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Hard Drive Crashed in 3 Months
Posted by Lembeck2001 on 01/10/2011
With a decade of owning home computers by Dell and Packard Bell, I had no issues or concerns until I went to Best Buy and bought a Gateway computer in August of 2009. I was set to get a Dell but was talked into the Gateway by the salesman. And it has been the worst purchase I have ever made as a consumer. This thing as been a piece of garbage since

Day 1. The first computer wouldn't start up at all so I returned it. The second computer seemed to work just fine until I got the blue screen of Death after 6 months. We called the Geek Squad and had to re-install everything to the factory default settings. Ok...great. And then 6 months later (still under warranty) - this awful machine crashed again with another blue screen of death.

We took it to Geek Squad. We were told it had severe hard drive damage but there was noting else they could do but charge us to re-install everything - which I can do on my own. So...we started over from scratch again. Same drill....we re-installed everything. And like clockwork, this piece of garbage crashed again 6 months later. You could set your watch to it.

This Gateway is the worst purchase I have ever made as a consumer and Geek Squad hasn't been much help in the process. God forbid you put anything on this hard drive and trust that it won't crash EVERY 6 months. I regret putting my hard-earned money down on this thing. Imagine taking your car in to get started back up every 6 months. This purchase has been a disaster and nothing but a heartache. AWFUL. I will not rest until I settle this with Gateway and so far their customer service is scarce at best. You would think I bought this used at a garage sale.

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Posted by Anonymous on 2011-01-10:
I have an 8 year old Gateway I bought from Best Buy. I never had a problem with it. It's not a perfect world. Not all machines are going to work. That's why manufactures include warranties. There is always going to be a certain percentage of malfunctioning machines no matter what machine or brand you buy.
Posted by MDSasquatch on 2011-01-10:
You should be backing up your hard drive to an external or other storage device just in case your drive fails. I believe there is a function in the control panels that makes this rather easy to do.
Posted by karleebarlee on 2011-01-10:
Did you have virus protection? Did you download music or anything like that?
Posted by Obsfucation on 2011-01-10:
Karlee is on to something. If a reinstall gets the machine working, you almost certainly have malware and/or viruses on the machine causing these crashes. A hardware problem would not be correctable by wiping the disk and reinstalling.
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StarEmpty StarEmpty StarEmpty StarEmpty Star
Posted by Rlbrown13 on 03/13/2012
TEXAS -- My higher-end Gateway desktop computer had a defective media card reader (bent connector pins) right out of the box. After 6 days of e-mailing and over 2 hours on the phone with their so-called "support", Gateway tells me that 1) I need to pay shipping to Texas for my defective computer. 2) I will be completely without a computer for 2 weeks - even though I told them I need my computer every night to coordinate a charitable event. 3) I need to remove all files and software before shipping it. 4) There is a very high likelihood they will charge me $199 plus tax for the in-warranty repair because they are calling it physical damage. and 5) Their "customer care" (what an ironic name!) supervisors do not accept phone calls and will not speak to me. All of this for a component that should cost less than 10 bucks on a $1,000 computer! DO NOT BUY FROM GATEWAY / ACER!!!
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Posted by Alain on 2012-03-15:
They sent you a defective computer and now they want you to pay for it? Doesn't sound right at all. Contact the Texas consumer protection agency if you are there at https://www.oag.state.tx.us/agency/contacts.shtml or your state's consumer protection agency and see if they can't give you some recommendations about this problem.
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Repair Department Beyond Awful
Posted by Indexit on 09/13/2010
Hard drive busted after less than 6 months. Now the real fun begins. Hours trying to just find out where to send it because their automated system does not work right and you never get to speak to a Human being. No response to emails. Finally after 100 phone calls and using a fake number spoke with someone. Sent in for repairs. Got back, STILL BROKEN, hours on the phone again trying to get through to someone. System still messed up big time. their email system does not work, on line chat does not work, down for over 24 hours. Gateway representative told me a number to call the first time, turns out it's wrong. Again doing something to trick their system get through, have to send back again for repairs.

Their automated system is beyond awful, never recognized their SNID or serial number, employees give out bad info, send in for repairs and they send back broken products, one hour on hold twice, and disconnected both times.

I will never buy one of their products again because if you need tech help it's a total mess. they do nothing but waste your time.
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Get zig zap wallpaper pattern after 5 minutes, tried recovery disc, did same thing after 5 minutes
Posted by Anniea24 on 07/08/2010
Has anyone had this problem, and what is wrong with it. Thanks.

