back to article Halfords.com crashes off the internet

Halfords.com is mostly unavailable today thanks to "a temporary administrative issue in our domain name renewal process". Visitors to the site this morning - including a vast number of Register readers - were met with a holding page for Network Solutions and an invitation to renew the domain. In the meantime the page contains …

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  1. irish donkey
    Thumb Down

    Having used Halfords.com

    All I can say is the Service/site/back office is rubbish

    Purchased a bike rack... Thank you for you order that will be delivered in six weeks....

    Quick phone call to customer services I need it in 2 weeks. Sorry sir we can't find your order. Call back tomorrow.

    Call to credit card company Yes Halfords has requested an amount from your card. Can I stop it? No not yet.

    Next day a call to Customer Services. Sorry sir still can't find you order. Call back tomorrow

    Automated email your order is being processed.

    Call to customer services sorry sir still can't find you order. Maybe you should wait until the item is delivered and then return it to us for full refund.

    Four days later and numerous phone calls. Order finally cancelled. Never again

  2. Michael Hawkes

    Rob Halford

    I didn't know the Judas Priest frontman was so popular.

  3. BristolBachelor Gold badge
    Coat

    administrative issue

    "a temporary administrative issue in our domain name renewal process".

    Which likely translates as: "We at halfords do not pay our bills on time, so our provider has stopped the service." They are lucky now that domains tend to have a grace period before other people can buy them, otherwise they could loose it.

    I wonder what happens if I go into Halfords and say: "I'm taking this now but I will come back at some other time to pay you for it"

  4. Anonymous Coward
    Happy

    Not us!

    "It apologised to customers for any inconvenience"

    Don't apologise to us, you better start apologising to the share holders, they're probably slightly more miffed!

  5. John Tserkezis

    Oops

    "a temporary administrative issue in our domain name renewal process"

    Lemmi guess. Someone forgot to pay the renewal.

  6. Captain Scarlet Silver badge
    WTF?

    no auto renew

    Definate Fail, why not slap on their auto-renew process.

  7. Anomalous Cowturd
    Go

    It's up now.

    Still not going there to buy anything...

  8. Andy Blackburn
    FAIL

    Whoopsy

    Technical Contact:

    Pending Renewal or Deletion

    P.O. Box 430

    Herndon, VA 20172-0447

    US

    570-708-8786

    Record expires on 14-Jan-2011.

    Record created on 14-Jul-1997.

  9. Jon Smit
    Thumb Down

    Awful site when it does work

    It's always been the last port of call for me. I can get practically everything they sell, cheaper elsewhere.

    I was looking at bikes before Xmas. Plenty of cheap ones - none available within any decent travelling distance of south London.

  10. Tigra 07
    Thumb Down

    I don't need no stinkin' title!

    Directautomotive (a supplier for our work) is down aswell today, it seems there's a few people not paying their bills this week.

    It's really hypocritical that these big companies expect to get away with not paying their bills, yet their customers would never be able to.

  11. IsJustabloke
    Stop

    I refuse to enoble a simple forum post....

    funily enough I was looking at the Halfrauds website about 11.45 last night....

    Did you know they no longer sell brake pads?!??! Not for cars anyway... plenty of bicycle ones were listed.

    Do you think this was all related in some bizzare way? :-)

    1. Daniel 43

      Auto Centre

      I know Halfords have bought out a car garage chain - national autocentre i think. Will probably have to go to them for car parts

    2. Anonymous Coward
      Anonymous Coward

      There's a good reason they no longer sell breakpads

      People who are clever enough to fit brake pads are clever enough to buy them for 1/3 the price at their local motor factors

  12. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    Six days late

    According to the who.is information, the renewal was due six days ago. Perhaps that's how long it took their accounts payable department to organise a whip-round.

  13. Badbob
    FAIL

    Absolute tripe anyway!

    I used their reserve and collect service for a part for my bicycle (needed it straight away, so didnt have time to go trawling around bike shops).

    Reserved it online and toddled over to the store (about 6 miles away), only to be told that "We don't have that in stock. Maybe it got stolen from the shelf". Aside from the fact that it is a pretty strange thing to steal (a bottom bracket, the bearing collection that goes inside the frame between the two pedals), when did it go missing and when was the last time you done a stock check?

