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Acer Aspire 5580 and Vista Home Premium - the Experience...

Well it's been about two weeks since I started using this, and I can't say the experience has been great. Here are the issues I have faced.

+ Wireless connection.
The eNet Management dialogue box intermittently announces that the internet has been disconnected, then usually announces that it is (re)connected straight after. Ongoing downloads are disrupted, though today while on Skype I noticed it happening, and there was no problem with the line... This fed into another problem: I set up a direct cable connection to see if there was any difference (it worked fine), but then the connection dialogue box for the cable connection would occasionally pop up (I assume because it was trying to 'reconnect' after the wireless went down - since I have told it not to try to reconnect this has stopped). Yesterday my Opera was working fine, but for some reason Firefox kept trying to connect with the cable connection - I would have lost a long post if I hadn't saved it on my computer too.

I contacted Acer support about this problem and was not too impressed: the first guy didn't try to find out what model etc. I was using, then when he heard I had 'intermittent connection' problems he told me to disable the Norton Internet Security that comes bundled with the laptop! I asked why, he said it was a known problem with Microsoft, and told me it would be in the knowledge base; I checked and it wasn't; I then asked why was there a 'known problem' with something that Acer supplies and recommends... He passed me onto his supervisor who asked me to try the cable connection; I also emailed him details of my wireless router etc. He emailed back a day later saying they have tested on their side and there were no problems and asked me to bring in my laptop for diagnostics... not a useful solution. I asked him to escalate it and/or send me details of how to do some diagnostics. No answer yet. Score for Acer support so far: 4/10.

++Update 11/09/07: Eventually I just removed the eNEt Management from the Startup folder. It doesn't seem to make any difference without it.
Also: This is a link for Acer users with Vista; it also has a link to get a new eNet application if you want it.++

+ The sidebar.
Sometimes the items in the sidebar would change place for no reason. Also: after booting up Windows told me that the sidebar was not working, it is investigating it, and will tell me when it has a solution. I reckon it may have something to do with the Google sidebar that annoyingly tried to install itself when I installed Google Desktop. This happened a couple of times, so I have now disabled the sidebar as it doesn't really do a lot for me, apart from having a big clock and date.
+ Outlook 2007.
More than once, I got an error message when opening Outlook, something like "A data file did not close properly the last time it was used. [Windows?] is checking...", then after a while it says ""Data file check complete". Once it suggested that I close down the Bluetooth connecting something (which I had never asked for) and so I did. It has had the same issue at least once since then.

+ Google Desktop
It's just not working. It all installs fine, and starts indexing, but then (maybe after rebooting) it just stops indexing, will only open in IE, and cannot find anything on my computer (e.g. put in "blog" and it tells me there is nothing... ).

Once when it opened up in IE it seemed to have issues of intranet security or something. I can't help thinking that Microsoft will do its best to make using Google Desktop as niggly as possible... It's very annoying anyway, as I find Google Desktop so massively useful :-(

An interesting take on the 'desktop wars' here by the way.

+ Windows Explorer
There's no more 'My Computer' icon on the desktop which I miss; and the Right Click > Create Shortcut option is no longer available.

The 'Up one level' button isn't there any more, only the 'Go back' one, which is OK if you've come from where you want to go, but not if - for example - you're opening a file in Word and it has brought you by default to the last place you saved a file,

There isn't the option 'Add to My Places' (I think it was called that) in the Explorer box - this was really useful, basically meaning you could access most-used folders in one click in Office applications.

+ Crashes
Using Canon Zoombrowser Ex, it tells me "Zb Module has stopped working" and closes it down.

Opera 9.21 has crashed on a number of occasions (once while doing this...).

Twice at least: "Host Process for Windows Services stopped working and was closed." (This one is quite worrying I feel.)

+ Lost settings and stuff.
My customised keyboard settings in Word (e.g. Alt+C = 'Center Paragraph') disappeared for some reason.

The default printer switched to 'Windows XPS' printer, whatever that is.