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Posted by leet60 on 2010-07-08:
It sounds like the graphics processor or card has died. Many recent PC's have onboard video processors rather than video cards, and if this is the case with yours you have only a few options:
1. If the PC is under warranty return it to Gateway.
2. Purchase a video card from a local store, very simple installation to run the video separate from the onboard video.

If your onboard video has gone bad, the motherboard may not be far behind.
Posted by PepperElf on 2010-07-08:
actually most desktop PC motherboards have video ports
however yes... it's usually not the best video you can get.

even a cheap card is usually better than the onboard video
Posted by madconsumer on 2010-07-08:
have you updated the driver?
Posted by madconsumer on 2010-07-08:
my new mobo has online hdmi hd, so i would say it is all about the mobo.
Posted by Helpful on 2010-07-08:
I wish I could tell you more. There isn't enough information here to make an absolute diagnosis. As others have expressed, looking at the video out is one option and may be the likely culprit.

Make sure you eliminate any software related issues too.
Posted by PepperElf on 2010-07-08:
There's an easy - and possibly free - way to test this.

Bring the computer into your favorite repair shop and see if they'll hook up a monitor to it.
Or get a friend to hook up his or her monitor to it

if the output still looks like crap, then it's your computer and not the monitor.
Posted by anniea24 on 2010-07-09:
Thank you, I'm trying to find a cheap monitor on craigslist to see if it is the monitor. The computer is 4 years old, came with the monitor.
Posted by MRM on 2010-07-09:
Also try the thrift store for a computer monitor and should only costs you $10.
Posted by CrazyRedHead on 2010-07-09:
I'm currently having the same problem. My computer is in the shop due to my video card going out. My screen went wonky and finally died. I couldn't do anything, not even reload windows after my factory reset. Luckily I have an extended warranty till next May that is taking care of it.
Posted by anniea24 on 2010-07-11:
Thanks everyone. I can't hook up the monitor to my computer, without buying an adapter for the analog cable of the old monitor. With the price of repairs here, it doesn't really pay to fix it, if it's the computer. I'll try a thrift store and keep checking craigslist for a monitor.
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Thanks for stopping my purc\hase of a Gateway laptop or desktop
Posted by Meeg on 06/15/2010
Thanks to all for halting my purchase of either a laptop or desktop computer. I was attracted to the price-point but hesitated and stumbled on "3 cents"; thank God I did. Who needs all those headaches, and I discerned that all I've read has to be more than random cases. So my comments to Gateway: GET YOUR ACT TOGETHER IN THIS COUNTRY OR GO OUT OF BUSINESS!
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Posted by lobo65 on 2010-06-15:
I am in no way a shill for Toshiba, but my repair guy said their satellite laptops were some of the better ones he had experienced.
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Don't expect acceptable support during warranty period from Gateway
Posted by Carmencita on 01/17/2010
TEMPLE, TEXAS -- In September my son purchased a Gateway DX4820 for me. The specifications included a 56kb V92 fax modem and the OS was Windows Vista Home Premium. When we assembled the computer we found the socket for the phone line just outside the PCI slots location. When we looked at the Device Manager there was no modem listed. I contacted the company and was told that to use a modem I had to have Windows Vista Business (this option was not explained when the computer was purchased). I did not upgrade my OS because Windows 7 Home was due out shortly and it included a fax capability. My Windows 7 upgrade came from Gateway and after installation the Device Manager still did NOT list a fax modem. I contacted the e-mail support for Gateway and it took me 2 e-mails to get the support personnel to acknowledge that "As per our records your desktop is in warranty and is registered." They then proceeded to look at their canned answers book and instruct me to go through the Windows 7 fax installation package (I had informed them that I had already done that). After several e-mails on this issue they tried to switch me to their paid support service, and when I AGAIN explained that my computer was under warranty they suggested I go to a shipping company, have them package and send the computer (at MY expense) to the Gateway depot in Texas where it would be "fixed" in 7 to 10 days after it was received.

I work from home and could NOT be without the service of a computer for such a long period of time, and suggested that because the fax modem is just a PCI card they could send me a new card and I would install it. This was a too obviously simple solution for the technical support personnel, who insisted that "As per our policy Fax modem is not an end user replacement part". A PCI card is not "user replaceable"????? Then I was supplied with the phone number of the Gateway "Voice Technical Support" where the support technician I contacted was even less knowledgeable than the ones I had been dealing with over e-mail. She first insisted that my computer was NOT equipped with a fax modem card. When I pointed out that the specs for this model list such a card and that there was a socket on the outside of the section where the PCI slots are located, she said that the card on that slot might not be a fax modem card. When I asked her what other kind of card had a socket that fits a phone line jack she said it could be an Ethernet card (on a PCI slot with a socket that would not fit an Ethernet jack?????).

