Dell Chromebook out of warranty
July 26, 2017 9:17 AM   Subscribe

I need to have my Dell Chromebook fixed, but not sure where to go/send it.

I got a Dell Chromebook. We installed Ubuntu, it worked fine, then stopped. Decided to reinstall Chromeos: during install, got "Boot failed: could not read from boot disk" error. Pressing ctl+alt+F2 showed additional info "SSD for installation not specified." Thought it was an HD problem, but after replacement, error kept occurring.

I took it to a (storefront/no name) computer repair place but no dice.

Obviously, it's out of warranty since we opened it up.

Do I need to send it somewhere? Where? What needs to happen here? Right now, it's an expensive paperweight.

For reference: I'm in Miami, will be in LA soon and also Nashville/Lexington/Louisville, if those are places with known resources.
posted by mrfuga0 to Computers & Internet (4 answers total)
Chromebooks are a couple of hundred bucks. I doubt you'll get it fixed for much less than that. ($75 for diagnostics labor, $75 for hour to fix it, plus parts)

Probably better off just buying a new Chromebook.
posted by COD at 9:50 AM on July 26, 2017 [2 favorites]

I went through the process of installing Gallium OS on a chromebook just a few weeks ago, and I believe I got a similar error message at one point in my hours-long saga of installing and reverting and backing up and blah blah blah. For me, powering through with the Gallium Install Procedure (making sure NOT to enable whatever extra access the system asked if I wanted and not setting a password for that, it doesn't work properly and will lock you out of system changes) ended up working and providing me with a much better laptop than ChromeOS can give me. I just kept trying. I'm not enough of an expert to say why it worked eventually.
posted by Pacrand at 10:23 AM on July 26, 2017

Have you tried a different OS? Can you boot from a live USB?

You can also try the drive/boot options in the BIOS: sometimes an AHCI, SATA, fast boot or other mode toggle will prevent a drive from working.

If it is a hardware problem and not the HD it's likely the motherboard, which probably can't be replaced for (much) less than the cost of the machine.

Are you sure it's out of warranty? RAM and HDs are often considered user-serviceable; it can't hurt to call Dell up.
posted by lozierj at 7:42 PM on July 26, 2017

Yeah, I really hate to say it but the Chromebooks are so cheap nowadays that the cost to diagnose and repair them will far exceed the original price of the machine. Over at Happy Techs we recently had a Chromebook in the shop that "wouldn't power on". As it turns out the display cable was loose from the motherboard so it was an easy fix. They definitely do not hold up to much wear and tear. Good luck!
posted by tull5307 at 10:08 PM on July 27, 2017

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