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SeniorGuru
Posts: 2,761
Registered: ‎12-22-2008
Location: CA
Views: 11,690
Message 11 of 26

Re: Updating BIOS on Thinkpad T60 - no battery


@TuuS wrote:

Why would you risk destroying your systemboard, you can buy a used battery, or a generic very cheap. 

 

 

ps. If you insist on taking such risks, then I'd recommend plugging your adapter into a UPS power supply


This is the issue IMO. If you want to flash the BIOS  but the ThinkPad battery is dead, even if you have a UPS, you're still prevented from doing the update. So you're forced to buy a battery, new or used, just for the 5 minutes it takes to do the BIOS update.

 

Surely it should be enough for Lenovo to warn you about the consequences of a power interruption in the middle of a BIOS update, strongly suggest that you have both AC power and battery or UPS backup, let you "sign" a waiver, perhaps by saying "yes, I agree" to two warnings, and then let you proceed.

 

Does Lenovo really need to be so paternalistic as to prevent informed people from taking the small risk that a an AC power interruption occurs during a BIOS update?

__________________________________________________
Cheers... Dorian Hausman • ca.gif English community
X1C6, E470, Y900s, [R.I.P. X1C2, T430s, TPT2, SL500, X61s, T60p, A21p, 770, 760ED... 5160, 5150... S360/30]
Moto Z3 Play, G6, [R.I.P. KRZR K1]
Guru
Posts: 7,626
Registered: ‎11-23-2007
Location: USA
Views: 11,686
Message 12 of 26

Re: Updating BIOS on Thinkpad T60 - no battery


@hausman wrote:

@TuuS wrote:

Why would you risk destroying your systemboard, you can buy a used battery, or a generic very cheap. 

 

 

ps. If you insist on taking such risks, then I'd recommend plugging your adapter into a UPS power supply


 

Does Lenovo really need to be so paternalistic as to prevent informed people from taking the small risk that a an AC power interruption occurs during a BIOS update?


Yes.

 

IBM was the same way, Lenovo just inherited this approach from them.

 

 

Because the vast majority of the users are not well-informed, and frivolous lawsuits are dime-a-dozen in this country anyway...

Cheers,

George




In daily use: R60F, R500F, T61, T410

Collecting dust: T60

Enjoying retirement: A31p, T42p,

Non-ThinkPads: Panasonic CF-31 & CF-52, HP 8760W




Starting Thursday, 08/14/2014 I'll be away from the forums until further notice. Please do NOT send private messages since I won't be able to read them. Thank you.
.
TuuS
Bit Torrent
Posts: 2,223
Registered: ‎01-02-2011
Location: US
Views: 11,684
Message 13 of 26

Re: Updating BIOS on Thinkpad T60 - no battery


@hausman wrote:

 

Does Lenovo really need to be so paternalistic as to prevent informed people from taking the small risk that a an AC power interruption occurs during a BIOS update?



First of all it's no "small risk", even with a battery and ac adapter thousands of people have destoryed laptops, so I think more caution is in order, not less.

 

Second, if someone really is "informed", then they can figure it out on their own...  it's not rocket science.. 

 

 

ThinkPad W-510 i7-820QM(1.73-3.06GHz) Quad Core... ThinkPad T500, T9900, 8gb SSD...FrankNpad T-60p/61p (X9000 2.8ghz) 8gb SSD ips FlexView...ThinkPad T-61p (T9300 2.5ghz) 8gb ram...Thinkpad X-61 Tablet 8gb ram.
SeniorGuru
Posts: 2,761
Registered: ‎12-22-2008
Location: CA
Views: 11,677
Message 14 of 26

Re: Updating BIOS on Thinkpad T60 - no battery


@TuuS wrote:
First of all it's no "small risk", even with a battery and ac adapter thousands of people have destoryed laptops, so I think more caution is in order, not less.

 

Second, if someone really is "informed", then they can figure it out on their own...  it's not rocket science.. 

 

 


If it's no small risk, etc. then some food for thought...

 

1. Why not require people to have BIOS updates performed only by Lenovo-authorized service personnel, either on-site or via EasyServ?

 

2. Why am I "allowed" to update the BIOS on Lenovo desktops without battery (i.e. UPS) backup?

 

3. How is that Lenovo's competitors manage survive despite the potential for lawsuits from irate customers whose mobos became toast during BIOS upgrades, even though they don't require those customers to have an operational battery to back up their AC power when they perform those updates?

