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BIOS Password Reset policy

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a c 572 D Laptop
December 22, 2011 4:03:11 PM

There seems to be a pervasive idea that the THG Rules of Conduct prevent THG members from helping an owner regain control of their laptop when there is a BIOS password problem.
Example: Toshiba A215 Clear Password

I believe the correct response should have been to refer them to the sticky topic: LOCKED OUT OF YOUR LAPTOP ?

In the example above if chaz08361 is the legal owner of that laptop he would get the information he needs to solve his problem. If he's not a legal owner - no harm/no foul.


What should the THG policy be on this issue?
Anonymous
a b D Laptop
December 22, 2011 8:04:42 PM

I think this supposed rule against discussing password cracking is not really against the forum rules. It's not like info about BIOS passwords, Ophcrack or NT Offline Password Editor can't be easily found through Google. You need physical access to a computer to use any of these programs.
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a b D Laptop
December 23, 2011 12:26:08 AM

As we cannot verify the owner of the computer, we cannot supply advice on how to bypass/crack the passwords. That's black and white in the ToS.

Yes, there are tools available to assist in this, but this forum doesn't need to promote it. And yes, you may need physical possession of the computer to use the tools, but that doesn't mean someone didn't steal the computer, or gain access in another manner.
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a b D Laptop
December 23, 2011 10:04:51 AM

I agree with aford10, first, I used to give advice how to get back in the computer,

but than I know someone who forgot laptop in the taxi cab, and poor friend lost her job because what everything was on it.

Plus she shopped on-line a bit, so $20 000 out of AMEX and Visa + personal account almost $5K was gone in 3 hrs. + her SS#, accounts from everything that she had.

Today 3+ years later her credit is in mid 500's despite of not having any credit cards or loans or being late on the payments. And she is constantly disputing something.

Bucket of problems. Nobody was caught and punished...

It can ruin someone for long time.

==============================

On the other hand, if someone is a member for while, regularly post, there is much smaller chance, that this guy is trying to steal. Maybe there could be some exception made through PM.

But those who just created account here and first post is to bypass the security measures, I am not for those.

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Anonymous
a b D Laptop
December 23, 2011 10:05:19 AM

Is this what you're referring to as being "black and white in the ToS", "content that promotes, encourages, or provides instructional information about illegal activities - specifically hacking, cracking, or phreaking."?

I don't agree that precludes posters from discussing ways of regaining access to Windows computers with forgotten/unknown passwords. I think the chance that it's a stolen computer are pretty slim.

Is it OK to discuss how to boot from a Mac OS X CD to remove a password on a Mac?
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a c 572 D Laptop
December 23, 2011 10:58:27 AM

aford10 said:
we cannot verify the owner of the computer
The laptop MFGRs/OEMs have resources we don't to verify ownership even if purchased from 3rd parties like BestBuy.
aford10 said:
we cannot supply advice on how to bypass/crack the passwords.
If an owner and MFGRs/OEMs are working to resolve a problem with BIOS access then bypass or cracking passwords is not involved.


-> There should be a way to avoid giving different advice to the same problem:
http://www.tomshardware.com/forum/73904-35-recover-6400...
http://www.tomshardware.com/forum/66406-35-toshiba-stel...

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a b D Laptop
December 23, 2011 12:17:49 PM

Quote:
Is this what you're referring to as being "black and white in the ToS", "content that promotes, encourages, or provides instructional information about illegal activities - specifically hacking, cracking, or phreaking."?


Yes, that's the one. Without knowing for sure who the owner is, helpful advice turns into hacking/bypassing passwords. From the way I read, and have heard from Joe, we direct them to the manufacturer, and close the thread.
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a b D Laptop
December 23, 2011 12:39:50 PM

WR2 said:
The laptop MFGRs/OEMs have resources we don't to verify ownership even if purchased from 3rd parties like BestBuy.
If an owner and MFGRs/OEMs are working to resolve a problem with BIOS access then bypass or cracking passwords is not involved.


Which is why we don't need to be involved, and advertise other ways to get around them.


