Electronics Repair (sci.electronics.repair) Discussion of repairing electronic equipment. Topics include requests for assistance, where to obtain servicing information and parts, techniques for diagnosis and repair, and annecdotes about success, failures and problems.

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I really hope that someone can help me with this. I have a P233 with
American Megatrends AMI bios.This computer was working perfectly but
has been sitting without drives in it for a couple of months. I just
returned from a Ham Fest yesterday with a box of 35 hard drives which
I bought for 5.00 The drives range in size from 1 to 15 GBTS. My
intention was to try these drives in a known working computer without
a hard drive to see if any of them would come up. What I planned on
doing was to go into bios before post and try to auto detect the
drive.Then I was going to format that good drive and add it to another
working computer which I'm presently using. Then I planned to copy my
pertinent files from the existing C drive to the new D drive. I
reasoned that even if the unknown drive had a virus, it could only
affect the RAM in which case a power cycle on/off would clear that and
so installing it into a stripped down box could not harm the computer
in any way. I've tested drives like this before without any problem it
seems. Afterward formatting would take care of any virus.

Well apparently I was wrong. Things didn't work out the way I had
hoped. The first drive I selected came right up without my first going
into bios and auto detecting it. How it did that without my first auto
detecting it made no sense to me. I would have expected to se some
message along with some beeps telling me that the configuration was
wrong and directing me into bios to correct it. Initially during this
boot up the screen had some logo talking about a server of some kind
and then I saw something about Linux. Then there was miles it seemed
of code displayed on the screen one line after another. It looked like
a program was unpacking or something but I'm not sure. Finally the
computer just hung. I turned it off and then on again. I managed to
access the bios screen and auto detected the drive. I also changed the
date and updated the configuration to show just a master and one 3.5
floppy. Everything seemed as it should be. I then exited bios saving
the configuration however it never completed post. I then tried a
power cycle again and this time the bios screen came up with gibberish
super imposed on it. After this and repeated tries I was not able to
get into bios again. My son suggested a possible "bios virus". I had
no idea that such a thing was possible. Isn't bios ROM? That being the
case how can something "write" to it? I pulled the battery overnight
and this morning re installed it. Everything is pulled except the RAM
and the video board. I then tried it again. The first time it let me
into bios. I noted that the date as well as the configuration was
wrong so I assumed I dumped everything that was not burned into the
chip. I did the re configuration, saved and exited but now its not
letting me back into bios again. And it's not completing post either.
It's really frustrating and discouraging to realize that I have now
apparently damaged a previously good machine by performing a seemingly
innocent act. Does anyone have any ideas what happened and if there
might be a way to correct it? Any help would be most sincerely
appreciated. Lenny
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On Oct 16, 10:16*am, klem kedidelhopper
wrote:
I really hope that someone can help me with this. I have a P233 with
American Megatrends *AMI bios.This computer was working perfectly but
has been sitting without drives in it for a couple of months. I just
returned from a Ham Fest yesterday with a box of 35 hard drives which
I bought for 5.00 The drives range in size from 1 to 15 GBTS. My
intention was to try these drives in a known working computer without
a hard drive to see if any of them would come up. What I planned on
doing was to go into bios before post and try to auto detect the
drive.Then I was going to format that good drive and add it to another
working computer which I'm presently using. Then I planned to copy my
pertinent files from the existing C drive to the new D drive. I
reasoned that even if the unknown drive had a virus, it could only
affect the RAM in which case a power cycle on/off would clear that and
so installing it into a stripped down box could not harm the computer
in any way. I've tested drives like this before without any problem it
seems. Afterward formatting would take care of any virus.

Well apparently I was wrong. Things didn't work out the way I had
hoped. The first drive I selected came right up without my first going
into bios and auto detecting it. How it did that without my first auto
detecting it made no sense to me. I would have expected to se some
message along with some beeps telling me that the configuration was
wrong and directing me into bios to correct it. Initially during this
boot up the screen *had some logo talking about a server of some kind
and then I saw something about Linux. Then there was miles it seemed
of code displayed on the screen one line after another. It looked like
a program was unpacking or something but I'm not sure. Finally the
computer just hung. I turned it off and then on again. I managed to
access the bios screen and auto detected the drive. I also changed the
date and updated the configuration to show just a master and one 3.5
floppy. Everything seemed as it should be. I then exited bios saving
the configuration however it never completed post. I then tried a
power cycle again and this time the bios screen came up with gibberish
super imposed on it. After this and repeated tries I was not able to
get into bios again. My son suggested a possible "bios virus". I had
no idea that such a thing was possible. Isn't bios ROM? That being the
case how can something "write" to it? I pulled the battery overnight
and this morning re installed it. Everything is pulled except the RAM
and the video board. I then tried it again. The first time it let me
into bios. I noted that the date as well as the configuration was
wrong so I assumed I dumped everything that was not burned into the
chip. I did the re configuration, saved and exited but now its not
letting me back into bios again. And it's not completing post either.
It's really frustrating and discouraging to realize that I have now
apparently damaged a previously good machine by performing a seemingly
innocent act. Does anyone have any ideas what happened and if there
might be a way to correct it? Any help would be most sincerely
appreciated. Lenny


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On Oct 16, 10:16*am, klem kedidelhopper
wrote:

Does anyone have any ideas what happened and if there
might be a way to correct it? Any help would be most sincerely
appreciated. Lenny


Your BIOS was set up to boot off the hard drive and it did. You should
have set it up to boot off a floppy, considering you have a floppy
drive. Next time, make a boot floppy.

For now, you're going to have to remove the BIOS chip from the board
and get it reflashed somewhere else.
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klem kedidelhopper wrote:
I really hope that someone can help me with this. I have a P233 with
American Megatrends AMI bios.This computer was working perfectly but
has been sitting without drives in it for a couple of months.

......

Does anyone have any ideas what happened and if there
might be a way to correct it? Any help would be most sincerely
appreciated. Lenny


First of all, if you are worried about viruses download the bootable antivirus
checker disks provided by several of the antivirus software companies. I
prefer AVG and it has found viruses that the others missed.

I fix about one computer a week these days by running the AVG standalone
antvirus. :-)

Second, download a recent copy of the UBUNTU Linux distribution. One of the
options is a standalone memory test. Only really bad memory fails the POST.
Bad memory can pass it and then mess things up.

Third, if you have a BIOS virus, you are effectively screwed. Most modern
computers have their BIOS in an EEPROM (electrally eraseable progamable
read only memory) chip. You can update the BIOS "on the fly".

For a computer of that age, there may have been a jumper on the motherboard
to allow or disallow it.

Most likely, you just messed things up.

