Windows 8 HP won't boot

From what my client described, they were poking around in the BIOS and I THINK disabled secure boot...they were trying to reset their password. Now I have their laptop and it will boot from nothing, does not respond to F2, F10 or F12 keys upon startup. All I get is a gray screen.

Bruce CorsonPresidentAsked:
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Bruce CorsonConnect With a Mentor PresidentAuthor Commented:
I've got the solution! I tweeted to @HPsupport and they gave me the answer:

"Try this to restore to the previous BIOS.  "

Here's what the site says:

HP Desktop PCs - Recovering the BIOS

This document pertains to HP and Compaq desktop computers with Windows.
If the BIOS on your PC becomes corrupted, for example from a failed BIOS upgrade or damage from a virus, the computer will fail to boot into an operating system. The computer might display a BIOS APPLICATION ERROR 50+ or simply stop at a black screen or beep. If you cannot enter the BIOS Setup Utility or System Recovery screens, and cannot start the computer from external storage devices, use this document to restore the BIOS.
Many HP computers have an HP BIOS Restore tool that might be able to recover the BIOS from an earlier version and restore basic functionality. This tool might or might not work in the event of BIOS corruption depending on many factors, but is worth trying in the event the BIOS has become corrupted.
Recovering the BIOS using key press combination
When you upgrade the BIOS on your PC, a copy of the previous BIOS version is stored in the HP_TOOLS partition of your hard drive. Many HP computers have an emergency BIOS recovery feature that allows you to recover and install the last known good version of the BIOS from the hard drive, as long as the hard drive remains functional. This emergency recovery feature is separate from the BIOS and is designed to work in the event of a catastrophic BIOS failure.
To recover an earlier version of the BIOS on your PC:
Turn off the computer.
With the computer off, press and hold the Windows logo key  and the B key at the same time.
Still pressing those keys, press and hold down the Power button on the computer for 2 to 3 seconds, and then release the Power button but continue to hold the Windows and B keys until the BIOS update screen is displayed or until you hear a beeping sound (usually 8 beeps).
The power LED light remains on, and the screen remains blank for about 40 seconds before anything appears on the display. You might also hear beeping sounds. Eventually, an HP BIOS Update screen displays and the BIOS update begins automatically.
Figure : HP BIOS Update screen
 Photo of HP BIOS Update screen showing a progress indicator
If the HP BIOS Update screen displays, proceed to step 4.
If the HP BIOS Update screen does not display, do one of the following depending on the condition:
Computer boots into Windows - The computer will boot into Windows if the power button and keys are released too soon. Repeat steps 1 through 4 above, holding the power button down for 2 or 3 seconds.
Power LED light turns off - The computer will turn off if the power button is pressed and held down too long. Repeat steps 1 through 4 above, holding the power button down for between 2 and 3 seconds.
After repeated attempts, the HP BIOS Update screen does not open - Your computer does not support this function or it has a hardware problem that is preventing the tool from opening. Contact HP using the Contact Supporttab at the top of this page.
After the BIOS is recovered, a Continue Startup button displays and a timer counts down. Click the Continue Startup button to restart the computer immediately. The computer will restart automatically when the timer reaches zero.
Figure : HP BIOS Update screen
 Photo of HP BIOS Update screen showing a Continue Startup button
When the computer restarts, a black screen appears with a message similar to the following:
A system BIOS Recovery has occurred.
BIOS Recovery (500)
Enter - Continue Startup
Press the Enter key to continue immediately or allow the computer to reboot automatically.
After restoring the BIOS, if the computer repeatedly displays a message about the BIOS, go to the HP Drivers and Downloads page and enter the model name of your computer. Select your computer model from the drop down menu and then select your operating system. Select BIOS to upload the latest version of the BIOS.
After restarting, Windows may display a message stating that the computer was improperly shut down or that a boot problem was detected. Read and respond to the screens to continue.
"All I get is a gray screen": you never see anything on the screen other than gray?  No HP logo or anything else?

If this is the case, then you have a hardware issue.
Bruce CorsonPresidentAuthor Commented:
Correct: no boot up logos...the screen has light behind it, but nothing shown. You can hear the disk spinning.

Well, it was working until client messed with BIOS. I can't boot from a Windows 8 disk or USB or TechUSB or System Rescue CD.
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You might test with a monitor attached to the external monitor port.

Do you hear the hard drive moving the head around?  When you try to boot from a CD, does it access the CD?  I'm trying to determine here if it is a video problem or something more severe.

Does the system have a CapsLock or NumLock light?  If so, tap the appropriate buttons and see if the lights change state.
Remove the power and battery, then press the power button for approximately 10 seconds. After that insert the battery and the power cord again and try restarting.
Bruce CorsonPresidentAuthor Commented:
@rindi I just tried that, thank you. Didn't work. @CompProbSolv, not video; DVD spins up but nothing happens.

I took it to our local Microsoft store. I hadn't been there before. Anyway, they concluded it is a BIOS password and logic board needs to be replaced.
I can understand that it may be a failed logic board but not how "it is a BIOS password" would keep the system from displaying anything at all.  I'd expect at least a prompt for the password.
i would remove the bios battery also before anything else
but i never saw a system that did not display Anything at all by changing bios settings, so i suppose they did other things to the system - or it just died on them
Bruce CorsonPresidentAuthor Commented:
I don't know how to close this without giving myself credit for the answer. But in fact this is the answer that worked.
you can give yourself all the credit - you solved it
Bruce CorsonPresidentAuthor Commented:
As explained in my answer, this is the only solution that worked.
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