Vista upgrade? - how to waste the hours away...

Along with many tens of thousands of people yours truly purchased a new PC earlier this year, finally opting for a laptop from Dell at a shade more than I budgeted for, mainly because it came with Windows XP Home with a free voucher upgrade to Vista.

For the past few weeks I've struggled to try and redeem my upgrade voucher, which was supposed to be redeemable online via the Microsoft Web site. Now Dell and Microsoft are asking me to call an 0870 national rate number - which costs 8p a minute during office hours.

Every time I call the number, it's either busy or a recorded voice tells me the Dell upgrade centre is too busy to accept my call, and can I call later.

Finally, at the start of this week, I get through to a human being, who tells me to visit www.dellvistaupgrade.com - which I do, and am told I only have until March 15th to complete my upgrade request.

Whew - talk about cutting it fine. Dell's support line, meanwhile, tells me it has extended the upgrade deadline until the end of March.

When do I get my upgrade copy of Vista? Dell will ship the upgrade before the end of April.

Come ON guys - some people have had Vista for weeks now. What's the delay for?

So I surf over to www.dellvistaupgrade.com/contactus.aspx to ask a question - aha, please call 0808-234-8397.

Busy, busy, number unobtainable. I get though at 4:50pm on Tuesday. "Thankyou for calling - our business hours are 8am to 5pm MOnday

through Friday. Please call again."

Thank YOU for closing the call centre early Dell. I finally got through on the 20th call attempt on Wednesday morning. My Vista upgrade will

be mailed out by the end of April. And no, they don't know the reason for the delay. The upgrade, by the way, is coming from the US, and I'll bet a pound to a penny the wretched thing comes surface mail.

Thanks a lot Dell. Thanks a lot Microsoft. Grrrrrrr....