To fix them, start by downloading the manual for your motherboard and the
last version of the BIOS if it is updateble.

Each of the following steps needs to be done with the computer and monitor
unplugged from the wall, plugged in to test them and then unplugged if you
need to go on. I epxect you understand this, but I mention it in case
someone else reading this later does not.

Then remove everything in the computer that is not permanent, all expansion
cards, drives, etc. It's ok to leave drives in brackets, just disconnect the
signal cables from the motherboard and remove the power plugs.

Remove everything that can be plugged into an expansion socket.
DO NOT remove connections to switches, speakers, etc.

Remove the battery. Check the voltage. If it is a lithium coin cell replace
it anyway. They often seem ok when they are not. Let it sit overnight before
replacing the battery. If it was less than 3.3 volts, it's a cause of some
of, if not all of your problems.

Remove all RAM.

Assuming you don't have a video card on the motherboard, turn it on. It should
go on and do nothing.

Some BIOSes have "no memory" beeps, most just do nothing.

Turn it off, unplug and put in ONE memory stick (two if the manual says you
need to and pay attention to where it says to put it (them)). You usually
can turn it off by holding in the power button for 8 seconds.

Plug in and turn on. It should now give you the "no video card" beeps
(probably 8).

Turn off, unplug and insert video card. Connect a monitor, plug in and turn on.

You should see the BIOS screen. You may see the video card BIOS message first.

If you get splotches on the screen, turn off unplug and try different video
cards or memory sticks. It's most likely one or the other.

You can also (unplugged) make sure any socketed chips are in their sockets
securely (slow even pressure, but not enough to break anything) and
use a clean (no lead on it) pencil eraser to clean off the the contacts
on the bottom of the cards and memory.

If it's clean, press the startup anyway option and it should attempt to boot.

If it's not clean, look in the manual for BIOS recovery options and follow
the instructions.

If you can run setup, go in and turn OFF "quick boot" or anything like it,
you want it to boot as slowly as possible (most POSTing and most messages).

If you get a clean POST, you can start replacing drives, memory, etc, one
at a time until something fails. If nothing fails, attach an optical drive
(CD/DVD) and boot from the Linux disk. Run a full memory test.

It's not perfect, it does not detect minor memory timing errors which will
cause the computer to crash, but it will find almost all of the ones the
POST missed.

Based on what you said, my GUESS from at least 6,000 miles away is bad
memory, which can be caused by dirty contacts, loose chips, or even
memory that is actually bad.

Geoff.


--
Geoffrey S. Mendelson, N3OWJ/4X1GM
My high blood pressure medicine reduces my midichlorian count. :-(


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klem kedidelhopper wrote:

I really hope that someone can help me with this. I have a P233 with
American Megatrends AMI bios.This computer was working perfectly but
has been sitting without drives in it for a couple of months. I just
returned from a Ham Fest yesterday with a box of 35 hard drives which
I bought for 5.00 The drives range in size from 1 to 15 GBTS. My
intention was to try these drives in a known working computer without
a hard drive to see if any of them would come up. What I planned on
doing was to go into bios before post and try to auto detect the
drive.Then I was going to format that good drive and add it to another
working computer which I'm presently using. Then I planned to copy my
pertinent files from the existing C drive to the new D drive. I
reasoned that even if the unknown drive had a virus, it could only
affect the RAM in which case a power cycle on/off would clear that and
so installing it into a stripped down box could not harm the computer
in any way. I've tested drives like this before without any problem it
seems. Afterward formatting would take care of any virus.

Well apparently I was wrong. Things didn't work out the way I had
hoped. The first drive I selected came right up without my first going
into bios and auto detecting it. How it did that without my first auto
detecting it made no sense to me. I would have expected to se some
message along with some beeps telling me that the configuration was
wrong and directing me into bios to correct it. Initially during this
boot up the screen had some logo talking about a server of some kind
and then I saw something about Linux. Then there was miles it seemed
of code displayed on the screen one line after another. It looked like
a program was unpacking or something but I'm not sure. Finally the
computer just hung. I turned it off and then on again. I managed to
access the bios screen and auto detected the drive. I also changed the
date and updated the configuration to show just a master and one 3.5
floppy. Everything seemed as it should be. I then exited bios saving
the configuration however it never completed post. I then tried a
power cycle again and this time the bios screen came up with gibberish
super imposed on it. After this and repeated tries I was not able to
get into bios again. My son suggested a possible "bios virus". I had
no idea that such a thing was possible. Isn't bios ROM? That being the
case how can something "write" to it? I pulled the battery overnight
and this morning re installed it. Everything is pulled except the RAM
and the video board. I then tried it again. The first time it let me
into bios. I noted that the date as well as the configuration was
wrong so I assumed I dumped everything that was not burned into the
chip. I did the re configuration, saved and exited but now its not
letting me back into bios again. And it's not completing post either.
It's really frustrating and discouraging to realize that I have now
apparently damaged a previously good machine by performing a seemingly
innocent act. Does anyone have any ideas what happened and if there
might be a way to correct it? Any help would be most sincerely
appreciated. Lenny



BIOS is stored in an EEPROM, so it can be updated. That allows idiots
to write code that will damage the BIOS. Who made the motherboard, and
what is the model number? Someone might have a board with the right
BIOS chip on it. I may have a similar motherboard I can send you, as
well. A P233 is win 95/win 98 grade, and I don't repair those computers
any more. I get them donated for parts, and scrap them for hardware &
scrap metal. Some of the drives are big enough for older machine tools,
so I test & keep those and the CD-ROM drives.


A computer with a P233 should be new enough not to require the BIOS
to be set up for a hard drive. Do you have a working computer running
ME or newer? Buy one of the USB to IDE/SATA adapters to test them
outside the computer. You can get them with, or without a power
supply. That way you can scan the drives for any virii before putting
them into a computer. Server & Linux suggests that it was running
Apache, a free server platform and used for a web server.


http://www.ebay.com/itm/USB-2-0-SATA-IDE-Cable-ATA-Converter-Adapter-Hard-Drive-2-5-3-5-DVD-CDR-/400249044101?pt=LH_DefaultDomain_2&hash=item5d30b3 bc85
http://www.ebay.com/itm/USB-2-0-SATA-IDE-Hard-Drive-Adapter-Converter-Cable-/150505362908?pt=LH_DefaultDomain_0&hash=item230ad1 95dc

There is a size limit for hard drives in the BIOS of older computers
that may


--
You can't have a sense of humor, if you have no sense.


