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Trouble with my Sony VAIO PCG-GRX520 laptop - will not start after I updated the bios

Posted on 2006-05-10
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Last Modified: 2007-12-19
Hey everyone,

I recently did a fresh install on my VAIO PCG-GRX520 laptop using XP Pro.  After the installation, I ran updates and then installed the drivers I picked up off the sony website.  One of the updates was for the BIOS.  The funny thing is, I remember my laptop working after I rebooted.  Later I try and turn it on, all I get is the power light.  It doesn't even run off the battery.

Is there a way to Flash the Bios?  I was reading that I might need to swapped the BIOS chip itself.  What would be the troubleshooting steps to determine it is the BIOS.  I figure if the BIOS doesn't boot up, then it has to be that.
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Question by:warriorfan808
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by:PUNKY
PUNKY earned 400 total points
ID: 16653539
Did you follow instructions from Sony to flash the BIOS? Steps listed below:

1. WARNING!!: Before installing this update, be sure the computer is running from AC power. If the installation of the BIOS is interrupted by power loss, the computer may not operate correctly or at all!
2. During the installation of this update, be sure that you are logged in as the Administrator or as a user with Administrative rights.
3. To ensure that no other program interferes with the installation, save all work and close all other programs. The Taskbar should be clear of applications before proceeding.
4. It is highly recommended to print out these instructions as a reference during the installation process.
 
Download and Installation Instructions  :

1. Download the PH-A20B00802JN.EXE file to a temporary or download directory (please note this directory for reference).
2. Go to the directory where the file was downloaded and double-click the PH-A20B00802JN.EXE file to begin the installation.
3. At the "Phoenix WinPhlash for VAIO" box, click Browse.
4. At the "Specify the New BIOS File" box, click the "R0220B0.WPH" file.
NOTE: If R0220B0.WPH file is not displayed in the "Specify the new BIOS File" Box, click Exit to abort the BIOS update. Please download and install the PH-A20B00802JN.EXE file again.
5. Click "FlashBIOS" to begin the BIOS update process.
6. At the "Warning" box, confirm all other programs are closed, all peripheral devices are disconnected, and the computer is connected to power via the AC Adapter, and click OK. Please wait as the BIOS is updated.
7. At the "System BIOS was successfully updated" screen, click Shutdown.
8. After the computer shuts down, wait for few seconds and then turn on the computer.
9. After the computer restarts, the BIOS update is complete.


 
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by:warriorfan808
ID: 16654391
Didn't notice the directions, but after reading them, I did all that was said.

My laptop was plugged into an outlet.
My user had administrative rights
The rest was done for me through the Sony Download Taxi.

Do you know of a way to reset the bios or repair it?  I'm not even 100% sure it was the bios.  After I did the bios, I rebooted the computer a few times because of installations I made.  Installed Office 2003; AVG; Adaware SE; Office updates; etc.  All went fine.
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by:JohnnyCanuck
JohnnyCanuck earned 400 total points
ID: 16654568
Normally, after a BIOS update on a desktop you should load the BIOS defaults.  Since your laptop won't boot to the setup screen I suggest removing the battery and pressing the "power on" key for 10-15 seconds.  Then reinstall the battery and AC power and try again.
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by:PUNKY
ID: 16654880
"After I did the bios...Installed Office 2003; AVG; Adaware SE; Office updates; etc.  All went fine..." it meant that you did successful flashing bios!
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by:Rick Hobbs
Rick Hobbs earned 400 total points
ID: 16654940
I am unsure where PUNKY got :
"After I did the bios...Installed Office 2003; AVG; Adaware SE; Office updates; etc.  All went fine..." it meant that you did successful flashing bios!

but your original post would indicate either memory, system board, or BIOS failure.  If it is under warranty, get it to a warranty station.   If it isn't, and you feel ok opening it up, remove the battery, remove the power, locate the cmos backup battery inside the system and unplug it, wait about 30 minutes, plug the cmos backup battery back in, reinsert the battery, apply ac power, pray and press the power button.
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by:PUNKY
ID: 16654951
From the questioner, though. He said that after he flashed bios, and then he reboots system couples of times during installations (office, AVG, etc) ..
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scrathcyboy earned 400 total points
ID: 16655007
OK, back to solving problem.  You need to open laptop case and find a small jumper next to CMOS battery.  You set this jumper to pins 2-3 for 2 minutes, then replace to pins 1-2.  Then try to boot laptop.

