MS UK extends free Win98 SE upgrade to OEM PCs
Now will somebody tell the call centre grunts about this?
Updated Microsoft UK has now put in place a mechanism that will allow all UK Windows 98 owners to get a free upgrade to Win98 SE. But the trouble is that it doesn't seem to have told the staff of the Microsoft Connection about it yet. A user trying to get an upgrade after reading about it on The Register tells us: "The person at the other end was very helpful right up until the point when I told him that I had an OEM copy of Win 98. He then told me that I would have to contact my OEM supplier and that it was entirely up to them as to whether or not I would get an upgrade." This is not true. See below. Earlier (MS gives SE update away for free) Microsoft's UK operation broke ranks with the US, which is charging $19.95 for the upgrade, and said that people who'd purchased retail Win98 could get the free upgrade. As this required a copy of a receipt, it wasn't then clear how people (i.e., most people) who got Win98 with their machine could get an upgrade. According to a letter to an MS OEM we've seen, it's now just a matter of calling the Microsoft Connection on 0345-002000, asking for the upgrade and then faxing through a copy of your Win98 Certificate of Authenticity. You'll only have to stump up for postage, and presumably this won't be $19.95 (although another informant tells of how he was hit for UKP12, a sum not unadjacent to $19.95, for postage for a "free" upgrade to Outlook 98). But as regards the OEM SE upgrade, it may take a little effort to persuade MS' operatives you qualify. Here's the text of the letter MS sent out, in case you need some back-up: "Thank you for your enquiry regarding OEM version upgrades to Windows 98 Second Edition. "The free upgrade offer is indeed now available to OEM customers. The procedure is as follows: "1 Customer calls Microsoft Connection on 0345 00 2000 and requests free upgrade. "2 Customer faxes through copy of Certificate of Authenticity and arranges payment of postage and packing charge by cheque or credit card. "3 Upgrade will be sent out within a week of payment being received. "Please feel free to pass these details on to any of your customers who would like to take advantage of this offer." ®
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