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So I bricked my BIOS today...

So I bricked my BIOS today...

Postby Cornflake » Mon Apr 27, 2009 2:29 am

Well after a long time looking I was finally the proud owner of an AMD Athlon X2 6400+ processor - and it arrived yesterday.

So today I decided to put it in. I have a Gigabyte GA-M55SLI-S4 motherboard. Everything went fine, although upon POST the bios notified me that it's an unrecognized AMD processor which makes sense because only the newest BIOS version supports the 6400+. So, I go to the BIOS page, download the BIOS updated and put it onto a bootable USB key.

Well I use the included flashing utility on the USB key to upgrade to bios version F11J, and it notifies me that the flash was "successful". Upon reboot, I notice I see a black screen and my system won't even get to the BIOS. The peripherals (CD, HDD)s get turned on but seemingly no activity. I find a nice guide here ( http://forums.tweaktown.com/f69/bios-fl ... ide-27576/ ) which has a section about if you get a corrupted BIOS. Well, even after clearing my CMOS and unplug everything but the floppy, I can't get the system to recognize the floppy and start up the DOS flash program. Supposedly an AWARD BIOS motherboard will allow you to do this since it has a "BootBlock" in case of emergencies. I could of swarn my floppy was set to boot as first device , but it's not working.

There's a page here ( http://pages.sbcglobal.net/jefn/bootblock.html ) also linked to on the guide, explaining at the very bottom what to do if you have a BIOS you cannot repair. Either PC repair shops or you can order a new BIOS chip. So, I was posting here to ask 1) Is there anything else I can do to recover my BIOS with just the floppy that I'm missing? and 2) Why would this have happened seeing as the program said it was a successful flash?
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Re: So I bricked my BIOS today...

Postby yeshuas » Mon Apr 27, 2009 2:46 am

Asking, just to be sure since your post included the second link, that you have in fact attempted to clear the bios as it suggested by unplugging everything and removed the battery, and moved the CMOS pin and then moved it back etc.

I have had this happen only a couple times and on one of them I repeated the process a few times before it worked, so maybe try following all the steps in the second link again.

another thing is to maybe replace the battery
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Re: So I bricked my BIOS today...

Postby Cornflake » Mon Apr 27, 2009 4:03 pm

Yes -- I did unplug the PC, remove the battery and put a jumper on the clear CMOS pins, and then pressed the power switch to dissipate any remaining power and then waiting about 5 minutes. However I'll try it again today.

When this happened to you, did you see any error messages upon reboot or did you just see a black screen?

When I boot it up now it appears to give power to my CD drive, HDD, and Floppy but I'm not sure if it's attempting to read from the floppy at all. It simply seems to 'loop' the power on process. See, I'm not even sure if my BIOS had a BootBlock... I'm sure it was an AWARD BIOS, and I was under the impression most AWARD BIOSes had a recovery BootBlock.

P.S. Seems like a failed flash seems to happen fairly often...
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Re: So I bricked my BIOS today...

Postby yeshuas » Mon Apr 27, 2009 5:08 pm

I have only had it happen 2 times and I work on computers for a living, so I don't think it happens very often at all really.

If memory serves me one was a black screen and it took a couple times of removing the power, the battery and then moving the jumper for the CMOS to clear it before I finally got where I could see the screen and it let me into the bios, I also replaced the CMOS battery, just to be safe.
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Re: So I bricked my BIOS today...

Postby Grav!ty » Mon Apr 27, 2009 5:23 pm

You may want to try what I did here...a bit risky but it works. I did that 4 or 5 times (maybe more) and it got me to the floppy and eventually I got the BIOS restored

had quite a hastle getting the system to POST after installing the CPU and it's taken me since my first post at the top of the thread to even get into the BIOS. I had to pull a few funnies that are really not recommended...pulling the CMOS jumper cap off while the system was powered on, shorting out the two pins to clear the CMOS and then letting it boot with no jumper cap on...just to get into the BIOS. The first time the whole system froze while in the BIOS and it took me another 4 or 5 attempts to get it to POST again


Caution: One can hose the motherboard totally doing this.
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Re: So I bricked my BIOS today...