 

 

__________________________________________________
Cheers... Dorian Hausman • ca.gif English community
X1C6, E470, Y900s, [R.I.P. X1C2, T430s, TPT2, SL500, X61s, T60p, A21p, 770, 760ED... 5160, 5150... S360/30]
Moto Z3 Play, G6, [R.I.P. KRZR K1]
Guru
Posts: 7,626
Registered: ‎11-23-2007
Location: USA
Views: 11,674
Message 15 of 26

Re: Updating BIOS on Thinkpad T60 - no battery


@hausman wrote:

@TuuS wrote:
First of all it's no "small risk", even with a battery and ac adapter thousands of people have destoryed laptops, so I think more caution is in order, not less.

 

Second, if someone really is "informed", then they can figure it out on their own...  it's not rocket science.. 

 

 



 

3. How is that Lenovo's competitors manage survive despite the potential for lawsuits from irate customers whose mobos became toast during BIOS upgrades, even though they don't require those customers to have an operational battery to back up their AC power when they perform those updates?

 

 



I'm not really certain that Lenovo's competitors' warranty policies include planar replacement in the event of a laptop getting bricked by a BIOS upgrade, but I know that Lenovo's does...

 

The fact that something is doable does not necessarily make it advisable, not in my book anyway.

Cheers,

George




In daily use: R60F, R500F, T61, T410

Collecting dust: T60

Enjoying retirement: A31p, T42p,

Non-ThinkPads: Panasonic CF-31 & CF-52, HP 8760W




Starting Thursday, 08/14/2014 I'll be away from the forums until further notice. Please do NOT send private messages since I won't be able to read them. Thank you.
.
SeniorGuru
Posts: 2,761
Registered: ‎12-22-2008
Location: CA
Views: 11,665
Message 16 of 26

Re: Updating BIOS on Thinkpad T60 - no battery


@ajkula66 wrote:
I'm not really certain that Lenovo's competitors' warranty policies include planar replacement in the event of a laptop getting bricked by a BIOS upgrade, but I know that Lenovo's does...

I didn't say, or even suggest, that competitors will replace mobos for free in the event of a BIOS update interruption. I assume they don't, just like Lenovo. My point is that despite not insisting on double backup, regardless of how they deal with toasted planars, careless people still get burned and yet those competitors still manage to stay in business. 

 


The fact that something is doable does not necessarily make it advisable, not in my book anyway.

 

Again, that's beside the point. I didn't say it was advisable. Quite to the contrary. My point is that if, despite the dire warnings, someone is willing to take the risk, they should be allowed to. Lots of things aren't advisable and yet people do them, even in the litigious environment of the US.

 

Thinking about this some more, I've updated the firmware of everything from cellphones to TVs to remote controls to car GPS, etc. They've all warned me about the negative consequences of interrupting the process. Some have suggested using a UPS. Most have asked me to confirm that I understand their warning. But none have prevented me from doing the update.

 

I do respect your opinion, even if I disagree with it Smiley Wink I've run into IBM's and now Lenovo's paternalism on this issue for many, many years. It never made sense to me. But today it's an anachronism, especially considering best practices by everyone else. ISTM it's high time Lenovo relaxed their stridency. But that's just my opinion. 

__________________________________________________
Cheers... Dorian Hausman • ca.gif English community
X1C6, E470, Y900s, [R.I.P. X1C2, T430s, TPT2, SL500, X61s, T60p, A21p, 770, 760ED... 5160, 5150... S360/30]
Moto Z3 Play, G6, [R.I.P. KRZR K1]
Guru
Posts: 7,626
Registered: ‎11-23-2007
Location: USA
Views: 11,660
Message 17 of 26

Re: Updating BIOS on Thinkpad T60 - no battery

The respect is mututal here, my good man.

 

However, I do believe that Lenovo will replace the planar bricked by the BIOS upgrade if the machine is still under warranty...

Cheers,

George




In daily use: R60F, R500F, T61, T410

Collecting dust: T60

Enjoying retirement: A31p, T42p,

Non-ThinkPads: Panasonic CF-31 & CF-52, HP 8760W




Starting Thursday, 08/14/2014 I'll be away from the forums until further notice. Please do NOT send private messages since I won't be able to read them. Thank you.
.
TuuS
Bit Torrent
Posts: 2,223
Registered: ‎01-02-2011
Location: US
Views: 11,654
Message 18 of 26

Re: Updating BIOS on Thinkpad T60 - no battery

I think if you want something to gripe about then think about this...

