FAQ for Computer Warranty Scheme (CWS)

  1. What is the Computer Warranty Scheme?

    The Computer Warranty Scheme (CWS) is in effect from 1st Feb 2015 to replace and enhance the former Warranty Extension Scheme (WES). The CWS provides comprehensive maintenance service for both desktop computers and notebook computers of the Central IT supported brands and models under the age of 6. The CWS subscription for computers is renewed semi-annually, to be initiated by the CSC, to refresh the computers covered in the scheme.

    Under the CWS, the hardware repair services for computers are rendered by their respective manufacturers or suppliers (referred collectively to as “vendors” hereafter) on various terms (charged or non-charged, on-site or carry-in, etc.), depending on the hardware warranty coverage and warranty period as agreed between departments/users and their vendors. The following table summarized the services provided by the CWS (those in italics are changes/enhancements to the WES):

    Services Provided by the CWS
    Type/Age of PC PCs between its 1st and 3rd Year with Warranty Covered by the Vendors PCs between its 4th and 6th Year with CWS Extending the Warranty Support 2
    Service Type Support Services Hardware Repair Services Support Services Hardware Repair Services
    Desktop Computer Provided by the CWS Provided by the respective computer vendor 1 Provided by the CWS Provided by the CWS
    Notebook Computer Provided by the CWS Provided by the respective computer vendor 1 Provided by the CWS Provided by the respective computer vendor 1
    1The vendors of desktop and notebook computers no longer have engineers stationed at the CityU for providing instant hardware repair services. Departments have to contact the vendors to arrange for engineers to provide on-site hardware repair service themselves.

    2Departments may consider using per-call services from vendors or outside service providers for repair of the computers not covered by the CWS. Please be reminded to follow the FO’s procurement procedures when using per-call services. Or, departments may consider to subscribe to vendor’s maintenance for notebooks between 4th and 6th year, if still available and cost justified, to obtain their regular hardware repair service.

  2. What are the differences between the CWS and the WES? And why is the CWS needed?

    In view of departments’ increasing reliance on using desktop/notebook computers for work, the CSC reviewed the maintenance service provision for this area and decided to replace the Desktop Computer Warranty Extension Scheme (WES) with the Computer Warranty Scheme (CWS) . The CWS merges the first 3-year vendor-supported warranty for desktop computers with the subsequent 4th to 6th year support provided by the outsourced CWS support team managed by the CSC. Moreover, it will extend the support to cover notebook computers (which was not covered in the old WES) so that users can have a unified support experience. The CWS support team is manned by an outsourced technical team trained and managed by the CSC to support the scheme. Please see Q1 for details on the CWS.

  3. What are the “Support Services” and “Hardware Repair Services” provided by the CWS?

    The CWS consists of “Support Services” and “Hardware Repair Services”.

    The “Support Services” for desktop and notebook computers in their 1st to 6th year include (i) trouble-shooting of hardware, software and network connection problems, (ii) installation of new operating system, application software and assistance in data migration, and (iii) configuration of parameters of system, network and application software. These ensure the compliances of the CWS computers with the campus IT environment.

    The “Hardware Repair Services” for desktop and notebook computers in their 1st to 3rd year will cover hardware inspection service only, at best effort, whereby users, if desired, can relate problems (written comments by the CWS engineers) to vendors which may help shorten the required time for hardware repair. Users should contact their vendors direct for maintenance appointments, and are required (i) to pay for any charges by vendors (labour and parts) for services that exceed their warrant agreements, and (ii) to settle the payment directly with the vendors, i.e. not via the CWS.

    The “Hardware Repair Services” for desktop computers (not for notebook computers) in their 4th to 6th year will cover labour and parts for hardware repair after their hardware warranties with vendors have ended so as to extend their usable lifetime.

    Please note that the “Hardware Repair Services” does not include repair for computer peripherals, such as keyboard, mouse, monitors, etc.

  4. Are the hardware replacement services provided by computer vendors?

    Please see Q3 on the CWS “Hardware Repair Services”.

  5. What is the charge of the CWS for each computer?

    A flat rate is charged semi-annually for each desktop or notebook computer that subscribes to the CWS. Depending on the number of subscription, the costs of the CWS should be borne by departments; however, the CSC will try to absorb the costs to the extent that the budget allows.

  6. What computer brands and models are supported by the CWS and are other criteria for joining the CWS?

    To join the CWS, departments need to register with the CSC in February or August for the eligible computers that either were purchased in the past 6 months or intend to renew their subscription from the WES to the CWS. The computers eligible for the scheme must meet all the following requirements:

    1. desktop or notebook computers,
    2. any one of the supported brands (Dell, HP and Lenovo) purchased from the approved vendors through the Finance Office,
    3. enterprise level models (i.e. not consumer level models, the 3 vendors have well defined model levels for their brands),
    4. purchased with first 3-year warranty including onsite labour and parts from the manufacturers or suppliers,
    5. less than 6-year-old with the cutoff dates being 1 Feb and 1 Aug.

    The above criteria will be reviewed periodically and changes, e.g. add or remove of supported brands and models, will be announced in advance.

    Unless with prior consent from the CSC, any charges arising from services being rendered to computers that are not covered by the CWS will be borne by departments.

  7. The CWS supports Windows desktop and notebook computers, does it also support Mac and handheld devices?

    Currently, the CWS does not include Apple’s Mac desktop and notebook computers or handheld devices, e.g. tablet computers and mobile phones.

  8. Can departments join or terminate the subscription to the CWS at any time throughout the year? If not, when is the time to join or to terminate?

    Subscription to the CWS is on a semi-annual basis. The CSC will invite departments twice each year to subscribe (join or terminate) to the CWS for their departmental computers. The 1st round is from 1 February to 31 July, and the 2nd round is from 1 August to 31 January of the following year. Invitation will be initiated by the CSC around 3 months in advance for the respective round. Once a computer has joined or has terminated a subscription to the CWS, its status will be valid for 6 months and can be revised in the coming round. Normally, computers that have not joined the CWS, except the computers that are just delivered after the invitation for subscription, will not receive services from the CWS, and these computers have to wait till the next round of subscription.

  9. Does the CWS support computers older than 6 years?

    Computers that are older than 6 years cannot be subscribed to the CWS. However, those that have reached their 6th year during their subscribed period will still receive services from the CWS until the end of the subscription period and they will not be allowed to join the CWS again.

  10. Can my self-owned computer join the scheme?

    No, only university-owned computers can join the CWS.