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Can you have a Partner ombudsman to assist with WGA issues? RRS feed

  • Question

  • Can you guys ensure that your Partner teams have an Ombudsman or some other way to better help Microsoft partners when they are having issues?

     

    Susan

    (P.S.  I know that WGA didn't come out via WSUS.. it just came out)

     

    Ramon |

    First of all let me state that I am not a Linux zealot, Mac evangelist or a criminal as defined in Vlad’s post. I have been a long time Microsoft partner at a high level and have been among their biggest supporters through the recent trials and tribulations on security, patching, Software Assurance and more. Microsoft abused my trust, cost my company a $150,000 account (annually) and cost me an employee over the last month. If you are interested please read on.

    Regardless of what Microsoft says WGA is a beta product at best. We have never sold or underlicensed a customer in the entire history of my company and we never will. We exclusively provide workstation hardware and licensing through HP and are their partner as well. We manage all patching through WSUS. So far so good.

    One of my biggest accounts recently wanted to come aboard as a fully managed account. We have been in negotiations and planning for well over four months as we consolidate all of their sites under management. Then something interesting happened - Microsoft delivered WGA through WSUS. Alerts started popping up on desktops and laptops randomly. Perhaps in an unfortunate random way they happened at the very senior management levels. Long story short, over the few days the bug caught up with everyone that was rebooting. 100% genuine HP systems running Windows XP Pro SP2 from the factory started randomly warning users and ceasing to work. Four of my techs spent night and day with the client to bring them to order.

    By the time this was all said and done one of the senior principals accused and berated one of my techs. He quit later that day. They at that point accused us of providing them pirated software and were considering a lawsuit against both my company and HP. The only thing that saved us were the horror stories of others on the Internet and reports of WGA’s beta status.

    During this entire ordeal I got no assistance from Microsoft. PRD said everything was OK, directed me to the Piracy hotline and told me to check with PSS. PSS was of no help whatsoever. My PAM was out of town at a conference and never returned my call. I had nobody that I could turn to at Microsoft as a partner to bail me out. I lost my employee, I lost a huge contract and I lost face with the client because of my faith in Microsoft as a company. Microsoft abused my trust and left me standing by myself reponsible for their mistakes.

    So you will pardon me Vlad if I don’t stand in line with your MVP pal that only seems to rant about patching and security while us in the real world have to put up with clients, personalities and busineses that do not care about how computers “work” I am really upset that she would have the nerve to say that we need to report and test and give feedback. Microsoft didn’t give XP away nor did we ask to be placed on a beta program where we would provide feedback. Microsoft did not allow us to choose whether or not this customer would be willing to test a beta program. They just rolled out what according to many reports is nothing more than spyware. And you want my time, my effort and my feedback on how to make that process better? There is no profanity suitable enough to express how deeply I disagree with Microsoft and Susan.

    If Microsoft is a company that believes it has a future selling software then it needs to learn to be responsible for the quality of their product and test things better before publishing it through the mainstream patching process. We have been a Microsoft partner for over eight years and never had a reason to look elsewhere. Microsoft betrayed our trust and made us look like criminals in front of one of our largest clients. They will not earn that trust back and we will actively seek and promote alternative solutions.

    Thank you.

    Ramon
    Tuesday, August 1, 2006 8:10 AM

Answers

  • Susan:

     

    Thanks for the insight. We have been working furiously with OEM's, enterprise partners, and internal partners to ensure the most transparent interaction possible.

     

    I'm curious to see that person's diagnostics output, however. Many times, fingers are pointed before root cause is noted. An example of a case I've worked on would be Paul Thurott's MCE 2005 installation.

    (Enlarged text.. )

    -phil

    Tuesday, August 1, 2006 9:48 PM

All replies

  • The Microsoft OEM System Builders web site offers a vast array of support services, including newsgroups moderated by Microsoft software licensing experts.

    Microsoft OEM System Builders: http://oem.microsoft.com/

    Get Genuine Kit for Windows XP Professional: http://oem.microsoft.com/script/contentpage.aspx?pageid=560312

    The Microsoft Genuine Advantage (MGA) Diagnostic Tool: http://go.microsoft.com/fwlink/?linkid=52012  

    Tuesday, August 1, 2006 1:34 PM
    Moderator
  • Carey, gimme a break.. this guy didn't build the systems... HP did.

    Okay so I know there's a diagnostic tool but why didn't PSS tell him about that tool or help him in any way?  It's called teamwork folks and the folks that do the support at PSS need to be able to know the resources to send folks to and not drop the ball.

    Tuesday, August 1, 2006 3:54 PM
  • Carey,

    Great Link for the systembuilder get genuine kit, they must have just come out with that within the last week or so, because I haven't noticed it before!

    Any idea as to the typical price?

    Thanx

    Tuesday, August 1, 2006 8:25 PM
  • Susan:

     

    Thanks for the insight. We have been working furiously with OEM's, enterprise partners, and internal partners to ensure the most transparent interaction possible.

     

    I'm curious to see that person's diagnostics output, however. Many times, fingers are pointed before root cause is noted. An example of a case I've worked on would be Paul Thurott's MCE 2005 installation.

