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IBM Thinkpad T20 bios password

telebasics
telebasics asked
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A collegea of mine, has just purchased a second hand iBM thinkpad t20, the selling party didn't know the BIOS password, so i thinking to help him, flashed the cmos battery, well IBM locked this option, and now the BIOS admin password also works as a boot password.

I really need a sollution so the laptop at least boots again, more points will be awarded to sollutions wich completely removes the password from the BIOS.

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Top Expert 2007

Commented:
There is no slution.
IBM / Compaq/ Dell all make their laptop machines tamper proof.

In fact, burning a new BIOS does not affect password protection, and on laptops especailly, you need to send them into IBM with proof of ownership in order to get this resolved.

I hope this helps !
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Top Expert 2007

Commented:
One 3rd party Co.

Also the last link shows access to IBM maintenance manuals that may help.

If the hard drive is password protected then nothing will help.


 HDD passwords with the option to restore all   original data. Detailed password recovery/removal   options (including Power-on and Supervisor) can
 be found at the link provided below. Click the  cylinder/lock icon on the top of the main page.

 http://www.nortek.on.ca/nortek/

http://www.nortek.on.ca/nortek/hdd_pw.html#Power

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Good Luck !

Author

Commented:
Yeah, and then pay even more money... He does have the bill wich the original buyer got whe he bought it, but more proof about ownership he doesn't have... What does IBM want?

I have to say that Hardware company's shouldn't make their system this tamper proof, people do really forget passwords, ask any company, how many employees forget the passwords set.

Author

Commented:
damn cant download the file, our proxy blocks it, can you mail it to me please?

vincent.boer@globalocity.com
Kyle SchroederEndpoint Engineer
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Commented:
To clarify, you can't boot the system at all now? Unclear on this because you said "now the BIOS admin password also works as a boot password" then said that you need to get it so "the laptop at least boots again".

Unfortunately, you're likely out of luck...the BIOS passwords on IBM systems get written into an area of the CMOS that can't be erased.  The only resolution for this is to have the system board replaced.  These passwords and the system that protects them are designed to not be defeatable by ordinary (read: non-IBM sanctioned) means.  You could try removing the CMOS battery, but that still most likely wouldn't do it.

I would also be somewhat concerned that this laptop is stolen, since how many people would forget the password for a laptop that they were probably using before selling it?

-d

Author

Commented:
damn cant download the file, our proxy blocks it, can you mail it to me please?

vincent.boer@globalocity.com

Author

Commented:
well he did have the purchase bil...

And i do know many people messing around with the bios, and then never use it again...damn what was that password again.

Commented:
"I have to say that Hardware company's shouldn't make their system this tamper proof"

It's understandable for you to take this position given your situation, but think about it objectively:  

What good is security that can be circumvented?  Answer: Absolutely worthless.  

I'll bet there are plenty of firms whose laptops have been stolen in airports who are happy to know that the information contained therein is not easily accessible.  

People who forget passwords just don't take it seriously.  I bet these people can remember their own phone numbers and social security numbers, both of which are essentially long strings of randomish numbers.  OK, this was the person who sold it to you and you're having to deal with the problem so I realize it's pretty frustrating.  However, you're just going to have to contact IBM as has already been suggested.

Author

Commented:
i used to work at a hardware vendor, and i had many custumers coming back in, forgetting the password, pleople i remembered selling the machine to.

Author

Commented:
"I'll bet there are plenty of firms whose laptops have been stolen in airports who are happy to know
that the information contained therein is not easily accessible. "

i agree, especially with the term "easily", but impossible, is another matter
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Top Expert 2007

Commented:
See

http://www.pc.ibm.com/qtechinfo/MIGR-4UYM3F.html

For the maintenance manual.
Hello,

I am used to be a certified IBM PC repair person. Here is the easiest way to get that problem fixed.

IBM used to supply us with a diskett that would allow us to reset the password in the BIOS. I am not sure how they are doing it now, but I am sure it is the same way.

If you contact 800-772-2227 they will either set up an appointment for a Customer Engineer to come out to see you, or you can send them you PC and they will reset it to "NO PASSWORD". They can't send you the diskett to do it for yourself for obvious reasons.

Hope that helps a bit!

Commented:
"i agree, especially with the term "easily", but impossible, is another matter"

What would you consider to be a difficult but not too difficult way of bypassing the security?  Anything you can do by yourself: pressing a special key combination, jumping a jumper, even downloading a utility, are all too easy because anyone could do it.  Getting IBM to do it is not impossible; it's as reasonably secure as can be without being impossible.  Anything less would be pointless as a security measure.

Again, you inherited the problem rather than created it, so this is understandably frustrating.

Author

Commented:
davidvasta> i am in holland, do they come there to?
and is that phone number international, or do i find a ibm certified repair company in holland?

Do they only send those diskettes to certified company's or to other normal pc repair company's also?

Commented:
Excuse my poor geography memory; does holland = netherlands?

IBM tech support phone numbers and email addresses in Netherlands:
http://www.ibm.com/planetwide/nl/

Clicking 'region' at the top of that page gets everywhere else IBM has tech support.  They don't list Holland as "Holland".

Author

Commented:
holland= netherlands, is good.

Gave the link to the colleage, so he'll decide what to do, when he decides, i'll let you know

I want to apologize about my bad spelling in the first comment.

I am not sure about Holland.


IBM Support in the US should be able to help. I am sure that the same support is available in Holland too. My company is based out of Holland and we use IBM all over the company. If anyone from Holland is watching, and knows, please help out.

You might just look under Europe or even France. I know that France has a good bit of IBM in it.

Author

Commented:
IBM netherlands askes Euro 800 for the job :-(
(= about $700) and after paying Euro 1500 for the laptop, it is starting to be an expensive piece of equipment...

He's is still thinking about it.

Author

Commented:
He is right, IBM is replacing the mainboard now