At this point she kept mumbling and going around in circles about what my computer model could have so I realized I was wasting my time with the whole support crew and I hung up. I bought a new fax modem PCI card for $40, removed the original one, put in the new one, and lo and behold! the computer recognized it and I now have a working fax modem. I looked at the original card I removed and it was indeed a fax modem card model HPI56L6(P40) manufactured 2009/06/02. If Gateway personel have such poor knowledge that they could not solve this simple problem, I hate to think what would happen to buyers who face more complicated problems while still under warranty. (PS I have a copy of all the e-mail traffic with Gateway).
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Posted by ndrulez on 2010-01-17:
It is compatible with Vista, XP etc. Did your DX4820 purchase come with a cd to install the card or was the software in your programs folder to install the card.
Link: http://www.alibaba.com/product-gs/238839233/V_92_Software_56K_PCI_Modem.html

I've always had to run the cd on cards to load the software and link the card up.

I don't buy Dell Acer or Gateway.
Posted by TheePlanB on 2010-01-29:
Hi and sorry to hear as well. I have a fax program in my pc and couldnt find it. Tech support would not help me at all and I wound up paying the $60-80 for 30min just to find out it was on a disc and all I had to do is insert it.

I have the US ROBOTICS 56K FAXMODEM USB its around $40 at local stores. This one came from "SNAKEWAY" its very easy to use all you need is the docs scanned into a file/folder, regular phone line no MORE added charges.

Hope that helps. Theeplanb
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No Support
Posted by Oildpep on 01/12/2010
From telling me I had to fax the information to them after I'd sent it to them (if it really needed to be faxed, why not tell me to send it that way first?) to blaming it on the software without even looking at the problem, I found Gateway's support to be just another run-around aimed at getting consumers to not use the service contract they'd ponied up $40 for.

I strongly recommend not spending the money on the useless 'service' program, which I think is a way to hose the consumer for $40 more dollars with no intention of ever honoring it. (If you must buy a Gateway, a company apparently willing to sell substandard merchandise.)
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Posted by Anonymous on 2010-01-12:
What is the problem with it? I personally would rather a person on the phone try to help me than to be without my computer for who knows how long.

Most issues are user error, and those that aren't can most times be fixed yourself by simply using google for the problem.
Posted by Anonymous on 2010-01-12:
At times it can be pretty hard to Google if the CPU isn't working properly, you know?
Posted by Anonymous on 2010-01-12:
Zz, most folks have access to more than one computer. Every local library has them for card holders use, and if not there, most folks know someone with a computer.
Posted by Anonymous on 2010-01-12:
So you commute way across town to your bud's house or the library to Google up the problem and then go back home to if that was the correct diagnosis? Uhhhhhhhhh, no!
What if the OP only has one CPU, no car and is feuding with their friends?
Posted by Anonymous on 2010-01-12:
Zz, I would (and have) actually google my issue and print out as many fixes as I could find, then trudge back to my house and see if any worked. These days, there are 3 pcs in my house, so I can use any one of those that are working.
Posted by Nohandle on 2010-01-12:
Lady, you are correct. Most issues are user related. I am, however, somewhat hesitant to let just anyone have access to my computer to deal with his problem. Granted, I have unlimited support from MSN at no extra charge, but I'm still the one to straighten it out in the end.

Oildpep, thanks for the warning. I don't deal with Gateway but I guess many do. They might better check twice into the service agreement.
Posted by Anonymous on 2010-01-12:
I see. Lucky for you that you have these options.
Posted by Anonymous on 2010-01-12:
NH, that is why I try to advise users to google their issue BEFORE sending the computer in.

Zz, computers are so cheap anymore that finding a home without at least one is unusual. Again, there are places you can use a computer for a small fee, or even free, that you can do a fix it yourselfer.

heck, users can email me and I will try to help for free. I have been playing with computers since my first one in 1990. I am not an expert, but I can pretty much figure out problems. And I have my trusty google.
Posted by Anonymous on 2010-01-12:
One CPU is enough for me.
Posted by Anonymous on 2010-01-12:
Yeah ZZ, Any more would just be conspicuous consumption for the sake of keeping up with the Jones.
Posted by goduke on 2010-01-12:
I hate the Joneses. They always have good stuff. Better stuff.
Posted by Anonymous on 2010-01-12:
The point is if the OP can get on here to complain, he can get on google and look up the troubles.

