Why were all those components "replaced"?
''After my PC failed completely I called a computer repair company from the yellow pages.
We paid to have our motherboard, CPU, and RAM replaced. The processor/CPU was replaced with an AMD Athlon XP 2400+, this is documented in our receipt.''
What kind of computer was it? If it was an E-Machines socket A (AMD Duron or Athlon XP) or socket 478 (Intel Celeron) model from 2001 to 2003, then you should be aware that the cheap motherboards E-Machines used have known design problem where electrolytic capacitors on the board start swelling and leaking. This first manifests itself as random crashes/lockups/blue screen errors, but as it gets worse, the computer will randomly reboot itself and then eventually the day comes where you push the 'power' button and the fans come on, but nothing else happens and nothing gets displayed on the screen.
In any case, the motherboard is the ONLY defective component, and the CPU, memory, drives, and everything else can be reused from the old board. Even the heatsink and fan can be reused, unless the fan is worn out. We do recommend replacing the substandard Bestec power supply with a standard off-the-shelf ATX power supply when repairing these units, but other than that you should not have been asked to replace anything, and certainly not the 2 most expensive parts in the machine (the processor and RAM).
It sounds to me like this person thought they found a sucker, and not only charged you for better/costlier parts than what you needed, but they either reused your old parts and didn't tell you, or took your old parts and gave you even worse quality used ones. Perhaps that person is/was running an Ebay business and then making huge profits reselling all the "defective" parts that he asks people to replace.
In the future, do not deal with sleazy computer repair ''firms'' that you see advertised in the local phone book or that leave flyers on your front door knob. Instead, either have one of your friends or family members that know what they're doing take a look at it, or bring it to a reputable electronics and computer store for service. A licensed business will not pull the kind of crap that this person did, especially if it's a big company like Best Buy, Comp USA, etc.
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