Apple ProCare – Yes, It’s Really Worth It!
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If you are one of the people who has considered Apple ProCare (or even one of them who has rejected Apple ProCare out of hand), we’re here to tell you that, yes, it’s a very good deal!

Just read on to learn our tale of woe, and how having Apple ProCare saved the day! (And how the Genius Bar folks at the Apple store in Palo Alto rock!)


First, in case you are not fully familiar with how Apple ProCare works, here’s a brief overview:

You pay $99 for a full year’s Apple ProCare membership, which anyone in your family can use. That entitles you to the following, right off the bat:

o Apple will completely set up any new Mac you buy. That includes, they explain, “When you buy a Mac at a retail Apple Store, we’ll transfer your mail, calendar, address book, photos, music, movies, and other files from your old computer (PC or Mac) to your new Mac, and install any additional software.” (Nice!)

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o A free annual inspection and tune up for any Mac in your family (up to three!) “Bring in your Mac and we’ll run system diagnostics, update your Apple software, and even clean your monitor and keyboard. Pretty much everything you need to make sure your Mac is in top-notch condition. Free to ProCare members.” We have at least three Macs running in our family at any one time, so this is quite a deal.

o Free backup consultations. “As a ProCare member, our Geniuses will help you protect all your files by finding the right back-up solution just for you and keeping you up and running with consistent, reliable backups.” (Also check up our own backup solution recommendations for both online backup solutions, and portable external hard drive backup solutions).

In addition, if you bring a Mac in for repair, you’ll get bumped up ahead of all the people in line who don’t have Apple ProCare. Ditto for a question or adjustment at the Genius Bar (that is the service area in an Apple store where employees provide technical assistance).

 

And here is where we pick up our story…

Last week, my after-market hard drive (i.e. I had it installed somewhere other than Apple) crashed. Hard. As a result, I needed to have it replaced (again, not by Apple, as this was not an Apple hard drive).

Unfortunately, my external hard drive to which I usually backed up my laptop was experiencing its own problems, so that full backup was unavailable to me. Fortunately, because of this, I had recently done a backup online.

When the machine was returned to me, with the new hard drive, for some reason the file permissions were all wrong. That meant that even logged in as an administrator, I couldn’t get into even the most basic of areas on the computer.

“Ah, I thought, I know how to fix that.”

So, working into the wee hours of the morning – until about 2am in fact – I “fixed” it.

When I was done, it was so horribly messed up that I needed to reinstall the operating system.

Only my computer kept spitting out the CD – it wouldn’t read it!

So, the first thing in the morning, I called the Apple store in Palo Alto (they rock!), and made an appointment for the Genius Bar – I figured I’d let them reinstall the OS, and then I could take it from there. My time was really tight, and I really needed to get my computer back up and running.

If any of you have ever been to a Genius Bar at an Apple Store, you know that the appointment slots for the Genius Bar fill up really fast.

When I called the earliest appointment available was hours away. And I really needed my system back up and running as soon as possible – plus I knew that restoring from the backup was going to take time. I grabbed the next available appointment, for that afternoon, but because I was just going to ask them to reinstall the operating system, and all I really needed them to do was put the disks in – I could babysit it – I figured that I would go up earlier and see if maybe I could just get them to start the reinstall sooner.

I showed up at the Apple store in Palo Alto hours early. Just hoping. The Genius Bar was crowded, and the appointment board showed that the appointment slots for the next several hours were all filled.

I crossed my fingers and walked up to the Genius Bar, where everybody behind the counter was helping someone, with many more to come, and when I caught someone’s eye I said, “Excuse me, I have ProCare…” …

…and I couldn’t even get the rest of the words out of my mouth.

It was like an E.F. Hutton commercial.

Everybody stopped talking. All Genius eyes were on me. Time stopped. The seas parted.

And they said, to me, despite all the people there with all those appointments stretching into the late afternoon “Oh yes, how can we help you?”

It was amazing.

And it continued to be amazing. They not only reinstalled my OS for me on the spot, but they let me stay there for hours, while my machine was restored from the online backup, so that they could help me make sure that all of my email from the backup was imported back into my mail program properly.

And, oh yes, they waved a chicken over my laptop (yes, really!)

When I walked out of there, I was one very happy and satisfied customer (and there were still long lines waiting for the Genius Bar).

So, yes, Apple ProCare is very much worth it.

And to Dale, Craig, and the others at the Genius Bar at the Apple Store in Palo Alto – you guys rock!

No Paywall Here!
The Internet Patrol is and always has been free. We don't hide our articles behind a paywall, or restrict the number of articles you can read in a month if you don't give us money. That said, it does cost us money to run the site, so if something you read here was helpful or useful, won't you consider donating something to help keep the Internet Patrol free?
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What info did you find here today?:

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2 thoughts on “Apple ProCare – Yes, It’s Really Worth It!
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  1. Well, it is certainly curious that they rarely write anything about SPAM or computer security any more…

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