BIOS Password

Laptops in general have much better hardware security than PCs. Some of them even come with fingerprint reader build in.

Most laptops come with a very strong BIOS password capability that locks up the hardware and makes the laptop completely unusable. This is the password that has to be entered before the operating system loads, usually on a black screen a few seconds after the laptop is started.

Of course BIOS password can be set on a PC too, but there it is stored together with the other BIOS settings – date, time, hard disk size, etc. It is very easy to reset the BIOS settings (and the password) on a PC – usually there is a jumper near the BIOS battery on the motherboard that needs to be moved from connecting pins 1+2 to pins 2+3 for a few seconds and than moved back to pins 1+2. Next time the PC is started it will alert you “… BIOS settings invalid… Defaults loaded… Press F1 to continue…” or something similar, and…. the password is gone!

However most laptops store the BIOS password in a special chip, sometimes even hidden under the CPU, that is not affected when the rest of the BIOS settings are reset. This makes the removal of a BIOS password on a laptop almost impossible. The only option in most cases is to replace the chip which is quite expensive and risky procedure and, of course, not supported by the manufacturers.

Some manufacturers (like Dell) can generate a “master password” for a particular laptop (from their service tag) if sufficient proof of ownership is provided. Others (like IBM) would advise replacing the laptop’s motherboard (very expensive). On some old laptops (4 – 5 years or older) the BIOS password can still be reset relatively easy, usually by shorting two solder points on the motherboard or by plugging a special plug in the printer port, etc.

In almost all cases on newer laptops it is either a big hassle, expensive or even impossible to reset the BIOS password, making it a very good way of protecting your laptop from unauthorized use.

However what makes your computer exactly yours are your own files, documents, emails, pictures, etc. They are all stored on the hard drive. So, even if your laptop has a BIOS password that locks it up and makes it completely unusable to anyone that doesn’t know it, your hard drive can still be removed from the laptop and connected to another computer, and your files retrieved quite easily.

61 Comments

  • #61 by obomba ben January 16, 2015 at: 12:27 am

    let mi try replacing the clip coz i’ve removing cmos battery, cleaning the motherboard n others possible trouble shooting methods bt didnt works 4 mi

  • #60 by colin December 30, 2014 at: 2:45 pm

    I have a laptop toshiba skull candy laptop all I did was save and exit Kyocera sims game and turn it off then a few mins later I turned Kyocera back on and it was just fine

  • #59 by Eric December 28, 2014 at: 12:38 pm

    youtube.com/watch?v=L4MkfUglfbs

    It worked for me!

  • #58 by karthick December 23, 2014 at: 1:06 am

    my government HCL laptop is lock (BIOS lock) and administrator (hdd lock) so how to solve the problem. plz help me

  • #57 by daya December 12, 2014 at: 3:32 am

    my government HCL laptop is lock (BIOS lock) so how to solve the problem. plz help me

  • #56 by TINKU November 1, 2014 at: 6:40 am

    MY BI0S N0T UPDATE ADMIN PASSWRD WITH FLASH PLEASE HELP ME

  • #55 by Tevin August 23, 2014 at: 3:13 am

    Thanx. You really helpd a lot.

    Mine is Dell optiplex 760 desktop. The motheboard has 1-2 & 2-3 pins situated next to the cmos battery but they had jumper.

    The jumper at the far north east of the battery where there are only 2pins. I switched off the machine, removed the battery then switched the machine on: then it said ” password disabled” .

    I inserted the battery back and switched on.

    I’m only 17yrs and this was no big thing for me.

  • #54 by vincent August 22, 2014 at: 8:06 am

    my laptop in writen like this whn i on it i dnt knw why ‘SATA Port 0 ST500LT012-9WS142 Lock.. So plz i need help

  • #53 by isanga salim saleh August 22, 2014 at: 2:47 am

    i need to unlock my tropix laptop which has a web camera what should be the solution

  • #52 by kOFFI August 20, 2014 at: 11:37 am

    Mon ordinateur marque DELL Latitude D530 mot de passe BIOS oublié……………….S’il vous plaît aider moi