back to article HP, Dell punters furious over Windows 7 upgrade delays

Some Hewlett-Packard and Dell customers are up in arms about delays to the Windows 7 upgrades promised to punters who purchased PCs from the hardware vendors earlier this year. Many computer makers hoped to keep sales ticking over ahead of the arrival of Windows 7 by promising customers an upgrade to the Vista successor once …


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  1. MarkOne


    everyone has forgotten that Microsoft promised the EU to ship a web browser selection Windows Update.

    I'm sure they are dragging their heels as much as they can on that one....

  2. Anonymous Coward

    lol, vista over again... but more fool you

    Once bitten... etc

    Silly idiots who actually trust the combination of MS, Dell / HP.

    If they had an ounce of sense then they would have waited and bought win 7.

    On another related issue, if peer-2-peer tech was not the current Government's tool of satan, maybe distribution could have been easier for Dell and HP.

  3. Dan 10
    Thumb Down

    Acer too

    My father-in-law needed a new machine, and I reccommended a nice dual-core budget Acer laptop on the basis that he wouldn't be stuck with Vista for long. The hardware's decent, if a bit clunky, but the upgrade delay hasn't gone down well at all.

  4. Alan Gauton

    And the difference with Toshiba is?

    Toshiba told their customers it would be December?

  5. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    They make you wait and they charge you £15 for a FREE upgrade

    I order a Dell Laptop Studio XPS 16, it arrived a week after the windows 7 launch date but did not have Windows 7 on, instead they made me wait almost a week before they placed my laptops ID tag onto the Dell Windows 7 upgrade website, and then pay £15 (£13.35 Shipping & Handling and £1.64 in VAT) for what was advertised as a FREE upgrade to Windows 7.

    The shipment date at first said 11 of December for my Windows 7 Ultimate® 64bit but then changed, so I actually wanted 2 (weeks reciving from the date of purchase, though it did take 4 days to arrive due to being shipped all the way from Kentucky USA.

    Order 26/10/09 recived on 9/11/09

    Not impressed.

    Further reading on the dell support site:

  6. codechimp

    Not the only guilty ones

    Ditto Lenovo, at least my order is acknowledged and "Pending Fulfillment" but still shoddy.

  7. Steven Jack

    Same timescales as Vista

    I did this with Vista, bought a laptop with XP Media Centre on it and got a free upgrade to Vista Home Premium. It took a couple of months to arrive. The manufacturers need to test the upgrade and provide a revised driver DVD. All of this can take some time. Good things come to those who wait.

  8. Ged T

    And for this HP customer, since 25 Oct...

    ...a few day's after the official release of Windows 7, I registered for the upgrade and after giving my name, address, credit card, HP product code, the product's serial number, the date of purchase, uploaded the proof of purchase (as a jpeg), inside leg measurement, blood group, life story/day to-date etc... Got a confirmation email that the anticipated date of delivery for the upgrade would be Nov 6th. That day has gone and no product upgrade had arrived.

    Imagine my surprise when, yesterday Nov 9th, I got a confirmation email to tell me that:

    "Your proof of purchase has been approved and your order will be shipped on or after the general release date of Windows® 7. We will send you another email notification once we ship your order. We will also post updates on our Windows® 7 website in regards to the availability date of the media at"

    Proof of purchase was an option to supply; given that HP already had the Product/Serial registered by me to them, it seems to be a redundent requirement to supply this information, let alone have an Approval state, based on what must be a manual check...

    On checking the status of my order, AFTER receveiving the above, the anticipated date of delivery is....

    Nov 6th

    This is not HP but a partner Arvarto Digital Services, a BERTELSMANN company.

    The really frustrating thing, beyond the inconsistent declarations giving in the order status report, is that there appears to be no way to contact them to query WTF is going on - HP, too, simply redirect any queries to this partner - Round and round in circles.

    So, to recap:

    Order Status: Bewildering

    Purchaser Status: Very annoyed

    Purchaser's likelyhood to buy Vendor's product in future (for Personal and Business): None

    There. I feel better...


  9. el-em

    HP Win7 Upgrade pain

    Just bought 6 new HP dx2420 machines last week with the promise of Windows 7, direct from

    The upgrade site is outsourced to Arvato Bertelsmann, and it appears that they only receive the serial numbers sold from HP's back office systems A FEW DAYS after the goods have arrived - as I had the frustrating "Product not entitled to Windows 7 upgrade" error. Their UK phone number 08715000764 appears to go into an infinite redirect loop... and the alternative 0018773568045 gave me a french accented IVR after which I gave up on waiting for an agent after 15 minutes...

