I love the new Windows Live Essentials apps and services, but their support? Not so much.
Over at ZDNet, I’ve outlined just how disorganized the Windows Live support options are. This post is about my personal experience trying to get a problem resolved.
I created my Windows Live home page in early December. Within a day or two of creating the page and accepting a flurry of invitations from other early adopters, I noticed that the status message at the top of the page was telling me I had additional invitations to review. It’s still there, as you can see:
Except when I clicked that link, I was told that, no, there were no network invitations waiting for me.
So I got in touch with Windows Live support, opening a ticket via https://support.live.com/. That page is nearly impossible to find via any Windows Live page. You have to read an online Help topic, then click the Get More Help link in the lower corner of the topic, and then click a small, boldface Get Support link in the middle of the page. That’s a usability fail, big time.
Here’s what happened next:
December 6: Automated message from Support acknowledging receipt of ticket.
December 6: E-mail from (apparently) live support tech, “Alvin,” asking for permission to access my account. I reply with permission.
December 7: Alvin writes back with word that he is “escalating [my] e-mail to our product specialists for further investigation.”
December 12: After a five-day delay, I hear from “Therese,” who identifies herself as a Subject Matter expert within the Windows Live Profile department. She asks for details about the issue and wants to see screen shots. I use the Windows Screen Clipping tool to capture snippets like those shown above and send them in the body of an e-mail. My message goes out minutes after I receive the request from Therese.
December 15: Therese writes back to say that she can’t open PNG files and I need to recapture the screen shots using the JPG format. I shoot two more screens and send them as file attachments. Again, my response goes out within minutes after receipt of the request.
Four hours later, I get another note from Therese show says, with no further explanation, that she’s off the case:
Ed, I will be forwarding this case to our product team, who will then engage additional resources to further investigate this matter. They will be getting back to you once an update becomes available. Thank you for your patience.
And that’s the last I’ve heard from Windows Live Support. It’s been nearly two weeks since I opened the ticket, and it doesn’t appear that anyone has done more than look at the details and pass it to someone else.