Clearing The BIOS Passwords On My Acer Laptop

December 5, 2015

Recently, I bought an older Acer Travelmate 8473T laptop on Ebay. Why not, it was only about $100. But it turned out to be not such a good deal.

One thing that really bothered me was that I could not access the BIOS.

DSC_2384_2

Acer BIOS Password Request

Usually, I’ll upgrade and reconfigure my machines. So, accessing the BIOS is really important.

This began another long project. Over a few weeks, I’ve spend probably 20 hours or more. Don’t you just love it when bad people and/or technology problems become the black hole of your time?

Quick Solution:

For those of you who just want the solution that worked for me,  Read the rest of this entry »


At Least Nine Ways To Identify Hard Disks

June 25, 2013

After writing the long post, Secrets of BIOS, Grub, and Triple Boot Servers, I still had some notes left over.

Here’s some more detailed info on the many different ways that hard drives are identified in my server using: Phoenix BIOS, ASUS BIOS 1006, Sept 1, 2008. There are at least 9 different properties or ways to identify them.

Disk Drive Model Name WD10 Hitachi WD400
Hard Disk 3 4 5
Fixed Disk 0 1 2
Sata Port 2 3 4
IDE 3 4 5
BIOS Boot Order 2 3 1
Grub HD? (hd1) (hd2) (hd0)
Operating System Windows 7 Redhat 5.5 Redhat 6.4
/dev/sd? /dev/sdb /dev/sda /dev/sdc

Make sense? Quick, how many can you recall?

Note: Redhat 6.4 is the main boot disk. After booting Redhat 6.4, the /dev/sd? is what is indicated by running fdisk -l. Please read the previous post for the details.


Secrets of BIOS, Grub, and Triple Boot Servers

June 9, 2013

Have you read: Rodger’s Very Simple Dual Boot Method?

If you haven’t already, do check it out. One advantage: no Master Boot Record (MBR) modifications! Another advantage: it allows all disks and operating systems the option to be completely independent of each other. You can remove any disk, insert it into another machine, and it will boot perfectly fine. The disks are no longer married to each other. But mainly, this post won’t make any sense to you, otherwise.

A few months ago, I used this method with only two operating systems: Redhat 5.5 and Windows 7. Then recently, in the same server, I installed Redhat 6.4 onto a third disk. But suddenly I had an awful time getting all three to work.

Symptoms:

Redhat 6.4 booted Redhat 5.5 perfectly. But when I booted Windows from the Redhat 6.4 grub.conf file, I got the error:

File:  \BOOT\BCD
Status:  0xc0000001
Info:  An error occurred while attempting to read the boot configuration file

Redhat 5.5 booted Windows 7 perfectly. But when I tried to boot Redhat 6.4 from the Redhat 5.5 grub.conf file, I got the error:

Error 2: Bad file or directory type

So, I could only boot two of the three operating systems at one time.  To make things work, I’d have to be changing sata cables. That really defeated the purpose of a triple boot.

This was really mysterious, and no one on the newsgroups had any idea how to fix it. Mere mortals would have given up and implemented some kind of work around. 🙂 But here is how I ultimately overcome the errors and got all the three disks to boot cleanly.  Read the rest of this entry »


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