 

The bios is stored in flash ram, so it's easy to update, but without the data present it's impossible to get the system to boot so that it can be updated.It would be an exceedingly simple task to design these boards with a secondary pre-bios, one that's burned in to ROM and who's ONLY job is to get the system to boot a bios update disc. Flash bios is a great idea, but this fatal flaw has never been fixed and instead of adding warnings and safegaurds, why not just design a system for recovery and make this whole discussion moot.

 

Regarding the battery/no battery debate, I belive if you're smart enough to make an educated decision about flashing without a battery, then you can easy bypass the build in safeguard as described above. I think removing it will result in a lot of novice users clicking "next" without reading, then someone walks into the room and flips a wall swtich that cuts off power and destroys the laptop, then we have angry irate members asking why this wasn't prevented by lenovo.

 

 

Personally I'd prefer to hear your gripe to theirs, at least yours is civil and contains some logic, and of course doesn't include a dead laptop.

ThinkPad W-510 i7-820QM(1.73-3.06GHz) Quad Core... ThinkPad T500, T9900, 8gb SSD...FrankNpad T-60p/61p (X9000 2.8ghz) 8gb SSD ips FlexView...ThinkPad T-61p (T9300 2.5ghz) 8gb ram...Thinkpad X-61 Tablet 8gb ram.
SeniorGuru
Posts: 2,761
Registered: ‎12-22-2008
Location: CA
Views: 11,651
Message 19 of 26

Re: Updating BIOS on Thinkpad T60 - no battery


@TuuS wrote:

It would be an exceedingly simple task to design these boards with a secondary pre-bios, one that's burned in to ROM and who's ONLY job is to get the system to boot a bios update disc. Flash bios is a great idea, but this fatal flaw has never been fixed and instead of adding warnings and safegaurds, why not just design a system for recovery and make this whole discussion moot.


Excellent idea! Ironically the term "to boot" a computer derives from the same notion back in the punched card era. From Wikipedia:
The computer term bootstrap began as a metaphor in the 1950s. In computers, pressing a bootstrap button caused a hardwired program to read a bootstrap program from an input unit. The computer would then execute the bootstrap program, which caused it to read more program instructions. It became a self-sustaining process that proceeded without external help from manually entered instructions. As a computing term, bootstrap has been used since at least 1953.

 

The bootstrap concept was used in the IBM 701 computer (1952–1956) which had a "load button" which initiated reading of the first 36-bit word from either a punched card in a card reader, a magnetic tape data storage unit or a drum memory unit (predecessor of the hard disk drive). The left 18-bit half-word was then executed as an instruction which read additional words into memory. Thus, computer bootstrapping is a technique by which a simple computer instruction or program activates a more complicated system of instructions or programs"

Even as late as in the '70s we'd have a small deck of punched cards to bootstrap our way out of emergencies like when we couldn't boot from disk. The same notion could easily be applied to flash memory. That would even allow product makers to update flash memory, including BIOS, automatically to their Internet-connected products without any customer intervention. (Whether that would be a good thing is a separate issue Smiley Wink )

__________________________________________________
Cheers... Dorian Hausman • ca.gif English community
X1C6, E470, Y900s, [R.I.P. X1C2, T430s, TPT2, SL500, X61s, T60p, A21p, 770, 760ED... 5160, 5150... S360/30]
Moto Z3 Play, G6, [R.I.P. KRZR K1]
TuuS
Bit Torrent
Posts: 2,223
Registered: ‎01-02-2011
Location: US
Views: 11,649
Message 20 of 26

Re: Updating BIOS on Thinkpad T60 - no battery

moving up a couple decades the bios was storred in ROM (read only memory), and the only way to update it was to remove and replace the chip, which we've all done from time to time, but flash bios was revolutionary, you could just update the bios from a download instead of having the manufacture (or 3rd party) ship you a chip. However when these chips started becoming integrated into the system boards, it would have made sense to install a second more basic ROM version for backup, since it's so easy to corrupt the flash memory the bios is stored on. It's hard to imagine why they wouldn't have done this long ago, but it's perhaps from the gap that exists between the engineers and the technicains who repair them. Sometimes the engineers can't see the big picture and design something that works well, but has such a fatal flaw that would have been so easy to avoid. It's also possible that this was designed, but some accounting guy saw a $2 chip that was redundant and crossed it off the list....    Grrrr....

ThinkPad W-510 i7-820QM(1.73-3.06GHz) Quad Core... ThinkPad T500, T9900, 8gb SSD...FrankNpad T-60p/61p (X9000 2.8ghz) 8gb SSD ips FlexView...ThinkPad T-61p (T9300 2.5ghz) 8gb ram...Thinkpad X-61 Tablet 8gb ram.

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