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"ME is in recovery state" Appears when I boot my X220

X200, X201, X220 (including equivalent tablet models) and X300, X301 series specific matters only.
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StarGehzer
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"ME is in recovery state" Appears when I boot my X220

#1 Post by StarGehzer » Sun Nov 25, 2018 4:08 am

When I boot up my X220 (Win7) the first thing to appear on the screen is the words, "ME is in recovery state" in the top left corner.
It never did that before today, and it does it every time I boot, even if I boot to a USB drive.
BIOS is the latest version.
I don't even know what 'ME' is, so how do I get it out of recovery state?
Over the years... 760XL, X31, X220, & a 2nd X220

shawross
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Re: "ME is in recovery state" Appears when I boot my X220

#2 Post by shawross » Sun Nov 25, 2018 7:13 am

Have you just updated the Bios?

Maybe see if you can reflash the Bios. Did you use the modded bios or the Lenovo Bios?

You could try either now maybe.

Edit - I just read somewhere where another person had this problem and removed the Bios battery and it came good. Or maybe you could just remove you normal battery and then hold down the power button for 15 secs.
Active --- Love the X series
X301 SU9400 IDA Mod - W 7 / X201 540M - W 7 / X220 2520 - W7

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X61 T7500 / T41 T42 T43 / A31

Rogue daily driver - Samsung RV511 15.6 " Screen - W 7

StarGehzer
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Re: "ME is in recovery state" Appears when I boot my X220

#3 Post by StarGehzer » Sun Nov 25, 2018 1:53 pm

Thanks for your reply.
The BIOS was upgraded to the latest version a long time ago. When the issue started I did some research & there were some suggestions that the BIOS was involved so I 're-flashed the BIOS, did the restart, the F9, & reset the things the way I wanted them.
It didn't make any difference.
After reading your note I removed the power cable & the battery then held the power button down for 20 seconds or so, the reinstalled the battery & cable.
When I booted up NO MORE ERROR MESSAGE! :banana:

Thank You!

BTW, if anyone can explain what the error message 'ME is in recovery state' actually means, I'd love to know.
Over the years... 760XL, X31, X220, & a 2nd X220

GomJabbar
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Re: "ME is in recovery state" Appears when I boot my X220

#4 Post by GomJabbar » Sun Nov 25, 2018 4:21 pm

According to the following post, this is likely caused by corrupted firmware. Sometimes removing all power such as what you did above will fix the problem. I have not seen this message before on my X220, but I did have to remove all power such as you did to resolve boot up problems.

https://www.dell.com/community/Laptops- ... -p/3934825
DKB

shawross
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Re: "ME is in recovery state" Appears when I boot my X220

#5 Post by shawross » Sun Nov 25, 2018 7:36 pm

StarGehzer wrote:BTW, if anyone can explain what the error message 'ME is in recovery state' actually means, I'd love to know.
When you did the reset you actually reset the Embedded Controller which runs Intel ME. You actually have 2 different operating systems in your X220. Little is known about the OS that Intel controls.
Active --- Love the X series
X301 SU9400 IDA Mod - W 7 / X201 540M - W 7 / X220 2520 - W7

Nostalgia
X61 T7500 / T41 T42 T43 / A31

Rogue daily driver - Samsung RV511 15.6 " Screen - W 7

StarGehzer
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Re: "ME is in recovery state" Appears when I boot my X220

#6 Post by StarGehzer » Mon Nov 26, 2018 12:38 am

GomJabbar wrote:
Sun Nov 25, 2018 4:21 pm
According to the following post, this is likely caused by corrupted firmware. Sometimes removing all power such as what you did above will fix the problem. I have not seen this message before on my X220, but I did have to remove all power such as you did to resolve boot up problems.

https://www.dell.com/community/Laptops- ... -p/3934825
Thanks! that link was interesting!
Over the years... 760XL, X31, X220, & a 2nd X220

