QUICK SUMMARY: This is a narrow review where I'm only relaying my experience with the software that supposedly came with this textbook. It did come with a CD which included the sample data and solved problems, but there is no software on the CD. Problem is, downloading the software is not only troublesome, but the software won't install on any of my computers! Worse, the customer support is abysmal and useless. I'm stuck. And angry.
*** Update: I *did* finally get the software installed, no thanks to the software publisher's technical support. The trick, I think, is to extract the entire contents of the initial download file (which is really just a collection of Word documents, a README file, and a software installer utility that will download the entire Decision Tools software package after it authenticates your license to use the Decision Tools) into the Windows Desktop -- NOT to any other folder on your hard drive! -- and then click the dts570ind.exe file on the Windows Desktop. Make *sure* that the course.lic (the license file) is unzipped to the Windows Desktop, too!
Background: This is the required textbook for my graduate course this semester. I bought this textbook early so I could begin reading the chapters and getting familiar with the Excel add-in software toolset. But the CD that accompanies this textbook doesn't have the software. Instead, it had an HTML document that provides a link to a website where you're supposed to download the software. Fine. I did that. The website is frustrating because you have to authenticate by answering questions about the book's index ("What is the first word of the third entry under the letter "Y"?), and then answer questions like, who is your professor, what's the name of your course, what's the course number? For me, I had to then go to my school's website to dig-out the requested information. Fine, I did that, too. But the downloaded software doesn't install on my computer (Windows 7) or my work computer (Windows XP)! Worse, the README file is incomplete as to the process for installing, but the more detailed instructions I received from the publisher also don't work, either. Now I'm spiraling out of control, because the tech support is so awful! Here's what they've done so far:
- Provided me with installation instructions for Windows Vista, although I've told them I'm trying to install on Windows XP
- Provided me with an Excel file that supposedly has the add-in software installed, but that software doesn't coincide with what's described in this textbook
- Provided me with installation instructions for Office Excel 2000 -- HUH?!??? What on earth!
- Provided me with installation instructions for a five-year-old copy of the Windows Installer package (version 3.1 - the latest is version 4.5)
This is a HORRIBLE experience!!!
I'm not even going to describe the textbook because if I can't get the software to install, the textbook is almost useless to me. I'm extremely frustrated and angry.
If I ever do get this software to install, I'll post here how I did that. But this has been nothing but a miserable experience for me.
CONCLUSION: Ask your professor or program director to use a different textbook!!!
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