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Thread: This is how to KILL IBM Laptop Passwords...(any kind)

  1. #1
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    Question IBM Thinkpad Passwords...

    Hiya!


    I am just curious - is there any truth to the story that IBM laptops, when the BIOS is password protected, and you don't know what it is, can never be used again?

    This sounds like total bull@$#t to me, cos there must ALWAYS be a way of defeating the passwords...

    I have an old Thinkpad, which works OK, but I cannot get into the BIOS without a password, and I have no idea what it is, as I bought the machine 2nd hand.

    The previous owner was contacted, but he has no idea what it might be either, so i'm kinda snookered...

    I contacted IBM, but they were not that helpful, and when I explained that it was 2nd hand, and I don't know the password, and neither did the previous owner, they said that the laptop is now a paperweight.

    This is unbeleivable, and I don't accept this as an answer.
    I told the guy what I thought of IBM, I can tell you!

    I find it real hard to beleive, that you cannot ever erase the password...

    Most full-size computers, you can erase any passwords, by clearing the CMOS, so this is what needs to happen.

    Your thoughts?


    MM.
    "An expert is someone who will tell you why you can't do something." - Alec Issigonis (designer of the Mini)

  2. #2
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    http://www.freewebs.com/corpsjames/CMOS.html
    http://guide.pcbeginner.com/tips/biospass.htm

    "IBM Thinkpad laptops lock the hard drive as well as the BIOS when the supervisor password is set. If you reset the BIOS password, but cannot reset the hard drive password, you may not be able to access the drive and it will remain locked, even if you place it in a new laptop. IBM Thinkpads have special jumper switches on the motherboard, and these should be used to reset the system."

    you'll have to open up the laptop, and there should be some jumpers you can switch to clear out the bios... find a manual on the mother board for the exact instructions, im sure you can find it online...

  3. #3
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    Thanks for the links!

    Will check them out.

    Re: Locking the HDD - you are right here!
    I had a IBM with a 6GB HDD which was locked too.
    I thought I could use the drive in another laptop(a Toshiba).
    I put the drive in, and try to access it, and the drive software just keeps telling me that the drive is not accessable...

    There is such a thing, as too much security - the general population are not NASA...


    Tell me: does the jumper process clear the HDD password too?

    Thanks!



    MM.
    "An expert is someone who will tell you why you can't do something." - Alec Issigonis (designer of the Mini)

  4. #4
    Stinker-pads is what I Call these dogs and Although we repair them? I cant stand them... Password's can be reset and I do not care about the issue or where they come from..

  5. #5
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    Lightbulb This is how to KILL IBM Laptop Passwords...(any kind)

    Hi all.


    I found a very, very good site, for removal of IBM ThinkPad CMOS passwords.
    The site covers all passwords, including the hard-drive ones.

    The site is friendly, and very informative, with lots of descriptions.

    If you actually need to extract passwords, you need a little technical and electronics knowledge, or access to someone who does.

    Also, extracting the passwords(if needed) costs a fee, but it is very, very cheap, compared to the IBM solution of having to replace the motherboard...

    You do NOT have to freight the laptop anywhere; you send a file obtained from the laptop's EEPROM chip, the guy finds the passwords, and e-mails them back - quick, easy, and simple.

    The site is located at:
    <http://www.ja.axxs.net/unlock/>


    MM.
    "An expert is someone who will tell you why you can't do something." - Alec Issigonis (designer of the Mini)

  6. #6
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    I merged these threads, as same subject by same members.

  7. #7
    i have a ibm r51 laptop which the password was locked and i scoured the whole net trying to find answers and all i found was replace chips get the password from the eeprom with some gadget here is a easy way very few people know and i wanted all you guys to know cause fourms like this only helps all us out what i did was located the eeprom and took a ohm meter set the dial to 20v ground is on the left side of mine red between last two reset the system while holding them thight a totaly cleared all my passwords and i was able to set my clock for the first time in 2years mine was 2nd hand also good luck

  8. #8
    rposey32....I have the same problem you had, can you tell me where you located your eeprom chip on the motherboard and what pins did you short with themeter?