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klem kedidelhopper wrote:

The first thing to do is get the machine to finish POST.
To do this I suggest you zero out cmos, disconnect all
drives, and try to get into setup again. To zero cmos
you have to find the 3-post jumper near the battery.
If you have the manual for the motherboard you can find
it. If no manual, then look for a 3-post jumper near the
battery. A jumper will be connected between two of the
posts, say the left and middle. With the power off,
connect the jumper between the middle and the right post.
Then re-connect the jumper to the original way.

After this, with all drives disconnected, try to start
the machine and go into setup. If you get into setup
then set the time-date and find the option to set all
settings to factory-default.

If you get this far you can try connecting your original
drive only and see if the system boots.
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On Oct 16, 1:56*pm, spamtrap1888 wrote:
On Oct 16, 10:16*am, klem kedidelhopper
wrote:

*Does anyone have any ideas what happened and if there
might be a way to correct it? Any help would be most sincerely
appreciated. Lenny


Your BIOS was set up to boot off the hard drive and it did. You should
have set it up to boot off a floppy, considering you have a floppy
drive. Next time, make a boot floppy.

For now, you're going to have to remove the BIOS chip from the board
and get it reflashed somewhere else.


Ive heard the term "reflashed" before. What is that? Lenny
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On Oct 16, 12:09*pm, klem kedidelhopper
wrote:
On Oct 16, 1:56*pm, spamtrap1888 wrote:

On Oct 16, 10:16*am, klem kedidelhopper
wrote:


*Does anyone have any ideas what happened and if there
might be a way to correct it? Any help would be most sincerely
appreciated. Lenny


Your BIOS was set up to boot off the hard drive and it did. You should
have set it up to boot off a floppy, considering you have a floppy
drive. Next time, make a boot floppy.


For now, you're going to have to remove the BIOS chip from the board
and get it reflashed somewhere else.


Ive heard the term "reflashed" before. What is that? Lenny


Your BIOS chip is a flash memory device. The BIOS was flashed at the
factory (i.e. the proper ones and zeroes were set in it). I suspect
that those ones and zeroes are no longer proper, and the BIOS chip
needs to have the proper ones reset into it, i.e. reflashed.

I once bought a "refurbished" (i.e. returned) PC that wouldn't boot.
Although it apparently had the proper revision of the proper BIOS, I
reflashed the BIOS from a file I downloaded from the manufacturer, and
it booted properly.
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On Sun, 16 Oct 2011 10:16:51 -0700 (PDT), klem kedidelhopper
put finger to keyboard and composed:

My son suggested a possible "bios virus". I had
no idea that such a thing was possible.


Here is one well-known example:
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/CIH_(computer_virus)

"CIH, also known as Chernobyl or Spacefiller, is a Microsoft Windows
computer virus written by Chen Ing Hau of Taiwan. It is one of the
most damaging viruses, overwriting critical information on infected
system drives, and more importantly, in some cases corrupting the
system BIOS."

- Franc Zabkar
--
Please remove one 'i' from my address when replying by email.
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Your computer booted into an unfamiliar operating system,
and you were seeing lots of the normal boot things on-screen
BECAUSE THE OS DOES THAT. Nothing wrong with the BIOS.

It's just a matter of booting from something (floppy, CD)
other than the 'unknown' system, then all will look normal.
Some BIOS'es are hard to enter at boot time (there's a few
seconds when they look for a keyboard entry, otherwise
it just boots up fast from the hard disk).

The good news, is that the boot process DID happen from
the unknown drive, even though it looked odd on your screen
(probably your computer had the wrong hardware to satisfy the
boot-time sequence on that hard drive). Maybe the
screen gibberish means the video card driver was not
autoidentified, and the freeze was because you didn't log in.


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On Sun, 16 Oct 2011 10:16:51 -0700 (PDT), klem kedidelhopper
wrote:

I really hope that someone can help me with this. I have a P233 with
American Megatrends


Ancient MB. Get something up to date.

My guess(tm) is that your BIOS and MB are fine. What you probably did
is connect the 2nd hard disk to the first IDE cable, without setting
the jumpers on either your original drive, or the used drive. The
result is that it won't boot. In that state, it will also fail to
display the BIOS screen, as it will be waiting a long time (about 5
minutes) for the drives to come ready, before showing the BIOS. Your
description would be more useful if you would describe what actually
happens when you turn on the machine, rather than what doesn't happen
(i.e. doesn't boot, won't show BIOS, etc).

Also, reversing the ribbon cable connections to the drives are
possible. In some really early machines, that would blow up the IDE
controller on the motherboard. If the drive is really mangled, with a
short between the +5V and +12V lines, it's likely that you just
applied +12V to the motherboard +5V bus, which tends to blow things
up.

If you want to continue this excercise, be sure that your main drive
is backed up. Also, either use the 2nd IDE controller and cable to
test drives, or do what I do, which is to use a USB to IDE cable, and
format it via the USB port. They're about $5 on eBay. Plan on
blowing up a few of them as drives with a short between the +12v and
+5v are likely to blow up the adapter.

--
Jeff Liebermann
150 Felker St #D
http://www.LearnByDestroying.com
Santa Cruz CA 95060 http://802.11junk.com
Skype: JeffLiebermann AE6KS 831-336-2558
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On Oct 16, 6:22*pm, Jeff Liebermann wrote:
On Sun, 16 Oct 2011 10:16:51 -0700 (PDT), klem kedidelhopper

wrote:
I really hope that someone can help me with this. I have a P233 with
American Megatrends *


Ancient MB. *Get something up to date.

My guess(tm) is that your BIOS and MB are fine. *What you probably did
is connect the 2nd hard disk to the first IDE cable, without setting
the jumpers on either your original drive, or the used drive. *The
result is that it won't boot. *In that state, it will also fail to
display the BIOS screen, as it will be waiting a long time (about 5
minutes) for the drives to come ready, before showing the BIOS. *Your
description would be more useful if you would describe what actually
happens when you turn on the machine, rather than what doesn't happen
(i.e. doesn't boot, won't show BIOS, etc).

Also, reversing the ribbon cable connections to the drives are
possible. *In some really early machines, that would blow up the IDE
controller on the motherboard. *If the drive is really mangled, with a
short between the +5V and +12V lines, it's likely that you just
applied +12V to the motherboard +5V bus, which tends to blow things
up.

If you want to continue this excercise, be sure that your main drive
is backed up. *Also, either use the 2nd IDE controller and cable to
test drives, or do what I do, which is to use a USB to IDE cable, and
format it via the USB port. *They're about $5 on eBay. *Plan on
blowing up a few of them as drives with a short between the +12v and
+5v are likely to blow up the adapter.

