My laptop was stolen in January of this year. It was a nice laptop, and it was my own stupid fault. I left it on a plane. Twenty minutes after arriving at my hotel I realized what had happened, phoned the airline and asked that they look for it. I had my seat number...
The thing was never found. I think someone swiped it on the way out of the plane. Heaven knows they all searched for it (and were very nice about it). So, it was gone.
I had a short-lived moment of panic: there was a lot of personal information on that thing, but then I remembered that I had a password that was about as break-proof as can be managed. After a couple tries the memory banks would have been erased and the machine sold on. It was still annoying, but, as I said, it was my own stupid fault.
I was out of town. I commissioned a friend to find me another, gave a price range and a sincere thanks. She found a laptop that had been marked way down because a newer model was being rolled out. The markdown was very dramatic. The laptop had huge memory, incredible RAM. It was fast, capacious - and it was on sale for just about $30 more than I'd budgeted. Definitely a fabulous buy.
I have been using it and very happy with it, but it started getting a little cranky. I backed everything up in duplicate and then took it to 'The Geek Squad'.
They looked it over, gave some suggestions, and I took it home and followed the suggestions - defrag the thing, do a disk cleanup, upload updates. It froze. It would not start.
So I took it back the next day. It was under warranty, though I had declined the extended warranty. I left it there, ran my errands - and received a phone call.
You have a defective hard drive. It will need to be replaced. It is, however, under warranty... (Imagine the voice of the announcer for Superman).
What can you say? Machines fail. I gave the OK to ship the laptop out and get the hard drive replaced (they didn't have one in stock, since it was an 'older' model). I had no complaints. It was under warranty and it would be fixed. I had backed everything up, so I had lost no graphics or manuscripts. And my friend, who found me the laptop in the first place, has one she isn't using.
Life isn't always convenient, of course, but I think I was lucky.