I was dragged into consulting part time for someone who couldn't find a decent consultant. And my son's school roped me into the job as a volunteer. And I spec'd major brands, as I do in my 'daylight' job.
Frankly, I don't care what the hardware costs... it doesn't cost ME, it costs the customer. But is has to be solid, and I spec the right system to do the job.
I remember specing a Dell server with RAID, they charged me for 'integrating' the raid controller... hell, it didn't even show up on the same day, forget aboutit being 'integrated'! And I had to hunt for drivers... and shoehorn them onto startup floppies for NT SBS (Ok, it's been a while...) which was supposed to be factory installed. You get the idea.
And I've run into other issues, from the HP server that refused to boot Redhat (which it was supposedly 'customized' for) with a USB keyboard, to jumping through hoops to get Dell to send me the 25th disk that failed out of the crummy batch they sent me at my son's school. Oh, and stripping out the bloatware on factory OS installs is so much work, it's easier to build a fresh image and just image the machines.
White box desktops are just plain silly. Anyone who thinks he can undercut a Tiawanese assembly line on price is kidding himself; but the majors are no picnic, either!
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