    Last week I went into the store to buy an Air Filter for my car. Checked the little book on the shelf, picked up the one stated, paid my £12 and went home to fit it. To find it was 2 inches short on each side. Called the store to be told that it must be an unusual model. Last time I checked, a Vauxhall Corsa is a pretty damn usual model of car. Funny how, if my car is so unusual that the local Vauxhall garage was able to sell me a GM OEM filter for £7 (cheaper than Halfords!!! at a GM parts dealer!!!!) just by knowing my engine size. Sounds pretty standard to me.

    Bunch of useless twats.

    1. N2 Silver badge

      The last resort

      And only after I've called and got the item put aside, do I finally stump up for their over priced goods.

      As for their web site, its shite even the search facility pisses me off as its one of those that erases the search results once clicked, grrr.

    2. Equitas
      FAIL

      Not very collected?

      Badbob wrote "Reserved it online and toddled over to the store (about 6 miles away), only to be told that "We don't have that in stock. Maybe it got stolen from the shelf"."

      I've more than once done a "reserve and collect" to find when I went into the store they simply went from the "reserve and collect" desk and picked the item off the shelf and sent me to pay at the ordinary cash desk. On the last occasion I asked the cashier several times to show me where the goods were marked as reserved, but was simply told that they would have taken the labels off them when they took them off the shelf. Believe that if you like. What's the point in having a special "reserve and collect" desk if they don't reserve the goods and take them to the "reserve and collect" point?

  14. Ragarath
    Coat

    Not ever using them again.

    Out shopping one day and thought "I need some things for the car," Halfords was nearby. Went got my stuff, put it up on the desk to pay, all rang in.

    "Would you like a bag sir?"

    "Yes please."

    "That will cost 2p."

    At which point items for purchase were left on counter and I walked out. If you want me to buy from you allow me to carry my purchase home. The price of the bags should (and I am sure already is) be factored in to the cost of your merchandise (overpriced anyway).

    Sorry off-topic Halfords rant. The one at the back please! No the blue one... that's it.

    1. Sarah Bee (Written by Reg staff)

      Re: Not ever using them again.

      Yeah, what an outrage. Personally I would have grabbed some petrol and self-immolated right there in protest.

    2. Lockwood

      bags

      Think of the trees!

      1. Anonymous Coward
        Alert

        Re: bags

        "Think of the trees!"

        I do, so I always make sure I use one-time-use plastic bags rather than paper bags.

        That way no trees are wasted, and I do my bit to keep those poor people who make plastic bags employed.

  15. Anonymous Coward
    FAIL

    Consistency. I love it.

    If nothing else, their back end is as consistent as the quality of their store staff.

  16. The Brave Sir Robin
    FAIL

    Wonder how long.....

    ...you have to wait between clicking the buy button and getting to the pay screen. In the high street shop you have to wait about 10 minutes for someone to come to the check-out to take your money from you. Its almost like they don't want to actually sell you things.

    1. Anonymous Coward
      Anonymous Coward

      agreed...

      It's because they employ kiddies at minimum wage (and expect them to work over) - who have absolutely no interest in actually being there - let alone helping the Halfords brand.

      A lot of companies seem to think this is a good idea?

      Quite a few of those companies don't exist any more. How long for Halfords?

  17. patrick_bateman
    IT Angle

    Fail

    me and dad went in to get some bits for our classic astons that we know they stock (standard generic parts) just didnt know where in the store layout. Assistant persisted that he wanted to know make model and everything even though we just needed to be pointed in the right direction...so....

    Staff: what car have you got

    dad: Aston Martin DB6

    Sales: Hmm

    Sales: Right, thats under Jaguar

    Me: AH HA HA HA HA HA HA HA HA HA,

    I now am in a hosting company and its supriseing who will forget or ignore the warning emails that are sent out months before hand.

    Halfords is like pc word - have a look at there products, right so thats the most i should be paying for it, wheres wilko's/maplins?

    1. SirTainleyBarking
      FAIL

      According to Halfords

      Where I went to get a generic radiator cap, Landrovers were not made before 1980.

      This was the 50th anniversary year.

      In Solihull

      2 weeks after the parade through the centre of town

  18. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    But

    Where am I supposed to get my gungum to go with these jubilee clips and coke can?

  19. Anonymous Coward
    Thumb Up

    Would recommend again!

    They delivered my order twice and didn't charge me a penny.

    Now that's what I call customer service!

  20. Anonymous Coward
    Jobs Horns

    PC World / Halfords

    That's what happens when there are no competitors on the high street / on the trading estate. Imagine a world with only the cult of Jobs, or Gates or even Torvalds, or am I being unfair? Back on message, 1&1 always give me warning AGES in advance of renewal which gives me ample time to dump those speculative purchases.

