thinkpads.com Support Community Forum Index Bill Morrow's thinkpads.com Open Forum - The Original Thinkpad Support Forum
Follow ThinkpadsForum on Twitter
 Support this forum, shop at newmodeus.com
 Support the forum, shop at newmodeus.com
System backups occur about 7:00 am EDT and last about 10 minutes. This will slow performance. RSS feeds have been added to the forum.
Donate if you wish to:
bill at thinkpads dot com

It is currently Wed Jul 23, 2014 4:40 am

All times are UTC - 5 hours




Post new topic Reply to topic  [ 13 posts ] 
Author Message
PostPosted: Wed Jan 26, 2011 12:04 pm 
Offline
Senior Member
Senior Member

Joined: Fri Dec 08, 2006 2:39 pm
Posts: 579
Location: Tampa, FL
I'm just wondering if anyone else has had or heard of this problem.

I got my T410 (full specs in my sig) new in July, 2010, so I've had it a while and to this point had no problems with it. As I typically do, I set a power-on password (pop) in the BIOS (no other passwords) shortly after initailly setting it up last year. All was fine until this morning when I powered it on. I use the T410 just about daily and everything was fine yesterday right up to when I powered it off last night.

I entered the password this morning as usual and got an "x" displayed indicating the password was wrong. I entered it again figuring I fat-fingered it the first time. Nope, still wrong. :? After a few unsuccessful power cycles and re-tries, I figured it was time to try and clear the password and start over.

I followed the steps in the HMM to unplug the coin backup battery and cleared the pop.The T410 now booted into Windows normally (after setting date/time in the BIOS). Several reboots worked fine, as well. I went back into the BIOS and re-entered the same pop and rebooted. I was prompted for the pop, entered it, got the expected "OK" acknowledgement and Windows booted normally.

I'm back up and running normally now (I'm typing this post on it) but since I've never seen this problem before, I'm curious if anyone else has? Should I just write it off as a glitch, or am I looking at an initial symptom of bigger problems yet to come?

Thanks!

_________________
Gary A.

lenovo: T410 (2516-CTO) | i7-620M | 8GB | 320GB 7200rpm | WXGA+ | WiFi 6300 | Bluetooth | Webcam | DVD-RW | 9 Cell | Win7 Pro x64 | Full System Specs
IBM: T21 (2647-47U) | PIII 1GHz | 512MB | 60GB 5400rpm | 3Com Mini PCI Ethernet/56K | DVD-RW | WinXP Pro SP3 | Full System Specs


Top
 Profile  
 
PostPosted: Wed Feb 02, 2011 11:23 am 
Offline
Senior Member
Senior Member

Joined: Mon Jan 21, 2008 1:40 pm
Posts: 827
Location: Howell, New Jersey
Take a look at the info here: viewtopic.php?f=18&t=93884

Passwords, especially bios/disk passwords make me nervous -- for the reason that exactly matches your glitch -- I'm not a geek (just a geek wannabe) so I really don't understand how you got past the password 'glitch' by removing the cmos?

Because I don't have a clue what I would do if I couldn't find my password, I never set a password -- I'm not worried so much about forgetting as I am about my doing something to cause the machine to somehow alter the password and lock me out -- kinda like your machine tried to do --

I guess that means I choose to be more vulnerable to a thief than to the complexities of the bios password :oops:

_________________
emtee3511
X200-7459-BW3(AFFS-Glossy) + X61-7674-Y23 + X61s-7666-3EU
+ X60s-1702-CTO
+ X100e-3508-CTO + T410i-2516-73U
+ T410-2537-N71+ T410-2537-FP9
+ W510-4391-C52(FHD-Glossy)


Top
 Profile  
 
PostPosted: Wed Feb 02, 2011 11:34 am 
Offline
Freshman Member

Joined: Thu Jan 27, 2011 2:56 pm
Posts: 83
Location: Prague, Czech Republic
emtee3511 wrote:
Take a look at the info here: viewtopic.php?f=18&t=93884

Power-on password doesn't imply HDD password protection. Those are two separate BIOS options.


Top
 Profile  
 
PostPosted: Wed Feb 02, 2011 11:42 am 
Offline
Senior Member
Senior Member

Joined: Mon Jan 21, 2008 1:40 pm
Posts: 827
Location: Howell, New Jersey
Well, you can see why this senior citizen won't set any passwords -- I don't have a clue :oops:

Which password makes my thinkpad a brick if I can't remember it -- Is that the hard drive password?

If I have a power on password, when does the machine ask for it -- when it boots to bios? Can it make my machine a brick?