    Finally have managed to order my Windows 7 upgrades - you can only order 5 at once, so I need to still do a SEPARATE transaction for PC number 6. HP fail to tell you that this upgrade will cost you £21.99 PER PC for the shipment of the DVD + License. This is quite a ripoff when ONE copy would make me happy, and an email of 6 keys - all of which should be able to be done for under a tenner.

    Come on HP! Stop trying to emulate Dell's tactics in ripping off the (small biz) consumer...

    Also, surely Microsoft should be brought to task on the always flaunted "free" upgrade if you buy an old OS within 90 days of a new OS shipment?

  10. NightFox
    Thumb Down

    It's that Deja Vu thing all over again

    I seem to remember exactly the same happening when we moved from XP to Vista... the OEM's upgrade programmes were a shambles, and MS's own one wasn't much better. Good to see they've learned their lessons and moved on...

  11. Trevelyan

    Waiting for Lenovo too

    Lenovo have long ago taken their "Administration fee", but I still have no Windows 7 upgrade media.

    My only hope is, that when it arrives, it will be in the form of proper install media, and not their evil rescue and restore disks....

  12. Michael C

    Why a single vendor solution just works

    I bought a cheap notebook from Acer back in late Sept and am still waiting on my 7 upgrade media. Currently it's been downgraded to XP and is running nice, but not what I'm after. My gaming rig has been running 7 since it showed up in my MAPS account for download, and i can't wait to get the little notebook upgraded (yes, i could waste a license key on it, but why when i have an 11th one coming free...)

    This weekend we bought a MacBook Pro for the wife. BestBuy apparently had it in stock a while (though it's the 100% current hardware), but it neither came preloaded with OS 10.6 nor was the upgrade disk in the box. I put a request on Apple's website, 8 minutes later THEY CALLED ME so i did not have to wait on hold, and Monday night the OS 10.6 media, niceley packaged not in some generic envelope, showed up on my doorstep. Apple said it should have had the disk, as it was manufactuered after 10.6 was in RTM, but apparently it was missed (happens).

    I'm now running OS 10.6 on a new machine (via a similar free upgrade process), and have Windows 7 running in boot camp and mirrored into Parallels for coherence mode. While I'm still waiting on a free upgrade to Windows 7 for the Acer (that I had to pay over $10 to ship, Apple send me the disks free both this time, and for my fathers machine when OS10.5 came out last time around), My wife was playing DDO in a virtual machine with higher graphics settings than my desktop PC upstairs, and a better framerate too, on a laptop... (apparently the 9600GT in the mac is a bit faster than an 8800GT from nVidia, and with a faster dual core and faster RAM, even in a VM the game gets a better frame rate than my 2 year old custom desktop).

    Apple has a distinct level of care in providing customer service. The machines may have a higher starting price, but for that price I've allways found the product to have more features and be more powerful than similarly priced competitors. Given they're a single source vendor, responsible to support the customer, the hardware, the OS, and the software equally, they can't place blame on a 3rd party when things don't go right (and there are issues, and i have made many service calls to Apple over the last 2 decades, the hardware is no more reliable, it;s just better pressented and supported). Their service policies are great, including not only break-fix support, but they'll actually walk you through processes over the phone, and Geniuses in the store can be booked for training events and software/OS support free of charge as well.

    I learned this lesson first hand when working for a BVC producing disaster recovery systems. They built the servers to sell as appliances, customized the Linux OS, and wrote all the software, so they as well were single sourced. All we ever heard from customers after switching is how wonderful it was for a company to take ownership and support a product end to end. With an HP or Dell backup system for example Dell will first blame the OS or server hardware for conenctivity issues and sick you on that vendor; they'll tell you it;s a software issue yet another 3rd party; end they'll blame Dell for faulty hardware; who then finally blames the drive manufacturer inside their chassis; and after 6-8 hours and 5 phone calls you can get an answer to why your backups are failing. A single source vendor has distinct support advantages, and paying the same price to Apple as i would for a higer end Dell, HP, IBM, toshiba, etc, but getting single sourced support, that's ABSOLUTELY worth it.

