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07-13-2018

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Anyone who could help me with M92p Tiny BIOS update?

2018-07-13, 18:50 PM

Hey everyone, 

 

I sincerely hope there is someone around who can help me with this problem, as clicking "contact lenovo support" does not provide any actual contact method with Lenovo support personnel :D 

 

So the story:
I bought one of the desktops that were being offered for sale at my company. These guys came off duty in January, and had warranty and support till March of this year, but they took their sweet time wiping them, so I only received mine now. 

When I went to install windows, I went into the bios to set the usb stick boot priority, and found the bios screen was in shambles. It was working, and all text was legible, but it looked like a text file opened with the wrong format in an ancient version of Word or something.

This was somewhat of a concern, but the machine seemed to be working fine, and windows 7 64 bit installed without a hitch (aside from needing a days worth of updates and a ton of lenovo drivers). 

So after the first wave of windows updates, I got the service bridge installed, and had Lenovo System Update take care of all drivers and suggested updates. All succeeded, except for the BIOS flashing! The flashing window came up, started doing it's thing, then quit before I could read any errors. I believe the error was Child Process error 16. No matter what I did, it did not work.

At that point it was late in the PM, so I just gave up and let windows do all the remaining updates instead of messing more with it.

Day 2, Windows fully updated, I gave it another go. I got a message that flashing was going to start, then the window went blank with a flashing cursor, until windows started to shut down. I've flashed Lenovo machiens earlier, so I knew it would do the actual flashing after reboot, then reboot again, so no big deal right? Except, after reboot, after the brief flash of the NIC bios, all I got was the flashing cursor!

Now I'm no idiot, I know bios flashing can take a few minutes, and had no idea what was actually going on in the background, so I waited somewhat over half an hour before hard-reseting the machine, as it was non-responsive. 

To my relief it booted right up. Apparently the bios update happened too, as I could enter the BIOS, and actually had the layout fixed, I could properly see what was what. Fixed right? Well... almost... When I press save and exit, the confirmation window has a graphical glitch (no is permanently black, and the right edge of the window has one segment out of place). So I went to look through the settings, and everything else seems to be in order... though when I change language to french, I have missing characters and questionmarks instead of letters all over the place, and the third language option is just a questionmark and half a bracket, when selected pretty much everything becomes garbled. But it still seems to be working fine (typing from the affected machine as we speak).

 

So I am thinking the flash process had something gone wonky, or the actual flash rom (the hardware itself) has a fault or a soldering error.

I tried to re-flash again. Of course the Lenovo updater thinks the update was successful, and does not try the flashing process again. Using the update tool on the support site now, using CMD as Admin:

Reading flash ........ done

Secure Flash enabled, recalculate ROM size with signature... Enable.

- FFS checksums ....... ok

Loading capsule to secure memory buffer ... done

18 - Error: Secure Flash Rom Verify fail

 

Child process failed. Reutrn code: 24

 

I get the same result if I try from a bootable pendrive. 

Does this intend to say that the ROM I am trying to load does not pass some form of security checksum, or that loading it into physical memory and reading it back before flashing returns a different checksum (IE hardware error?)?

 

The BIOS option to flash older versions is enabled!

Windows info returns bios version as: LENOVO 9SKT9AAUS, which is the new version the Lenovo updater tried to flash. 

 

Is there a valid workaround for this, or is this likely a hardware problem? (In which case I will return the PC and get my money back).

Thanks for any help in advance!

 

 

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10 Posts

07-13-2018

HU

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Re: Anyone who could help me with M92p Tiny BIOS update?

2018-07-13, 20:35 PM

So... created a bootable pendrive to try and re-flash. I got the same error yet again, so I read through the available functions of afudos, and used the /D switch to verify my bios image against the bios image provided in the download. And tadaaa...
Reading flash ................ done

Secure flash enabled, recalculate ROM size with signature ... Enabled

FFS checksums ....OK

ROM File Capsule Header checking .. Enable 

ROM File Size checking ...... OK

ROM ID checking ................. OK

ROM file verification status..OK

everything seems to check out. How is this even possible when there's clearly bugs in the BIOS display? 

See attached image for how it looked when I got it.

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10 Posts

07-13-2018

HU

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Re: Anyone who could help me with M92p Tiny BIOS update?

2018-07-13, 20:37 PM

This is how it looks currently, you can see the menu structure is intact now (at least for the English language) aside from the list of languages (and the exit window having a fixed black frame around the no button).

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10 Posts

07-13-2018

HU

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Re: Anyone who could help me with M92p Tiny BIOS update?

2018-07-13, 20:40 PM

And one more pic, this is the 'mystery language mode'. How is this even possible if the verification passes? Is there any other FW that could be corrupted on these machines? If anyone can suggest a way to re-flash the bios once more, please let me know, otherwise I'll have to give up on this machine :( 

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10 Posts

07-13-2018

HU

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Re: Anyone who could help me with M92p Tiny BIOS update?