--
Jeff Liebermann * *
150 Felker St #D * *http://www.LearnByDestroying.com
Santa Cruz CA 95060http://802.11junk.com
Skype: JeffLiebermann * * AE6KS * *831-336-2558


Right now there is no drive in the machine. I'm just trying to see if
I can go through post. The "'drive seek" doesn't seem to happen either
so "A" drive is not happening during the boot attempt. If I can just
get into bios again I would try to select that from the advanced menu
and see if it makes a difference. If I can get to an "A" prompt on a
diskette with Format and F disk on it perhaps I'll have a shot... Lenny
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On Sun, 16 Oct 2011 16:02:29 -0700 (PDT), klem kedidelhopper
wrote:

Right now there is no drive in the machine.


Remove CMOS battery to reset everything. You may need to also
temporarily move a jumper to do the CMOS reset.

--
Jeff Liebermann
150 Felker St #D
http://www.LearnByDestroying.com
Santa Cruz CA 95060 http://802.11junk.com
Skype: JeffLiebermann AE6KS 831-336-2558
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I was going to keep my nose out of this, but I'm so thoroughly confused that
I have to butt in.

What are you trying to do? Test the drives? If so, this seems about the
worst possible way. It would make more sense to set these drives as slaves
and boot them on a known-good computer (as someone else suggested). Even
better, if they're IDE-ATA drives, you can mount them in a box with a USB
interface, and simply attach them to a running machine.

What is the question you're asking? I suspect it's the wrong one.


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On Oct 16, 8:22*pm, "William Sommerwerck"
wrote:
I was going to keep my nose out of this, but I'm so thoroughly confused that
I have to butt in.
What are you trying to do? Test the drives? If so, this seems about the

worst possible way. It would make more sense to set these drives as slaves
and boot them on a known-good computer (as someone else suggested). Even
better, if they're IDE-ATA drives, you can mount them in a box with a USB
interface, and simply attach them to a running machine.

What is the question you're asking? I suspect it's the wrong one.


William
Thank you for "butting in". I appreciate everyone's input, yours
included. I thought that I was being very concise. However I have to
ask seriously did you read the OP? And if I did follow what you just
suggested how would that have prevented a CMOS virus, if that's what
this problem is? But to address another question I have why would
these engineers in their infinite wisdom write a bios to anything
other than a non writable eprom. It would seem like some things should
be sacred. Lenny


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klem kedidelhopper wrote:


But to address another question I have why would
these engineers in their infinite wisdom write a bios to anything
other than a non writable eprom. It would seem like some things should
be sacred. Lenny


Because BIOSes need to be updated fairly often. New hardware comes out,
things are improved, bugs are found.

Geoff.

--
Geoffrey S. Mendelson, N3OWJ/4X1GM
My high blood pressure medicine reduces my midichlorian count. :-(


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On Oct 17, 6:45*am, klem kedidelhopper
wrote:
On Oct 16, 8:22*pm, "William Sommerwerck"


wrote:

I was going to keep my nose out of this, but I'm so thoroughly

confused that
I have to butt in.
What are you trying to do? Test the drives? If so, this seems

about the
worst possible way. It would make more sense to set these drives

as slaves
and boot them on a known-good computer (as someone else

suggested). Even
better, if they're IDE-ATA drives, you can mount them in a box

with a USB
interface, and simply attach them to a running machine.


What is the question you're asking? I suspect it's the wrong one.


William
Thank you for "butting in". I appreciate everyone's input, yours
included. I thought that I was being very concise. However I have

to
ask seriously did you read the OP? And if I did follow what you

just
suggested how would that have prevented a CMOS virus, if that's

what
this problem is? But to address another question I have why would
these engineers in their infinite wisdom write a bios to anything
other than a non writable eprom. It would seem like some things

should
be sacred. Lenny


What William suggests is something I and many others have done many
times without problems. I saw a computer (not mine) that was so
infected the processor was 100% busy and would do nothing useful,
including running a virus scan. Of course they needed to salvage the
apps and data and couldn't just re-format and start over. The drive
was first slaved into a good machine and subjected to a virus scan.
Remember those pesky viruses have to execute to become active. The
slave drive executes nothing during boot so activates nothing (unless
the boot drive has its own viruses). That's when I became convinced
about Norton utilities. Norton wouldn't dump a virus because it was
running. AHAH, I'll boot into safe mode and kill it before it's
running. Norton (at least that version) will not run in safe mode. I
don't have Norton.

As far as booting from unknown drives, I wouldn't even attempt that.
The OS installation gets tweaked during install for the hardware on
the machine. Who knows what the original hardware was?

I also had a machine with a BIOS bug that was fixed with an update. It
was FLASH so I didn't have to get a new BIOS chip and install it
though one time I didn't follow the procedure EXACTLY and corrupted
the BIOS. That machine was old enough to still have a socketed chip
and it 'only' took $30 and a few days wait. My current Gigabyte boards
all have dual flash BIOS chips. If you foul up a BIOS update (and I
did THAT once too) it defaults back to the known good one and boots
back up and yes, you can copy the current BIOS to the backup. The
Gigabyte boards will now update the BIOS online while running Windows.
That is about the easiest. I would think that a BIOS virus would be
harder to write as it would be specific to a board model. Or do all
the BIOS writes behave identically?

G
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On Mon, 17 Oct 2011 06:45:13 -0700 (PDT), klem kedidelhopper
wrote:

On Oct 16, 8:22*pm, "William Sommerwerck"
wrote:
I was going to keep my nose out of this, but I'm so thoroughly confused that
I have to butt in.
What are you trying to do? Test the drives? If so, this seems about the

worst possible way. It would make more sense to set these drives as slaves
and boot them on a known-good computer (as someone else suggested). Even
better, if they're IDE-ATA drives, you can mount them in a box with a USB
interface, and simply attach them to a running machine.

What is the question you're asking? I suspect it's the wrong one.


I am Not William, but item by item:
William
Thank you for "butting in". I appreciate everyone's input, yours
included. I thought that I was being very concise. However I have to
ask seriously did you read the OP?


I have. You were fairly clear. I think your BIOS got whacked.

And if I did follow what you just
suggested how would that have prevented a CMOS virus, if that's what
this problem is?


Definitely. If you never execute code from the used drive it cannot
transmit a virus to your "clean-up" machine. Big difference in not trying
to boot from it.

But to address another question I have why would
these engineers in their infinite wisdom write a bios to anything
other than a non writable eprom.


Cost. Cost. Cost. Availability. Mask ROM is prohibitively expensive
in the storage sizes used for BIOS these days, flash is much cheaper and
has the feature of being updatable. The updatability feature has fixed
problems on two mainboards i have had.

