From here it sounds like the technician is an idiot.
- I highly doubt its the processor. Processor failures are extremely rare.
- The computer powers on fine, you can check to see if the fan on the power supply is spinning. Why the heck would he replace the power supply?
- Usually with a bad motherboard, the computer will power on and then shut off and throw a motherboard diagnostic code (fairly reliable). Most modern computers, and especially those from major vendors like Compaq should have diagnostic lights.
- If it was a hard drive failure, you’ll probably get some error about "(SYSTEM FILE HERE) NOT FOUND, or “UNKNOWN HARD ERROR”, or misc blue screen during bootup. Anyway, this can EASILY be checked by running the diagnostic software from the hard drive manufacturer which you can easily download from the manufacturer’s website. Compaq should provide the diagnostic CD with the damn computer.
If I was this Compaq technician, first I would check the diagnostic code it’s throwing. I’m guessing it’s memory. Did the idiot try reseating the memory? That’s the FIRST hardware component you check. You dont just randomly start replacing the motherboard, processor, and power supply. The memory may have come loose duing shipping or while you were unpacking it.
Memory will produce the symptoms you described (it powers on, but will not boot). If reseating it does not fix it, you can put one stick in at a time. Finally, if that does not work, run the hard drive diagnostics. It’s bound to be either memory, or the hard drive.
P.S. Dells are not the almighty computers either. Laptop hard drives are incredibly unreliable no matter what company you’re buying the laptop from Dell/Gateway/Toshiba, etc. At the last company I worked for, out of 1000 new Dell Latitude laptops, more than 10 failed within 2 weeks, and a bunch more within the first month (mainly hard drive and motherboard problems). For companies, the support is average, but they send you the parts quickly. For home users, you get outsourced support from India and it can be really annoying when the guy tells you his name is Mary, John or Bob when it’s obviously Pooja or some other Indian name Plan to spend atleast 25-40 minutes on the phone regardless of whether you have Gold business support or outsourced home support.