Once, I close Bittorrent and for some resaon, it tells me 'Bitorrent has stopped working, Windows is checking for a solution'. Why does it do this when I have closed it down on purpose.

The task bar not 'Autohiding' when it should (this happened once only, to be fair).

In Word 2007 I can't work out how to disable the automatic 'Leave one space after the paragraph break' option - I can do it in individual documents, but not as an overall setting.

I turned off the Aero scheme, and reverted to the 'Classic Windows' scheme, and set the 'Visual Effects' (in 'Performance Options') to 'best performance'. I've had less issues since then. And it runs quicker. Here's the result of the Windows Experience Index scoring - the maximum is 5.9, I'm not really sure what it means though...


Conclusion: I wouldn't recommend neither this laptop, nor Windows Vista for the moment. I'm sure it's a combination of factors but I think the wireless connection problem is an Acer issue, and the rest boil down to Vista and/or other programs not being adapted properly to it.

So far, I have noticed nothing in Vista that I didn't have in XP (though I'm sure there's lots of stuff I don't see), except for the search which is better, but I had more with Google Desktop installed in XP. And yes I have a firewall here, but my free ZoneAlarm in XP did just as well and was more controllable.

I think it's probably more Vista than Acer, but bottom line, I shouldn't have to deal with these issues. I hate not feeling secure with my computer. Don't get Vista unless you're getting a new computer anyway, and definitely don't bother upgrading.

**Update 08/04/08** There is some detailed information about the issues between Google Desktop Search and Vista, here. The main conclusion is: "Instant Search will run in the background, even when it is not the default search product. However, Instant Search will "cede precedence" to the default desktop search product, from a PC resources perspective. Thus, PC performance should not suffer as much as it does now under the current scheme."
I must say, the writer of the article seems very pro-Microsoft, and thinks that MS shouldn't have bothered ceding to pressure anyway. But I think the end result pinpoints the issue with MS anyway - they're not giving users the option of turning off the effing thing if they don't want it... >:[


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Andy Ramblings on :

I have been playing with Vista for a while now, got a beta copy from MS. Still waiting to be impressed.
First things, Some applications are bundled but are not the best. I haven't used Symantec products for a few years now.
For AV, I use NOD32 (
There are going to be coming out soon with an AV/Spam blocker/firewall combo soon.

Do you have the wireless & the cable connected at the same time ? If so, that is sure to confuse any network as you will have 2 ip addresses pointing to the same device. I would suggest one or the other.
To be honest I would remove symantec as it is a load of crap..

Anyway, nice review, Laptop is otherwise very good I assume?

julian on :

Hi Andy :-)

Will check out NOD32 thanks, I just couldn't be bothered to change it while setting up the computer etc. My problem with the bundling issue was that it Acer support telling me they had a 'known problem', when Acer had bundled it in! Anyway, I thing the support guy was thinking of another model.

The wireless and cable were not on at the same time.

Laptop is OK. Nothing to write home about (though enough to write a blog post on... hmmm :-P

Mr.AWESOME! on :


my names SAMUEL :-) umm how much is a acer laptop 120gb umm i dont no much info about it except i brought it 4$1829 PLZ READ!!!!!! um sticker says...
1gb ddr2---intel(r)pentium(r)dual-core processor t2310 (1.46 ghz, 533 mhz fsb, 1mb l2 cache)--:-p--up to 252 mb mobile intel(r)bluetooth, graphics media acceleratorx3100--:-0--15.4" wxga acer crystalbright(tm) lcd (8ms/220nits)--8-)--dvd-super multi double layer--:-D--802.11b/g WLAN thx... if u actually looked at it all PLZ REPLY OR MESSAGE lol if not tht then add both or just demons THANKYOU AND PLZ ANSWER MY QUESTION

julian on :

Honestly, your comment is wierd and I'm not sure if it's spam. So I don't want to use your email.

Anyway, I'm no expert in prices, and I'm not sure which currency you mean (AUD?), but a good starting point would be to check on Amazon for 'Acer laptops' and get an idea of the basic retail price from there.

