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McFrulek
Paper Tape
Posts: 3
Registered: ‎08-10-2018
Location: HR
Views: 661
Message 1 of 13

Lenovo X1 Carbon 2nd gen - Won't POST or boot after BIOS update 1.35

Greetings,

 

I've been a happy owner of the following notebook. Yesterday after using Lenovo Vantage I got info that a new BIOS is available 1.35.

 

I updated, the system rebooted, it was all fine and working. I eventually turned off and rebooted the laptop a couple of times during the day and still everything was fine, until later that day in the evening I put the laptop to sleep (closing the lid). After trying to wake it up I got a cold shower.

 

- The screen doesn't light up

- There is no POST or boot picture at all

- The Keyboard backlight lights up and works

- The adaptive touchbar works (and cycles thru the two menus)

- The fan spins for about 5 secs after power om

 

The things I have tried so far:

 

- Connecting to an external monitor to see if there would be any activity - no signal

- Tried pulling out the battery and draining the system (holding power button for a minute)

- Tried the reset button.

 

Unfortunately nothing worked, and im stuck and in need of assistance.

 

Thank you in advance for your kind advices.

 

 

JDGillis
Bit Torrent
Posts: 2,327
Registered: ‎12-11-2015
Location: US
Views: 644
Message 2 of 13

Re: Lenovo X1 Carbon 2nd gen - Won't POST or boot after BIOS update 1.35

I believe you have to follow the steps in the order below for the hard reset to work

 

  • Remove AC adapter
  • Press and hold the power button for 15 seconds and release
  • Use a paperclip or toothpick etc. to press and hold the emergency reset button for 10 seconds and release
  • Re-attach the AC adapter and try booting back into Windows.

Good Luck, 

myusrn
Serial Port
Posts: 33
Registered: ‎10-01-2017
Location: US
Views: 617
Message 3 of 13

Re: Lenovo X1 Carbon 2nd gen - Won't POST or boot after BIOS update 1.35

Hi @McFrulek

 

This is exactly what happened to me with my x1 carbon 2nd gen 8gb ram 256gb ssd uefi bios 1.35 device configuration today as well. 

 

Its been working w/o any issues and today i recycled power at which point no uefi bios displayed lenovo logo, no sound system beep that  normally accompanies cold boot startup, and no ability to use f1 to enter bios configuration or f12 to try booting for usb thumbdrive image.

 

As you noted the keyboard backlighting is working and i'm able to cycle through the adaptive touchbar configuration options. 

 

Same things you mention i did the typical hold down power button for long enough to force a device reset and no change.  I'm at a total loss as to recover from this and it would seem odd coincidence that both your identical systems displayed this behavior on the same day.

 

Looking forward to a solution to get things working again as i just invested no long ago in a brand new m2 ssd thumbstick drive.

myusrn
Serial Port
Posts: 33
Registered: ‎10-01-2017
Location: US
Views: 613
Message 4 of 13

Re: Lenovo X1 Carbon 2nd gen - Won't POST or boot after BIOS update 1.35

Hi @JDGillis

 

I did exactly what you suggest, assuming tht the emergency reset button is what you access via the pin hole found just beside the right hand side middle screw on the base of the device.  This had no change in the results.  What is that emergency reset button supposed to do?  Does it perhaps have a different effect if you keep holding it depressed with paperclip/toothpick while trying to start up again from a cold boot state?

McFrulek
Paper Tape
Posts: 3
Registered: ‎08-10-2018
Location: HR
Views: 576
Message 5 of 13

Re: Lenovo X1 Carbon 2nd gen - Won't POST or boot after BIOS update 1.35

I'm very sorry you are also expirienceing the same problems as I am, but it gives me comfort knowing that I'm not the only one, and that being as you have the same "simptoms" as me, makes me think this could be a BIOS update flaw (altho the process was successful and the laptop worked).

 

I've tried the procedure listed above, but unfortunately no results the same condition still persists.

JDGillis
Bit Torrent
Posts: 2,327
Registered: ‎12-11-2015
Location: US
Views: 569
Message 6 of 13

Re: Lenovo X1 Carbon 2nd gen - Won't POST or boot after BIOS update 1.35

I believe that the reset button only cuts off power from the battery (not 100% sure on that) but usually the fix on other models is to unplug the CMOS/Coin Cell battery for a few minutes to reset, but the X2 Carbon 2 gen, it is on the underside of the System/Motherboard, and requres nearly a complete dissassembly (page 66of the HWMM linked below) to access (bad design).   

 

ThinkPad X1 Carbon Hardware Maintenance Manual Machine types: 20A7 and 20A8

https://download.lenovo.com/ibmdl/pub/pc/pccbbs/mobiles_pdf/x1carbon_2_hmm_en_sp40a26110_01.pdf

 

For access, remove these FRUs in order:

• “1010 Base cover assembly” on page 55

• “1020 Battery” on page 56

• “1030 Solid-state drive” on page 58

• “1040 Wireless LAN card” on page 59

• “1050 Wireless WAN card” on page 59

• “1060 Thermal fan” on page 60

myusrn
Serial Port
Posts: 33
Registered: ‎10-01-2017
Location: US
Views: 554
Message 7 of 13

Re: Lenovo X1 Carbon 2nd gen - Won't POST or boot after BIOS update 1.35

Hi @McFrulek & @JDGillis thanks for followup responses. 