If laptop boots, you are fine.  If it FAILS to boot, this means you powered laptop off before the BIOS was finished being flashed, and this is fatal to any motherboard BIOS.  The best you can do in this case is BUY a new BIOS chip for the motherboard from SONY.  Of course, they will say they cant sell you one and you cant replace it, that is how they are, so the reality sets in that you have maybe trashed your entire laptop.  Sorry.
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by:warriorfan808
ID: 16656019
thanks for the help guys.  I'm going to give it ago first thing in the morning.  Just came on here to see what people thought.

Seriously, I will be suprised if it's the bios.  I did the entire setup a week ago and didn't touch the laptop since.  It was kinda hard to remember what happened.  I tried to go back and remember everything.  I do know that I did the following:

Installed a Fresh copy of XP Pro
Downloaded the drivers and applied.
Then I installed all the software and updates which required reboots.  I'm pretty certain I turned it off also, but I wouldn't bet the farm on it.  Maybe I didn't turn the thing off and the reboots just recycled the old bios until I finally shut it down.  I was plugged in though.  Battery life on that thing is horrible, I wouldn't have been able to last through the installations.
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by:Zuhir Elgmati
Zuhir Elgmati earned 400 total points
ID: 16656247
How to reset the BIOS to its default values.

Follow this procedure to reset the BIOS to its default values.

   1. Restart the computer.
   2. At the SONY screen, press the F2 key.
   3. In the PhoenixBIOS Setup Utility window, press the RIGHT ARROW key until the Exit menu is selected.
   4. On the Exit menu, press the DOWN ARROW key until Get Default Values is selected.
   5. Press the ENTER key.
   6. In the Setup Confirmation dialog box, press the ENTER key.
   7. In the PhoenixBIOS Setup Utility window, on the Exit menu, press the UP ARROW key until Exit (Save Changes) is selected.
   8. Press the ENTER key.
   9. In the Setup Confirmation dialog box, press the ENTER key.

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by:PUNKY
ID: 16659922
@ zuhairGmaty! I tried and it works! great procedure. Thanks. But I am not sure if this will work on this  warriorfan808's case since his system (as his statement) will not boot and only power light on. I dont like guessing, but likely the comment from Scrathcyboy is correct.

Flashing bios is danger! it would neither keep system up-to-date or get it killed.  
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by:Zuhir Elgmati
ID: 16673255
GOOD NEWS ......PUNKY : THIS INSTRACTION FOR Sony VAIO PCG-GRX520 laptop ... SO I THINK IT WILL BE WORK .
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by:warriorfan808
ID: 16673262
thanks for the instructions zuhair.  I actually tried them a while back, they're on the sony website.  I still haven't taken the thing apart yet.  I unscrewed everything I could, but I couldn't get the case off of it.  I'm going to get some help from a friend that has taken one apart a few times.  I'll distribute the points right after I get it open.
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by:Zuhir Elgmati
ID: 16673271
I'M SORRY FOR THAT..... WISH GOOD LUCK FOR YOU
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by:warriorfan808
ID: 16673291
No problem man.  Thanks for the help
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by:warriorfan808
ID: 16686660
I held off for the weekend to work on it, but some one ended up stealing it.  Damn, it's pretty odd to me.  I had a brand new dell dual core laptop in there too, but they choose the old VAIO.  Good thing there isn't any data on it.  I'm still hoping it shows up.  I ended up having to use my personal laptop, which I hate doing.

I'll distribute the points and end this thread.  Thanks for all the help.
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