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Gateway E-4200


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#1 candt

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Posted 20 July 2005 - 11:41 AM

Hello. The local university is having a surplus sale of computers, and they are selling a bunch of Gateway E-4200 computers. It has a Pentium 3 processor, 600 MHZ, between 10 and 20 gig hard drive, 256 MB of RAM, comes with Windows 98 installed, a monitor, and keyboard for $125 tax included. What do you think of the price? Is it worth it to buy an older computer like this, or will it be dieing on me soon? I dont believe these come with a modem, will this have a PCI slot so I can install one? I need a computer for internet access only, so I do not need anything fancy. Please let me know what you think.

Another question. My laptop has started to run terribly slow at times, and while it is doing this, the hard drive light is lit solid, like it is doing something, but the computer runs terribly slow when it does this. Sometimes it takes up to 20 minutes just to start up in the morning. Is the hard drive going on it? I recently had it in for service and they replaced the mother board. Thanks for your help.

Edited by candt, 20 July 2005 - 11:52 AM.


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#2 pchartwell

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Posted 20 July 2005 - 01:38 PM

PRO: It's cheap. (It should also be expected to have a few PCI slots.)

CON: It's really cheap! :thumbsup: No, I mean... 600 MHz processor, 256 MB RAM, 20 GB HD... windows 98?!? A PC like that will make internet Jesus cry. It has no upgrade potential. Frankly I'd say it's a waste of money.

Suggestion: Save up around $400-500 or so and get a cheap NEW PC. Dell, Gateway, Compaq, HP, etc. all run loss-leader PC ads. One of those would be miles better than this old retread. (IMHO)

#3 Leurgy

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Posted 20 July 2005 - 02:09 PM

Hello candt and welcome to BC.

First question:

If your budget is an issue go for it. Thats a very reasonable price considering that a used monitor can cost $50 by itself. No one can predict when it will die on you so you take your chances in that regard but it will be an acceptable computer for surfing and email. According to the E-4200 Users Guide this model was a server and has three PCI slots and on board Network card. It was originally a PII so it may have been upgraded. See if you can get a restore CD if you decide to get it.

Second question:

This sounds suspiciously like a malware issue on your laptop. I would suggest you submit a HiJack This log for review by our team. See How to submit a Hijackthis Log.

When the only tool you own is a hammer, every problem begins to resemble a nail. Abraham Maslo

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 Trying to remove your data from the web is like trying to remove pee from a swimming pool


#4 candt

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Posted 20 July 2005 - 11:33 PM

Thanks a bunch for all of the great replies. I think I will look for a new computer and not the used Gateway in the event I am unable to figure out what is wrong with my laptop.

Let me go into further detail about how my laptop is performing. Not only does it bog down and go painfully slow at times, the computer has become much louder than it used to be. For example, when I click on a link and hear the computer doing its work, it just seems louder. Another thing that has occurred is a blue error screen. I wrote down exactly what it says, and I will type it out here for you. The error screen reads as follows:

"A problem has been detected and Windows has been shut down to prevent damage to your computer.

KERNEL_DATA_INPAGE_ERROR

If this is the first time you've sen this Stop error screen, restart your computer. If this screen appears again, follow these steps: Check to make sure any new hardware or software is properly installed. If this is a new installation, ask your hardware or software manufacturer for any Windows updates you might need. If problems continue, disable or remove any newly installed hardware or software. Disable BIOS memory options such as caching or shadowing. If you need to use safe mode to remove or disable components, restart your computer, press F8 to select Advanced startup options and then select safe mode.

Technical Information:
STOP: 0x0000007A (0x0c020183c, 0x000000E, 0x8060f734, 0x036E9860)

Begining dump of physical memory"

That is what it says on a blue screen. This all started happening after the replacement of the mother board. Any ideas?

Let me also add that this problem comes and goes. But lately, the problem has been occuring more and more often.

Edited by candt, 20 July 2005 - 11:37 PM.


#5 Herk

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Posted 21 July 2005 - 12:00 AM

Have you defragmented on a regular basis? Sounds as though your hard drive is trying to run itself to death finding things. If not, go to My Computer, right-click on your C: drive and choose "Properties." Then click on the "Tools" tab and then the Defragmentation button. If you're using XP, click the Analyze button, then defragment after it analyzes.

If that's not the problem, let us know.

#6 candt

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Posted 21 July 2005 - 12:05 AM

I am pretty good about checking that, and after hitting analyze, it tells me it does not need to defragment. But, to eliminate that possibility, I will defrag now. I have also run Ad-Aware, and have in the past on a regular basis.

Edited by candt, 21 July 2005 - 12:34 AM.


