So I ordered a new PCI card for my new computer in order to get it to work properly with the Yamaha mLAN driver. But — whoops, silly me! I looked at the back of the computer, saw metal tabs over card slots, and figured, hey, I know how to put in a PCI card.

If I had taken the trouble to look at the specs of the computer before ordering, I might (maybe) have noticed that it uses PCI Express. Confusing name, because PCI Express ain’t PCI. The two card types are fundamentally incompatible, although in theory, your software won’t know the difference. (That is, I want to emphasize, the theory.)

So I spent $35 on a PCI card that I can’t use, and wasted a week waiting for it. When it arrived, I had to hack the plastic packaging open with a box cutter. God forbid they should put these things in packages you can open with your fingers. Now the package is ripped to shreds, so there’s no point in trying to return it.

One might legitimately ask, shouldn’t the Yamaha tech have said, “Does your new computer use PCI or PCI Express?” But no, that would be passing the buck. It’s my fault.

Hewlett-Packard — reinventing the wheel, one spoke at a time.

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1 Response to Slotted

  1. Conrad says:

    No, they might very well take it as a return. Especially if, rather than wanting your money back, you ask for the proper part. In retail they’d care that the UPC was intact; I don’t know what they’d want through mail order.

    In any case, it’s certainly worth asking about. If it’s within their policy to allow returns, the clerk you talk to will be glad to do it. They get paid either way.


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