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How to reenable the F11 function (Product Recovery Program)

Posted: Mon Jan 28, 2008 2:35 pm
by arlab
The Rescue and Recovery - Recovery repair diskette solves this problem.
But for those without a floppy drive, I've created a CD image (ISO) of the diskettes, using a PC with a floppy drive and MagicISO (here's a nice tutorial on how I did it).

Like the above link says:
This package creates a bootable diskette that can be used to repair a corrupt boot sector on your primary hard drive. This package can also be used to reenable the F11 function as long as the service partition has not been removed from your hard drive.

This package supports Rescue and Recovery versions 1.0, 2.0, 3.0, 3.1, 4.0, 4.1 and 4.2.
Here are the download links (these ISOs were made at the 28th of January of 2007 - check if these really are the latest versions of the repair diskette):

Recovery repair CD for Windows 2000 and XP (rnr31_rrd.exe):
http://rapidshare.com/files/89450678/rn ... _fixed.iso

Recovery repair CD for Windows Vista (rnr40_rrd.exe):
http://rapidshare.com/files/89450908/rn ... _fixed.iso



Now burn the ISO image to a CD (using Nero, MagicISO, etc.) and restart your computer with the CD in the drive.
Note: Install the Rescue and Recovery software, before restoring the partition.


When booting from the CD (I only tested with the Vista diskette. I assume the same dialogues will appear with the XP and 2000 one):

You'll probably get a "Write protect error writing drive A: Abort, Retry Fail?" error. Just enter "F" to choose the Fail option (this error will appear several times. Just keep pressing "F" every time it appears).

You'll eventually get to a screen where you should choose the option "Option 1: Repair the current master boot record." (press ENTER).
After a few more Fails, a message saying "repairing... writing new mbr..." should appear. After pressing Fail again, you'll get a message saying "File creation error".
Finally another screen will appear with two option: "Press ENTER and continue" and "Press ENTER and continue" (yes, both options have the same text). CHOOSE THE SECOND ONE! (I lost a bit of time here, because I kept choosing the first option).
You'll see a few more error messages (continue pressing "F") and finally a screen saying "The operation was completed successfully". Press ENTER.
You'll probably get a few more "Fails"... After reaching the DOS prompt ("A:\>"), you can turn off the computer.
Note: Remember to eject the CD, or you'll boot again from it.

Now, when you press the ThinkVantage button you'll have the F11 option or you'll be redirected to Rescue and Recovery.




---------------------

Edit: If the "Factory Restore" option has vanished from the pre-boot environment, follow the steps in this thread.

Posted: Mon Jan 28, 2008 3:20 pm
by alacrityathome
Should be useful..thanks.

But, can you expand on what you mean by:

"Note: Install the Rescue and Recovery software, before restoring the partition."

I assume it means that you have already had the hidden partition and have all the TP software on the PC but have only lost.... for some reason ... the F11 capability?

On the other hand, if you use the CD/DVD disks to rescue and recover.....they will not only install the TP software but the F11 capability as well.

Alacrity

Posted: Mon Jan 28, 2008 3:43 pm
by arlab
The CDs I made (with the content of the recovery diskettes) don't install the Rescue and Recovery software. They only make the RnR software recognize the hidden partition.

You won't be able to enter the pre-desktop area without prior install of the Rescue and Recovery software.

Posted: Mon Jan 28, 2008 9:11 pm
by ryengineer
arlab wrote:The recovery CDs don't install the Rescue and Recovery software. They only make the RnR software recognize the hidden partition....snip
They do.

Posted: Tue Jan 29, 2008 8:14 am
by arlab
ryengineer wrote:
arlab wrote:The recovery CDs don't install the Rescue and Recovery software. They only make the RnR software recognize the hidden partition....snip
They do.
I'm talking about the Recovery CDs that I uploaded (that have the content of the recovery diskette).

Posted: Tue Jan 29, 2008 10:18 am
by ryengineer
arlab wrote:I'm talking about the Recovery CDs that I uploaded (that have the content of the recovery diskette).
I see. But you should term them something else because people are going to confuse it with actual recovery disks.

Posted: Tue Jan 29, 2008 11:23 am
by arlab
I suppose you're right. I have renamed them.

