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HP Win2K driver saga continues

Users pissed off, big time

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It's not only HP printer owners who are up in arms about the company's inability to ship Win2K drivers for its products. Following our stories last week on the lack of delivers for the OfficeJet range of all-in-one printer/fax/scanners, several readers have written in pointing out that owners of Hewlett-Packard CD writers suffer from the same problem. Adding insult to injury, CDR drivers (which are still at least a month away) will cost as much as $25 plus shipping and can only be ordered by phone for delivery by snailmail (please allow 2 to 3 weeks for delivery). An HP support page here lists the affected CDRs. Reader Andrew Bowman says: "I bought one of these late Feb/early March, and installed it at the same time as I upgraded my machine to Win2K and lo, neither the Win98 or NT4 cd writing software works. "HP had a note on their site (at the page above) saying that new versions of the software will be available for a 'nominal' charge from March 23rd. It was then changed to say April 1st. And now it just says as soon as they can. "Oh, and the charges have been named as $9.95 for some drives and $24.95 for others (including the 8210i that I bought). "I'm pissed off about the lack of driver support (and lack of information about when it will be supported) and also with having to pay extra for drivers for something I've just bought - it's not like I've had the benefit of the drive for years or anything. "It seems I was taken in by my belief that paying a bit extra for an HP CD writer was justified in terms of the support and reliability one has come to expect from HP. I won't buy another HP product again without checking that they've bothered their tails to produce drivers for it." Phillip Matz adds: "With regard to your article(s) concerning HP's inability to provide even beta drivers to its customers for an operating system which has been commercially available for a business quarter I would like to add that they also do not have WIN2K support for their CD-Writers. I engaged in a minor tit-for-tat email scourge with HP's "technical support" concerning their lack of support for their CD burners in Win2k recently and their response was simply they didn't have the resources available to evaluate their drivers in win2000. I will never purchase an HP item again." Paresh Pandya comments: "This is in response to a recurring article regarding HP and the lack of drivers for Win2K. I would like to point out that the problem isn't isolated to their Printer division. I own an HP 7200e cd writer however can I use this device in Win2K? Of course not since HP has yet to release drivers for it! "'Due to some unexpected issues with the HP CD-Writer Plus Drive software applications that are required for Windows 2000 compatibility, HP has decided to delay the software release until all quality standards are satisfied.' (taken from HP's web site) "Previously they had expected an April date for *beta* drivers. Come on people, Win2k was in development for what 3 yrs? Is it going to take that long to get support for our devices?? And what of Microsoft's claim that hundreds of thousands of devices were tested for compatibility? Did they just happen to skip popular mainstream components and use obscure ones? "To further add insult, HP will be charging $24.95 plus s&h (in yankee bucks of course) to have the privilege of obtaining a copy of the updated software needed to run in Win2K. This is just unacceptable. "Thank you and I hope to see more coverage on this debacle." Over to you, HP... ® Related Stories HP eventually wakes up to Win2K Win2K drivers: HP is 'hurrying'

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