 

On my system the uefi bios 1.35 update was applied a month or so back just after it was released.  To me that would suggest that if this is a 1.35 related matter that there are some circumstances necessary for that bug to kick in, vs just applying the update, that leads to leaving one in the state our machines our in. 

 

When my x1 carbon 2nd gen went into this state it wasn't being physically moved, docked/undocked or plugged/unplugged from power in so would seem unexpected that an actual motherboard type failure occured.  I had been in diskmgmt.msc blowing away a data disk partition and the recovery partition both of which are actions i've done many times before.  Even if i fritzed the disk i would expect boot to get to bios post screen and i did test booting without m2 ssd thumbstick drive present just in case and that made no difference. Also i don't know much about motherboard failures but if one occured would the adaptive touch bar mode key and keyboard backlighting behaviors be responsive?

 

Last night i left it in the on state all night, depicted by adaptive touch bar and keyboard backlighting being on, in order to drain the battery.  This morning with battery drained i firing it up with a drained battery and connecting power adapter to get things going again but this didn't change results, i.e. no bios startup and post screen controls displayed.  I also tried connecting it to oneline pro docking station setup with external screen and keyboard, to rule out it was actaully starting up but nothing being displayed on builtin screen, and that showed no different result either.

 

@JDGillis, any insights on what effect going throught the complexity of getting at and removing/reinstalling the cmos battery backup is expected to have in terms of trying to rescue what was perfectly usable x1 carbon 2nd gen device?

McFrulek
Paper Tape
Posts: 3
Registered: ‎08-10-2018
Location: HR
Views: 522
Message 8 of 13

Re: Lenovo X1 Carbon 2nd gen - Won't POST or boot after BIOS update 1.35

If I let the X1 go on in the "power on" state, it would simply shut down in a matter of a minute all by itself. So I have no option to drain the battery like that, but than again it yielded no results.

 

It's not that It seems hard to switch the CMOS battery off by going thru the entire laptop, but I do still have 10 months left on the warranty and I don't think I should risk it. The only hassle is that I have to send the laptop to Belgium to get it checked out which also results in courier costs of shipping and getting it back.

 

I would like a Lenovo official to respond to this thread with a viable solution and explanation to what is happening here.

 

If not I guess it will have to be sent back, shame.

myusrn
Serial Port
Posts: 33
Registered: ‎10-01-2017
Location: US
Views: 492
Message 9 of 13

Re: Lenovo X1 Carbon 2nd gen - Won't POST or boot after BIOS update 1.35

i did a search on "what happens if cmos coin cell battery dies" and found these three hits https://www.reddit.com/r/buildapc/comments/3wn2d8/discussion_just_a_reminder_that_a_dead_bios/

https://www.techwalla.com/articles/what-happens-when-a-cmos-battery-dies

https://forum.thinkpads.com/viewtopic.php?t=117808

 

The first outlines a scenario that sounds very reasonably aligned to what we are experiencing with this explaination <snip>My guess is when the battery died the dead battery kept the motherboard in "off" and regardless of trying to turn it on it continued being off.</snip>

 

I followed the "1110 System board assembly and coin cell battery" instructions in order to get at cmos battery and unplug it for a few minutes then replug it in. After putting it all back together nothing has changed and issue still repros the same. 

 

Note that you don't have to remove touch led cable [ nice because its got lots of adhesives in place ], fan, wifi card cables [ just remove card cable connections hard to get back in place ], or ssd in order to lift out system board to gain access cmos battery for unplug/wait a few minutes/replug or replacement.  You do need to paperclip pop out wwan card holder on back. This video [ https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=AP8wxnt3otA ] on replacing the system board called that important detail out.

 

So now i am wondering if a dead cmos battery would cause this issue or should an thinkpad x1 carbon boot bios and into post even with a dead cmos battery.  The search hits i've been reviewing say yes it just won't hold onto bios configuration settings whenever internal battery drains to nothing and there is no external ac power source connected. 

 

Would be nice to know if this is a known issue and whether or not its related to failed expensive internal part thus relegating what was previously a useful business computer to now being a parts only paperweight. 

myusrn
Serial Port
Posts: 33
Registered: ‎10-01-2017
Location: US
Views: 361
Message 10 of 13

Re: Lenovo X1 Carbon 2nd gen - Won't POST or boot after BIOS update 1.35

Hi @McFrulek & @JDGillis i have a status update.

 

After a week of leaving this device along today i started looking into if i could find a replacement systemboard/motherboard for cheap.  It became clear that i was going to need to take device apart again in order to get specific codes off board, buried under ssd m2 thumbstick drive, in order to ensure i was looking at and pricing the right offerings.

 

After putting things back together this time i hit the power button for kicks and i actually got the familiar bios post audio beep followed by esc/f1/f12 key interrupt options.  I chose f1 and went into bios and set the clock, saved the change and restarted.  The system went put up the familiar lenovo splash screen and after bios post successfully booted my existing windows 10 install.  I signed in and then turned away for a brief few seconds while it finished signin process and something happened to cause it to reset again.

 

After that when i tried to boot i got some crashy keyboard light flashes and intermittent hints of bios post booting and after a few tries of this it all reverted back to state where boot just lights up keyboard backlighting and adaptive touch bar and stays that way never displaying lenovo splash screen or getting into bios post.  

 

Soooo what do you think. Might the fact that i had the two successful bios post boots and windows 10 boot suggest that the systemboard/motherboard is fine and that the issue perhaps is that a dead, or almost dead, cmos battery causes the system to not be able to boot bios at all vs just failing to allow it to retain clock and other settings from one session to the next?

 

 

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