Manually Flash BIOS mini laptop no drives

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Manually Flash BIOS mini laptop no drives

Postby dashvandel » November 29th, 2011, 3:58 pm

Ok how would one force a BIOS image to poorly flashed chip?
Personal background, kind of unrelated the point will come full circle at the end of my dilemma.

I have owned several Linksys WRT54G’s and have enjoyed various flashing and JTAG related projects with these over the years. I have followed Andrey Mikhalchuk's Blog and successfully created my own versions of his Linksys projects.

The problem… I was given a Dell Mini v10 1010 inspiron laptop. The previous owner performed a bad Flash in Windows. I suspect the bad flash also knocked out the keyboard. When powered up the power LED lights up, the sound of the hard drive is spinning, power goes to the USB ports, the backlit display and video is black… it is essentially bricked.

There are several methods to “un-brick” these things using USB Flash drives, USB Floppy drives and key combinations on startup. Since I believe the keyboard is knocked out I opened it up looking for a serial port. When I think of a brick I think of JTAG and serial…

#1 problem I do not know how to identify the BIOS chip there are several that look identical.

#2 I cannot find specs on the board or even pin outs info to find a serial port.

#3 I do not own a BUSPIRATE; hence I am asking the people experienced flashing EPROM and EEPROMs and never admitting defeat; in hopes someone can shed some light where I can find my board schematics, BIOS chip location, or labled pinouts. I will settle for one of the three and post my results.

The board’s official model number is:

CN-0N402N-12961-977 6355 REV A00

Dell Inspiron Mini 10

Here is an image of what the board looks like this is from a google search
http://www.netbook-battery.net/images/2 ... 10x310.jpg

thank you for reading
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Re: Manually Flash BIOS mini laptop no drives

Postby drewmerc » November 29th, 2011, 9:12 pm

EN25F16 512x4KB also known as cFeon f16-100hip is the spi bios chip in a dell mini
flashrom can program the chip tho you still need a programmer
as for the pin out look at the datasheet for the above chip
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Re: Manually Flash BIOS mini laptop no drives

Postby MS3FGX » November 29th, 2011, 9:18 pm

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Re: Manually Flash BIOS mini laptop no drives

Postby Acedork » November 29th, 2011, 9:32 pm

I know you probably already checked this, but are you sure the video is dead? Maybe the backlight has just gone bad...or did it all start right after the bad flash?
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Re: Manually Flash BIOS mini laptop no drives

Postby dashvandel » November 30th, 2011, 11:13 am

EDIT:: removed the IMG tags

Ok folks,

@ MS3FGX thank you my thoughts have moved to this train of thought because of you I found the light bulb... :D

http://img2.imagesbn.com/images/114810000/114819989.jpg
http://www.comtrol.com/modules/ecommerc ... Pinout.jpg
http://corepcsolutions.com/wp-content/u ... rammer.jpg
I believe it is the one near the battery connection, because it has a little "hole" in it idk could be wrong didnt they used to wipe the chip out with light? hence "Fashing" at any rate I know I will be corrected on that
does anyone see the connection I am seeing! sooo my thoughts are follow the "recovering-a-corrupted-eee-pc-bios"

with my own "correct" BIOS image and ssshhhlap that image on there,
I am not 100% certain but I think I have located the chip...
here is the board..

http://img2.parts-people.com/products/C500M.jpg
I will continue to post progress.
Last edited by dashvandel on February 29th, 2012, 1:55 pm, edited 2 times in total.
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Re: Manually Flash BIOS mini laptop no drives

Postby dashvandel » November 30th, 2011, 11:14 am

Acedork wrote:I know you probably already checked this, but are you sure the video is dead? Maybe the backlight has just gone bad...or did it all start right after the bad flash?


yes everything got knocked out after flash...
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Re: Manually Flash BIOS mini laptop no drives

Postby GaspingSpark » November 30th, 2011, 1:12 pm

Modern flash chips do not have a "hole" for erasing. If you have a chip with a hole in it, there may be problems beyond just a bad flash.

The flash chip might also be on the Processor/Memory board. Did you check the ones on there to see if there was a flash chip?
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Re: Manually Flash BIOS mini laptop no drives

Postby k-ww » November 30th, 2011, 2:56 pm

If the chip has a hole in it, the 'smoke' got out and the chip / board is dead.
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Re: Manually Flash BIOS mini laptop no drives

Postby dashvandel » November 30th, 2011, 3:07 pm

GaspingSpark wrote:Modern flash chips do not have a "hole" for erasing. If you have a chip with a hole in it, there may be problems beyond just a bad flash.

The flash chip might also be on the Processor/Memory board. Did you check the ones on there to see if there was a flash chip?


I have no way of finding this info out I have been in contact with a fellow over seas, I have purchased a replacement BIOS as an extra precaution... part of the issue is finding zero docs on this board... There are only two chips that are in odd places and for the lack of knowing' and just observation "don't" have a mate, I know you guys will roll on that one ;) but hounestly there is one by the LCD bus and another with a small "pit mark Circular Shapped" in the corner located near the Battery connection.


EDIT:**** there has been some Lost in translation issues, as this gentelman keeps sending chips for the wrong board; hence, he tells me its shipped and shows me a .jpg of the board which I reply with the correct .jpg of the board, the service tag, and "part number of the board" I have all this info and I can't locate which chip is the BIOS" ****
Last edited by dashvandel on November 30th, 2011, 3:20 pm, edited 1 time in total.
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Re: Manually Flash BIOS mini laptop no drives

Postby dashvandel » November 30th, 2011, 3:16 pm

k-ww wrote:If the chip has a hole in it, the 'smoke' got out and the chip / board is dead.


" Au Ju " @ k-ww " I see what you did there, ;) and I will pour it over my prime rib and eat it just this once Sir "

I will post detail pics of the chips I suspect could be the BIOS.

I think I have ruled out a few of them as there are quite a few 8 pin chips on this board.
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