2018-07-15, 8:18 AM

SOLVED

 

Since noone chimed in, and there seems to be no useful comments to anyone asking about this problem, I hope this will make it easy for google to index this post and let anyone find the solution easily (and not have to spend 4 days trying to fix their pc).

 

18 - Error: Secure Flash Rom Verify fail is a message in response to a hardware fault condition. 

 

I buckled down and took the thing apart today. I imagine after afudos loads the rom image to the programming buffer, it does a verification on it before burning, and this verification appears to be failing. To me, as a hardware tech, this could mean one of two things: The buffer memory in the BIOS chip is in fact busted (it sometimes happens with any type of memory, and is non-reversible bar replacing the surface mount chip), OR the communication between the system and the chip is messed up. 

The problem with a lot of surface mount tech is that RoHS approved soldering materials are -SH*T-. Leadless solder cracks, delaminates, in some instances can even tear off solder pads from the circuit board because of it's rigidity during thermal expansion of the chip or motherboard. I have met -so- many boards that failed due to nothing else but solder problems because of this, it's not even funny. And "luckily" this was also the problem in my case.

 

I was trying to run the recovery session to force the BIOS update, and all I got was two beeps, and a screen with a blinking cursor... and my board no longer booted at all, it would lock up right after showing the 'press f1 to enter setup' message, and be non-responsive, only shutting down if I held the power button for 7 sec.

At this point I had nothing to loose, so I took the thing to pieces, and had only the motherboard, ram, and the cooler attached, so I could actually see most of the mobo. It seems to be a mostly AIO solution, so there was only one chip big enough that it could contain the BIOS. Applied pressure to the smd chip with my thumb, flicked power, and... no two beeps... suddenly the recovery screen came up and started flashing my BIOS. Held firm till the update was done, PC shut itself off. Install CMOS jumper back to normal, put everything back together, booted right up to Win7 scanning the HDD, and everything seems to be working, bios corruption is also gone.

 

I also know the mistery language was what I think is Chinese or Korean hehh.

 

Unfortunately this is still not a permanent solution, as the rest of the solder joints could fail at any time, so I will be returning the PC to swap it for a different one, or get my money back. 

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10 Posts

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HU

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Re: Anyone who could help me with M92p Tiny BIOS update?

2018-07-15, 8:27 AM

By the way, this also means that the 'verification' feature of afudos is useless. My bios was clearly corrupted, yet it told me it verified fine against the rom image provided by lenovo. I have at one point also read-out my rom contents, and have just now bothered to actually look at it in comparison to the Lenovo provided file... I did not even need to calculate a checksum, the size of the files does not even match. Yet afudos said the contents matched... yeah... 

 

I have been avoiding Amibios with any new purchase motherboard all my life... no wonder... even their tools are useless...

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5 Posts

01-25-2017

GR

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Re: Anyone who could help me with M92p Tiny BIOS update?

2018-07-29, 21:17 PM

Problem solved toay,
You need to open your machine. 

Find the cmos clear jumpers.

Move the little cup from positions 1-2 to 2-3. 
Unplug Hard Disk. 

Close the machine. 

Insert a portable USB DVD to a usb port (have a copy of the new bios on the cd) and turn on your machine. 

It will boot from USB DVD drive and it will load the new bios. 

Machine will shut down after the new bios update. 

Open agin the machine, plug the Hard Disk and put back the jumpers to 1-2 position. 

Unplug USB DVD and it will boot from Hard Disk. 

That's all. 

IN OTHER WORDS: Bios update can be done if first you change the jumpers on motherboard.

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10 Posts

07-13-2018

HU

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  • Message 8 of 10

Re: Anyone who could help me with M92p Tiny BIOS update?

2018-07-29, 21:43 PM

Please read through threads before you comment. This will prevent misinformation of others.
If you had done so before posting, you would already know that I did that, and it did not work. You would also already know how I solved my problem since it is clearly marked in the thread that I have solved it. 

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5 Posts

01-25-2017

GR

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Re: Anyone who could help me with M92p Tiny BIOS update?

2018-07-29, 22:25 PM

I read very carefully what you wrote. And you took the exact answer on that question. 

Otherwise you should know how to ask questions. 

That is the solution on the thread. 

Thank you.

 

PS. Forum is not only for you but for al of its members. Maybe someone else will find it useful. 

 

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Re: Anyone who could help me with M92p Tiny BIOS update?

2020-02-17, 5:29 AM

THis worked perfectly. I Used a normal USB Flash Drive and No Problems. Loaded Windows 10 and Everything is back to normal. THanks again. This post should be out there more. alot of peopel are having this problem..

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