03-29-2010 04:12 AM
There is a new BIOS available adressing this:!
I installed, it and Win7 is still can't activate it?!
BIOS: 1.15 / ECP: 1.06
03-29-2010 05:48 AM
This bios update does not address the problem with machines that have already lost their activation. It even states it right there, in the strange english translation. Basically what it's saying is this version of the bios update won't break your authentication, but it also won't fix it if it's already broken.
I suggest you call Lenovo and tell them what your issue is. There has still yet to be an official response posted in this thread, so your only real recourse is to call Lenovo.
03-29-2010 09:13 AM
Actually, the way I read that is that is will break activation still, I dunno, I might be reading it wrong.
03-29-2010 11:08 AM
One person has stated they went from 1.09 to 1.15 and have not lost their activation.
But anyawy, I read this:
Prevents from preload 64-bit Windows re-activation after updating a BIOS.(This BIOS fix does not resolve re-activation request itself) (This problem does not affect when BIOS updating by BIOS Update CD)
We've fixed the issue with WinPhlash64 (The 64 bit version of the flashing utility) in this BIOS update, and this fix will prevent the preloaded 64-bit Windows 7 from having to be re-activated after updating the BIOS. However, this BIOS will not resolve the need to re-activate if you are already in that state from a previous BIOS update. The problem that cause the SLIC table/SLP Marker to be removed when flashing from within the OS using WinPhlash64 previously is not effected when doing the BIOS update by using the CD method.
03-29-2010 11:16 AM
I called them, and they just transferred me to the Microsoft Automated Activation IVR Platform, asking me to activate my copy of Windows using COA key.
So looks like no one is working on actually fixing affected systems, they just simply provide "workaround"
03-29-2010 11:51 AM
It may be that you'll never be able to get back the digital certificate that was in your BIOS, without replacing the motherboard. That's because Microsoft may not allow any sort of software patch to be distributed that generates authentication certificates for Windows. Particularly if those certificates were different for each machine.
The reason for that would be that such software would potentially give hackers a way to pirate Windows. Anyway, that explanation would fit what we're seeing from Lenovo. So in the end, it may come down to replacing the motherboard, or manually supplying the code from the battery bay.
Anyway, that's just a guess. It's unfortunate that the BIOS update in question apparently overwrote areas of the BIOS that it wasn't supposed to.
03-29-2010 12:22 PM - edited 03-29-2010 12:23 PM
Yeah, sound logical to me. But as a consumer, I really don't care about limitations imposed by agreement between Lenovo and Microsoft. Someone at Lenovo screwed things up - Lenovo should fix it either by providing a download or if they cannot then by servicing the computers like mailing everyone mail-in boxes or dispatching a techinician onsite.
Let's see how things turns out in one month timeframe, when less tech-savvy people will get a nice notification from WGA.
03-29-2010 12:59 PM - edited 03-29-2010 01:04 PM
They have scheduled an onsite dispatch to replace my system board, which I think is a huge waste of money, but oh well.
The problem is, they wont have parts availability till Early next month still.
03-29-2010 01:29 PM
I also suspect that a software patch won't be allowed to be distributed for this problem. Very aggravating and costly from a customer satisfaction/reputation standpoint. I don't want a tech taking apart my pristine, brand new machine and installing another system board. Better and cheaper solution: Lenovo, send me a OEM system integrator licensed copy of Windows 7, so I can activate with that key, both now, and in the future, if I have to. As is, my Lenovo OEM key is useless.
03-29-2010 01:42 PM
The problem is, what you have in your restore partition is exactly that already. It's an OEM installation of Windows 7 using an OEM key. The problem is, that OEM key can not be validated any longer as the SLIC table in your bios is now gone. The key you have on the bottom of your notebook is a COA key which, I'm told, will not activate as is but allow you to call Microsoft, give them that key, and then they will give you a real key that will allow for activation. Until you need to rebuild your machine of course, then you need to start that process over again.
A patch won't be distibuted (but may end up being leaked) because the utility they use to place the marker in your bios can be used to place markers in systems that weren't legally licensed to have that marker.
There should be no need for a motherboard swap. They should just have to run a utility on your machine to replace the missing marker. Unfortunately, I'm guessing they won't allow that utility to get into the hands of an on site field service tech, so you would actually have to send your notebook to Lenovo themselves. The only option a field service tech would have is to replace the motherboard.
Still, this remains a huge blunder by Lenovo and they should try to come up with some other way to facilitate this to make it easier for end users. Even if it was a matter of you inputting your serial number of your system into a website, which could then validate your system came with Windows 7, and then behind the scenes build a one-off CD image that would only replace the SLIC marker on a machine if it matched the serial number built into the ISO. Or it could build some sort of signed Windows executable that again would only run on your machine with your serial number.
Either way, those options are unlikeyl to happen.
I'd be curious to know how many machines this broke. Mine was one of them (W510). I still haven't returned mine, but I will before the 6th of April. That's the last day I can return mine.