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Need help unlocking Pheonix Award 6.00 BIOS on Gateway Computer.

Hi,

I have a Gateway AMD X2 6000+ computer using a Pheonix Award BIOS 6.0. As I am sure most of you are aware, this BIOS is locked.

I've seen some things online that would lead me to believe this can be overcome by just switching the CMOS jumper on your MB for a few minutes to drain power from the BIOS, and then switch it back. Upon restart, your BIOS is back to factory specs and everything is unlocked.

Being a total noob, this is the impression I got, but I am also pretty sure I am completely wrong. Is this correct or will I turn my computer into a paperweight by doing this?
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MitchellVII
Asked:
MitchellVII
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1 Solution
 
StashioCommented:
Hi,
There are two ways to reset your motherboard, and the first one is the method that you've already mentioned - the 'Clear CMOS' jumper. This is the quick way however it also involves locating the jumper on the motherboard which can take a while!
Option two is the easier way - on your motherboard you'll see a round flat watch-type battery - remove the power to your PC, then remove the battery, wait for 5 mins, put the battery back in and power up your PC. The BIOS will now  go back to it's factory default settings!

Don't worry it won't 'wipe' your BIOS, it'll just put it back to factory settings.

Enjoy!
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MitchellVIIAuthor Commented:
Actually, on my MB, the CMOS Jumper is one of the few things that is out in the open and easy to get to, lol.

So I just switch the  jumper for 20 minutes, switch it back, turn on the computer and my BIOS will be unlocked?  That's it, just that easy?  You said this will return it to factory settings, but wasn't it "locked" at the factory or did Gateway do that.

Sorry to sound nervous.  It just seems to easy.
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StashioCommented:
Hey don't worry about it, if you've never done it before I'd be worried if you sounded too keen to try it :)

Cool OK, so to go for the jumper option:
1) Shut down PC and remove power lead
2) Switch the Clear CMOS jumper
3) Power on PC (no need to wait)

After that you should see a 'CMOS CLEARED' message pretty much as soon as you power the machine back on and you're all set.
Just remember to switch the jumper back afterwards or you'll clear your BIOS everytime you power on your PC :)
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MitchellVIIAuthor Commented:
And this will unlock all the things such as CPU Voltages that are now grayed out in my BIOS?  I will be able to set fan speed, etc?  I will be able to OC in the BIOS?

If this is so easy, how come there are so many software programs written (that you need a degree to understand) that do this using software?  Why wouldn't everyone do it this way?  Sorry - still paranoid.

Just in case, how would I backup my BIOS before I do this so I can reload it if I fark this up?
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StashioCommented:
There are certain things that are read-only in your BIOS - the CPU Voltage is a good example, where the info is displayed but cannot be altered. Unlocking your BIOS wouldn't change this as it's part of the software that is your BIOS and not a lock configured by Gateway.
There are plenty of ways to clear the BIOS, software's the lazy way because you can do that from Windows and not even have to open up the case of your PC - that said I'd never use the software myself because I don't know who's written it so a few extra mins to do it right is worth my time :)
There's no way to back up your BIOS but don't worry because it won't be going anywhere.
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MitchellVIIAuthor Commented:
Hmmm,

On the CPU voltages thing - I know that is part of OC'ing a CPPU - to nudge up the voltage and I always thought this was done in the BIOS.  I have NTune, but the voltage adjusters there are also grayed out i assumed because my BIOS was locked.

So if I can't change voltage in BIOS, where do I change it?
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nobusCommented:
you can't - if you cannot there.
i doubt resetting the bios will "unlock" anything, but you can try - it won't harm
if you can take the bios chip out, these maybe able to help :
http://www.recoverybios.com/                                    replace bios
http://www.badflash.com/                                        "          "
http://bioschips.nlan.org/                                    bad bios chip
http://www.unicore.com/                                    Bios upgrade
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MitchellVIIAuthor Commented:
I reset the bios as recommended and it made no difference.  I am probably just dealing with a MB here that is very limited as far as OC goes.  No problem, for 80 bucks I can drop a MB in there that will have a fully customizeable BIOS, which is likely what i'll do.  Probably Asus.
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nobusCommented:
i use Asus all the time- and no problems up to now
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nobusCommented:
strange - you credit an nswer you commented as " it made no difference"  while i told you that would not work, and even provided links how you could get it ok.
if you want to review the answer :  http://www.experts-exchange.com/help.jsp#hi17
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MitchellVIIAuthor Commented:
Look at my original question and you will see that he answered it.  May not have solved my problem, but it was the answer I had requested.
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dave74xCommented:
There is no way to unlock the bios.. Best thing would be to get another MB.
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