    1. Anonymous Coward
      Anonymous Coward

      1and1

      Personally I have had nothing but trouble with renewals from 1and1.

      Their email correspondence about all account issues/renewals/etc has been terrible.

      Their email correspondence/spam on the other hand always seems to get through?

  21. Doug Glass
    Go

    Some moron ...

    ... forgot to pay the bill.

  22. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    Do you suppose

    ... mail from Network Solutions was going to their customer services inbox? That would explain everything.

  23. Students not allowed?
    FAIL

    Seriously...

    .. never known a company to manage its domains like I manage my underwear supply - only renewing after it runs out.

  24. F'tangF'tang

    Halfrauds

    With a trade card most stuff in Halfords is 50%-60% off the shelfprice... Still, EuroCarParts is a better place to get your car spares...

    Yes the staff are all teenagers who usually dont know an alternator from a starter motor...

    But, their Halfords Advanced workshop tools are really good... Independently tested their torque wrenches (made by Norbar) came out tops for accuracy, beating the top name brands by a wide margin...And the 150 piece socket set is lifetime guaranteed and unbelievably good quality (frequently on offer for 50% off... or permenantly 50% off with a trade card) for about 90 squids...

    Staff: what car have you got?

    Me: Aston Martin DB6

    Staff: Are you nuts... you have an Aston Martin DB6 and you are buying parts for it in here...

    Staff and all customers within earshot: AH HA HA HA HA HA HA HA HA HA HA HA HA HA HA HA

    1. N2 Silver badge

      I agree

      The store may be pretty naff, but their pro tools, sockets etc are good quality

      1. Equitas

        At a sensible price................

        On special offer of 50% off, plus Quidco credit for paying with a registered credit card, plus cashback on the credit card ....... their pro tools are worth having. Not much else is.

  25. Shannon Jacobs
    IT Angle

    Excuse me, but what is Halfords?

    Article needs a bit of context for people in the parts of the world where Halfords has not been heard of, webpage notwithstanding. I take it that they are a retail chain of some sort, and that they sell bicycles and some other goods.

    1. Anonymous Coward
      Anonymous Coward

      info

      How dare you live in another part of the world :)

      Halfords is a store that sells car parts, motorcycle parts, cycles & parts, tools, car stereos, little fluffy dice, workshop manuals, etc, etc. etc.

    2. Equitas
      FAIL

      Where on earth ................

      is Shannon Jacobs? How can we compare Halfords to some other chain without knowing in what country to make the comparison.

      Halfords strike me as being the most horrendous waste of a store. It could have been like the Canadian Tire chain, had it been reasonably managed. But it has not been. Mind you, Canadian Tire is mainly a very large scale franchise operation, so the local store -- usually several times the size of a Halfords branch -- is quite probably locally-owned.

    3. Bonce
      Coat

      err

      why didn't you look it up on their website?

      (sorry)

  26. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    Cynic

    Well call me a cynic but maybe this was deliberate.

    This is now being reported all over the press and I'm sure the halfords.com traffic will have increased as a result.

  27. PsychicMonkey
    FAIL

    Seen this happen

    I used to work for a womens (now sell mens as well) clothing chain, the chain also has small shops the sold accessories for the ladies. Our webhost were supposed to hadle the the domains, we had paid for the renewal but they never got round to it. We got a complaint about the website sellign sex toys, turns out the name had been picked up because it wasn't renewed took about a week to get it back, think it cost the webhost a large sum as well.....

  28. Anonymous Coward
    FAIL

    and halfords.co.uk....

    ...which doesn't expire until September of this year, so you'd think they'd at least ensure that wasn't just redirected to the non-existant .com address and point it to their web servers while they renew their .com - even if only to apologise to being such f--kwits!

    Expect the .co.uk will dissapear to a holding page in Septermber then!

  29. Anonymous Coward
    Alert

    Could be Worse...

    In a retail park round my way, one of the stores forgot to renew the lease on their unit. Needless to say, the unit was given to a new store and the old one was told to "ship out by Friday". I expect the manager (or whomever was responsible) was looking for a new job that Friday!

  30. Mike Pellatt
    FAIL

    next fail in 2021

    See they've renewed it til 2021 now. Not that the DNS has propagated yet. and halfords.co.uk still redirects to the broken .com....

  31. Scotty
    Thumb Down

    Its went to the dogs!

    They've not been the save since the Burmah asset strippers flogged them off from Quinton Hazzel many moons ago

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