  13. Kimo

    Plenty of Fail to go around

    Same thing is happening with Asus, who is using Mentor Media to process upgrades. I've been going back and forth just to get information on how long shipping will take and if they would charge US customers (apparently no, but that was after their service department said $20). They claim my upgrade is in the queue to ship, but I'm not holding my breath. All of the Windows 7 drivers for my model have bee available for download since early October. If they had just allowed a download option, I would have been much happier.

  14. Annihilator Silver badge

    @Steven Jack

    "The manufacturers need to test the upgrade and provide a revised driver DVD. All of this can take some time. Good things come to those who wait."

    That's fair enough from XP to Vista, but Vista -> 7 doesn't have the same driver problem. Vista drivers will work in Win 7 like, 99.999% of the time.

    Besides, you know fine well that they've refreshed the ones on sale right now in Curries et al - the same hardware you bought a month ago is still on sale now, but mysteriously with Win7 loaded.

    As for my (well, Dad's) Acer purchase - have had the "we've despatched your shipment" email (twice) saying it shipped on 23rd October. Still waiting... Maybe it was shipped in an empty glass bottle and lobbed into the Irish sea (generally that's where the disc shipment comes from)

  15. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    Mine went via South Africa

    No kidding - my upgrade went :

    Germany -> France -> South Africa -> UK

    While in SA it went to Jo'burg (twice), Pretoria (once) and Cape Town. Amusingly I could see the "shipped to wrong depot" comments all the way along the tracking system.

    I used to be a MS "Partner" so I'm used to this bollox, which really DOES happen all the time.

  16. RichyS
    Gates Horns

    @Steven Jack

    Oh well, at least you had a couple of months of your computer working properly then...!

  17. Richard Vivash

    Packard Bell the same

    Father has been in hospital for a while and will be in bed for a long time now he's home, so we thought it would be nice to get him a laptop so he can surf, play games or watch DVDs.

    Bought a PB (Acer now I guess since the take over) and ordered the free (if you can call £20 free!) upgrade on 20th October. They took the money pretty quick, but no sign of the upgrade. Finally we received an email two days ago (Sunday!?!) saying that the upgrade has been dispatched. Still no sign in the post though.

    Funny thing, I ordered Snow Leopard from Apple a few days before its release date and a courier turned up at my door on the morning the OS was released! That's what I was expecting for the Win 7 upgrade... should have known better!

  18. Svein Skogen

    And ... this time it's NOT MS'es fault

    I built a new computer right before the launch, bought an OEM-license for Vista with upgrade offer, registered the offer, and had Win7 a few days after the launch. Surgically free from shipping and handling costs...

    So it's not MS'es fault.


  19. Anonymous Coward
    Thumb Up

    Dell actually ARE shipping W7...

    I purchased a laptop from Dell in August on the basis of getting the free upgrade too and the day after the release of Windows 7 went to the Dell web site to find out about my free upgrade from Vista <SPIT> to 7.

    Seems they changed the process and while the used to have you registering and then they promised you an email inviting you get your free copy of 7, you can now just go online and order your free 7 DVD set.

    GO TO and once through the process (need your Service Tag and address details from the order), it takes about 5 to 7 days for the DVD to get to you.



    Boo to Dell for not TELLING anyone they changed the process!!!!!


  20. ender

    "Free" upgrade?

    You still can't buy HP desktop machines with Windows 7 pre-installed here (in Slovenia) - instead, they offer you free upgrade, which actually costs 39,90€ for "administrative and manipulative expenses". Where are they shipping Windows 7 from - Afghanistan? And when you actually try to use the upgrade offer, you need to retry entering your product and serial numbers several times (closing the browser in between tries) before it actually acknowledges that you're entitled to the upgrade.

  21. ender

    HP and multiple computers

    I forgot to mention that after checking with a HP rep, I was told that you only need to order a single upgrade kit per computer type, and that you can use the same upgrade kit on all entitled computers of that type. We'll see if that's true once the kit arrives.

  22. Anonymous Coward
    Thumb Down

    Guess I can save myself EUR20 now

    My dad got a good deal on a new Dell in September, so I told him to go ahead and order it, and I'd sort out the Windows 7 upgrade for him when I make a trip home at the end of November.

    Still no notification from Dell about the upgrade, so I went directly to the Dell website to try to place the order, and the process just failed, without any explanation "try again later"). At this stage, it sounds like the upgrade wouldn't arrive in time anyway, so I guess Dell won't be getting my 20EUR for the "free" upgrade.

