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September 29, 1998

UP TO 13% OF NEW PCs FAIL ON START-UP, SAYS NEW SURVEY

By CBR Staff Writer

Around 13% of all new computers purchased are dead-on-arrival, and fail to start up after their first boot, according to the annual Windows Magazine Tech Support Survey. But hardware faults accounted for most of the problems, not Microsoft Corp’s Windows operating system, usually singled out as unreliable by Microsoft’s competitors. Eleven brands of PCs were evaluated, and showed an 87% average for all vendors on systems that worked well on their first start up. Hewlett-Packard Co got the best average – 92% – with Dell Computer Corp and Gateway Inc making 91%. Faulty hardware was the most common fault, accounting for 37% of problems encountered, followed by driver problems (36%), and application software (34%). The operating system was way down on the list at 24% of problems encountered, with peripherals and 10% and human error rounding out the list. Users were presumably not too keen to blame themselves for the faults.

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