    (Enlarged text.. )

    -phil

    Tuesday, August 1, 2006 9:48 PM
  • Given that no one from PSS or his PAM pointed him to that tool or this forum, unfortunately it's too late.

    We're not enterprise partners.. we're small shops.  Can you get the word out to your PSS folks ... and perhaps do a Partner webcast on WGA?

     

     Phil Liu MSFT wrote:

    Susan:

     

    Thanks for the insight. We have been working furiously with OEM's, enterprise partners, and internal partners to ensure the most transparent interaction possible.

     

    I'm curious to see that person's diagnostics output, however. Many times, fingers are pointed before root cause is noted. An example of a case I've worked on would be Paul Thurott's MCE 2005 installation.

     

    -phil

    Wednesday, August 2, 2006 4:25 PM
  •  Susan Bradley wrote:

    Given that no one from PSS or his PAM pointed him to that tool or this forum, unfortunately it's too late.

    We're not enterprise partners.. we're small shops.  Can you get the word out to your PSS folks ... and perhaps do a Partner webcast on WGA?

     

    Thanks for the heads up!

     

    We have plans to reach out to individuals from non-MS based sources (i.e. ZDNet, Digg, etc) but are working on the implementation details right now. With regards to the partner programme needs, I'll see what I can do.

     

    Thanks!

     

    -phil

    Wednesday, August 2, 2006 5:06 PM
  • SUSAN:

    Please accepy my apology as an average former believer of M* products.I feel sorry for you and all the other honest ones but no amount of lip service from M* will ever make up for it.

    The main problem with M* is even partners that work with them NEED a like big fat phone directory to find out anything. Much less the average consumer. And because they have grown so big they really aren't worried that they may lose a few customers mainly because "THEY CAN DO NO WRONG"

    You are right to think of other options because of poor and inadequate service and loss of your reputation. I would surmise if the attorneys need any extra information for the class action suits all they would have to do is look at this forum.

    And the point being if you don't believe in M* products yourself how can you then tell your customers to trust them!?

    Good luck on you and your company!

    PATRICK

    Wednesday, August 2, 2006 9:23 PM
  • Hi Susan,

    I would be happy to work with Ramon regarding his issue.  I will make sure to have tha appropriate PAM or TAM engage as well. 

    I would need Ramon to open a service request.  He can do that by going here:  http://support.microsoft.com/oas/default.aspx?c1=509&gprid=9860

    Then I would ask that he post post the SR# number to this forum asking me to contact him.  I will get in touch with PSS to obtain his direct contact information and I will be able to assit him. 

    I can assure you that the WGA Validation (KB 892130) and WGA Notifications (KB 905474) are *not* published to WSUS.  In order for us to do that, would require very specific publishing rules to be applied to our updates by the Windows Update team and that has not happened. 

    The Microsoft OEM team, actually one of the TAM's (technical account mananger) for a program they call OEM Connect is in the process of getting a document published for the OEM partners.  This document will provide the partners with information as to 'what' to do when they encounter a WGA Validation or Notification issue.  This document will be placed on the OEM Communications site and a formal communication will be sent directly to the OEM partners to notify them of this documents existence.

    I can certainly understand Ramon's frustration, but I hope he will consider my offer to help.  I will also be happy to try to track down who his PAM is and try to get to the bottom of why his phone call was not returned (but again, in order to do that I would need to be able to obtain Ramon's contact info).

    Thanks,
    Michelle

     

    Thursday, August 3, 2006 11:28 PM
  • As Michelle has stated, its best to actually get in contact with the customer before jumping to conclusions. We've done several investigations in the past month or so, all have lead to something very interesting as well.. :)

    We are en-route to attempt and figure out what exactly happened in this case, however.

     

    Thanks Susan!

     

    -phil

    Friday, August 4, 2006 5:23 PM
  • Trying to get you that contact info.  I too know that WGA is not pushed to WSUS.
    Friday, August 4, 2006 7:05 PM
  • SUSAN:

    My apology extends to RAMON as well Although in reality the damage is already done.

    I do know for a fact that corporate and some other users were offered at the start of this program a "limited pass" to avoid these problems but they had to tell M* they wanted this and it's very doubtful that some even knew about it. I think blame it on M* policy of releasing information.

    From my experience with M* products If I take away the fact it was only ONCE the only thing out there and they have a history of never learning or listening to their customers I feel it will take years if ever to regain trust in some of their former customers.

    True but sad because there are many sincere people working at M* but the higher ups just DON'T GET IT!

     

    Sunday, August 6, 2006 5:05 AM
  • In your specific case of replacing a eMachine motherboard with a non-emachine motherboard, you'll need to purchase a new Windows XP and perform a "repair install". You can purchase an OEM version of Windows XP Home Edition for only $89.99 + tax & shipping at Newegg.com.
    Monday, August 7, 2006 4:00 AM
    Moderator
  •  Susan Bradley wrote:
    Trying to get you that contact info.  I too know that WGA is not pushed to WSUS.

     

    Thanks Susan!

    Monday, August 7, 2006 6:35 AM