It would seem like some things should
be sacred. Lenny


?-)

--
JosephKK
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Default computer problems

On Oct 17, 11:42*am, wrote:
On Oct 17, 6:45*am, klem kedidelhopper
wrote:
* On Oct 16, 8:22*pm, "William Sommerwerck"
* wrote:

*
* I was going to keep my nose out of this, but I'm so thoroughly
confused that
* I have to butt in.
* What are you trying to do? Test the drives? If so, this seems
about the
* worst possible way. It would make more sense to set these drives
as slaves
* and boot them on a known-good computer (as someone else
suggested). Even
* better, if they're IDE-ATA drives, you can mount them in a box
with a USB
* interface, and simply attach them to a running machine.
*
* What is the question you're asking? I suspect it's the wrong one.
*
* William
* Thank you for "butting in". I appreciate everyone's input, yours
* included. I thought that I was being very concise. However I have
to
* ask seriously did you read the OP? And if I did follow what you
just
* suggested how would that have prevented a CMOS virus, if that's
what
* this problem is? But to address another question I have why would
* these engineers in their infinite wisdom write a bios to anything
* other than a non writable eprom. It would seem like some things
should
* be sacred. Lenny

What William suggests is something I and many others have done many
times without problems. I saw a computer (not mine) that was so
infected the processor was 100% busy and would do nothing useful,
including running a virus scan. Of course they needed to salvage the
apps and data and couldn't just re-format and start over. The drive
was first slaved into a good machine and subjected to a virus scan.
Remember those pesky viruses have to execute to become active. The
slave drive executes nothing during boot so activates nothing (unless
the boot drive has its own viruses). That's when I became convinced
about Norton utilities. Norton wouldn't dump a virus because it was
running. AHAH, I'll boot into safe mode and kill it before it's
running. Norton (at least that version) will not run in safe mode. I
don't have Norton.

As far as booting from unknown drives, I wouldn't even attempt that.
The OS installation gets tweaked during install for the hardware on
the machine. Who knows what the original hardware was?

I also had a machine with a BIOS bug that was fixed with an update. It
was FLASH so I didn't have to get a new BIOS chip and install it
though one time I didn't follow the procedure EXACTLY and corrupted
the BIOS. That machine was old enough to still have a socketed chip
and it 'only' took $30 and a few days wait. My current Gigabyte boards
all have dual flash BIOS chips. If you foul up a BIOS update (and I
did THAT once too) it defaults back to the known good one and boots
back up and yes, you can copy the current BIOS to the backup. The
Gigabyte boards will now update the BIOS online while running Windows.
That is about the easiest. I would think that a BIOS virus would be
harder to write as it would be specific to a board model. Or do all
the BIOS writes behave identically?

G


I noticed something else now. If I leave the computer off for example
overnight, the next day it will let me get into bios only once. I can
change things and exit and it appears to save the changes. However on
the next attempt to access bios, hitting DEL during the period where
the RAM is counting up will not get me into bios again. It just gives
me a black screen. This "once only" thing has repeated several times
with the same end result. And my changes aren't appearing to work
either. Tthe last time I did this I changed the boot sequence to
floppy then IDE0 and I enabled floppy drive seek. When I exited and
saved, it did seem to do those things, and then on subsequent attempts
it just goes to a black screen again. So it does appear that the bios
is screwed up somehow. Now here is another interesting thing. The
working computer I have with all my important customer files seems to
have the same bios chip in it. Both chips have a yellow and blue label
that covers about 2/3 of the top of the chip. The label reads: BURN-
IN and under that: 24HRS. There is a smaller white label on the other
side of the top of each chip. The chips read as follows:

Possible corrupted chip:
Chip in working computer:
AMIBIOS
AMIBIOS
586
1985-95
586 1985-95
American
American
Megatrends
Megatrends
D167887
D174223

If I had to guess I would say that these bios's are identical, however
I don't dare mess with that good one. Does anyone have any
suggestions or perhaps if there was a way to copy the good bios to my
bad machine? I don't know how I would ever install it though. I just
don't want to do anything that could possibly harm my good machine.
Thanks, Lenny
  #20   Report Post  
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Posts: 412
Default computer problems

On Oct 18, 11:16*am, klem kedidelhopper
wrote:
On Oct 17, 11:42*am, wrote:



On Oct 17, 6:45*am, klem kedidelhopper
wrote:
* On Oct 16, 8:22*pm, "William Sommerwerck"
* wrote:


*
* I was going to keep my nose out of this, but I'm so thoroughly
confused that
* I have to butt in.
* What are you trying to do? Test the drives? If so, this seems
about the
* worst possible way. It would make more sense to set these drives
as slaves
* and boot them on a known-good computer (as someone else
suggested). Even
* better, if they're IDE-ATA drives, you can mount them in a box
with a USB
* interface, and simply attach them to a running machine.
*
* What is the question you're asking? I suspect it's the wrong one.
*
* William
* Thank you for "butting in". I appreciate everyone's input, yours
* included. I thought that I was being very concise. However I have
to
* ask seriously did you read the OP? And if I did follow what you
just
* suggested how would that have prevented a CMOS virus, if that's
what
* this problem is? But to address another question I have why would
* these engineers in their infinite wisdom write a bios to anything
* other than a non writable eprom. It would seem like some things
should
* be sacred. Lenny


What William suggests is something I and many others have done many
times without problems. I saw a computer (not mine) that was so
infected the processor was 100% busy and would do nothing useful,
including running a virus scan. Of course they needed to salvage the
apps and data and couldn't just re-format and start over. The drive
was first slaved into a good machine and subjected to a virus scan.
Remember those pesky viruses have to execute to become active. The
slave drive executes nothing during boot so activates nothing (unless
the boot drive has its own viruses). That's when I became convinced
about Norton utilities. Norton wouldn't dump a virus because it was
running. AHAH, I'll boot into safe mode and kill it before it's
running. Norton (at least that version) will not run in safe mode. I
don't have Norton.


As far as booting from unknown drives, I wouldn't even attempt that.
The OS installation gets tweaked during install for the hardware on
the machine. Who knows what the original hardware was?


I also had a machine with a BIOS bug that was fixed with an update. It
was FLASH so I didn't have to get a new BIOS chip and install it
though one time I didn't follow the procedure EXACTLY and corrupted
the BIOS. That machine was old enough to still have a socketed chip
and it 'only' took $30 and a few days wait. My current Gigabyte boards
all have dual flash BIOS chips. If you foul up a BIOS update (and I
did THAT once too) it defaults back to the known good one and boots
back up and yes, you can copy the current BIOS to the backup. The
Gigabyte boards will now update the BIOS online while running Windows.
That is about the easiest. I would think that a BIOS virus would be
harder to write as it would be specific to a board model. Or do all
the BIOS writes behave identically?


