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narotic
What's DOS?
Posts: 3
Registered: ‎10-03-2011
Location: CH
Views: 18,785
Message 1 of 7

T420 BIOS locked with supervisor password on *new* T420

I bought a T420 (type 4236-5H7) online and was surprised to find that the system tried to deploy USAF SDC (Standard Desktop Configuration) on first boot. I cancelled the process and the harddrive was subsequently erased, such that the Windows boot manager gives an error.

 

No big deal so far, as I intended to reinstall Windows myself anyways. Much more annoyingly, however, is that the BIOS is protected by a supervisor password right out of the box (and no mention whatsoever of what this password might be). In other words, I cannot change the boot list necessary to reinstall the operating system.

 

Has anyone any suggestions on how I can obtain this supervisor password? And secondly, why the **** does Lenovo ship USAF SDC on a normal consumer product? Any help is appreciated, as I'd like to turn this shiny new brick into something useful.

lead_org Microsoft MVP Contributor
Microsoft MVP Contributor
Posts: 21,009
Registered: ‎12-19-2008
Location: Australia, Melbourne
Views: 18,745
Message 2 of 7

Re: T420 BIOS locked with supervisor password on *new* T420

firstly where online did you get this machine? Did you get it through the official Lenovo channel, or did you get it through some other channel?

If you didn't get it from Lenovo, then you should contact the seller whom sold the machine to you in the first place.

Lenovo can't provide you with methods for password override, if such thing even exists.


Regards,

Jin Li

May this year, be the year of 'DO'!

I am a volunteer, and not a paid staff of Lenovo or Microsoft
Community SuperMod
Community SuperMod
Posts: 4,691
Registered: ‎04-25-2008
Location: US
Views: 18,743
Message 3 of 7

Re: T420 BIOS locked with supervisor password on *new* T420

Hi narotic,

 

As lead_org said, discussion of ways to defeat passwords isn't allowed here.

 

It sounds like the wrong configuration was shipped in error. Return the machine to the seller for exchange or refund.

I don't work for Lenovo. I'm a crazy volunteer!
narotic
What's DOS?
Posts: 3
Registered: ‎10-03-2011
Location: CH
Views: 18,722
Message 4 of 7

Re: T420 BIOS locked with supervisor password on *new* T420

I got the machine from buy.com, so not really some shady little dealer somewhere. Of course I first contacted them, but they referred me with some generic message to Lenovo support.

 

I would prefer to avoid having to return the laptop, since i had it forwarded to Switzerland. Moreover, since I ordered a new laptop and got it in this configuration in a sealed packaging, I assume that Lenovo might know the password (as opposed to me setting a password and forgetting it).

lead_org Microsoft MVP Contributor
Microsoft MVP Contributor
Posts: 21,009
Registered: ‎12-19-2008
Location: Australia, Melbourne
Views: 18,718
Message 5 of 7

Re: T420 BIOS locked with supervisor password on *new* T420

Lenovo wouldn't set any passwords from factory if it was intended for the end consumers, or set the machine in the manner you described, unless it is a corporate or government overstock. You should ask Buy.com where they got the machine, where they got the stock from, they can chase it up with Lenovo, since they will be a channel partner.

Lenovo wouldn't have put any passwords on your machine if it was an end consumer product. There is no master passwords that you can override the current passwords with.

The only solution is for full motherboard replacement (at your own expense).

I am just curious if you are having this issue with the laptop, why did you forward it to Switzerland and not have this issue dealt with properly?

Do you still have all the purchase detail of this machine? i.e. serial number and more importantly the tax invoices?

 

Since you bought the machine from Buy.com, the sale contract is between you and Buy.com, Lenovo is only the supplier to Buy.com (if that is where they purchased the machine from) and not the direct supplier of the product to you. So you really need to get Buy.com to get this sorted out, Lenovo can't do much for you.

 

My suspicion is that Buy.com may have sourced the machine from an alternative source, i.e. corporate or government overstock, and then sold it through their channel. If they got it from government overstock what you described can occur, as these machines would be setup in a manner ready for use by the government agency that deploys this standard. In which case the Buy.com would still be your only source of assistance you would get, but given that you don't have the machines on hand, even they can't help you much (as most likely they would offer a refund for your purchase). 

Regards,

Jin Li

May this year, be the year of 'DO'!

I am a volunteer, and not a paid staff of Lenovo or Microsoft
narotic
What's DOS?
Posts: 3
Registered: ‎10-03-2011
Location: CH
Views: 18,697
Message 6 of 7

Re: T420 BIOS locked with supervisor password on *new* T420

I'll chase it up (again) with buy.com, although the box was closed and the plastic bag sealed, so that would lead me to believe that the laptop came out of the factory in this configuration.

 

I had it forwarded to Switzerland because I a myself am living there, so I do have the machine, serial numbers and all paperwork with me on hand here. Ordering from the US is a (slightly risky) way to (1) avoid getting screwed over by the prices here in Europe for identical products and (2) to get a much desired US keyboard layout.

 

Anyways, thanks for your comments so far.

lead_org Microsoft MVP Contributor
Microsoft MVP Contributor
Posts: 21,009
Registered: ‎12-19-2008
Location: Australia, Melbourne
Views: 18,684
Message 7 of 7

Re: T420 BIOS locked with supervisor password on *new* T420

you should chase it up with Buy.com, i am reading that the USAF SDC was employed by the USAF, and how it leaked to the public is indeed very strange.

It may have seal, but it doesn't say much for product source, whether it is an end consumer unit or a government special order.
Regards,

Jin Li

May this year, be the year of 'DO'!

I am a volunteer, and not a paid staff of Lenovo or Microsoft

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