
TROUBLESHOOTING: The BIOS has been upgraded to the latest
version available from your website (v3.04), but this has
not resolved the issue.
FIRSTNAME: **********
LASTNAME: **********
COMPANY: **********
CUSTOMER_ID:
PHONE: **********
ADDRESS: **********
ZIPCODE: *** ***
CITY: **********
REGION: United Kingdom / Ireland

From: Acer Support

Hello, Thank you for contacting Acer.
Regarding your enquiry,
 
Did you buy any extended warranty?
 
If not we can still assess/repair the laptop for you however this
would be classed as a chargeable repair, the process would be the
following.
 
There will be a £51.99 charge taken from you before your machine is
brought in for repair. You will then be given courier details so that
you may arrange collection of your machine for shipment to our repair
centre. Once received in the repair centre it will undergo assessment
by one of our technicians. They will draw up a written proposal for
you containing full details pertaining to your repair. This will be
sent to you by post giving you ten days to respond.
 
Once you have received the proposal you have the option to reject it,
which means the £51.99 will cover the engineer and couriers fees, and
the machine will be returned to you un-repaired.
 
After ten days, if your proposal is not signed and returned to us by
fax or post the repair is defaulted as rejected, your machine is not
repaired, and shipped back to you.
 
We can not give estimates of repair costs, under any circumstances,
without the machine being diagnosed by an Acer technician
 
If you would like to book your machine in for an assessment please
let us know and we will make the necessary arrangements.
 
Regards
Jonathan
Acer Technical Support Team

To: Acer Support

On Fri, 12 Jun 2009, Euro Mail wrote:

> Did you buy any extended warranty?
>  
> If not we can still assess/repair the laptop for you however this would
> be classed as a chargeable repair, the process would be the following.

Whilst I have no extended warranty, this is a defect which has been present
since the laptop was purchased which I have only recently been able to
identify as a bug in the BIOS firmware.

There is no requirement for the laptop to be returned for repair - the bug
can be addressed through a BIOS upgrade which I can apply myself once it has
been made available.

Please be advised that this is a problem that affects all Acer TravelMate
6410 series laptops, not just my specific device, as it is a bug in the BIOS
firmware.

> There will be a £51.99 charge taken from you before your machine is
> brought in for repair.

I do not believe it is appropriate for you to charge to repair a design flaw
which has existed since the machine was originally purchased and affects all
of your products that use the same BIOS.

From: Acer Support

Hello, Thank you for contacting Acer.

Regarding your enquiry,

We would not recommend flashing your BIOS due to the inherent risk of
rendering your machine inoperable. We are able to repair your machine
if the BIOS has been flashed. Unfortunately this problem is not
covered by the warranty and would be classed as a chargeable repair.
an initial charge of £51.99 would need to be taken. This will cover
the collection of your computer by our courier, shipping to our
repair centre, and time for a technician to assess the problem. We
will then send out a quotation containing full details of the cost of
the repair. If you accept this, the engineer will complete the work
as quickly as possible and will deliver your machine back to you once
the issue has been resolved.

Regards
Simon

Acer Technical Support Team

To: Acer Support

On Fri, 12 Jun 2009, Euro Mail wrote:

> We would not recommend flashing your BIOS due to the inherent risk of
> rendering your machine inoperable. We are able to repair your machine if
> the BIOS has been flashed.

I would request that you actually read my entire response rather than
glancing at random words in it and making up your own question to fit - your
reply is not at all relevant to the problem I have described.

As I have already explained, the problem is a design flaw which not only has
affected this product since it was purchased, but affects every laptop in
the TravelMate 6410 series.  The resolution for this problem would be for
you to provide a BIOS update which fixes the bug in the existing BIOS
implementation.

From: Acer Support

Hello, Thank you for contacting Acer.

Regarding your enquiry,

I will forward that onto my supervisor then and get them to look into
it and see if there is an issue with this model

Regards
Jonathan
Acer Technical Support Team

To: Acer Support

This issue was escallated over a week ago and I have not received any
further communication from Acer.

Your response to a flaw in the firmware affecting a whole product line has
been extremely poor.  Despite the quality of Acer hardware being generally
ok, both this experience and past experiences with Acer support means that I
can't recommend Acer to any of my customers, and my business will be buying
no further Acer hardware as it is clear that Acer has no interest in
customer satisfaction or working with customers to resolve problems that
affect large numbers of devices.

In any case, I have included unified diff at the bottom of this email, which
patches the _WAK method of the laptop's ACPI DSDT to resolve this issue.  I
hope that you will pass it on to your developers so that this fix can be
included in a BIOS update in the near future.  Please see
http://bugzilla.kernel.org/show_bug.cgi?id=13497 for further details.

Conclusion

Acer have taken to ignoring my support requests and I have no faith in them ever fixing the problem, even though I have done their jobs for them and provided them with the fix.

Acer clearly feel that they do not want to spend the time responding to their customers to whome they have sold broken hardware. Additionally, they are still selling this defective hardware despite knowing that it has a problem. I certainly will not be buying from Acer in the future and advise other people to do the same - there are plenty of other companies selling similar products who actually work with their customers to resolve problems instead of disregarding them.