Hope that helps.

natasa skordara on :

:-) :'(

julian on :

Um OK, if you say so :-)

Bill on :

on't think I would want this combination again i.e. Acer with Vista from PC World supplier as first have cd problems i.e. cannot find CD drive & after supposedly fixed then just reverted to not working, supplemented by crashing and close down problems. I even defrag and scan regularly so it has to be lack of tie up in the combination. Bring back XP

julian on :

Hi Bill, sorry to hear another person is having problems... I really regret getting it - I don't know if it's Vista, Acer, or the combination, but blue screens are a regular occurrence, as are wireless connection problems... It works most of the time, but it just doesn't feel reliable.

david on :

i'm fir from malaysia.. can this list of acer empowering tools work on my already installed XP ? i learn that it only works on vista? is it right?

julian on :

Afraid I can't help you there - I don't know which empowering tools you mean. The link you give is to a battery. Anyway I'm no expert on this type of thing. I suggest you try asking Acer/checking their webiste

Anonymous on :

Just wanted to share some advice:

Get a Dell next time. Based on my 8 years of experience with a PC and recently, a laptop, there wasn't anything (at least not that I can remember) to complain about service-wise. I did have problems but a quick call to Dell's technical support solved all my issues.

It's not the first time I've heard complaints about Acer laptops. It's a shame really because they're cheaper than most brands with the same set of specifications. Dell is not quite in the same price league with Acer but I think it's still pretty close. But personally, Dell has always provided good after sales service (since my first PC in 2000) and I'll probably stick with Dell in the future.

Dell is at least, still cheaper than HP/Compaq with the same set of specs based on my research. And recently they're offering free 2GB RAM upgrade for most models (both PC and laptops). Something that's uncommon with other well-known laptop makers, I believe. :-)

julian on :

Weird, I thought I had answered you before... anyway thanks for dropping by and sharing your experience.

Actually, I thought of Dell but was deterred by stories of having to send your laptop off for repair and getting it back three weeks later or worse. Also, somehow, I couldn't work my way around their website well.

So far, the Acer is OK, but not great...

frankai lee on :

my acer aspire 4920 laptop computer gave up on me after 3 months of light usage. Call up acer call center - they were very uncooperative. try to push the blame, told me to send to vendor. Send to vendor and still waiting for it to be sent back to me. Should have followed my friend's advice. NEVER NEVER have anything to do with acer. Strange behavior of acer , with all those bad complains, the people running the setup seem to be unconcerned.

julian on :

Well, it seems like we can't always count on friend's recommendations tho - one reason I went for Acer in the end was that a friend had one and told me he'd never had any problem for 2-3 years...

Russ on :

I have an ACER 7720-6155 and have overall been pleased although am highly disappointed that i cannot get Google Desktop to work. Same problem, it installs and indexes fine and then can't find a thing. This is terrible as i found GDS to be an amazing tool and time saver. Anyone find a solution to this yet, i have searched and researched without luck.

julian on :

As far as I'm aware, GDS will not work at all with Vista. There was some noise about requiring Microsoft to let it work, and my brother says it will work with Service Pack 1, but I'm not holding my breath...
I also find GDS such a useful tool to have.

Maybe there is hope though:
check this

and this:

BobM on :

I read with interest about others experience with the Acer 7720-6155. I bought mine in Oct. 2007. I was impressed that it had the features I was looking for at a very reasonable price. I hesitated at first because I had an Acer copier more than 10years ago that stopped working after 18 months light useage. I went on line to try to download a new driver to see if that was the problem but couldn't find an Acer site!!

Now, Acer has an extensive internet presence so I thought that they probably turned themselves around could be trusted to have better products.

After 3 months I was very happy with the laptop and even wrote a glowing review on it. No sooner had I done that the problems reared their ugly heads. First was being dropped from my wireless router repeatedly. I bought a new router but the problem did not stop.
(Returned the router).

Then the system was no longer recognizing the DVD drive. It didn't exist anymore as far as the system was concerned. I contacted Acer and they said to uninstall the driver and reinstall by restarting. No luck. Acer then told me to send the laptop back to them since the drive needed to be repaired or replaced, but that I should backup everything. The computer was serviced and shipped off within 24 hrs of being received.