#7 Leurgy

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Posted 21 July 2005 - 07:24 AM

That error seems to indicate bad sectors in the hard drive, failing ram or something loose inside the laptop according to this.

See if you can get more info from the System Log in Event Viewer.

A crack, a scratched trace, or a defective component on the motherboard can cause this error.


When the only tool you own is a hammer, every problem begins to resemble a nail. Abraham Maslo

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 Trying to remove your data from the web is like trying to remove pee from a swimming pool


#8 candt

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Posted 21 July 2005 - 09:59 AM

Thank you for that link. How do I access System Log in Event Viewer?

#9 Leurgy

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Posted 21 July 2005 - 10:32 AM

Go to Start>Control Panel>Administrative Tools>Event Viewer>System.

When the only tool you own is a hammer, every problem begins to resemble a nail. Abraham Maslo

**** We use our powers for good, not evil ****

 Trying to remove your data from the web is like trying to remove pee from a swimming pool


#10 candt

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Posted 21 July 2005 - 10:42 AM

I found the system log in event viewer and there are several warnings, and error messages. Here are a few of them:

"The driver has detected that device \Device\Harddisk0\DR0 has predicted that it will fail. Immediately back up your data and replace your hard disk drive. A failure may be imminent."

That one was a "Warning" message. Here is another Warning message in the log:

"Your computer has automatically configured the IP address for the network card with network address 00038A000011. The IP address being used is xxx.xx.x....."

These events also list a source. The source for the last warning is Dchp. The source for the first error was Disk. Here are some "Error" messages listed in the log.

"The time provider NtpClient is configured to acquire time from one or more time sources, however none of the sources are currently accessible. No attempt to contact a source will be made for 13 minutes. NtpClient has no source of accurate time."
The source for this one was W32Time.

Here is yet another error message.

"The device, \Device\Ide\IdePort0 did not respond within the time out period."

"The Application Layer Gateway Service service failed to start due to the following error : The service did not respond to the start or control request in a timely fashion."

It looks like those are all of the error and warning messages I have in the log. They are all repeated several times throughout the log. According to the first warning, it appears as if my hard drive is going to fail, and that this is most likely the cause of my problems. Is it possible that the computer thinks this is the problem when it is actually something else? Please let me know your thoughts.

ETA: Found another warning message

"An error was detected on device \Device\Harddisk0\D during a paging operation."

Edited by candt, 21 July 2005 - 10:48 AM.


#11 Leurgy

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Posted 21 July 2005 - 04:17 PM

It sure sounds like your hard drive is failing. There is another diagnostic you may be able to use to be sure. What kind of laptop is this (Make and model number)?

If thats the case then the other two errors (DCHP and W32time) are a moot point.

When the only tool you own is a hammer, every problem begins to resemble a nail. Abraham Maslo

**** We use our powers for good, not evil ****

 Trying to remove your data from the web is like trying to remove pee from a swimming pool


#12 candt

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Posted 21 July 2005 - 04:35 PM

My laptop is a HP pavilion ze1115. Its approximately 3 years old, and has a 1.1 GHZ AMD Duron processor, 20 gig hard drive, 256 MB of SDRAM, Windows XP.

#13 Leurgy

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Posted 21 July 2005 - 04:44 PM

It turns out HP has a self test built in for the hard drive. See HP Notebook PCs - Testing the Hard Drive with the Hard Drive Self Test.

When the only tool you own is a hammer, every problem begins to resemble a nail. Abraham Maslo

**** We use our powers for good, not evil ****

 Trying to remove your data from the web is like trying to remove pee from a swimming pool


#14 candt

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Posted 21 July 2005 - 06:16 PM

While I was unable to locate that specific test, I did run a test called E-Diag tools. It tests all of the hardware, and guess what the hard drive failed the test. Here are the results it gave me:

"Failure on hard disk drive. Check that this drive is seated correctly. If the test still fails, replace the drive."

Now since I just had the motherboard replaced in the computer, it is a very real possibility that the hard drive is not fully seated. How do I verify that it is fully seated? Do I simply take out the battery, take off the cover to the hard drive, and push in on it?

On my model of laptop, in order to remove the hard drive, I need to remove two small screws on the bottom front, and the hard drive simply pulls out.

#15 Leurgy

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Posted 21 July 2005 - 06:25 PM

I would fully remove the drive and put it back in. I tried to find out on the HP site what kind of drive that might be but they don't say (no suprise). If you do reseat the drive, make a note of the make and model number. Might be able to come up with another diagnostic test.

When the only tool you own is a hammer, every problem begins to resemble a nail. Abraham Maslo

**** We use our powers for good, not evil ****

 Trying to remove your data from the web is like trying to remove pee from a swimming pool





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