Applause for Dell



I usually work on desktop computers and so have complaints from time to time about the way desktop computer manufacturers design access to their components. They’re improving overall, but sometimes you’ll still find something that you’d just like to slap an engineer over… Recently I had to swap a keyboard on a Dell Inspiron 5150 laptop. (Spilled drink.) I must say, congratulations to whoever designed the laptop for the easy access to the keyboard replacement.


I would have to say I’ve opened quite a few laptops and typically to get to the keyboard it can be frustrating. Not hard mind you, but remove these twelve screws, try to get the plastic tabs to seperate, then remove this other part, then another few screws then the keyboard just slides out and disconnects from it’s data plug. (Easy right?) Well, it’s usually just tedious.

This laptop though was excellent. They’ve designed a small plastic strip at the top of the keyboard that has a notch in one side as an obvious sign it’s meant to come loose. It “pops” off thanks to plastic tabs and then exposes the 4 or so screws that hold the keyboard in. Disconnect the data cable, put in the new one and snap back the plastic strip. The only complaint I could have is that I despise those plastic snaps (break too easily if you can’t see where it’s holding.) I’d rather see a couple screws holding that in and no plastics snaps, but I’m just pleased they’ve thought ahead about replacement of one of the most replaced notebook parts.

Years ago most laptop makers started making a nice access panel for memory (the most used replacement/add on), lately Dell’s and other laptops have had easy hard drive insertion/removal and now the keyboard. Thanks for making the techs life a bit less tedious.

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