As luck would have it, the computer was shipped to my summer address in New Hampshire rather than my winter address where I was. Probably my fault. It sat in NH for more than a week before I could threaten FedEx enough to send it on to me in Florida. A total of 3 weeks had passed since it was sent to Acer.

When I got it back it worked fine but the only thing they did was to reinstall Vista. Two weeks later the wireless reception was still good but the DVD drive problem was back.

Now, do I avoid Acer and have a local, trusted repair person look at it or risk dealing with Acer again?? :-(

julian on :

Hi Bob,
sorry to hear about your problems. Interestingly (or not), I also have had problems with the DVD - though I had concluded that it was a Vista thing - when I try to burn a DVD in the standard 'all computers' format, it always ends up saying something went wrong, and the DVD is unreadable and wasted. Now, recently, the DVD player is making funny sounds (like a loud rattling) on occasion...
If you have a trusted local person, and the guarantee is over, I'd go for the trusted person with whom you can discuss the problem and decide. Otherwise, you have to gird yourself up for a determined interchange with Acer, and demand a new drive, etc... sigh...
Good luck :-)

Me on :

Yr lying

julian on :

No, I'm not.
Though I have to admit, I have lied before. Like when I told my teacher that I had found the marbles, although I had swiped them from his desk...

Russ on :

I have an ACER 7720-6155 and have been overall very pleased with it. I did learn one thing the other day though that wad very disappointing. I thought it came with bluetooth which it advertises. It even has a bluetooth button on the top of the keyboard. When I press it, it used to say something like "disabled" and now it does nothing. After spending some time, i believe there is no bluetooth included in it it. I went on ebay and bought a BT dongle and it works well.

julian on :

Sounds strange; I do remember that to activate Bluetooth on mine, I had to do some fiddling about in the Control Panel and stuff. But if they say it has Bluetooth and it doesn't they're liable for all kinds of legal action.

khagen on :

no comment

Malaysia New Acer Aspire 5935 Buyer on :

I'd bought a high end unit of ACER ASPIRE 5935G on 25 July 2009. One the first day i only then discover that it required us to burn the Factory Default Discs and Drivers. This is very funny if they position as a high end unit, while required user to do all those basic stuff. This is real bad move.

Then, through out the process, i'd spent more than 20 disc that only find out that the unit got problem with the DVD drive as well as the software restore.

Only after many phone calls of complaint and waiting on the second day that i have them to agree to have the unit excahnged.

When i'd made the appointment and travel to the Warehouse, i only then find out that the reserved unit for my exchange was given to another customers. After such a long waits, calls, and travelling only then find out this kind of un-professional services.

Glad enough the Indian Rep friendly enought to help me find another unit while waiting, a blunt rude looking guy turn in and apparently he is the one who is responsible for all these.

During the exchange process, as i understand which suppose to be one to one exchange process turn up ugly. He begin to say that he would only exchange for the main unit, the rest of the accessories like battery, power supplies won't be changed. He stressed that is "ACER" policy again and again. I was very frustrated with his attitude but at the end i'd to keep repeating that i was promise for one to one exchange.

He only then give in a battery, then, he started the same story on the power supplies. Then the booklets. I decided not to argue with him and let him have the booklets but not the power supplies. The, he began to take down all the stickers on the new one and put it back to the old one that i'd just submitted.

With the looks, the type of words used, i'm clearly insulted by this type of service.

My purchase of notebook won't stop today, but i'll definitely advise all my friends, family, business associates, partners not to consider ACER products. As the high-end product fail on the first day, and the services and support are the worst experience any customer would ask for.

julian on :

Commiserations on your bad experience, it's very annoying to have problems with something brand new...

I was also a bit surprised at having to burn my own recovery disks, and I also had problems with the DVD - only that happened later. The problem was initially solved by using a different software for burning, but even now I cannot trust it to work reliably.

cheap computers on :

I wouldn't recommend neither this laptop, nor Windows Vista for the moment.

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