Reseting a Gateway Computer Password

I got this question in the comments today:

I have a gateway computer and i use apassword each and every time i turn it on so that nobody can get on it. But for some strange reason my password has either been changed or someone has been messing with my computer behind my back. It is a good computer and ive never had any trouble with it. Now the only thing that shows up on the screen is GATEWAY and ENTER PASSWORD no matter how many times i enter my password after ther 3rd time it say system disabled and i have to start all over again. What can i do? I miss my computer. That’s my pet.

Quick lecture about security–every security measure has some cost, though it might not be obvious. With passwords, or any type of authentication, part of the cost is that legitimate users will be deprived access.

First, let’s make sure you’re entering the password correctly. Make sure you’re typing the right password (I forgot my gym locker combination after more than 3 years the other day, so it does happen). Then, swap the keyboard out, or attach an external keyboard if it’s a laptop, and try again. If your keyboard isn’t working, it might prevent you from correctly entering the password.

If that doesn’t work, based on your description, it sounds your BIOS password has become corrupted.

If it’s a laptop, try unplugging it, removing all the batteries, and holding down the power key for five minutes. If it’s a desktop, unplug it, open the case, and remove the watch battery from the motherboard. Let it sit overnight without power.

This might reset the password… but probably not.Nowadays, most computers store the BIOS password in solid state storage that doesn’t lose its data without power. It’s more secure, certainly, but this is the downside of security.

On the motherboard (you might try searching the Internet for a manual), look for a CMOS reset jumper. This depends entirely on the specific computer you have, so I can’t provide more explicit directions.

Next, try Gateway’s support. Get the serial number from the back, and enter it here. Try and find the default password. You might also be able to get it from the computer’s manual, if you have it around.

Still no luck? Try some typical default passwords: admin, administrator, owner, gateway, cmos, password, 1234, 1234567890.

Hope that helped!

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