Viglen Genie PCs - Won't work with many keyboards - what can I do?
A sorry tale of woe.
In May 2012 we brought a large quantity of Viglen Genie PCs with 2nd generation Sandy bridge processors. When the PCs arrived, we quickly noticed that the PCs would often hang - typically failing to recover from a power event such as standby.
Viglen said initially that the problem must be our software image (despite this image being deployed on hundreds of other PCs) and ignored us when we said they would fail with a fresh install of Windows 7. Then a visiting Viglen engineer let slip that there was a known issue with the units. After a lot of diagnosis and our time spent trying to trouble shoot, Viglen then sent a batch of replacement keyboards. The fault remained. So they sent a second batch. The fault remained. On the third batch of keyboards, the machines were fine and we breathed a sigh of relief. The guy at Viglen said he would look at getting a proper fix.
Anyway, a long time later and the guy at Viglen has left the firm. Worse, when we need to replace the keyboards (as we often have to do) we can't find ones that don't cause the machines to hang - we left with re-using old ones from other PCs for the moment. Viglen now claim that the PCs are 100% fine and that it is the keyboards that are faulty. So basically I am left with a large quantity of problematic PCs.
I've tried to point out the logic that I have no problem with any keyboard on any other PC, but many keyboards won't work on the Genies. But I am told that my logic is irrelevant - Viglen claim they have now 'pinpointed' the keyboards, although they can't list exactly what models will/will not work.
From what I can work out, the keyboard code/USB circuitry in the PC/motherboard is defective. Viglen seem to be simplifying the statement that 'the keyboard operation' is the problem down to 'the keyboard is the problem.'
Has anyone else experienced this particular problem? What would anyone advise I do? Has anyone else in this day and age had to worry about USB keyboards not working with a mass-produced PC?
We brought Viglen one last time after various large projects were screwed up, and now greatly regret the poor product and poor after care service. Any comments or suggestions gratefully received. But as far as I am concerned - beware!! A ZX spectrum is far more useful... than a PC with no keyboard.
Had a very similar problem with a batch of Stone PCs we bought a few years ago. PCs would boot fine but only pick up the keyboard 1 time out of 10, if at all. IIRC we got another batch of keyboards from Stone but same problem. After many calls we managed to get a BIOS update from stone which we had to go round all 100 pcs with a floppy disk - not fun. This helped but didn't cure the problem, maybe down to 1 in 2/1 in 3 boots would pick up the keyboard.
End result, we have never bought from Stone again. Sorry but no advice other than so the same and don't buy from them again.
This is something you may get with any supplier. The less said about Viglen the better (ugh) but Stone just box up OEM parts with no real third party interaction other than the splash screen at the "bios". For instance, we self built a load of machines last year to find that the manufacturer (Gigabyte) had arsed up the BIOS cloning on them, meaning we have around 30 machines with identical SMGUIDs. That's always good fun when you're trying to image them...
Hi, yes, we've been offered this file. We weren't told what it did, except that it was a 'keyboard patch' for the model of keyboard they say has been 'pinpointed.' The point is, the problem occurs on multiple models of keyboard, so we weren't sure if installing a 'keyboard patch' purportedly for one model would work on another.
It's curious that you've been offered this fix for the keyboard disappearing problem - whereas this is not the issue we see. The entire PC hangs (losing all work) and stays with a black screen. This seems to be a different fault.
I've asked them: "Please kindly explain how all of these many different models of keyboards are all so very faulty and that your are confident that this specific model of PCs of yours are working as they should. I also expect a response to indicate why these allegedly faulty keyboards do not cause a problem on any other PC, including other Viglen ones." But no reply.
Anyway, Viglen are no longer responding to any e-mails - including the one above -now. I suspect they know that there is a big issue with these units. But to not even to respond to e-mails asking for clarification is not professional.
Yes, sadly our experience it seems is that Viglen are more than prepared to sell faulty equipment to a firm... and then walk away. We've also put so much time in to trying to get these units fixed.
Does anyone have any other suggestion as to what we might do, apart from give this 'keyboard patch' for the other issue a whirl?
Last edited by SchoolDude; 5th December 2013 at 11:53 AM.