Toshiba Equium A60 - Refuses to power up/detect power after bad BIOS flash.

Posted on 2006-05-09
Last Modified: 2012-08-13
A friend of mine had this laptop and his friend attempted to update the BIOS and when they finished the machine is dead. He said that something went wrong during the flash.

I was expecting that there would be something on the display even if the BIOS is screwed. None of the lights, light up to indicate the machine is aware that it has power. I tested the power supply with a DMM and it is putting out 19.4~ V which is good and healthy. Then I got the screen off and checked at the motherboard to see if it has power at it and it does but still no indication that it has power and does not attempt to start.

I had the motherboard out to see if maybe there was a jumper to reset the system after a problem like this or a battery backing the BIOS or some way to reset the board. There were no jumpers but there is a battery. The battery is soldered to the board and is reading 3V. I desoldered the battery and kept it off for a few minutes then soldered it back on, reassembled the system and its still "Dead". Ive fixed laptops many times before, replaced parts, etc.. and ive dealt with difficult BIOS situations such as "The Award BIOS boot block" and others but I really dont know where to go with this system. I couldnt see any signs of burnout/damage on the board.

The machine is in immaculate condition and barely used, I cant understand why it wont start. Any ideas?

~User X
Question by:UserX
    LVL 87

    Accepted Solution

    A bad flash of the BIOS will render the system unusable. You will have to return the PC to Toshiba to get it repaired, as a bad BIOS normally isn't user servicable. You have to get a BIOS chip with the correct info for your PC programmed into it, then replace the chips. As laptop BIOS's are soldered to the mainboard, thise also means a lot of soldering. With Desktop Mainboards where the BIOS chip is socketed, you can sometimes recover from a bad BIOS flash if you have a 2nd, same mainboard around. You'd then start the PC with the good chip into the BIOS programming utility, carefully remove the good chip (fit it loosely beforehand) and replace it with the bad one, then reprogram it, all while the system is running. But this isn't possible on a notebook. Sorry for the bad news.
    LVL 6

    Expert Comment

    by:Wooky Jack
    have you tried starting up the laptop on just the battery or just the ac adapter?
    LVL 1

    Author Comment

    I have tried both and tried together. as I mentioned above I also removed the onboard battery and kept them all out for a good while but when I put them back....Still absolutely nothing.

    Toshiba were looking at $700 for the motherboard and if I wanted them to install it I would have have to pay extra. I have managed to locate a board on eBay and it is on its way but I would still really like to understand why this board does not acknowledge power. Id be very tempted to readd the informating from the BIOS on the new board and reprogram the old chip to see what happens but at the same time im not prepared to have another dead board.

    ~User X
    LVL 87

    Expert Comment

    BIOS interfaces between the Hardware and the user, if the BIOS is corrupt the hardware won't be recognized properly and this will cause all kinds of problems.

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