G


I noticed something else now. If I leave the computer off for example
overnight, the next day it will let me get into bios only once. I can
change things and exit and it appears to save the changes. However on
the next attempt to access bios, hitting DEL during the period where
the RAM is counting up will not get me into bios again. It just gives
me a black screen. This "once only" thing has repeated several times
with the same end result. And my changes aren't appearing to work
either. Tthe last time I did this I changed the boot sequence to
floppy then IDE0 and I enabled floppy drive seek. When I exited and
saved, it did seem to do those things, and then on subsequent attempts
it just goes to a black screen again. So it does appear that the bios
is screwed up somehow. Now here is another interesting thing. The
working computer I have with all my important customer files seems to
have the same bios chip in it. Both chips have a yellow and blue label
that covers about 2/3 of the top of *the chip. The label reads: BURN-
IN and under that: 24HRS. There is a smaller white label on the other
side of the top of each chip. The chips read as follows:

Possible corrupted chip:
Chip in working computer:
AMIBIOS
AMIBIOS
586
1985-95
586 1985-95
American
American
Megatrends
Megatrends
D167887
D174223

If I had to guess I would say that these bios's are identical, however
I don't dare *mess with that good one. Does anyone have any
suggestions or perhaps if there was a way to copy the good bios to my
bad machine? I don't know how I would ever install it though. I just
don't want to do anything that could possibly harm my good machine.
Thanks, Lenny


This didn't display as I thought it would. This is how the two chips
should look:

Possible corrupted chip:

AMIBIOS
586 1985-95
American
Megatrends
D167887

Chip in working computer:
AMIBIOS
586 1985-95
American
Megatrends
D174223

Sorry but the system formatted my script. Thanks Lenny


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Posts: 412
Default computer problems

On Oct 18, 11:50*am, klem kedidelhopper
wrote:
On Oct 18, 11:16*am, klem kedidelhopper
wrote:



On Oct 17, 11:42*am, wrote:


On Oct 17, 6:45*am, klem kedidelhopper
wrote:
* On Oct 16, 8:22*pm, "William Sommerwerck"
* wrote:


*
* I was going to keep my nose out of this, but I'm so thoroughly
confused that
* I have to butt in.
* What are you trying to do? Test the drives? If so, this seems
about the
* worst possible way. It would make more sense to set these drives
as slaves
* and boot them on a known-good computer (as someone else
suggested). Even
* better, if they're IDE-ATA drives, you can mount them in a box
with a USB
* interface, and simply attach them to a running machine.
*
* What is the question you're asking? I suspect it's the wrong one.
*
* William
* Thank you for "butting in". I appreciate everyone's input, yours
* included. I thought that I was being very concise. However I have
to
* ask seriously did you read the OP? And if I did follow what you
just
* suggested how would that have prevented a CMOS virus, if that's
what
* this problem is? But to address another question I have why would
* these engineers in their infinite wisdom write a bios to anything
* other than a non writable eprom. It would seem like some things
should
* be sacred. Lenny


What William suggests is something I and many others have done many
times without problems. I saw a computer (not mine) that was so
infected the processor was 100% busy and would do nothing useful,
including running a virus scan. Of course they needed to salvage the
apps and data and couldn't just re-format and start over. The drive
was first slaved into a good machine and subjected to a virus scan.
Remember those pesky viruses have to execute to become active. The
slave drive executes nothing during boot so activates nothing (unless
the boot drive has its own viruses). That's when I became convinced
about Norton utilities. Norton wouldn't dump a virus because it was
running. AHAH, I'll boot into safe mode and kill it before it's
running. Norton (at least that version) will not run in safe mode. I
don't have Norton.


As far as booting from unknown drives, I wouldn't even attempt that.
The OS installation gets tweaked during install for the hardware on
the machine. Who knows what the original hardware was?


I also had a machine with a BIOS bug that was fixed with an update. It
was FLASH so I didn't have to get a new BIOS chip and install it
though one time I didn't follow the procedure EXACTLY and corrupted
the BIOS. That machine was old enough to still have a socketed chip
and it 'only' took $30 and a few days wait. My current Gigabyte boards
all have dual flash BIOS chips. If you foul up a BIOS update (and I
did THAT once too) it defaults back to the known good one and boots
back up and yes, you can copy the current BIOS to the backup. The
Gigabyte boards will now update the BIOS online while running Windows..
That is about the easiest. I would think that a BIOS virus would be
harder to write as it would be specific to a board model. Or do all
the BIOS writes behave identically?


G


I noticed something else now. If I leave the computer off for example
overnight, the next day it will let me get into bios only once. I can
change things and exit and it appears to save the changes. However on
the next attempt to access bios, hitting DEL during the period where
the RAM is counting up will not get me into bios again. It just gives
me a black screen. This "once only" thing has repeated several times
with the same end result. And my changes aren't appearing to work
either. Tthe last time I did this I changed the boot sequence to
floppy then IDE0 and I enabled floppy drive seek. When I exited and
saved, it did seem to do those things, and then on subsequent attempts
it just goes to a black screen again. So it does appear that the bios
is screwed up somehow. Now here is another interesting thing. The
working computer I have with all my important customer files seems to
have the same bios chip in it. Both chips have a yellow and blue label
that covers about 2/3 of the top of *the chip. The label reads: BURN-
IN and under that: 24HRS. There is a smaller white label on the other
side of the top of each chip. The chips read as follows:


Possible corrupted chip:
Chip in working computer:
AMIBIOS
AMIBIOS
586
1985-95
586 1985-95
American
American
Megatrends
Megatrends
D167887
D174223


If I had to guess I would say that these bios's are identical, however
I don't dare *mess with that good one. Does anyone have any
suggestions or perhaps if there was a way to copy the good bios to my
bad machine? I don't know how I would ever install it though. I just
don't want to do anything that could possibly harm my good machine.
Thanks, Lenny


This didn't display as I thought it would. This is how the two chips
should look:

Possible corrupted chip:

AMIBIOS
586 1985-95
American
Megatrends
D167887

Chip in working computer:
AMIBIOS
586 1985-95
American
Megatrends
D174223

Sorry but the system formatted my script. Thanks Lenny


I just found a third machine sitting here with no hardware in it. It
also has an AMI bios chip in it The chip has similar markings, (date
etc), no blue and yellow label but it bears the number EO56165. Does
anyone know what the differences if any might be in these three bios's
and if perhaps they might be interchangeable? Lenny
  #22   Report Post  
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Posts: 475
Default computer problems

On Oct 18, 8:16*am, klem kedidelhopper
wrote:
On Oct 17, 11:42*am, wrote:

snip
What William suggests is something I and many others have done

many
times without problems. I saw a computer (not mine) that was so
infected the processor was 100% busy and would do nothing useful,
including running a virus scan. Of course they needed to salvage

the
apps and data and couldn't just re-format and start over. The

drive
was first slaved into a good machine and subjected to a virus

scan.
Remember those pesky viruses have to execute to become active.