    Thanks.

  9. #9
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    Be vary careful.


    I find that, generally speaking, shorting pins directly on the EEPROM or via a multi-meter could be extremely dangerous to the overall life of your laptop, unless you know EXACTLY what you are doing - the EEPROM will not forgive you, if you get it wrong...

    I understand and respect the frustration of IBM Thinkpad password(so much so, that I don't buy Thinkpads anymore - ever), however, I just wanted to voice my 2c of concern.
    "An expert is someone who will tell you why you can't do something." - Alec Issigonis (designer of the Mini)

  10. #10
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    Cool

    I have a ThinkPad too and it pulled the same bologna that you all are talking about. Not knowing much if anything about laptops I just found the CMOS battery and pulled it. Left it out overnight and when I put it back in everything was fine. I could access the HDD again and got into my BIOS settings just fine, don't know if this is an isolated bit of luck but it worked for me.

    LG


  11. #11

    Locating the CMOS Battery

    Quote Originally Posted by LadyGrey
    I have a ThinkPad too and it pulled the same bologna that you all are talking about. Not knowing much if anything about laptops I just found the CMOS battery and pulled it. Left it out overnight and when I put it back in everything was fine. I could access the HDD again and got into my BIOS settings just fine, don't know if this is an isolated bit of luck but it worked for me.

    LG
    If you would kindly point me to a link showing me how to find and extract the CMOS battery , I would appreciate it. My R50 freezes at the IBM verification manager screen. It may help me to cicrumvent that.

  12. #12
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    Are you able to download the manual for your Thinkpad?
    It should show you how to find and replace the CMOS battery...
    "An expert is someone who will tell you why you can't do something." - Alec Issigonis (designer of the Mini)

  13. #13
    Try changing the security chip......Also.. "An Expert is anyone who has NOT failed at the same thing twice".. Just food for thought and "not" meant to be offensive...My opinion as well as my own statement....(Think Einstein got er right the first time)? E=MC~~~.....Poof/poof/..Nope.....You get the pic.. Chips as well as CMOS are where to look..

  14. #14
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    Yeah, well, I just like the saying, which is why it is my signature.


    From a technically correct point of view, you are probably right!!!
    "An expert is someone who will tell you why you can't do something." - Alec Issigonis (designer of the Mini)

  15. #15

    ibm ThinkPad Password remover EEPROM or BIOS

    Here goes some addition information on how to recovery your password: LINK REMOVED BY MODERATOR
    Last edited by PrntRhd; 11-04-2006 at 09:28 PM.

  16. #16
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    SpyerPWD,
    You seem to have this really bad habit of posting the same links to your website in forums all over the web.
    Link will be removed, and you will take a vacation.
    Last edited by PrntRhd; 11-04-2006 at 09:39 PM.

  17. #17
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    my experience with some of the ThinkPad series, is that YES.. they are locked down. Remember that 85%+ of IBM's laptop customers were / are large corporations, who go to great lengths to protect proprietry data.

    I can attest that if one access' the BIOS and sets the HD lock - via password protection, there is no way you can get the system to boot without the password.

    Big Biz... Big Risk.. Good Luck

  18. #18
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    It is precisely this stance that IBM take, that ensure that I never buy another IBM laptop - either new or 2nd hand...

    None of the other laptop manufacturers make it that hard to disable passwords etc - the IBM method leaves a lot to be desired, and I'm sure that this attitude to enforced security, has cost them big time in sales to "Joe public"...

    ...just take my opinion of them, for starters!
    "An expert is someone who will tell you why you can't do something." - Alec Issigonis (designer of the Mini)

  19. #19
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    Quote Originally Posted by Mini-Me View Post
    the IBM method leaves a lot to be desired, and I'm sure that this attitude to enforced security, has cost them big time in sales to "Joe public"...
    But not for business...
    AV, Anti-Trojan List;Browser and Email client List;Popup Killer List;Portable Apps
    “When men yield up the privilege of thinking, the last shadow of liberty quits the horizon.” - Thomas Paine
    Remember: Amateurs built the ark; professionals built the Titantic."

