In December 2009, I bought an Acer Aspire M5810 desktop from one of the major electronics chain retailers. In June 2010, my "cold boot" sequence (boot from power OFF) failed; I would receive the error message "reboot and select proper boot device or insert boot media in selected boot device and press a key". Thereafter, I could press [ctrl]+[alt]+[del], i.e. "warm boot" and Windows 7 would load successfully. However, I was dissatisfied with this "solution" and on June 6, 2010, I entered into an exchange of email with Acer tech support.
The timeline of events then goes like this...
June 6, 2010: Begin exchange of troubleshooting email and telephone help with Acer Tech Support
June 8, 2010: Acer authorized me to ship computer back for warranty repairs
June 14, 2010: I shipped my computer to Acer Canada
June 16, 2010: Acer Canada received my computer
June ??, 2010: Acer Canada shipped my computer to Acer USA in Temple, Texas
June 21, 2010: Acer USA shipped my computer back to Acer Canada
June 24, 2010: Acer Canada received my computer
June 29, 2010: Acer Canada shipped my computer to me
June 30, 2010: I received my computer in Winnipeg, Manitoba
Upon receiving my computer back, the cold boot issue was fixed. Acer's Temple, Texas depot included a diagnostics report letter that said Acer USA had replaced the Hard Disk Drive, Video Adapter, BIOS update, and reinstalled the Operating System.
But, when I started to check things out, I noticed the HDD partitions were not the same as the factory configuration of the original HDD (the one that ACER replaced). Instead of having C: [Windows] @ 450 GB, D: [Data] @ 456 GB, and a hidden EISA drive with "PQSERVICE" restore partition, all that showed was a C: [Windows] @ 931 GB. I assumed that C: and D: were just combined now or something.
I thought I would reboot to try the [alt]+[f10] combo to run Acer eRecovery (to reinstall Windows) from the hidden EISA partition. Well, that didn't work; Windows 7 booted up as if I hadn't touched the keyboard whatsoever. So, I booted into Windows 7 and then I went to the Control Panel - Adminstrative Tools - Disk Management to look for the EISA partition - and there was nothing there but the C: [Windows] @ 931 GB. I tried to run the Acer eRecovery software from Windows start menu, and the software advised me that the restore partition was indeed missing and I would be required to restore Windows using the eRecovery DVD-ROMs (three of them) I created when I first used my computer. I do indeed have those discs, but I don't want to restore using that method.
So again, I contacted Acer Tech Support, who advised me that by running the restore from the three DVD-ROM discs, the hidden "PQSERVICE" EISA restore partition would be, uh, "restored", at the same time as the O/S is reinstalled. Well, that didn't work! I advised Acer Technical Support of my experience, to which they instructed me to "purchase eRecovery discs for $20". But, I already have the discs - I created them in December 2009 when the computer prompted me to do so! I feel like I'm going in circles here! So, let's try Acer's telephone support...
I reached a customer service representative at a "foreign" call centre who, after a very circular conversation that went no where but downhill, explained to me in clear and unambiguous terms ... that because Acer had to remove my original HDD and replace it with a different HDD, Acer had no obligations to format the drive to match the specifications of the original, and that Acer had no obligations to ensure the new HDD had restore partition with Acer eRecovery software! What the heck!? I spent $85 to ship my computer to Acer under the premise that I would have it restored (under warranty) to "like new" condition. In my opinion, my computer is not "like new" without that restore partition.
I did further research on various forums and I keep reading about these "NAPP" CD that Acer makes for their repair depots and authorized service technicians that can be used to programatically restore the HDD to true factory configuration - EISA "PQSERVICE" partition, C: [Windows], and whatever else that model is supposed to have setup. When I asked Acer Tech Support (both phone and email) about this tool, they systematically ignored me as if they didn't hear (see) my message. I'm not quite sure where to turn to next - do any of you readers have any suggestions? This is my third Acer Aspire computer (Pentium 4, Core2 Quad, and now I7), but unless I can get a solution from Acer, this will be my last.