If I have a hard drive password, when does the machine ask for it -- at the logon screen?

_________________
emtee3511
X200-7459-BW3(AFFS-Glossy) + X61-7674-Y23 + X61s-7666-3EU
+ X60s-1702-CTO
+ X100e-3508-CTO + T410i-2516-73U
+ T410-2537-N71+ T410-2537-FP9
+ W510-4391-C52(FHD-Glossy)


Top
 Profile  
 
PostPosted: Wed Feb 02, 2011 11:56 am 
Offline
Freshman Member

Joined: Thu Jan 27, 2011 2:56 pm
Posts: 83
Location: Prague, Czech Republic
emtee3511 wrote:

Hard drive password can only "brick" a HDD drive, not the entire thinkpad. Power-on password is requested after POST. The HDD password is requested right after it (the drive is unlocked without another password prompt if the power-on password is the same as the HDD one).
As far as my knowledge goes, there are three possible passwords on a recent thinkpad - the power-on one, the HDD one and a BIOS one.

I used to have power-on + HDD protected using a password / fingerprint (I could enter either one) and BIOS protected by another password.


Top
 Profile  
 
PostPosted: Wed Feb 02, 2011 12:06 pm 
Offline
Senior Member
Senior Member

Joined: Mon Jan 21, 2008 1:40 pm
Posts: 827
Location: Howell, New Jersey
What about bios password -- that's the one that can brick my machine if I forget it?

Can you set the same password for bios/ power on/ hard drive?

When does the machine ask for a bios password that has been set?


And last... thank you very much for taking your time to answer my questions :)

_________________
emtee3511
X200-7459-BW3(AFFS-Glossy) + X61-7674-Y23 + X61s-7666-3EU
+ X60s-1702-CTO
+ X100e-3508-CTO + T410i-2516-73U
+ T410-2537-N71+ T410-2537-FP9
+ W510-4391-C52(FHD-Glossy)


Top
 Profile  
 
PostPosted: Wed Feb 02, 2011 12:27 pm 
Offline
Freshman Member

Joined: Thu Jan 27, 2011 2:56 pm
Posts: 83
Location: Prague, Czech Republic
emtee3511 wrote:
What about bios password -- that's the one that can brick my machine if I forget it?

It seems (from the first post in this topic) that you can reset the BIOS settings (which are stored in a CMOS) by simply removing the CMOS battery for a few seconds/minutes. That has been proven to work on all desktop / laptop CMOS-based systems I've "met" in the last 15 years (or so).

emtee3511 wrote:
Can you set the same password for bios/ power on/ hard drive?

Maybe. Perhaps. I've never tried it.

emtee3511 wrote:
When does the machine ask for a bios password that has been set?

Only upon entering the BIOS configuration interface. Forgetting such password thus won't prevent you from normal system bootup.

If you're likely to forget a power-on/HDD password, you can simply use the fingerprint reader, provided your thinkpad has one. There's a fingerprint enroll tool available on Windows - you can enroll all your fingers (just in case) and set them as "power-on" ones.

Also note that by using this kind of protection, you only make life harder for a simple thief. If you work with valuable data, you need to use a strong disk/filesystem encryption instead.


Top
 Profile  
 
PostPosted: Wed Feb 02, 2011 12:40 pm 
Offline
Senior Member
Senior Member

Joined: Mon Jan 21, 2008 1:40 pm
Posts: 827
Location: Howell, New Jersey
"If you work with valuable data, you need to use a strong disk/filesystem encryption instead"

:) Nah... I'm an old lady/homemaker --
My machines are just for fun, to make my household record keeping easier, and to communicate with kids and family members spread out from Jersey to New Mexico to Texas -- thanks very much for enlightening this senior citizen today...

_________________
emtee3511
X200-7459-BW3(AFFS-Glossy) + X61-7674-Y23 + X61s-7666-3EU
+ X60s-1702-CTO
+ X100e-3508-CTO + T410i-2516-73U
+ T410-2537-N71+ T410-2537-FP9
+ W510-4391-C52(FHD-Glossy)


Top
 Profile  
 
PostPosted: Wed Feb 02, 2011 6:57 pm 
Offline
Admin
Admin

Joined: Sun Jun 04, 2006 1:26 am
Posts: 8876
Location: San Jose, CA 95120 USA
@nikki605: Can't say this is a typical problem but it's in the realm of possibility if the data inside the CMOS memory was corrupted. That you were able to remove the power-on password by the usual method and reset it so that it now works again, would seem to say that the memory has a slight case of amnesia :) .

