Linked by Howard Fosdick on Fri 23rd Nov 2012 14:03 UTC
In the News Hard to believe, but articles are popping up at business websites claiming that venerable Hewlett-Packard may fail. In their most recent fiasco, HP wrote off a loss of $8.8 of their $11.1 US billion acquisition of Autonomy and have alleged fraud in the deal. Revenue is down 7% from a year ago and the stock has hit a 10-year low. The company is laying off 27K employees but that may not be enough. Some speculate HP might be broken up into parts with buy-outs involved. This article from last May offers a good in-depth analysis of how all these problems came to pass.
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Poor Support or Product
by robr on Fri 23rd Nov 2012 15:00 UTC
robr
Member since:
2012-11-23

I had an extraordinary conversation with an HP tech when trying to troubleshoot why a client's 5610 wifi printer kept disconnecting from the local network. I was told to open ports on the ADSL router to the outside world including 139. There's something very wrong with your product if this is required or something very wrong with tech support if it's a 'recommended fix'.

The client took it back and bought a Canon - end of problem.

Reply Score: 6

RE: Poor Support or Product
by UltraZelda64 on Fri 23rd Nov 2012 16:39 in reply to "Poor Support or Product"
UltraZelda64 Member since:
2006-12-05

I had an extraordinary conversation with an HP tech when trying to troubleshoot why a client's 5610 wifi printer kept disconnecting from the local network.

A Wi-Fi printer? Now I'm no genius, but I figured years ago that that would be a problem without ever trying it (and I never wasted my time, for that reason).

Whatever happened with using good old wired connections to all your important always-available peripherals like printers, and then accessing them either over a wired or wireless network connection, depending on what interface the computer has that's connecting to it? Ethernet and serial buses never went extinct, and many routers these days even have USB ports, making it possible to connect a printer using either method directly to your router and accessible on the network.

The client took it back and bought a Canon - end of problem.

Could have easily tried a better, more traditional, more reliable connection to your network in the first place... Wi-Fi can be anything *but* reliable. In my experience, it's like 70/25 between working inadequately and not working at all. The remaining 5 percent? Actually working well with a relatively solid connection. Wi-Fi drivers are often crap, and I wouldn't be surprised if that was the printer's problem. Available "clean" space in the 2.4 GHz frequency band in many areas is crap, too, although if another printer worked it probably wasn't interference.

With a computer you just have to wait for an updated driver to become available and install it... with a peripheral like a printer, you'd probably have to do a firmware update (much more risky).

Reply Parent Score: 2

RE[2]: Poor Support or Product
by jello on Fri 23rd Nov 2012 18:33 in reply to "RE: Poor Support or Product"
jello Member since:
2006-08-08

WiFi printers enable you to have one printer for the whole house while having several computers and laptops in different rooms. (used by different people)

As an HP printer owner that uses it only in WiFi mode let me tell you this: the weak point of these printers are the drivers.

Once in a while we loose connectivity to the printer with two different Windows 7 laptops, while printing from a MacBook never fails...

Reply Parent Score: -1

StephenBeDoper Member since:
2005-07-06

Whatever happened with using good old wired connections to all your important always-available peripherals like printers, and then accessing them either over a wired or wireless network connection, depending on what interface the computer has that's connecting to it? Ethernet and serial buses never went extinct, and many routers these days even have USB ports, making it possible to connect a printer using either method directly to your router and accessible on the network.


Wifi printers have the same appeal as wifi itself: no need to be physically connected with a cable.

Obviously that's possible without having the printer itself connected via wifi (network printer, printer shared over the network using a PC that can be accessed via the wifi network). The issues are that: many people only have a laptop these days & aren't interested in getting a desktop just to share a printer over the network. And there are many consumer-grade printers available now that have wifi support, but lack a physical ethernet jack, because most printer makers seem to consider that a business-class option (AKA they can charge an artificial premium for it).

The primary issue I have with wifi printers is that the interface for joining the wireless network tends to be terrible. I remember setting one up a few years ago for someone who had an older router that only supported WEP - entering a WEP key with a 2-button interface isn't exactly my idea of user-friendly.

Reply Parent Score: 6

RE: Poor Support or Product
by jspaloss on Sat 24th Nov 2012 02:52 in reply to "Poor Support or Product"
jspaloss Member since:
2007-05-10

I'll agree with you if we're talking about their consumer-grade printers or computers. They're throwaway, but then again, most consumer grade inkjets are. And I see more HP "entertainment series" laptops with bad motherboards than anything else.

But when it comes to enterprise-grade gear, they are excellent.

Their enterprise support is great too. I've been able to purchase contract extensions on systems where the warranty (and support contact) had expired, and then have parts replaced under that contract for a fraction of what the replacement parts would cost. 4 hour turnaround time is pretty good. Support is one of the main reasons I keep selling HP servers.

I just took apart two HP Elitebook 8000w series notebooks that were damaged when the recent hurricane ripped the roof off the building they were in. Although both are likely a total loss. It was surprising to see how well designed they were. Really a night and day difference from the total crap that is the DV series.

Reply Parent Score: 4