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Profile NeoAmsterdam
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Message 611366 - Posted: 29 Jul 2007, 22:50:10 UTC
Last modified: 29 Jul 2007, 22:50:48 UTC

I hope everyone's having a better day than I am - My computer committed BIOS-cide.

The BIOS was being updated with a fix for a watchdog timer issue that would cause the computer to power off even if the watchdog timer was set to "disabled". Obviously the fix didn't come soon enough, and now I'm stuck.

Since the BIOS chip is in a socket instead of being soldered onto the motherboard, I'm considering yanking the cadaver out and replacing it. Does this sound like a good idea, or is the computer 100% FUBAR?
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Message 611367 - Posted: 29 Jul 2007, 22:55:10 UTC - in response to Message 611366.

I hope everyone's having a better day than I am - My computer committed BIOS-cide.

The BIOS was being updated with a fix for a watchdog timer issue that would cause the computer to power off even if the watchdog timer was set to "disabled". Obviously the fix didn't come soon enough, and now I'm stuck.

Since the BIOS chip is in a socket instead of being soldered onto the motherboard, I'm considering yanking the cadaver out and replacing it. Does this sound like a good idea, or is the computer 100% FUBAR?


If the bios is in a socket, you should be able to replace it with a good chip with a compatible bios on it. What mobo is it?

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Message 611368 - Posted: 29 Jul 2007, 22:58:16 UTC - in response to Message 611366.

I hope everyone's having a better day than I am - My computer committed BIOS-cide.

The BIOS was being updated with a fix for a watchdog timer issue that would cause the computer to power off even if the watchdog timer was set to "disabled". Obviously the fix didn't come soon enough, and now I'm stuck.

Since the BIOS chip is in a socket instead of being soldered onto the motherboard, I'm considering yanking the cadaver out and replacing it. Does this sound like a good idea, or is the computer 100% FUBAR?



I can help, what is the CPU and Motherboard you are using?

On Core 2 based PC, there is a recovery mode.

Who?

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Message 611369 - Posted: 29 Jul 2007, 22:58:57 UTC - in response to Message 611367.

Commell LV-670. The chip reads...

PhoenixBIOS™ D686 BIOS ©Phoenix 1998
...followed by the serial number.
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Message 611370 - Posted: 29 Jul 2007, 23:01:06 UTC - in response to Message 611368.

It's a P4 box, though I can't remember if it's Northwood or Wilamette or Wocka-Wocka-Wocka.

BOINC lists it as "GenuineIntel
x86 Family 15 Model 2 Stepping 9 2398MHz [x86 Family 15 Model 2 Stepping 9] [fpu mmx]" but because it was running Windows NT 4 Service Pack 6 it omits SSE among other features.
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Message 611377 - Posted: 29 Jul 2007, 23:13:13 UTC - in response to Message 611370.

It's a P4 box, though I can't remember if it's Northwood or Wilamette or Wocka-Wocka-Wocka.

BOINC lists it as "GenuineIntel
x86 Family 15 Model 2 Stepping 9 2398MHz [x86 Family 15 Model 2 Stepping 9] [fpu mmx]" but because it was running Windows NT 4 Service Pack 6 it omits SSE among other features.



i guess, you already tried this: phoenix

this guy has similar problem

on P4 based, most of the time, you got to remove the CMOS jumper, and boot on a recovery disk.
usually, you ll find this recover disk at the PC vendor web site.

who?


Profile NeoAmsterdam
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Message 611381 - Posted: 29 Jul 2007, 23:31:09 UTC - in response to Message 611377.
Last modified: 29 Jul 2007, 23:37:02 UTC

i guess, you already tried this: phoenix
Yes. It was very informative, but unfortunately I wasn't able to locate anything useful.

this guy has similar problem
He was able to boot off a floppy, and I haven't been able to so far - USB or internal.

on P4 based, most of the time, you got to remove the CMOS jumper, and boot on a recovery disk.
usually, you ll find this recover disk at the PC vendor web site.
I've already done the tricky jumper trick (it's a miniATX) without much luck, but I'll keep scouring the vendor's site.

Thanks for the help, who?

Addendum: I forgot that BIOS beeps when GIGO hits the [processor] fan because I don't have a speaker in the box. I'm checking Phoenix's site again.
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Message 611387 - Posted: 29 Jul 2007, 23:36:50 UTC - in response to Message 611381.

i guess, you already tried this: phoenix
Yes. It was very informative, but unfortunately I wasn't able to locate anything useful.

this guy has similar problem
He was able to boot off a floppy, and I haven't been able to so far - USB or internal.

on P4 based, most of the time, you got to remove the CMOS jumper, and boot on a recovery disk.
usually, you ll find this recover disk at the PC vendor web site.
I've already done the tricky jumper trick (it's a miniATX) without much luck, but I'll keep scouring the vendor's site.

Thanks for the help, who?


ok, do you have a floppy drive?
if so, with the jumper CMOS removed, the LED of the floppy should be on 5 seconds after you turn on. If it does not, your safety sequence in the bios is gone too. You will need a reprogrammed ROM. Pretty hard to find.

email me on a private message all your config details, including brand and motherboard number, I can contact the OEM and get the chip if you need it.

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Message 611395 - Posted: 29 Jul 2007, 23:44:19 UTC

Here is a link to Commell's update site for that board, you can download the bios and the Award bios flash tool. If the flash tool will boot and run off of the floppy, you may have a chance.
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Message 611396 - Posted: 29 Jul 2007, 23:46:22 UTC - in response to Message 611387.

