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How to turn off BIOS password request

Posted on 2007-07-31
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Last Modified: 2013-11-09
Toshiba Satellite A105-S4547 at boot does not respond to F8 (Safe mode) and asks for a password on a blue screen (we are NOT talking about the Windows XP login screen, this PC never gets to any part of Windows XP). . IF F2 (BIOS) is pressed it goes to the opening page of the BIOS and also asks for the password.

Previous to this owner may have **partly** run a System Recovery procedure and/or typed in some DOS commands.

Toshiba support siad the password might be toshiba but this has failed. And since it appears we are talking about the BIOS password, that is not turned on in BIOS when PC arrives from the factory so how on earth would it get turned on ???

QUESTION: HOW CAN WE BOOT TO WINDOWS and not have the password requested.

Note: Reinstalling windows from CD often requires resetting the boot order and going to F12 (Boot Order) results in the password being requested.

Regards,
  Mike
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Question by:mgross333
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Expert Comment

by:WistfulWhims
ID: 19605964
You will need to pull the CMOS battery and let the system sit for about 30 minutes, then replace the CMOS Battery and the BIOS password will be cleared.

I'll look for a good run-through of how to get to the CMOS battery in that model.

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Expert Comment

by:usacadena
ID: 19605967
Download updated bios from manufacters site. flash the bios using a floppy.
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Expert Comment

by:jamietoner
ID: 19606365
The bad news is this laptop(like most laptops) uses a security chip so removing the cmos battery will not disable or reset the bios password. The only way to get past it is to replace the motherboard or replace the security chip(involves some soldering). "HOW CAN WE BOOT TO WINDOWS and not have the password requested. " You can't. If you need to recover data from the drive attach it to another system with an external enclosure or adapter and pray they didn't set a hard drive password as well. If there is a hard drive password as well you would need to send the drive off to a data recovery firm.
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by:WistfulWhims
ID: 19606964
I haven't tried this, but I found it while searching for something else.  Last post at the bottom of the page.

http://forum.gsmhosting.com/vbb/archive/index.php/t-64200.html
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Expert Comment

by:WistfulWhims
ID: 19606976
Another possibility is that sometimes they programmed in a backdoor password...here's a list

http://www.uktsupport.co.uk/reference/biosp.htm
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Expert Comment

by:rid
ID: 19607097
How did you acquire this unit? I'd try returning it as it doesn't work and get a refund, if applicable. The situation must have been like this from start, if you didn't do anything yourself to the BIOS.

If it is a recent model, the security systems are probably quite competent and a CMOS reset will not help. And flashing the BIOS can't be done if the unit can't be booted...
/RID
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Expert Comment

by:Mark
ID: 19611550
Did you try Toshiba with a capital T. It could be case sensitive.
As stated in earlier posts here, a password on recent laptops are very secure. Removing them is not an easy job.
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Author Comment

by:mgross333
ID: 19612084
I am calling the customer to try the suggestions in WhistfulWhim's 2nd post at (his link, read the Toshiba section) AND Sparkmaker's post. I will post here and assign points if either idea works.

Rid post, 1st paragraph:  This is NOT my laptop; I fix PCs for a living. My customer wants me to fix problem without returning PC to Toshiba. If laptop goes back to Toshiba, I do NOT GET PAID.

Also rid, regarding
> The situation must have been like this from start, if you didn't do anything yourself to the BIOS.

My original Question above (2nd paragraph) clearly states that the customer DID DO SOMETHING to cause this.

Regards-Mike

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by:rid
ID: 19612133
From your original post it's by no means clear that you fix laptops professionally and the wording leads to the thought that you've bought it (previous owner mentioned) so what's with the capitals here? Mind-reading is not part of my toolbox, not at a distance anyway.
/RID
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Author Comment

by:mgross333
ID: 19612224
rid,

I concede that my post was not clear on these points.

Mike
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Expert Comment

by:rid
ID: 19612285
It's OK. Unfortunately, I have to emphasize what has been mentioned by e.g. sparkmaker; modern laptops have a good security technology. Some "backdoor" PW might work, but it might be a good idea to cut your losses and tell the customer the true story (if possible without rubbing their nose in it :) ).
Cheers
/RID
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Author Comment

by:mgross333
ID: 19616156
The custome tried both the answer's above, spell possible BIOS password Toshiba with upper case, lower case and (Capital T, the rest lower case) and none of these worked.

Then from WhistfulWhim's link, holding down the left shift key while booting also failed (i.e the password request still occured) despite a very clear statement that this would cause the password test to be skipped for ALL toshiba laptops at that link.

SO I told the customer they could call Toshiba for a cost to send it back to them and get this fixed. The laptop is still under warranty (about 8 months old) and Toshiba will probably fix this (for free or for a fee as this situation was caused by something the customer did).

But first I will search the Toshiba online docs for a solution.

ALSO CAN SOMEONE EXPLAIN WHAT IS GOING ON HERE: T HE BIOS PASSWORD IS REQUESTED WHEN ONE GOES INTO THE BIOS, NOT WHEN THE PC BOOTS, RIGHT ??? SO WHY IS THE BIOS PASSWORD BEING REQUESTED AT BOOT?? OR IS IT MAYBE NOT THE BIOS PASSWORD BUT SOMETHING ELSE (THE CUSTOMER SWEARS IT IS NOT THE WINDOWS LOGIN  PASSWORD).

ANY OTHER SUGGESTIONS ON HOW TO FIX THIS WOULD ALSO BE APPRECIATED.

MIke
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Accepted Solution

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Mark earned 2000 total points
ID: 19616292
This may be an administrative password which supercedes the BIOS password but is needed for both accessing the BIOS and startup of the laptop. A BIOS password would only allow access to the BIOS but not allow the laptop to enter the OS, whereas an administrative password would allow access to both. This may also have the effect of locking the hard drive as well. If so that may be real trouble as the hard drive would be rendered useless without a password.
Most of the documentation you are referring to in the earlier posts are for older Toshiba laptops. Those methods worked in their day but not for the newer laptops with security chips.
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