cancel
Showing results for 
Search instead for 
Did you mean: 

Lost BIOS Setup Password

Lost BIOS Setup Password

I have got an old Armada 7400 that's been passed around for years. There is a password on the F10 BIOS setup and no one has a clue what it might be.

Is there any way to clear the password?

Note: I have FDISK'ed the PC and it is blank. I do not need to be concerned about doing something that would risk data.

Thanks,
Andrew
16 REPLIES

Re: Lost BIOS Setup Password

PS. I've read some google on the topic. I'm not going to go to the expense or trouble of an eprom programmer. I've tried taking off the bottom and removing both the small three cell battery pack as well as the small hearing aid batter cell. I left them disconnected for about 3 minutes and then put the bottom back on. When I booted and pressed F10, I still got the password prompt on the BIOS settings. (Aaaarrgghh!)

Did I perhaps not leave them disconnected long enough. Am I on the wrong track? Is there a jumper to move or different battery to pull?

Please advise. This is my last obstacle in getting this old laptop reconstructed.

Thanks in advance,
Andrew
Soujanya
Valued Contributor

Re: Lost BIOS Setup Password

Hello Andrew,

This weblink might help you.

http://www.dewassoc.com/support/bios/bios_password.htm

You can also try this.

http://www.uktsupport.co.uk/reference/biosp.htm

Good Luck !!

Re: Lost BIOS Setup Password

Thanks. This told me to leave the battery out for 20 to 30 minutes, where as I only did it for 3 to 5.

I've done that and I believe it did set the password back to the defaults, because the screen flashed by the amount of RAM I have in the PC and not it's asset tag number like it used to. However, I believe I'm still going to have a lot of searching to do for the right default password.

Searching for the correct default password would be easier, if I knew what the BIOS manufacturer. Since all that goes on the screen during boot is "COMPAQ", I can't see the type of BIOS.

How can I tell which BIOS I have in the laptop?

Thanks again,
Andrew
Tom Leavitt
Honored Contributor

Re: Lost BIOS Setup Password

Andrew:
Does this help you? Appears there are 3 batteries to disconnect.

Clearing Passwords:
1. Turn off the computer.
2. Disconnect the AC Adapter.
3. Remove the battery pack.
4. Remove the keyboard/CPU cover assembly.
5. Disconnect and remove the auxiliary battery.
6. Disconnect and remove the Real Time Clock (RTC) battery.
7. Wait five minutes.
8. Reconnect the auxiliary battery.
9. Reconnect the RTC battery.
10. Install the keyboard/CPU cover assembly.
11. Reconnect the AC Adapter. Do not reinstall the battery pack yet.
12. Turn on the computer.
NOTE: Remember to set the date and time the next time the computer is turned on.
Tom

Learn From History
rcote2
Respected Contributor

Re: Lost BIOS Setup Password

Andrew, have you looked at:

http://www.bioscentral.com/

There is BIOS password software/freeware out there that will "read" the password if you could get up and running.

Otherwise, the default password is often the company name of the BIOS maker - you could try "Award" or "AMI" , etc. (without the quotes)

Good luck! RAY

Re: Lost BIOS Setup Password

I'm getting ready to try the disassembly, going for battery number 3.

But meanwhile, HOW CAN I TELL WHICH BIOS I HAVE IN THE LAPTOP? It doesn't appear during the boot process, because of the "Compaq" startup screen.
Tom Leavitt
Honored Contributor

Re: Lost BIOS Setup Password

Andrew:
Your Armada 7400 motherboard [204268-001] is MANUFACTURED by Compaq & I can't find out anything about the BIOS.
Let us know how my '3 battery' removal proposal went.
Tom
Learn From History

Re: Lost BIOS Setup Password

Hmmm. I'd removed three batteries before. I wasn't counting the big battery pack as a battery. I did remove it, along with the two under the keyboard (1 button battery and 1 3 cell shrinkwrapped pack). I just wasn't reading your notes correctly.

Anyway, no change. I still get prompted for a password.

I've tried four different crack tools. Some say there is a password and some don't find one. When one finds a password, I try it, but it isn't valid. I've also tried pretty much all the "default" (backdoor) passwords for all the different BIOS makers that I've found posted. None work.

I might try another crack or two, but I'm pretty much giving up. If I had walked around the neighbor hood and offered to mow yards for $20, I'm sure I would have made enough money to buy a better PC and spent less time over all. I should have quit long ago.

Thanks for the assistance,
Andrew
Tom Leavitt
Honored Contributor

Re: Lost BIOS Setup Password

Did you put in the password 'Compaq'?
Learn From History
Roger Faucher
Honored Contributor

Re: Lost BIOS Setup Password

Andrew:

Compaq computers usually (shortly after turning them on) position a flashing block cursor in the upper right corner of the display. The moment you see that, press the F10 keyboard key several times. That should get you into the BIOS Setup program (although I fear it will want the password first). Try removing the AC power input and all three batteries and leave it overnight to see if that will clear the password.

Make a great day!

Roger
Make a great day!

Roger
Vinay kumar_1
Occasional Visitor

Re: Lost BIOS Setup Password

Hi, Andrew. Here is the necessary steps to be taken by you to clear the BIOS setup password.

You could go through the following website which contains the essentila steps to be done to clear the BIOS setup password.

http://www.dewassoc.com/support/bios/bios_password.htm

Thanks
Vinay Kumar

Re: Lost BIOS Setup Password

Well, I left the batteries out for about an hour. I closed the case and booted on AC, without putting the main battery back into the slot. F10 did nothing.
- I formatted C: Still nothing with F10.
- I ran the diagnostics (sp25498) and tried to create a new diagnostics partition. It said a partition already existed (this is good).
- I ran the setup (sp7117). It said the contents of the diagnostics partition was current, but I re-installed anyway.
- I tried F10. BIOS setup still wouldn't appear.
- I ran the ROMPaq. It said the contents were current, but I re-installed anyway.
- I tried F10. BIOS setup still wouldn't appear.
- I put in the main battery.
- I tried F10. BIOS setup still wouldn't appear.

So apparently I've gotten rid of the password, but now I'm just as stuck, because F10 does nothing now.

Ideas?
rcote2
Respected Contributor

Re: Lost BIOS Setup Password

Andrew, saw this on another forum as a suggestion for your F10 problem - no idea if it will work.

"Just boot holding down the delete key and be patient. Once in setup, choose defaults."

RAY

Re: Lost BIOS Setup Password

Nope. The DEL key idea didn't work. It was worth a try though.

I think I'll try loading the OS and then see what happens.
rcote2
Respected Contributor

Re: Lost BIOS Setup Password

OK, one more thought - in days gone by you used "F1" and somtimes "Alt-S" to enter BIOS.

You must be tired by now of all the suggestions, but I just thought of this.

RAY
Tom Leavitt
Honored Contributor

Re: Lost BIOS Setup Password

Andrew:
Try this for information on your BIOS and other system components:
http://esupport.com/home.cfm
Click on the 'Bios Agent' button & follow through.

You can then delete the little 'Agent' utility, etc. by:
Start>
Find>
Files or Folders...
Named: biosag
Containing text: ----
Look in: [c]
When the results appear, delete.
Tom



Learn From History