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Laptop problem (could be BIOS related, not sure)

Discussion in 'General Hardware' started by SaiZo, Apr 10, 2012.

  1. SaiZo

    SaiZo

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    Ok, so I got a good deal on a second hand Packard Bell (don't laugh!), that came with Vista.
    There was something wrong with the harddrive so I thought, hmm.. why not just format the drive and install Windows 7 over it?

    So now comes the good part: It did work whilst having vista on it, almost, there was an error when the previous owner tried to do a "rescue" on the disk.

    And the bad part..: The BIOS was locked, and the owner had forgotten the password.
    I have two other Packard Bell's, where one had that aswell once, just did the same thing - removed CMOS battery and let it sit for a while, put it back in and voilá:

    Nothing happens. (Well almost nothing, it powers up but that's just about it).

    So my first thought is.. The memory.. I might have placed a memory module incorrectly.
    Nope. Wasn't that.

    Something is shorting the motherboard (ASUS).
    Nope.

    Try another AC/DC Adapter?
    Nope.

    Connect it to an external screen.
    Nope. Still nothing.

    Hear a noise from DVD?
    Yepp.

    Harddrive?
    Nope.

    Speakers making any startup noise?
    Nope..


    I have run out of idéas. Totally. I have opened the computer and put it back together more than five times now. Tested the memory, the harddrive on other system.. Nada.

    Any clues? I tried to google, noticed that a guy who actually changed the motherboard experienced the same issue.

    The model is AJAX C3 (C3 series?).

    If it's wasted, then I'll salvage the parts and use it on my other PB.
     
  2. Law-II

    Law-II

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    Hi

    I know this sounds silly however; did you put the cmos battery back in the right way round (this may short the board)

    remove the HDD and boot to bios - maybe this will work (faulty hdd controller on an hdd I had once stopped my PC in it's tracks)

    nb: remember that the hdd may have a super hidden recovery partition, this may be a conflict

    hope this helps

    atb (all the best)

    Law-II
     
    Last edited: Apr 10, 2012
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  3. SaiZo

    SaiZo

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    Hi! It works now, yes the battery was shorted. A piece of plastic strip fell off upon disassembly of the laptop. But.. The password still remains. Trying to figure out what part is the actual BIOS chip on the motherboad.
     
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  4. Law-II

    Law-II

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    Hi

    you could give this a try - http://www.pccmos.com/

    also have a look here, looks like you may need some HP tools to remove said password -
    http://h30434.www3.hp.com/t5/Other-Notebook-PC-Questions/Reset-BIOS-password-HP-6530b/td-p/118937
    [post by Byeelectric101] looks like the way to go

    atb

    Law-II
     
  5. SaiZo

    SaiZo

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    I changed the battery (CMOS) since it was giving a warning. I had it running, now again it refuses to boot up.. If this continues I'll sell it in parts.
     
  6. SaiZo

    SaiZo

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    Now it doesn't even start.. Something is wrong. The new battery (CMOS), measures 3.03v. The old one measures 2.0v.

    I was thinking, if I remove the motherboard from all the plastic, and connect it to either a secondary screen or it's own screen and just a keyboard connected - remove the HDD, DVD and memory, would it be easier for me to search for any errors?

    Note: It was functioning yesterday, now nothing happens.
     
  7. FreedomEclipse

    FreedomEclipse ~Technological Technocrat~

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    how much did you pay for this laptop?

    maybe the previous owner knew there was something seriously wrong with it, thats why he sold it on. im just saying...some deals a too good to be true
     
  8. SaiZo

    SaiZo

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    About $15. They bought a new one instead, the button next to "1" and the left arrow was missing. I do know that the mousepad thing doesn't work, they had an external mouse connected to it. I just wanted it as an extra system.

    The motherboard strangely enough, is from Asus. I think I could sell the screen etc. or use it on my other PB. The memory worked excellent on the other one.
     
    Last edited: Apr 16, 2012
  9. FreedomEclipse

    FreedomEclipse ~Technological Technocrat~

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    well for $15 youd probably make a fair bit of profit on the screen.

    take the laptop apart if you really want to but given the age of the laptop its probably not worth putting in the extra effort.

    part it out and sell everything seperately either at a local repair shop or ebay.

    dont let the guys at the repair shop lowball you though, even second hand screens can fetch a good price
     
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  10. Law-II

    Law-II

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    Hi

    What is written on the old CMOS battery? [nb: this could be a bespoke battery for the notenook as I have been unable to locate one of these on the www]

    Remove the battery pack and run the lappy from the mains (power brick)

    Remove the hdd and check that you are able to access the bios at POST (system bootup)

    atb

    Law-II
     
  11. Law-II

    Law-II

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    +1 I tend to agree with FreedomEclipse

    atb

    Law-II
     
  12. jsfitz54

    jsfitz54

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    In not sure if this helps, in the 1st post you indicated the bios was locked.
    If memory serves me HP had a utility to correct a bad bios flash.

    http://h30434.www3.hp.com/t5/Notebo...-which-had-had-a-bad-BIOS-upgrade/td-p/225042

    This utility would run off a usb flash drive and restore bios to factory conditions. This would also unlock a locked hard drive.

    The process takes quite a bit of time and the screen is black/blank and you hear a few beeps. Such a long time that its best to walk away.

    Perhaps Packard Bell has the same sort of utility.


    Perhaps the power issue is related to a loose power charging jack. People often pop the solder connections with rough handling. Sometimes they can be resoldered, just apply heat or a little extra solder to area, other times a replacement jack has to be ordered. Also a weak capacitor will give you problems, most of the 16v ones that supply 12v power.
     
  13. FreedomEclipse

    FreedomEclipse ~Technological Technocrat~

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    its a little too late for that i think. Laptop wont even start anymore.
     
  14. jsfitz54

    jsfitz54

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    So that would indicate a power issue. Read last part.
     
  15. FreedomEclipse

    FreedomEclipse ~Technological Technocrat~

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    that would depend on whats wrong with the laptop. I have tired to repair laptops that charge batteries just fine but dont boot up either when the laptop is plugged into mains and the battery is taken out or viceversa.

    at this stage unless youve personally physically inspected the laptop for yourself, you cant be 100% certain that it is a power issue.
     
  16. jsfitz54

    jsfitz54

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    Battery charging is a separate function. Isolated from running the pc. That's why you can charge with the laptop off.

    Not powering the motherboard indicates a broken link between battery/power and motherboard...a weak or bad capacitor is most likely the reason.

    And the reason I draw this conclusion is that it ran started sometimes/intermittently and now does not.

    First post indicates all the parts that were ruled out.


    In any event, your right in that it's worth more in parts, if the OP is not handy at fixing.
     
    Last edited: Apr 16, 2012

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