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You may have hit a certain combination of keys on your Gateway laptop and turned on the NumLock function accidentally. The result is that the rectangle of keys from the 7 key down to the question mark key have become a number-entry keypad. Worse, Gateway manuals don't discuss this function.
Hold down the "Fn" key on the bottom row of the keyboard, and press the "NumLk" key. Type the letters UIO. If they come out as numbers, move on to the next step. Hold down the "Fn" key and press the "F11" key. Type the letters UIO. If they come out as numbers, move on to the next step. Hold down the "Fn" key and press the F11 key and "Scroll Lk" key simultaneously. Type the letters UIO. If they come out as numbers, move on to the next step. Hold down the "Fn" key and press the "F9" key. Type the letters UIO. If they come out as numbers, move on to the next step. Hold down the "Fn" key and press the "Scroll Lk" key. Type the letters UIO. They should come up as letters. If none of these help, then it's probably a keyboard malfunction and you'll need to get it repaired.
First check to see if NumLock is turned on. This is usually indicated by a LED somewhere either above the keyboard or possibly at the front of the machine. If it is currently on, you will want to toggle it to OFF in order to type in your password. This is usually done by pressing the blue FN key located at the lower left corner of your keyboard, along with one of the function keys at the top of the screen. I believe on Toshiba laptops, this should be FN + F11, but check the keys themselves. Look for a blue picture, usually of a calculator. Holding the FN key down and then pressing this key should turn off NumLock and allow you to type the password.
Note: It is also possible that the 'N' key on your keyboard has gone bad. If this is the case, open the On Screen Keyboard, accessible through Start > All Programs > Accessories > Ease of Access, and type your password using this.
I hope this helps!
Never ran into this problem myself but a friend of mine has. He said what fixed his what holding Fn + Num Lock and it remedied his problem. Unless your key is stuck/broken you can also try a can of air and try to blow it out and or pull the key and make sure its not stuck down. But deff try the holding Fn + Num Lock method first.
It appears that the function key is stuck on. try an external keyboard. if the external keyboard has the same problem its an issue with windows but if not you could be looking at a replacement keyboard. hope this helps Peter