  23. JaitcH

    Why doesn't HP step up to the plate and simply mail ...

    The complainers should be more patient.

    Doubtless HP are busy sourcing oversize packaging, as is their custom, and waiting on suppliers to deliver.

  24. Blain Hamon

    I guess the news here is...

    People actually expecting consumer (non-corporate) Dell, HP, et al would be responsive. They already have your money, why should they be motivated to send out the update through anything but a cheap outsourced operation?

  25. John F. Jackson


    Same problem I had with Vista and DELL.

    I researched the UK Internet Trading laws then.

    If you ordered online the supplier has 30 days to produce the goods.

    Should he fail you are entitled to purchase the goods at retail, if available, and send him the bill.

    Consult trading standards, solictor ... count to 30 ... nearly there then!

  26. Michael 10
    Gates Halo

    MSDN-AA style next time?

    I can't understand this obsession with physical media these days. Microsoft has a wonderful system for MSDN-AA, which I get through my school (took a few days for the school techs to reply to my e-mail though). Simple website with a checkout system, I place windows 7 32 bit and 64 bit in my cart, checkout, they get added to my software list, with a link to a downloader and the cd-keys listed. Bonus points for allowing me to use the install images I downloaded from the P2P network my school chums have set up. I had windows 7 running on both my machines before I even had the website login (yay for 30 day trials).

    Most people can burn a DVD or copy and install from a usb key these days. Windows 7 is easily the easiest to install from USB (extract disk image to clean drive), so you don't even have to burn a disk. Why is it so hard for companies obsessed with not sending out install media (I've un-borked so many computers because of messed up recovery partitions, one which wouldn't let me install from the recovery disk I actually made, because the recovery partition was missing), to set up a similar download system? Follow the Blizzard model and you can even make the images P2P, and it won't even strain your network.

  27. Deadly_NZ

    Oh Dear

    And after the endless wait for a legitimate company to do sweet Fanny Adams on the orders, they wonder why people go to the torrent sites .... Damn Dell and HP are useless I wont have their products in my house And don't you just love the FREE (LMAO here) upgrades

    Oh well off for a beer to forget the debacle that is dell HAHAHA

  28. shooi

    ...and Mesh

    At least most of you actually got the upgrade voucher. My Mesh PC was delivered with a photocopied note saying that they'd run out of vouchers and I would receive mine by registered post as soon as they got more in.

    I've chased twice. They're just blaming Microsoft and have told me that the upgrade scheme runs until 10th February 2010 and I'll definitely get my upgrade before then.

    I've stopped holding my breath now...and reboot...

  29. Maverick

    bunch of fools

    er, like we've done this many, many times before - the ability to learn from your mistakes IS a sign of intelligence!

    I waited and bought Win7 fully installed on an Acer laptop for my daughter - why did you not all do the same? eh? eh?

    or if in UK call the credit card company and demand they reverse the transaction for failure to deliver - you can be sure THEY know how to contact the company - distance selling regs are equally nasty alternative :)

    I bought from Comet and I had the great fun of them trying to sell me Norton Sec Suite as an add on sale (with McAfee* already fully installed for free) plus a 'it is not an extended warranty sir' in case the software 'broke' (really!) after the 1st year - almost worth the trip alone for the amusement :))

    * = yes, I know, I know - it's gone now . . . OK already?

  30. foxyshadis
    Thumb Down

    Just download it

    Hate to say it, but you might as well torrent the upgrade ISO (if there's a difference - same media now, right?), use a fake key, and as soon as the real one arrives switch the key with one of the many free applications that can do that. This is basically what the OEMs do anyway, when they even bother to use the key on the sticker. You've already paid for the upgrade, you're entitled to do it on your time, not theirs.

  31. Skizz
    Thumb Down

    Upgrading now

    I have an Acer laptop and got the 'free' upgrade last Saturday (from the Czech Republic of all places). I'm installing it now and it's not great so far. Firstly, it requires running as administrator, but it doesn't tell you this when you do run it, it just tries to do the upgrade, fails, and doesn't tell you. So you're sat waiting not knowing it's failed. Then it told me some apps were incompatible and a restart was needed, but it didn't restart automatically, just dropped back to the desktop. It's copying files now.

    The packaging suggests the upgrade will take 2-3 hours! An Ubuntu 9.04 install (with office apps and stuff) takes about 25 minutes on the same PC!