Posted: Tue Feb 05, 2008 7:19 pm
by mavior
I guess that the problem of this topic is: when you get your original mbr overwrited for some reason, you must have a 3.5 drive to restore it!(unbelievable that lenovo do not release a cd -probably only 2% of laptop users had a 3.5drive).
So this topic try to supply an alternative media (cd) for restore mbr.
Now,my question is: do the rescue dics provide such a functionality anyway?? (I mean only restore the mbr!!not re-install the rescue and recovery partition!).
And if not,is it possible that lenovo leave alone thousands of users without a simple and accessible solution to do so, without having to re-install the rescue and recovery partition??
Also could someone take a look at my related questions to this topic here http://forum.thinkpads.com/viewtopic.php?t=56834 ?
I feel depressed reading the two reply people leaved.
thank you very much

Posted: Thu Feb 07, 2008 5:08 am
by arlab
mavior wrote:Now,my question is: do the rescue dics provide such a functionality anyway?? (I mean only restore the mbr!!not re-install the rescue and recovery partition!).
What rescue discs are you talking about? The ISOs I made or the recovery discs you can make through RnR?
I you're talking about the latter, I have no clue. Never made one or have I asked Lenovo to send them to me.

Posted: Wed Feb 13, 2008 11:51 pm
by koppie
arlab you are awesome. I registered with this forum just so I could say that.

I've had a shiny new Thinkpad T61 for just a couple weeks now. The very first thing I did was dual-boot Linux. I even read a review comparing several different distros and picked the one that worked best (Mandriva). Even without a dedicated graphics card, the T61 performs like a real sweetie pie--I've got a composite window manager with all the latest 3d eye candy and it's super smooth and super fast. I started up a system monitor and I love watching when one cpu core hands off a task to the other one.

All was roses and candy . . . until I ran the ThinkVantage update. And it updated my BIOS.

When you dual boot, you typically make an entry in the MBR. That's what I've done with all my computers before this one. Turns out the Thinkpad doesn't like it when you touch the MBR. The result: nothing from the hard drive would boot. I fired up a Live CD and installed a new boot loader, changed the boot flags on the partitions, tweaked the bios settings . . . nothing. I searched on the web for ages, but seems like everyone else in the world either (a) doesn't know/care about Linux or (b) is smart enough to do their homework and not install a boot loader on a Thinkpad MBR in the first place. No one had advice that could help me.

Until I came across this thread with arlab's wonderful advice. And handy little ISO's!

Using this utility, I was able to reset my MBR. Now I can get back all my dual boot goodness. Thanks dude!

--Koppie

Posted: Tue Feb 26, 2008 6:03 pm
by thorin_2
I was elated when I found your post, as I needed to recreate the MBR so I could access the hidden restore partition. Alas, the ISO has failed me.

After I created the ISO, I boot to the CD and get "Starting PC DOS". Then I get a "Wite Protect error writing drive A" and the "Abort Retry Fail" message. I tried Fail and Retry to no avail. I then click Abort, and I see A: prompt. I typed DIR then ENTER and see a list of commands. I tried autoexec.bat but then go the abort rerty fail again. What should I do? Do I run repair.exe? Cleanmbr.exe? or?

Posted: Tue Feb 26, 2008 8:30 pm
by arlab
Never choose Abort. Keep choosing Fail. Sorry if I didn't make that clear in the post.

Posted: Wed Feb 27, 2008 9:07 am
by thorin_2
OK. Each time I get further but now I'm stalled again. I press 'F' and eventually get to a blue screen titled "THinkVantage Technologies Boot Manager Repair Program" The only option I Have is to press ENTER to continue. I do so, and nothing happens. After some time the CD spins down but nothing else happens and the blue screen remains. I have to power of the laptop at that point. I even waited ~5 minutes to no avail. How do I get past this screen? Why is it failing to repair or give me the "Opiton1" as stated in the other post?

Posted: Wed Feb 27, 2008 11:00 am
by arlab
That never happened to me... Try pressing F when nothing seems to be progressing (even after the blue screen appears).

Also, make sure you are using the correct version of the CD (Windows/XP).

Posted: Wed Feb 27, 2008 11:41 am
by thorin_2
I finally got it to work. I never saw the abort, retry, fail again (maybe it was hidden behind the window). I just started pressing "F" and it eventually worked. BTW, the REPAIR option didn't work for me, but the REPLACE did. I'm now back to my factory image... and hating it I guess, as I now need to reinstall so many apps...oh well.

Posted: Thu Feb 28, 2008 1:12 pm
by arlab
thorin_2 wrote:I never saw the abort, retry, fail again (maybe it was hidden behind the window).
That's exactly what I thought it was happening. Glad it all worked out.

Posted: Mon Apr 07, 2008 5:36 am
by bautista.ekonomista
hmmm.. i have a problem wherein i can't see the "factory restore" option in RnR both in Vista and Thinkvantage boot environment..

