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Acer 5552g corrupted bios

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  • Acer
  • Laptops
Last response: in Laptop Tech Support
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May 28, 2012 11:58:39 AM

Hello.

Excuse me if I'm posting in the wrong section but I'm in need of help and I'm not sure what to do anymore.

My Acer 5552g laptop died yesterday. It doesn't show anything on the screen and only one led is lighting up: the one that has a little lightbulb icon above. The cooling fan starts for a few seconds but then it goes into idle. I haven't done anything special with the laptop prior to it malfunctioning. I've just shut it down (it told me that some background software needs to be closed first but I was in a hurry and clicked the force shutdown button) and the next day, when I tried to turn it on it started behaving like I mentioned.

I suspect it might be a corrupted BIOS problem even tho I haven't tried installing a new version of BIOS on it. I have tried the recovery mode technique which involves pressing FN and Esc and then powering it on while having a BIOS.fd file on an USB stick but that didn't work. Today I have disassembled it in order to find and take out the CMOS battery but I am not able to locate it.

I have attached some pictures of the motherboard. Maybe you can help me find the CMOS battery. Or suggest a solution.

Thank you very much!

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a c 572 D Laptop
May 28, 2012 12:55:53 PM

Upper right corner - doesn't that look like a round silver battery to you?
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a c 572 D Laptop
May 28, 2012 12:58:14 PM

Razeh said:
Today I have disassembled it in order to find and take out the CMOS battery but I am not able to locate it.
Do you actually need to take the battery out?
You might be able to just short the CMOS battery contact points to reset the BIOS to default settings.
What does the manual call for you to do?
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a c 572 D Laptop
May 28, 2012 1:00:42 PM

Razeh said:
My Acer 5552g laptop died yesterday. It doesn't show anything on the screen and only one led is lighting up: the one that has a little lightbulb icon above. The cooling fan starts for a few seconds but then it goes into idle.
Does it seem your laptop is actually booting up, apart from the blank screen?

If so your LCD backlight might have failed.

If you hold the screen close to a bright light or shine a flashlight on it - can you make out faint images?
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May 28, 2012 1:24:07 PM

I'm not sure I know how to short up the CMOS battery contact ports. Also I have no idea where the battery is on the MB.

The LCD doesn't light up at all. Also... there are no sounds coming out of the laptop so I doubt it's an LCD failure since I never had any problems with it. On a previous HP laptop the LCD malfunctioned but the problem slowly progressed.
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a c 572 D Laptop
May 28, 2012 1:25:44 PM

Did you look at the picture I put in above?
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May 28, 2012 1:26:44 PM

Didn't see your first reply. It looked like a battery but as I haven't seen many MB's in my life, I decided to not tinker with it before asking for some advice. Also... in the service manual it shows a picture with a removable battery.
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a c 572 D Laptop
May 28, 2012 1:27:41 PM

And it told you how to remove the battery?
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a c 572 D Laptop
May 28, 2012 1:28:28 PM

Wait! didn't the service manual also show you the position of the battery?
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a c 572 D Laptop
May 28, 2012 1:29:33 PM

And I suppose the service manual didn't say anything about CMOS, RTC or BIOS reset procedures?
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May 28, 2012 1:33:00 PM

Here is a screenshot from the service manual.


Also there's some info about how to instal a new BIOS by using a special recovery method. While the laptop is unplugged it tells me to press Fn+Esc and then plug it in and turn it on. Also before turning it on I should have an USB stick with the BIOS file on it. In my case, the name should be BIOS.fd. I have tried that but it didn't work.
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May 28, 2012 1:40:39 PM

Here's the step by step recovery method I have tried using various forums for tips about how to do it. I tried different names for the FD file as well as making a smaller partition on my USB stick since some recommend using a storage device that has less than 2 gig's. I wasn't able to write the file on a CD since I'm using a netbook now.

