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ulixs
Paper Tape
Posts: 6
Registered: ‎05-18-2016
Location: US
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Message 1 of 10

[x220i] Failed EEPROM - Replacement

Hi,

I have a x220i which won't boot up. The only thing when switched on, all leds turn on but after a short while they switch of.

I disconnected everything like hdd, bluetooth, lcd, battery and touchpad bezel. But it didn't change.

This laptop only was used a short while and was produced on 11-11-2011. So it is the timeframe for the eeprom failure.

Now to the eeprom, I want to change it, where is it located? Can I replace the chip with a new written one?

Is there any chance to get the uuid serial number to get it working again?

Thanks a lot

Community SeniorMod
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Message 2 of 10

Re: [x220i] Failed EEPROM - Replacement

Hello, ulixs

There might me a dust on the systemboard that causes laptop power off.

But, as your laptop worked a short time, a small RTC battery (CMOS) might cause boot/power off issue. It seems dead. Replace it with any voltage compatible, at least for the test.

EEPROM chip is located on the back side (not CPU's one) of the systemboard, the nearest to the mobo's ExpressCard connector CN13. Depending on the chips model, there might be one or two chips. Their numbers on the mobo are SPI1 and SPI2.



x220 • Gobi 2000 3g | hdd, msata ssd, wwan, wifi, gps -- unique hand-made config
ThinkPad 25 Special Anniversary Edition. #retro. Signed by D.Hill
T470p | X1 Carbon Gen3 | Miix 2 10" | Yoga Tablet 2-1050F (Android) + BT Keyboard
ThinkPad Stack • 2.4/5 Wireless Router, HDD 1 TB, BT Speaker, Power Bank, Mobile Projector

Do it well, worse becomes itself

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ulixs
Paper Tape
Posts: 6
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Location: US
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Message 3 of 10

Re: [x220i] Failed EEPROM - Replacement

Hi,

I did replace the bios battery. Didn't work.

The system board looks like fresh out of the factory, the laptop smells like fresh out of the production.

There are 2 eeproms, which failed? The bios one, because the system does not boot? If I could replace the eeprom and programm it, I don't have the mainboard serial (uuid) would this be a problem or could this be fixed with the hardware maintenance diskette?

Community SeniorMod
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Message 4 of 10

Re: [x220i] Failed EEPROM - Replacement

Since the laptop isn't bootable, you can't check out chips or BIOS image in it. There is an Intel tool from the ME Tools package for that task - Flash Programming Tool, the version for the certain chipset.

But, as your laptop can't boot, there might be a problem in the initial BIOS image part - loader. So, there is a chance SPI1 chip or image in it is broken.

I can't explain how BIOS regions are shared between two chips, there is the single chip in my laptop. So, you might replace them one by one, compare regions existed by their offset, reflash selected regions. I'd start with reflashing, not replacing the soldered chips.

Regarding the maintenance diskette your plan seems correct.

Anyway, try to reset BIOS/EC: remove the charger and battery, press the power button and hold it during 30 seconds. Try to boot.



x220 • Gobi 2000 3g | hdd, msata ssd, wwan, wifi, gps -- unique hand-made config
ThinkPad 25 Special Anniversary Edition. #retro. Signed by D.Hill
T470p | X1 Carbon Gen3 | Miix 2 10" | Yoga Tablet 2-1050F (Android) + BT Keyboard
ThinkPad Stack • 2.4/5 Wireless Router, HDD 1 TB, BT Speaker, Power Bank, Mobile Projector

Do it well, worse becomes itself

Communities:   English    Deutsche    Español    Portugues    Русскоязычное    Česká    Slovenská    Українська   Moto English

ulixs
Paper Tape
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Location: US
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Message 5 of 10

Re: [x220i] Failed EEPROM - Replacement

I tried to reset without battery, and it didn't work as well Smiley Sad

 

It is a common problem, known to lenovo, that after a short while, the eeprom will fail. So they changed the mainboards. But this laptop was sitting long in the shelf... and now there is no waranty anymore.

 

How could I reflash the regions of the chips?

 

thank you

Community SeniorMod
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Message 6 of 10

Re: [x220i] Failed EEPROM - Replacement

> It is a common problem, known to lenovo, that after a short while, the eeprom will fail.

I don't know about such cases though I was/am in contact with hundreds of Lenovo laptop owners, x220 including. But I agree - there was a problem eeprom related in the ThinkPads manufactured in 2011 as your one.

If you don't have anough, appropriate skills, I can't explain you scenario or manual how-to, step-by-step. Sorry.

If you have decided to recover laptop yourself, read the manuals for the tools I mentioned above. At least.
Bios-mods forum might be helpful too.

Regarding the chip desoldering and reflashing it seems better to contact technician.



x220 • Gobi 2000 3g | hdd, msata ssd, wwan, wifi, gps -- unique hand-made config
ThinkPad 25 Special Anniversary Edition. #retro. Signed by D.Hill
T470p | X1 Carbon Gen3 | Miix 2 10" | Yoga Tablet 2-1050F (Android) + BT Keyboard
ThinkPad Stack • 2.4/5 Wireless Router, HDD 1 TB, BT Speaker, Power Bank, Mobile Projector

Do it well, worse becomes itself

Communities:   English    Deutsche    Español    Portugues    Русскоязычное    Česká    Slovenská    Українська   Moto English

Community SeniorMod
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Message 7 of 10

Re: [x220i] Failed EEPROM - Replacement

This really doesn't sound like a problem with the eeprom.  With that kind of failure, it becomes impossible to retrieve things like serial number, MAC address, etc.  The BIOS is stored in an entirely different kind of chip, an SPI (serial flash), which has nothing to do with the BIOS code.  The BIOS chip can be damaged be static discharge if you handle it while it is off the board, or if you apply excess voltage, but other than that, it is difficult to damage.  The 2011 problem was related to eeproms, not SPI chips


Rich


I do not respond to requests for private, one-on-one help. Your questions should be posted in the appropriate forum where they may help others as well.

If a response answers your question, please mark it as the accepted solution.

I am not an employee or agent of Lenovo.
ulixs
Paper Tape
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Registered: ‎05-18-2016
Location: US
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Message 8 of 10

Re: [x220i] Failed EEPROM - Replacement

@richk: I don't know how to interprete your message... It's no damaged BIOS? and no EEPROM?

What do you think it is?

To make it clear, before the error no one did touch the mainboard. The only thing was to install the lenovo drivers, which may have included a bios update. But the computer started normal and worked... (I wasn't there, I only trying to save this thinkpad from the scrap)

Here is a video, how the thinkpad behaves...
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Sc8Mm3YQdTM

What can I do to troubleshoot it, where do I start?
I have a oscilloscope, logic analyzer...
Community SeniorMod
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Message 9 of 10

Re: [x220i] Failed EEPROM - Replacement

If you installed a BIOS update, I would ask about the memory.  After a certain BIOS level, PC3-8500 (1066 mHz) memory no longer worked.  If that is what you have, you just need faster memory.  I would check that first


Rich


I do not respond to requests for private, one-on-one help. Your questions should be posted in the appropriate forum where they may help others as well.

If a response answers your question, please mark it as the accepted solution.

I am not an employee or agent of Lenovo.
ulixs
Paper Tape
Posts: 6
Registered: ‎05-18-2016
Location: US
Views: 2,034
Message 10 of 10

Re: [x220i] Failed EEPROM - Replacement

Ok,

there was no PC3-8500 RAM installed, it was PC3-10600.

I tested it with PC3-12800, but it didn't work as well....

Now what? EEPROM?

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