Will this resolve my problem? (btw, i have another post which talks about my experience. You can read it here:
http://forum.thinkpads.com/viewtopic.php?t=60106)

Also.. if i do factory restore after doing what you posted here (Supposing what you posted here works for me), will I be able to do factory restore for unlimited times?

Thanks a lot! :D

Posted: Wed Apr 09, 2008 6:44 am
by arlab
I have no idea. :(
But after doing a factory restore using this method, I'm no longer able to do it... But I don't know if that's what's supposed to happen... :/

Posted: Thu Apr 10, 2008 1:49 am
by bautista.ekonomista
I'm planning to drop by the IBM service center here in singapore in 2 weeks' time to talk to them about this problem. I'll give you an update after such. :D

Posted: Thu Apr 10, 2008 3:58 am
by arlab
A definite answer on this subject would be nice...

Re: How to reenable the F11 function (Product Recovery Progr

Posted: Sun May 04, 2008 8:15 am
by arlab
I've added to the first post this piece of text, that solves the problem of the missing "Factory Restore" option:
arlab wrote:Edit: If the "Factory Restore" option has vanished from the pre-boot environment, follow the steps in this thread.

Posted: Fri May 16, 2008 9:05 am
by led_snapper
Any idea where the webpages have gone? I can't seem to access them now?

Posted: Sat May 17, 2008 11:13 am
by arlab
led_snapper wrote:Any idea where the webpages have gone? I can't seem to access them now?
Which ones? Just tried and had no problem whatsoever with any of them. :?

Posted: Mon Jun 09, 2008 5:58 am
by lh1
Need help!!
I perform whole procedure for reenabling F11 function for my T61:
1. Download rnr40_rrd.exe
2. Extract it to usb fdd drive
3. Reboot and new mbr writing - success!
4. Then turn off
5. Turn on.
Pushing blue button:
F1 - BIOS
F11 - RnR
f12 - Boot device

I press F11 and... nothing! I see usual Vista booting...

Re: How to reenable the F11 function (Product Recovery Progr

Posted: Mon Jun 09, 2008 1:23 pm
by arlab
Try installing the Rescue and Recovery software.

Posted: Mon Jun 09, 2008 1:59 pm
by lh1
Hmm... I already have RnR 4.2. OK, i try to reinstall

Posted: Fri Jun 20, 2008 11:49 pm
by mrleo
I use T61 7658-02U. I did as you said and received a message:"read error while reading drive". I tried to do it again but still received this message. Then I used Boot Magic 8.0 to set active to hidden partition (#1). After reboot I can access RnR and restored to factory state. Now I can access ThinkVantage and RnR unlimitted times :). I think using Boot Magic is easier cause Boot Magic is one of Hiren Cd's tools

Posted: Mon Aug 25, 2008 11:00 pm
by pksw
Thanks for this guide - it worked great. I got a new t41p with Vista Ultimate.

Now dual booting Vista Ultimate and WinXP, and I still have the recovery partition working. So I have the best of all three!

Steps required:
1. Installed vistabootpro (under Vista)
2. Shrunk C:\, and created D:\ partition for XP
3. Installed WinXP on D:\

Now this alters the boot process, so the system won't boot Vista, nor will F11/recovery partition work.

4. Boot off the image provided in the first post, to fix the MBR so the recovery partition works.

Now have the option of F11, or it boots into XP

5. Installed vistabootpro on XP, and set it up allow the Vista boot manager to allow selection of Vista or XP at startup.

It works!!

Posted: Wed Dec 31, 2008 12:33 am
by clli160
I followed the instruction, the repair didn't work but the replace dose. My T43 is restoring itself now (I am using my T60 now) !! :D
I was about to order the recovery CDs from Lenovo (it cost about $85 AUD) and was trying the last time then it's the solution.

A big thank you to everyone posted their effort here! :thumbs-UP:

A little note to add .. for creating the ISO image CD, we can use Sonic (the come with software): Backup Project tab > Burn Image
[size=9]For people not familiar with Windows related knowledge.[/size]

This is life saving threat :Nice:

---------------
Ellen

Re: How to reenable the F11 function (Product Recovery Program)

Posted: Tue Oct 09, 2012 2:36 pm
by craigflow
BIG Thanks :-)

link to XP iso not working, but I found it here:

http://www.ulozto.net/xLc9u12/rnr31-rrd-fixed-iso

Haven't been able to factory restore my N100, have been looking for weeks until I found your post - working as we speak :-)

Tip for those who end up with a blue dos screen - keep hitting f :-)