The
slave drive executes nothing during boot so activates nothing

(unless
the boot drive has its own viruses). That's when I became

convinced
about Norton utilities. Norton wouldn't dump a virus because it

was
running. AHAH, I'll boot into safe mode and kill it before it's
running. Norton (at least that version) will not run in safe

mode. I
don't have Norton.


As far as booting from unknown drives, I wouldn't even attempt

that.
The OS installation gets tweaked during install for the hardware

on
the machine. Who knows what the original hardware was?


I also had a machine with a BIOS bug that was fixed with an

update. It
was FLASH so I didn't have to get a new BIOS chip and install it
though one time I didn't follow the procedure EXACTLY and

corrupted
the BIOS. That machine was old enough to still have a socketed

chip
and it 'only' took $30 and a few days wait. My current Gigabyte

boards
all have dual flash BIOS chips. If you foul up a BIOS update (and

I
did THAT once too) it defaults back to the known good one and

boots
back up and yes, you can copy the current BIOS to the backup. The
Gigabyte boards will now update the BIOS online while running

Windows.
That is about the easiest. I would think that a BIOS virus would

be
harder to write as it would be specific to a board model. Or do

all
the BIOS writes behave identically?


G


I noticed something else now. If I leave the computer off for

example
overnight, the next day it will let me get into bios only once. I

can
change things and exit and it appears to save the changes. However

on
the next attempt to access bios, hitting DEL during the period

where
the RAM is counting up will not get me into bios again. It just

gives
me a black screen. This "once only" thing has repeated several

times
with the same end result. And my changes aren't appearing to work
either. Tthe last time I did this I changed the boot sequence to
floppy then IDE0 and I enabled floppy drive seek. When I exited and
saved, it did seem to do those things, and then on subsequent

attempts
it just goes to a black screen again. So it does appear that the

bios
is screwed up somehow. Now here is another interesting thing. The
working computer I have with all my important customer files seems

to
have the same bios chip in it. Both chips have a yellow and blue

label
that covers about 2/3 of the top of *the chip. The label reads:

BURN-
IN and under that: 24HRS. There is a smaller white label on the

other
side of the top of each chip. The chips read as follows:

Possible corrupted chip:
Chip in working computer:
AMIBIOS
AMIBIOS
586
1985-95
586 1985-95
American
American
Megatrends
Megatrends
D167887
D174223

If I had to guess I would say that these bios's are identical,

however
I don't dare *mess with that good one. Does anyone have any
suggestions or perhaps if there was a way to copy the good bios to

my
bad machine? I don't know how I would ever install it though. I

just
don't want to do anything that could possibly harm my good machine.
Thanks, Lenny


Are those motherboards identical including Rev number? If the chips
are socketed I would remove them and read the data of both with a chip
programmer and save the files. Copy the good one into the faulty one
and try again.Vanilla EPROM programmers my not be able to program
FLASH chips.

G
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klem kedidelhopper wrote:

I just found a third machine sitting here with no hardware in it. It
also has an AMI bios chip in it The chip has similar markings, (date
etc), no blue and yellow label but it bears the number EO56165. Does
anyone know what the differences if any might be in these three bios's
and if perhaps they might be interchangeable? Lenny


Probably not. They are all simiar products, but customized for different
manufacturers and motherboard models.

BTW, did you try the instructions I posted?

Geoff.

--
Geoffrey S. Mendelson, N3OWJ/4X1GM
My high blood pressure medicine reduces my midichlorian count. :-(


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On Oct 18, 4:39*pm, "Geoffrey S. Mendelson"
wrote:
klem kedidelhopper wrote:
I just found a third machine sitting here with no hardware in it. It
also has an AMI bios chip in it *The chip has similar markings, (date
etc), no blue and yellow label but it bears the number EO56165. Does
anyone know what the differences if any might be in these three bios's
and if perhaps they might be interchangeable? Lenny


Probably not. They are all simiar products, but customized for different
manufacturers and motherboard models.

BTW, did you try the instructions I posted?

Geoff.

--
Geoffrey S. Mendelson, *N3OWJ/4X1GM
My high blood pressure medicine reduces my midichlorian count. :-(


I couldn't find any information on my mother board but I did try
following the steps you outlined. I was very hopeful that things would
start going better when I pulled the video board and I got the 8 beeps
as you said I might. But it still is doing the same thing. It seems to
be corrupted somehow. So I guess that I would need to have a chip
burned especially for my particular mother board. The chances of that
happening are slim at best. I was hopeful when I saw all the AMI
bios's. Do you suppose it would hurt anything to try the last one I
found in the dead machine? Lenny
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klem kedidelhopper wrote:
I couldn't find any information on my mother board but I did try
following the steps you outlined. I was very hopeful that things would
start going better when I pulled the video board and I got the 8 beeps
as you said I might. But it still is doing the same thing. It seems to
be corrupted somehow. So I guess that I would need to have a chip
burned especially for my particular mother board. The chances of that
happening are slim at best. I was hopeful when I saw all the AMI
bios's. Do you suppose it would hurt anything to try the last one I
found in the dead machine? Lenny


Did you check to see if there is a BIOS recovery function on the motherboard?

If not, you could try one of the BIOSes and hope it works. You may end up
with a useless motherboard, but you already have one. :-)

IMHO if the old motherboard was close enough to the new one, the BIOS
will work.

Geoff.


--
Geoffrey S. Mendelson, N3OWJ/4X1GM
My high blood pressure medicine reduces my midichlorian count. :-(




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On Tue, 18 Oct 2011 08:50:09 -0700 (PDT), klem kedidelhopper
put finger to keyboard and composed:

Possible corrupted chip:

AMIBIOS
586 1985-95
American
Megatrends
D167887

Chip in working computer:
AMIBIOS
586 1985-95
American
Megatrends
D174223


I suspect that the "D" number may be some kind of serial number. That
was the case with 486 Award and AMI BIOSes, of which I have plenty.

BTW, your BIOS chip needs to be writeable, not only for upgrade
reasons, but because both BIOS and Windows write to the ESCD table and
other structures (DMI Pool ?) when new hardware is discovered (Win9x
has a setting to disable this behaviour).

