When I bought my Gateway 700XL online, I never dreamed it would survive what it has. This is a real workhorse of a computer. Its 1.89 GHZ processor, 256MB RAM and 80 GB Western Digital hard drive provide me with a smooth and steady platform for my writing. My Boston acoustic speakers with sub woofer provide me with crisp clear sound, which I need, because I love music when I'm writing.
I've had my Gateway for 6 years. It's as steady today as the day it was delivered. That's saying something when I realize just what this sturdy machine has been through. It's been hacked, cracked, moved, and tampered with, but it just keeps on keeping on. The tech support from Gateway was very very good. Even when our local Gateway store closed, the phone consults proved extremely helpful and instructive.
For the money I wouldn't buy another machine. After looking around at all the desktops out there, I'll continue to buy Gateway. It is everything a writer could want. If I need more memory, there are expansion slots to add on if needed, up to 4 GB of DDR. I've replaced my hard drive 4 different times. It took 10 minutes to swap it out and get back up and running. I do recommend sticking with the brand of hard drive originally installed with the computer. One of my swap outs was a Maxtor, which ended up acting kludgy and stiff. The Western Digital hard drives seem to be smoother and longer wearing.
This was a relatively pricey machine back in late 2001, but it has paid for itself in superior performance and reliability.