StarGehzer
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Re: "ME is in recovery state" Appears when I boot my X220

#7 Post by StarGehzer » Mon Nov 26, 2018 12:42 am

shawross wrote:
Sun Nov 25, 2018 7:36 pm
StarGehzer wrote:BTW, if anyone can explain what the error message 'ME is in recovery state' actually means, I'd love to know.
When you did the reset you actually reset the Embedded Controller which runs Intel ME. You actually have 2 different operating systems in your X220. Little is known about the OS that Intel controls.
Thanks! I wondered if it was a translation issue where perhaps they tried to say something like "I am in recovery mode" ('I' being the computer)
So it actually refers to the Intel ME, which still says nothing about what 'ME' is. LOL
Over the years... 760XL, X31, X220, & a 2nd X220

RealBlackStuff
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Re: "ME is in recovery state" Appears when I boot my X220

#8 Post by RealBlackStuff » Mon Nov 26, 2018 6:04 am

It's the CPU's built-in spyware from Intel: Management Engine.
Lovely day for a Guinness! (the Real Black Stuff). And pigs CAN fly!

StarGehzer
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Re: "ME is in recovery state" Appears when I boot my X220

#9 Post by StarGehzer » Mon Nov 26, 2018 3:55 pm

RealBlackStuff wrote:
Mon Nov 26, 2018 6:04 am
It's the CPU's built-in spyware from Intel: Management Engine.
THAT is a great link, explained it so I could mostly understand it! LOL

Thanks!
Over the years... 760XL, X31, X220, & a 2nd X220

Bobs
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Re: "ME is in recovery state" Appears when I boot my X220

#10 Post by Bobs » Wed Jun 19, 2019 9:13 pm

StarGehzer wrote:
Sun Nov 25, 2018 1:53 pm
Thanks for your reply.
The BIOS was upgraded to the latest version a long time ago. When the issue started I did some research & there were some suggestions that the BIOS was involved so I 're-flashed the BIOS, did the restart, the F9, & reset the things the way I wanted them.
It didn't make any difference.
After reading your note I removed the power cable & the battery then held the power button down for 20 seconds or so, the reinstalled the battery & cable.
When I booted up NO MORE ERROR MESSAGE! :banana:

Thank You!

BTW, if anyone can explain what the error message 'ME is in recovery state' actually means, I'd love to know.
Thanks for this, I have been looking for a fix for 2 days, much appreciated All

skx
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Re: "ME is in recovery state" Appears when I boot my X220

#11 Post by skx » Wed Jun 19, 2019 11:27 pm

StarGehzer wrote:
Mon Nov 26, 2018 3:55 pm
RealBlackStuff wrote:
Mon Nov 26, 2018 6:04 am
It's the CPU's built-in spyware from Intel: Management Engine.
THAT is a great link, explained it so I could mostly understand it! LOL

Thanks!
I highly advise you to clean your X220's Intel ME:

1. as stated by RealBlackStuff, it is malicious lowlevel spyware out of enduser's control and without any benefit for the enduser

2. cleaning the malicious Intel ME is very easy for X220 with its bios chip under the palmrest

3. your X220 Intel ME is already >1 year vulnerable to security exploits which are no longer patched by Lenovo, you can test yourself with INTEL-SA-00086 Detection Tool: https://downloadcenter.intel.com/download/27150?v=t

4. you only need to buy a cheap 5USD CH341A USB SPI programmer on ebay

All instructions here: https://github.com/corna/me_cleaner Same difficulty level as flashing a modified EC. Just do it ;)
ThinkPad X220: i5-2520M CPU 2.5GHz - 8GB RAM 1333 MHz - SSD 860 EVO 250GB - Debian - ME_cleaned
ThinkPad X230: i5-3320M CPU 3.3GHz - 8GB RAM 1600 MHz - SSD 860 EVO 500GB - Debian - ME_cleaned

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