In fact, the next time you flash your BIOS, use the flash utility to
save a copy of the BIOS at the susbsequent reboot, and then compare
this copy against the downloaded BIOS image. Your own BIOS will have
an ESCD table, whereas the downloaded one will be blank.

- Franc Zabkar
--
Please remove one 'i' from my address when replying by email.
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On Tue, 18 Oct 2011 14:31:10 -0700 (PDT), klem kedidelhopper
put finger to keyboard and composed:

I couldn't find any information on my mother board ...


When the BIOS goes through POST, it will display a BIOS ID that
identifies the motherboard.

AMI BIOS motherboards identification:
http://www.wimsbios.com/aminumbers.jsp

- Franc Zabkar
--
Please remove one 'i' from my address when replying by email.
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I'd expect the $5 for 35 drives to be as worthwhile as buying a lottery
ticket.. with very little expectations of finding a good drive.
Entertainment only.
Regardless of what the seller said.. likewise, watch a lottery commercial.

Detective Harry Callahan of the SFPD might suggest that you ask yourself one
question.. Do you feel lucky?

A P1 PC, even if it was working yesterday, is another stroke of luck. When
was the BIOS battery last replaced with a NEW one?

I dunno if there's any harm in checking HDDs with just a PSU (no data cable)
just to see if they spin up without smoke or weird noises, but that may be a
worthwhile first step.

Many years ago, I performed some (486) BIOS hot swaps to get machines
running again, but hardly worth the effort for a motherboard with no
documentation, as there are sometimes jumpers that need to be changed.

If the drives spin up with power applied, then it's probably safe to connect
them to a working, disposable PC as Slave drives, or with an external USB
case.

Even if the drives seem to be working properly, they wouldn't be a good
choice for storing useful data, since they're already probably over a decade
old and their histories are unknown (dropped, previous PSU failures etc).

Any value might be attained from removing the small fasteners and scrapping
the rest.. although some like to save the magnets and other parts.
The heads are obviously very sensitive, and could be useful as inductive
pickups.

--
Cheers,
WB
..............


"klem kedidelhopper" wrote in message
...
I really hope that someone can help me with this. I have a P233 with
American Megatrends AMI bios.This computer was working perfectly but
has been sitting without drives in it for a couple of months. I just
returned from a Ham Fest yesterday with a box of 35 hard drives which
I bought for 5.00 The drives range in size from 1 to 15 GBTS. My
intention was to try these drives in a known working computer without
a hard drive to see if any of them would come up. What I planned on
doing was to go into bios before post and try to auto detect the
drive.Then I was going to format that good drive and add it to another
working computer which I'm presently using. Then I planned to copy my
pertinent files from the existing C drive to the new D drive. I
reasoned that even if the unknown drive had a virus, it could only
affect the RAM in which case a power cycle on/off would clear that and
so installing it into a stripped down box could not harm the computer
in any way. I've tested drives like this before without any problem it
seems. Afterward formatting would take care of any virus.

Well apparently I was wrong. Things didn't work out the way I had
hoped. The first drive I selected came right up without my first going
into bios and auto detecting it. How it did that without my first auto
detecting it made no sense to me. I would have expected to se some
message along with some beeps telling me that the configuration was
wrong and directing me into bios to correct it. Initially during this
boot up the screen had some logo talking about a server of some kind
and then I saw something about Linux. Then there was miles it seemed
of code displayed on the screen one line after another. It looked like
a program was unpacking or something but I'm not sure. Finally the
computer just hung. I turned it off and then on again. I managed to
access the bios screen and auto detected the drive. I also changed the
date and updated the configuration to show just a master and one 3.5
floppy. Everything seemed as it should be. I then exited bios saving
the configuration however it never completed post. I then tried a
power cycle again and this time the bios screen came up with gibberish
super imposed on it. After this and repeated tries I was not able to
get into bios again. My son suggested a possible "bios virus". I had
no idea that such a thing was possible. Isn't bios ROM? That being the
case how can something "write" to it? I pulled the battery overnight
and this morning re installed it. Everything is pulled except the RAM
and the video board. I then tried it again. The first time it let me
into bios. I noted that the date as well as the configuration was
wrong so I assumed I dumped everything that was not burned into the
chip. I did the re configuration, saved and exited but now its not
letting me back into bios again. And it's not completing post either.
It's really frustrating and discouraging to realize that I have now
apparently damaged a previously good machine by performing a seemingly
innocent act. Does anyone have any ideas what happened and if there
might be a way to correct it? Any help would be most sincerely
appreciated. Lenny


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On Thu, 20 Oct 2011 03:56:27 -0400, "Wild_Bill"
put finger to keyboard and composed:

I'd expect the $5 for 35 drives to be as worthwhile as buying a lottery
ticket.. with very little expectations of finding a good drive.
Entertainment only.


If the OP is ever inclined to discard the drives, I would be very
grateful for the PCBs.

This is the sort of thing I do with them:
http://www.users.on.net/~fzabkar/HDD...l_SP0411N.html

- Franc Zabkar
--
Please remove one 'i' from my address when replying by email.
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However, I have to ask seriously did you read the OP?

Yes. That's why I took so long to respond. I was thoroughly confused.


: And if I did follow what you just suggested how would that
have prevented a CMOS virus, if that's what this problem is?


I don't know. But simply attaching an "infected" hard drive to a running
computer won't necessarily spread the infection.




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wrote in message
...

What William suggests is something I and many others have done many

times without problems. I saw a computer (not mine) that was so
infected the processor was 100% busy and would do nothing useful,
including running a virus scan. Of course they needed to salvage the
apps and data and couldn't just re-format and start over. The drive
was first slaved into a good machine and subjected to a virus scan.
Remember those pesky viruses have to execute to become active.

Exactly.

The slave drive executes nothing during boot so activates nothing (unless

the boot drive has its own viruses). That's when I became convinced
about Norton utilities. Norton wouldn't dump a virus because it was
running. AHAH, I'll boot into safe mode and kill it before it's
running. Norton (at least that version) will not run in safe mode. I
don't have Norton.

I did something similar when my main drive became infected seven years ago.
I bought another drive, installed a vanilla version of the OS on it, from
which I probed to infected drive to clean it up.


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On Oct 22, 7:09*am, "William Sommerwerck"
wrote:
snip
I did something similar when my main drive became infected seven

years ago.
I bought another drive, installed a vanilla version of the OS on

it, from
which I probed to infected drive to clean it up.


I just had one of those 'DOH' moments. Since the OP just wants to
verify the drives, why not use something like Seagate diagnostics to
boot off of CD and test the drives.If the boot good drive is a Seagate
I don't think it matters what the brand of the test drive is. I expect
WD has something similar. That way he gets a report on the state of
the drive without infecting anything.

G
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