  20. #20
    Quote Originally Posted by LadyGrey View Post
    I have a ThinkPad too and it pulled the same bologna that you all are talking about. Not knowing much if anything about laptops I just found the CMOS battery and pulled it. Left it out overnight and when I put it back in everything was fine. I could access the HDD again and got into my BIOS settings just fine, don't know if this is an isolated bit of luck but it worked for me.

    LG
    That's what I did too. I had it disconnected for only an hour. Once I rebooted I was prompted to change the system date/time in the BIOS. Thanks for the heads up. That's a lot better than trying to hack some password.

    Quote Originally Posted by Nemo View Post
    If you would kindly point me to a link showing me how to find and extract the CMOS battery , I would appreciate it. My R50 freezes at the IBM verification manager screen. It may help me to cicrumvent that.
    Google is your friend. A quick search would show you. It's surrounded by yellow plastic and has a red and black wire coming out of it. Just pull the 2-pin connector from the header off of the motherboard. I left mine disconnected for an hour and the CMOS was cleared.

  21. #21
    Quote Originally Posted by MaDoGreg View Post
    my experience with some of the ThinkPad series, is that YES.. they are locked down. Remember that 85%+ of IBM's laptop customers were / are large corporations, who go to great lengths to protect proprietry data.

    I can attest that if one access' the BIOS and sets the HD lock - via password protection, there is no way you can get the system to boot without the password.

    Big Biz... Big Risk.. Good Luck
    It takes a simple screw removal to extract the HDD. Then you can insert it into any external 2.5-inch USB hard drive enclosure and pull data off of it. Some lock. Not very secure at all.

  22. #22
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    Ahhh yes, but remember that IBM's can also have a HDD password.
    You are quite correct, and it is easy to copy the data, if the BIOS has a password, but the HDD does not, by swapping it out and copying the data as you say, however, if the HDD has been password protected too, you can't access the laptop drive in ANY other machine...

    I have tried this on a locked HDD, and I think the BIOS can see it(on another PC), however, it cannot be accessed - you get the standard "This device is not responding" error.

    If the HDD is locked with a password, then it is useless unless you can unlock the password on it, via the BIOS of the laptop you took it from...


    ...more then a little frustrating...
    "An expert is someone who will tell you why you can't do something." - Alec Issigonis (designer of the Mini)

  23. #23
    Quote Originally Posted by Mini-Me View Post
    Ahhh yes, but remember that IBM's can also have a HDD password.
    You are quite correct, and it is easy to copy the data, if the BIOS has a password, but the HDD does not, by swapping it out and copying the data as you say, however, if the HDD has been password protected too, you can't access the laptop drive in ANY other machine...

    I have tried this on a locked HDD, and I think the BIOS can see it(on another PC), however, it cannot be accessed - you get the standard "This device is not responding" error.

    If the HDD is locked with a password, then it is useless unless you can unlock the password on it, via the BIOS of the laptop you took it from...


    ...more then a little frustrating...
    Wipe (aka format) the HDD and there is no more lock...

  24. #24
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    Quote Originally Posted by jonmcc33 View Post
    Wipe (aka format) the HDD and there is no more lock...
    Not quite...a wipe and a format are not the same thing and the way the drive is locked normal wiping tools won't unlock it...plus there is the fact, at least on an IBM, the setting can't be changed to 'off' without disabling the password, so any new drive will become locked.

    These measures were put in, specifically, to make it difficult to access the data on the drive by someone who doesn't know the code. Businesses like that sort of thing.

    The only sure-fire method to actually 'defeat' the protection is to have the laptop 'professionally' service by IBM...that means replace the security chip. Not really a cheap option.
    AV, Anti-Trojan List;Browser and Email client List;Popup Killer List;Portable Apps
    “When men yield up the privilege of thinking, the last shadow of liberty quits the horizon.” - Thomas Paine
    Remember: Amateurs built the ark; professionals built the Titantic."

  25. #25
    Quote Originally Posted by mjc View Post
    Not quite...a wipe and a format are not the same thing...
    Um, I removed the CMOS battery and managed to format the HDD without a problem...

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