@emtee3511 and comps: The "bricking" of the system is caused by the BIOS (aka, Supervisor) password. This occurs when one has the BIOS password set and then either removes the CMOS battery or it goes dead. If taking out the CMOS battery was an attempt to remove what was thought to be a power-on password or if the user never knew that the BIOS password was set (or forgot it), then that's the action that will brick the system. When the CMOS battery loses power, the system date and time goes with it. Upon the next boot, the BIOS realizes the loss of the time and forces the user to enter BIOS to reset it. You must then enter the BIOS password in order to set the time. If you can't do that, then the system will not boot any drive. The Thinkpad BIOS password system is not like some of the other (read: older) desktops/laptops which can be defeated by simply taking out the CMOS battery.

Yes it is possible to use the same password for all three (power-on, hard disk and BIOS), but for proper data protection, I always advise against it.

_________________
Ray Kawakami
[DONOR] X22;X24;X31;X41;X41T;X60;X60s;X61;X61s;X200s;X300;X301;Z60m;Z61t;Z61p;560Z;600;600E;600X;T21;T22;T23;T41;R50;A21p;A22p;A31;A31p
NOTE: All links to PC-Doctor software hosted by me are dead. Files removed 8/28/12 by manufacturer's demand.


Top
 Profile  
 
PostPosted: Thu Feb 03, 2011 11:31 am 
Offline
Senior Member
Senior Member

Joined: Mon Jan 21, 2008 1:40 pm
Posts: 827
Location: Howell, New Jersey
Thanks very much Ray -- I think I finally "get it" and understand passwords a little better --

_________________
emtee3511
X200-7459-BW3(AFFS-Glossy) + X61-7674-Y23 + X61s-7666-3EU
+ X60s-1702-CTO
+ X100e-3508-CTO + T410i-2516-73U
+ T410-2537-N71+ T410-2537-FP9
+ W510-4391-C52(FHD-Glossy)


Top
 Profile  
 
PostPosted: Thu Feb 03, 2011 12:51 pm 
Offline
Freshman Member

Joined: Thu Jan 27, 2011 2:56 pm
Posts: 83
Location: Prague, Czech Republic
rkawakami wrote:
Upon the next boot, the BIOS realizes the loss of the time and forces the user to enter BIOS to reset it. You must then enter the BIOS password in order to set the time. If you can't do that, then the system will not boot any drive. The Thinkpad BIOS password system is not like some of the other (read: older) desktops/laptops which can be defeated by simply taking out the CMOS battery.

So it's one of the "newer" ones that use a NOR/NAND flash memory chip to store persistent data. I wonder why the power-on password isn't stored in the non-volatile memory as well.


Top
 Profile  
 
PostPosted: Thu Feb 03, 2011 9:51 pm 
Offline
Admin
Admin

Joined: Sun Jun 04, 2006 1:26 am
Posts: 8876
Location: San Jose, CA 95120 USA
Actually the memory technology is a little bit older than flash. It's stored in Electrically Erasable Programmable Read Only Memory.

_________________
Ray Kawakami
[DONOR] X22;X24;X31;X41;X41T;X60;X60s;X61;X61s;X200s;X300;X301;Z60m;Z61t;Z61p;560Z;600;600E;600X;T21;T22;T23;T41;R50;A21p;A22p;A31;A31p
NOTE: All links to PC-Doctor software hosted by me are dead. Files removed 8/28/12 by manufacturer's demand.


Top
 Profile  
 
PostPosted: Sat Apr 07, 2012 8:41 am 
Offline
ThinkPadder
ThinkPadder

Joined: Fri Aug 11, 2006 10:31 am
Posts: 1460
Location: Saltillo, Coahuila MEXICO
So to make things clear, why did the password cleared, was that a glitch?

_________________
Current
T61 8897-CTO:
Penryn T8100 2.10GHz | G.Skill 4GB RAM | Hitachi 5K500.B-250 HDD | 14.1" SXGA+ | GMA X3100 | 6-cell Battery | Windows XP SP3 |||Past: T42p, T30, A22e
X61s 7666-CTO: Merom L7500 1.6GHz | 2GB | Seagate 160GB HDD | 12" Ultralight XGA | GMA X3100 | Extended Battery |


Top
 Profile  
 
Display posts from previous:  Sort by  
Post new topic Reply to topic  [ 13 posts ] 

All times are UTC - 5 hours


Who is online

Users browsing this forum: No registered users and 3 guests


You cannot post new topics in this forum
You cannot reply to topics in this forum
You cannot edit your posts in this forum
You cannot delete your posts in this forum

Search for:
Jump to:  
Powered by phpBB® Forum Software © phpBB Group