Sorry about the crossed-wires earlier, but I discovered the beep codes while you were replying. It's long-short-short (morse code "D"), followed by an unending series of higher-pitched short beeps. From what I have read it means that BIOS can't start the video routine(s).

I'll reconnect the floppy with the jumper absent to see if the safeties are gone.
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Message 611397 - Posted: 29 Jul 2007, 23:47:21 UTC - in response to Message 611395.

I've got the disk already made, but unless it'll boot from the floppy there's little use for it.
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Message 611399 - Posted: 29 Jul 2007, 23:48:55 UTC - in response to Message 611396.

Sorry about the crossed-wires earlier, but I discovered the beep codes while you were replying. It's long-short-short (morse code "D"), followed by an unending series of higher-pitched short beeps. From what I have read it means that BIOS can't start the video routine(s).

I'll reconnect the floppy with the jumper absent to see if the safeties are gone.


I have often found that the 'video' error beep codes very often indicate a RAM problem. You might try subbing some different RAM and try again.

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Profile NeoAmsterdam
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Message 611402 - Posted: 29 Jul 2007, 23:55:29 UTC
Last modified: 30 Jul 2007, 0:20:39 UTC

Well, at least I now know what the beep tone is for a floppy drive who's cable has been plugged in the wrong way 'round (reminds me of my 8-bit days).

I'll try to reseat the RAM next, but so far the floppy is making its usual grinding sounds. I'm about to plug the VGA into the box to see what's going on.

Addendum: Video-out is not working, but it seems that the computer is booting (or at least attempting to from an internal floppy drive. I'm setting up a disk image in VirtualPC that will call the flashing tool from AUTOEXEC.BAT (so I have have some sort of a clue as to what'll be happening).
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Message 611408 - Posted: 30 Jul 2007, 0:07:43 UTC - in response to Message 611370.

It's a P4 box, though I can't remember if it's Northwood or Wilamette or Wocka-Wocka-Wocka.



I had a soda in my hand when I read this and almost dropped it on my computer, LOL.
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Message 611418 - Posted: 30 Jul 2007, 0:37:07 UTC - in response to Message 611408.

It's a P4 box, though I can't remember if it's Northwood or Wilamette or Wocka-Wocka-Wocka.

I had a soda in my hand when I read this and almost dropped it on my computer, LOL.

Sorry about that! The last thing I'd want is someone else to have a hardware problem on account of humor.

Anyway, VirtualPC is being rather uncooperative at the moment (not sure why) so I'm going to restart and see if that clears things up.
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Message 611441 - Posted: 30 Jul 2007, 1:54:06 UTC - in response to Message 611402.

Well, at least I now know what the beep tone is for a floppy drive who's cable has been plugged in the wrong way 'round (reminds me of my 8-bit days).

I'll try to reseat the RAM next, but so far the floppy is making its usual grinding sounds. I'm about to plug the VGA into the box to see what's going on.

Addendum: Video-out is not working, but it seems that the computer is booting (or at least attempting to from an internal floppy drive. I'm setting up a disk image in VirtualPC that will call the flashing tool from AUTOEXEC.BAT (so I have have some sort of a clue as to what'll be happening).


If is trying to read the floppy, is the led on the floppy showing any activity? If it is really trying to load from the floppy, I would expect the light to be on. And it might be verrryyyy slow, so give it some time if it seems to be trying.

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Message 611442 - Posted: 30 Jul 2007, 1:54:50 UTC - in response to Message 611408.

It's a P4 box, though I can't remember if it's Northwood or Wilamette or Wocka-Wocka-Wocka.



I had a soda in my hand when I read this and almost dropped it on my computer, LOL.


He might have one of those Brambleweeny cpus that Simon had online for a time............

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Message 611446 - Posted: 30 Jul 2007, 2:20:12 UTC - in response to Message 611418.

http://www.badflash.com
I haven't had to these guys in a number of years, but they saved my bacon with
a new chip after a flash went no response bad.


HTH

UncleVom
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Message 611447 - Posted: 30 Jul 2007, 2:31:56 UTC
Last modified: 30 Jul 2007, 2:36:55 UTC

Heaven knows I wouldn't mind a Brambleweeny 57 and a really hot cup of tea!

It looks like I can't coax VirtualPC to write directly to the USB floppy drive, and Disk Utility on OS X doesn't want to either, but yes indeed the floppy drive LED on the P4 is doing the five-second-long blink mentioned earlier.

I'm going to break out my older, floppy-savvy computer and try to get that to write the disk image.
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Message 611471 - Posted: 30 Jul 2007, 3:44:50 UTC
Last modified: 30 Jul 2007, 3:45:35 UTC

You won't believe how convoluted the process was (I had to start with VirtualPC and MS-DOS 6.22, make a disk image, copied the BIOS flashing tool and new BIOS to the disk image, copy that into a subdirectory on the virtual DOS computer, format the disk image from within DOS with format a: /s, copy the flash stuff back onto the disk image, write AUTOEXEC, mount the disk image in the Finder, tweak Disk Utility to support the (old) NDIF format, pass that disk image onto a USB thumb-drive, and crank up my laptop (which fortunately still has a bootable Mac OS 9 partition)), but I finally got to print the disk image to a floppy.

So... I turn on the power, I get the beep (morse code "D"), the floppy comes to life, and then... well... without video-out I haven't a clue. I'm hoping that it's booting, but when I boot from the disk image in the Virtual DOS environment, everything grinds to a halt once "Starting MS-DOS..." comes on the screen... very frustrating...

I'm re-titling the thread "BIOS Hell" since "mayday" no longer applies.

All of you have been very helpful - thank you so much for pointing me in the right direction.
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