Postby yeshuas » Mon Apr 27, 2009 5:25 pm

Does your board have onboard video by any chance, if so try removing your graphics card and connecting to the onboard video, if it doesn't try removing the graphics card and booting once then replace it and try booting again.
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Re: So I bricked my BIOS today...

Postby Cornflake » Mon Apr 27, 2009 6:25 pm

yeshuas wrote:I have only had it happen 2 times and I work on computers for a living, so I don't think it happens very often at all really.

If memory serves me one was a black screen and it took a couple times of removing the power, the battery and then moving the jumper for the CMOS to clear it before I finally got where I could see the screen and it let me into the bios, I also replaced the CMOS battery, just to be safe.


Black screen as in no signal? Because I don't have any signal at all. I just tried again clearing the CMOS, and I left out the battery out and the jumper on for over an hour. I guess I'll try yet again.

If that doesn't work, I'll takeout my video card and replace it, and my last ditch effort would be what Graham suggested.

P.S. Do you think that the Best Buy repair department would be able to flash a bios directly? And without charging and arm and a leg? If not I'll have to search around for local PC repair shops, of which there aren't many.
P.P.S. I don't think I could send in for a new chip, it looks soldered on to the board. It doesn't have a "socket" like these BIOSes here: http://www.devhardware.com/c/a/Hardware ... Your-BIOS/
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Re: So I bricked my BIOS today...

Postby Cornflake » Mon Apr 27, 2009 7:59 pm

*UPDATE*

Well, I've tried everything I can and it looks like it's completely bricked. From what I can tell, this Gigabyte board has no built-in recovery or emergency features like some others. Meaning, if for the many list of reasons your BIOS flash doesn't 'take', you're S.O.L..

Not only that, but since the (rather tiny) BIOS chip is soldered onto the board, It's probably only a snowball's chance in hell that it could ever be fixed (I'll still call around and see, but I won't get my hopes up).

I'm just completely befuddled at how a simple procedure, that "completed successfully" failed for absolutely no reason. There was no power failure, I wasn't using a Windows flash utility (they supposedly fail often) and I confirmed again using WinRAR that the BIOS files I downloaded were not corrupted off the internet. yeshuas, you only had it happen twice while working on computers for years? Something tells me you're lucky. Speaking of luck, it's just my kind that would fail a BIOS flash the first time I ever (successfully, so said the program) flashed my chip.

P.S. My experience happened exactly like this person who was flashing their BIOS on a "MSI Wind" (A laptop I think). Dumped me to a C: prompt when done, requiring me to hold the power button to reboot:
After flashing the bios it would not shut down from DOS, I had to remove the battery and plug to shut it off. The Bios flash was completed and just blinking ar the C: prompt for 5 minutes and the fan was running on full. So I think it was a bad bios flash but now what? Can I remove the cmos battery to reset it? I'd rather just RMA it then break open the case. Any other ideas?

Full thread is here http://forums.msiwind.net/bios/bricked- ... t5108.html (quote taken from post 5)
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Re: So I bricked my BIOS today...

Postby yeshuas » Mon Apr 27, 2009 8:10 pm

If you can RMA it under warranty I would.

If you have to RMA it and pay for the repair..............it will probably be more than a new board.
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Re: So I bricked my BIOS today...

Postby Cornflake » Mon Apr 27, 2009 9:52 pm

I sure hope someone around here could flash the chip. The mobo is 2.5 years old now, and:
Manufacturer Warranty

Beyond any applicable Newegg return policy, this item is warranted independently by the product's Manufacturer. Below is a summary provided for convenience only and may not be accurate or current. Use this link for full details.

* Manufacturer Limited Warranty period (parts): 1 year
* Manufacturer Limited Warranty period (labor): 1 year


CPUs Have like 5 year warranties... mobo's with 1? This is madness! Image

But thanks for all the help though :)
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