  32. Annihilator Silver badge
    Paris Hilton

    Follow up

    My (Dad's) upgrade disc arrived today. Despatched from Czech Republic. The invoice even has the P&P charges broken down into Czech koruna (CZK), then handily converted to GBP.

    Whether it's a coaster or not, I have no idea yet.

  33. Anonymous Coward
    Thumb Up

    HP OK in NZ

    My HP upgrade disk arrived without a problem, shipped from a 'HP Partner' in Singapore though where they seem to generally have the nous to run a business. Still peed off about the USD$20 'admin fee' though

  34. Sureo

    I know why HP is so slow

    I know why HP is so slow, its because they don't have drivers available for some of their products. A driver for my laserjet 1020 is coming "soon". If I can't use my printer, I can't use Windows 7. Its not like Windows 7 just appeared out of thin air.

    HP: You've got one angry customer and I don't buy anything from companies on my shit list.

  35. Unhappy!

    HP Shambles

    My experience is exactly the same as Ged T's. I did recieve this email from HP "please wait for 1 more week, within that period you should get the same." - whatever that means!


  36. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    @Dan 10 re: Acer

    Can't comment on your personal experience but got my Acer upgrade within a couple of weeks of payment.

    Acer's process seems much better than others, you pre-ordered (in my case in September), payment only requested when W7 available and shipped shortly afterwards. Good communication along the way too - can't fault them.

    I have a friend who needs to supply proof of purchase for a Samsung which was an insurance replacement (so no reciept) has to register then order after Jan 1st or somesuch.

    Acer just asked for date of purchase (as well as serial #) - all very trusting and I have little intention of installing it either - at least until SP1.

    Vista aint as bad as advertised anyway(!)

  37. Simon B


    MIS SOLD GOODS ACT - Return to sender and demand a refund

  38. wanderson

    Windows 7 non-shipment

    It has become tiresome to hear constantly from Microsoft Windows users the whining and complaining - either about the products themselves, and/ or the services of these products from Microsoft's OEM vendors.

    If they are so unhappy, dump Microsoft based computers - period!

    Oprah Winfrey declared on her TV show some time ago that she will no longer accommodate people complaining and making "excuses" for their bad behavior. The same holds true for Windows users. Get a different Operating system (OS) based computer or get a life - you made the bad choice by selecting such crappy software, so live with it, or go climb in a hole somewhere.

  39. white rabbit

    Fight back as a group

    I will not go into the long story of my encounter with HP and arvatous except to say in an email I was promised this" You can expect to receive your upgrade kit between October 30 and November 9, 2009". Now arvatous is telling me 5 weeks ,Xmas 2 months who knows? Hey I paid for this in my package and I want it now and I want to know when I will receive it

    Sadly Hp ignored my complaints did not log them, lied to me and hung up on me.

    I was lucky enough to get someone to help me at HP. This is what I am going to do and hope you will too.

    First you will need this helpful information.

    HP is located in Palo Alto Ca.

    There phone is (650) 857-1501 ask for the ECR people Executive Customer Relations and keep calling and complaining if you bought your computer from HP.

    I was also given another direct # by the helpful person at HP which he said is a direct line to the ECR people of 1800 756 0608 and use choice 7 when asked.

    Lastly he gave me this link.

    This is the Mark Hurd

    Chairman of the Board, Chief Executive Officer and President

    Hewlett-Packard Company

    Fill in the information and send your complaints and keep sending your complaints and tell them that if this problem is not fixed ASAP they will lose another HP customer. Hit them in the pocket book that's all they care about. Keep doing this and passing the word on till it become a national embarrassment by getting in the news along with arvatous too and a loss of further sales to HP.

    If you know of other places to post this please feel free too.

    Thanks fellow frustrated customers.

  40. Wallyb132

    Info somewhat incorrect...

    I havent read the comments on this article, so this may already be posted, i dont know, however the info i've been reading about charging for the upgrade in various el reg stories is inaccurate. i purchased 4 HP laptops between 6-26-09 and 10-15-09, all of which qualify for the win7 upgrade, after reading the various el reg stories i was expecting to have to pay for the upgrade kits, however when i logged on the to upgrade site and placed the order i was quite surprised, i wasnt charged for the order, not even shipping. i simply provided my proof of purchase and received a confirmation email saying my order was placed...

    now granted its 11-18-09 and i still havent received my 4 upgrade kits, but at least i wasnt charged for them...

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