I don't try to be like anyone else. Having more than one computer is convenient. I have mine, the kids have theirs. There are lots of people who have more than me, lots who have less.
Posted by Anonymous on 2010-01-12:
Perhaps they are not CPU savvy.
Posted by Anonymous on 2010-01-12:
Maybe not Zz. But I figure if someone can figure out how to complain on a website, they can figure out how to go to google and type in "my computer blah blah" and read the responses that come out.
Posted by Anonymous on 2010-01-12:
I beg to differ. Complaining here is much easier than debugging your CPU.
Do I detect Lady Myopia coming out to play?
Posted by Anonymous on 2010-01-12:
Yeah, it's pretty easy to post a review on my3cents. Holy smokes, even the one line gibberish muckers from left field can figure it out. In fact I bet those who repair computers for a living would be quite insulted by the insinuation that fixing a computer is as easy as posting on my3cents. I mean no offense to the gibberish muckers.
Posted by Anonymous on 2010-01-12:
So true.
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Keep away from Gateway desktops.
Posted by AlbertClark on 12/23/2009
I have a Gateway dual-core processor tower desktop that just now died of motherboard failure. That is the third time in less than one year. The first time required nearly 8 weeks of waiting to get a new motherboard. The second time required a few weeks. I assume this time will require the same few weeks or more ... provided Gateway assumes any responsibility for selling such a shoddy piece of equipment. I think it is time to use it as a boat anchor, something for which it perhaps was originally intended.

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Posted by MRM on 2009-12-23:
That is one cheap boat anchor compared to a real anchor.
Posted by TheePlanB on 2010-01-29:
I very strongly agree with you. I'm in the same boat with you and using the anchor as well. I thought it made a nice propeller. Any class actions on this at all? feel free to read mine as well.
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Computer, Customer svc, & warranty are a joke
Posted by Gatewayhtr on 11/24/2009
NORTH SIOUX CITY, SOUTH DAKOTA -- The computer kept shutting off by itself. Finally Gateway tells me I need to take it to a computer shop and have them get my data off at my expense. I take it to the shop they luckily get all of my data and also find the motherboard is faulty. They called Gateway and they were told that Gateway would cover the part only. I am responsible for the shipping to & from and the labor. We have had this computer a little under 3 months. What kind of customer service is this? For all of the money we paid for this piece of junk I should have to be putting more money out. I've email consumer affairs and also put a call into consumer affairs in South Dakota. I am not spending anymore money on this computer!!!
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Do Not Buy A Gateway
Posted by Jenieb65 on 10/02/2009
I like others have purchased Gateway computers for years and have loved them. Last October I purchased one from HSN and it worked fantastic until September of this year. The computer shut down. I called Gateway customer service and after getting the runaround, with their computer operator not being able to recognize my computer ID#, I finally got to speak to a representative, who unfortunately did not speak very plain English. Her only answer for me was to buy the restore disks. I like others was quite put out with this as I already had tried a factory restore from the partitioned drive to no avail, but they assured me that this was what I had to do. So I put out the $21.25 for the disks. The arrived 8 days later and of course did not fix the problem. I called Gateway again and spoke to another individual with very broken English who informed me that I would have to send the computer to Gateway at my own expense.

Their product doesn't work and I am bearing all the expenses. I asked to speak to a supervisor and was told that there was no supervisor to talk to. I was told that I would receive an email specifying exactly how to package. I never received that email. So I took the package to Staples and had it packaged. I received a call from their Repair Center in Texas, which isn't Gateway it is Acer (I was not aware that Gateway was bought by Acer). She informed me that the packaged arrived and was damaged in shipping. The exterior shell of the computer was dented and due to that, they would not honor the warranty and fix the computer. When I explained to her that the exterior of the computer had nothing to do with the interior of the computer she informed me that she understood, but would not repair the computer unless I was willing to pay for it. So I asked her to speak to a supervisor.

She informed me that she could give me a number but that I would not be able to speak to a supervisor. Apparently the supervisors at the Texas location due not deal with customers. By this time, I was very upset and told her that Gateway had shi*** customer service (probably not the most appropriate word to use). She said that if I did not calm down she would hang up on me. I said "Excuse me" and she hung up on me. I realize I shouldn't have gotten so upset, but since it broke down they have done absolutely nothing to get it fixed but charge me money. I will never buy another Gateway. I will stick with HP, they have great customer service and don't charge to send the computers to be repaired.

I guess the blessing in disguise is that I paid for insurance and hopefully between UPS and Staples I might be able to recoup some of my loss. I don't know that I will ever see my computer again.
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Posted by Anonymous on 2009-10-03:
Will it boot up in safe mode? Have you googled to see if you can fix it?
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