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T60 HD Password

T60/T61 Series
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jn330
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Joined: Fri Aug 07, 2020 6:45 am
Location: AKRON, OH

T60 HD Password

#1 Post by jn330 » Wed Oct 07, 2020 8:08 am

I recently bought a used laptop T60 from eBay. The seller did not tell me, but the machine has a HD password still on it. I care nothing of the contents of the hard drive, and plan to install a new OS. However, it seems I cannot use the HD until this password is removed. It is a "user+master" setup. If I cannot reformat/reset the HD, what are my options? Can I put in a new HD?

dr_st
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Re: T60 HD Password

#2 Post by dr_st » Wed Oct 07, 2020 8:15 am

If it's a HD password, then yes, it stays with the drive; putting in a different drive will resolve your issue.

Sometimes, password-protected hard drives can be secure-erased in a way that removes the password, at the cost of wiping the drive clean. I have never tried it myself.
Thinkpad 25 (20K7), T490 (20N3), Yoga 14 (20FY), T430s (IPS FHD + Classic Keyboard), X220 4291-4BG
X61 7673-V2V, T60 2007-QPG, T42 2373-F7G, X32 (IPS Screen), A31p w/ Ultrabay Numpad, A21m 2628-GXU

Vopu
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Re: T60 HD Password

#3 Post by Vopu » Wed Oct 07, 2020 12:41 pm

Hi, as dr-st said professional data recovery companies have the tools to deal with this , both sw&hw,
I dont think this is a viable option for a T60 though , data recovery costs £150-£200p/h if i am not mistaken
I know HDD passwords are written on the HDD itself, not on the controller for a quick swap. Part of that HDD "where password is encrypted" is not user accessible though. You said it is a user+master password setup, do you mean both those are for the HDD ? Do you have a bios password also? or did you set up one?
First a doggy unit comes to mind as in stolen or perhaps a company laptop being sold by an employee.
I would get in touch with the seller and trace this first,and try to get the passwords if he is the user, failing that,than request a partial refund as the HDD is practically useless to you, if you are not happy with the outcome request a refund as its not clearly as advertised.
If you decide to dig into this than read on. :eek:
Assuming you don't have a bios password on that machine, and also the HDD itself is not encrypted with something like trucrypt or another SW,
Boot into your bios set a bios admin password, exit saving with F10
Reboot once more , than take out your battery and unplug the machine. While unplugged
Press power botton for 10-30 sec
Reboot into bios type your admin password , at bios setup screen find HDD password line(MASTER) and use your newly created admin password instead of HDD password
I have heard this work on some units/somehow
If it works dont ask me why :lol:
And for ethical/security rasons wipe that HDDcompletely before digging . :roll:
See if that helps
Vopu

cadillacmike68
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Re: T60 HD Password

#4 Post by cadillacmike68 » Wed Oct 07, 2020 11:03 pm

It works because on some systems the master HDD PW was set to the BIOS / Supervisor PW. Putting one in answered both at power on. I used to set my systems up like that when traveling overseas, but then I FUBAR'd a HDD by forgetting the PWs use and don't do it as much.
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dr_st
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Re: T60 HD Password

#5 Post by dr_st » Thu Oct 08, 2020 3:14 am

I started using HD passwords on all my laptops, just to deter the casual laptop thief from prying through my personal data, should the laptop get stolen. So, if I set the same password to HD and to BIOS/Supervisor, I only need to type it once to get the PC to boot?
Thinkpad 25 (20K7), T490 (20N3), Yoga 14 (20FY), T430s (IPS FHD + Classic Keyboard), X220 4291-4BG
X61 7673-V2V, T60 2007-QPG, T42 2373-F7G, X32 (IPS Screen), A31p w/ Ultrabay Numpad, A21m 2628-GXU

Vopu
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Location: London, GB

Re: T60 HD Password

#6 Post by Vopu » Thu Oct 08, 2020 4:22 am

dr_st wrote:
Thu Oct 08, 2020 3:14 am
So, if I set the same password to HD and to BIOS/Supervisor, I only need to type it once to get the PC to boot?
As far as i know, yes. :eek: (Not all units) As long as the HDD stays in the same machine. This is because a copy of HDD password (albeit encrypted)is present at bios and when you set up a bios admin password it attaches itself to the same string and acts as ADMIN to overwrite the string. Same set up of Admin works on dual HDD & SSD machine with individual passwords overwritten by Master Bios Admin password.Problem starts if you use a USB enclosure or swap the HDD to another machine. Mind you password only enables access to the drive not the contents if encrypted by a SW. Technical explanation to all this is beyond me though. I know it works tricking the system , however both the Bios password and HDD password stays , what admin gives you is just to bypass only. Since the contents are not individually encrypted that is all that matters and what you need.
If there is a Bios Admin password on a machine together with HDD password , you wont pass the bios screen to erase the password without accessing the bios first. And since there is no way erasing/removing a HDD password without knowing it, i see this trick as the only option except data recovery.
A more technical input on this by a forum member awaits, and i am all ears.

Regards
Vopu

jn330
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Joined: Fri Aug 07, 2020 6:45 am
Location: AKRON, OH

Re: T60 HD Password

#7 Post by jn330 » Thu Oct 08, 2020 6:32 am

Thank you for the responses. The HD is only 120GB, so I'll be replacing it regardless. It was listed as a part only machine,so I'm glad it works at all! I plan to convert it to a T61 at some point.

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