WR2 said:
There should be a way to avoid giving different advice to the same problem:
http://www.tomshardware.com/forum/73904-35-recover-6400...
http://www.tomshardware.com/forum/66406-35-toshiba-stel...


This has recently been brought up in the moderator section, and I believe we are all on the same page now.
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a b D Laptop
December 23, 2011 2:39:43 PM



So is this now to be a hard and fast rule which relates to User Account passwords as well as Admin or BIOS? Can we no longer suggest logging in as Administrator in Safe Mode (XP only, of course) then blow the password away in User Accounts, when asked by a member with, a few posts on the book?

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Anonymous
a b D Laptop
December 23, 2011 2:53:05 PM

What about Mac OS X? Or router passwords?
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a c 572 D Laptop
January 17, 2012 10:19:40 AM

aford10 said:
I believe we are all on the same page now.
Maybe not so much.
I've been noticing some comments similar to this thread.
DELL 110L BIOS PASSWORD REMOVAL

Doesn't that type of comment go well beyond the "direct them to the manufacturer" policy?

What does a well phrased reply to that type of question look like?








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a b D Laptop
January 17, 2012 11:22:43 AM

While maybe not the most eloquent, de5 gave the needed information. Both replies were good.
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January 17, 2012 11:30:31 AM

Quote:
Is this what you're referring to as being "black and white in the ToS", "content that promotes, encourages, or provides instructional information about illegal activities - specifically hacking, cracking, or phreaking."?

I don't agree that precludes posters from discussing ways of regaining access to Windows computers with forgotten/unknown passwords. I think the chance that it's a stolen computer are pretty slim.

Is it OK to discuss how to boot from a Mac OS X CD to remove a password on a Mac?


aford10 said:
Yes, that's the one. Without knowing for sure who the owner is, helpful advice turns into hacking/bypassing passwords. From the way I read, and have heard from Joe, we direct them to the manufacturer, and close the thread.


Talking about legality, I believe that changing the password on Mac OS X should be given concession on the grounds that Apple states exactly how to do this in their own support articles. If you disagree, I will remove the sticky I have about Mac OS X password reset.
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a c 572 D Laptop
January 17, 2012 11:45:04 AM

aford10 said:
While maybe not the most eloquent, de5 gave the needed information. Both replies were good.
Maybe you can clarify your clarification?

Uploaded with ImageShack.us
Where does this reply "direct them to the manufacturer"

As for de5_roy's reply I don't see why anything beyond the first two lines are needed.
Do we need to impute the motive of someone wanting help to unlock his own system?

Is the sticky topic already in place for that type of frequently asked question not adequate?





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a c 572 D Laptop
January 17, 2012 11:58:22 AM

If both of these replies meet the "direct them to the manufacturer" policy,
and putting yourself in the place of a newly arrived member of the THG forums.
which one is more respectful and likely to keep a new member coming back?


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a b D Laptop
January 17, 2012 12:15:30 PM

amdfangirl said:
Talking about legality, I believe that changing the password on Mac OS X should be given concession on the grounds that Apple states exactly how to do this in their own support articles. If you disagree, I will remove the sticky I have about Mac OS X password reset.


I'll admit that I'm not the most familiar with the OS X methods and policies. I don't want to address this until I have a chance to do some research, or consult with someone more knowledgeable than me with Macs.
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a b D Laptop
January 17, 2012 12:25:00 PM

WR2 said:
Maybe you can clarify your clarification?


When I said both of the replies were fine, I was saying that both are acceptable replies and fall within our forum Terms of Service. One user noted that we can't assist in bypassing passwords, and the other supplied the laptop link.

Not every member will coached to give the same regurgitated response. As long as they fall within the ToS, they are fine by me.
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January 17, 2012 12:58:19 PM

aford10 said:
I'll admit that I'm not the most familiar with the OS X methods and policies. I don't want to address this until I have a chance to do some research, or consult with someone more knowledgeable than me with Macs.


Could you raise this question on the thread in the mod section that I don't have access to and act accordingly to the sticky I have. I will not be present soon until Saturday.
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