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a c 572 D Laptop
May 28, 2012 1:55:59 PM

I'm not convinced you had a BIOS problem in the first place.
It's about the last thing I would have thought would fail.
I always suggest a BIOS reset before you move on to a BIOS replacement.
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May 28, 2012 2:00:17 PM

I see. Well what do you think the problem might be? I have googled my issue and everything pointed towards an corrupted BIOS problem.
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a c 572 D Laptop
May 28, 2012 2:01:44 PM

Razeh said:
My Acer 5552g laptop died yesterday. It doesn't show anything on the screen and only one led is lighting up: the one that has a little lightbulb icon above.

That LED light pattern might very well be a diagnostic code explaining what the problem might be.

Does your manual have a section on troubleshooting / diagnostic codes?
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May 28, 2012 2:07:24 PM

I can't seem to find any info about that. I did however find something about "Clear CMOS jumper". Should I try that?
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a c 572 D Laptop
May 28, 2012 2:09:00 PM

That's the same as taking the battery out.
It should reset your BIOS back to default in case there had been a change.
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May 28, 2012 2:12:28 PM

Before trying that... is there anything else I could do before starting to reassemble my laptop?
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a c 572 D Laptop
May 28, 2012 2:13:23 PM

Razeh said:
I've just shut it down (it told me that some background software needs to be closed first but I was in a hurry and clicked the force shutdown button) and the next day, when I tried to turn it on it started behaving like I mentioned.
Usually, when you force a shut down like this (when you shouldn't) the only thing at risk is your Windows installation being corrupted. It really should not have been an issue with your hardware or firmware (BIOS).

On the other hand your screen not displaying anything is a hardware symptom.

Of course you tried reaching the BIOS using F2 at power on and that failed too?



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a c 572 D Laptop
May 28, 2012 2:14:34 PM

After the problem started, could you tell if the HDD would spin up and keep spinning till you forced the shutdown?
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May 28, 2012 2:16:08 PM

Also, in the guide it says that I should remove the RTC battery. And I'm unable to do that.
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May 28, 2012 2:18:21 PM

I'm not sure I did the F2 thinghie since I've tried quite a few methods this days. Also I haven't noticed whether or not my HDD still works.
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a c 572 D Laptop
May 28, 2012 2:18:23 PM

I can't think of anything else you need to check before putting it back together.
The main things you work with in troubleshooting are accessible through the logic door and the HDD bay door.

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a c 572 D Laptop
May 28, 2012 2:19:45 PM

Was the "Clear CMOS jumper" instruction to remove the RTC battery? (RTC battery = CMOS battery).
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May 28, 2012 2:23:12 PM

Here are the exact instructions. They were mentioned as a solution to remove the BIOS password.
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a c 572 D Laptop
May 28, 2012 2:25:54 PM

That looks like it. Touch a screwdriver to those two contacts and BIOS will reset.
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a c 572 D Laptop
May 28, 2012 2:27:17 PM

It says you can disconnect the battery instead of removing it. Can you see how to do that?
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a c 572 D Laptop
May 28, 2012 2:29:02 PM

OK.....lets back up..... it's saying Clear Password only?
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May 28, 2012 2:32:49 PM

Yes. Also after a bit of researching I have found out that the little thing you pinpointed from my first set of pictures is in fact the CMOS battery. It is soldered to the motherboard and I don't think there's a way to remove it.
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a c 572 D Laptop
May 28, 2012 2:36:52 PM

If you can find a section on CMOS or BIOS reset (and not Password reset) I think it will work pretty much the same way.
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May 28, 2012 2:41:47 PM

Found nothing in the manual
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a c 572 D Laptop
May 28, 2012 2:48:42 PM

I'm not finding a whole lot more than what you already have using Google.
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a c 572 D Laptop
May 28, 2012 2:50:02 PM

What you might need to do, Im pretty sure you can do with the laptop reassembled and continue troubleshooting through the removable panels on the bottom.
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May 28, 2012 2:51:54 PM

Will start to put it back togheter then. Tho I'm not sure what else could I try. I hate it that I hadn't extended my warranty.
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a c 572 D Laptop
May 28, 2012 3:23:40 PM

I've looked through the Troubleshooting guides in the manual.
The one that seems to fit the best is the LCD failure chart.
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May 28, 2012 3:37:22 PM

I'll try to follow that chart then.
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a c 572 D Laptop
May 28, 2012 8:33:33 PM

When the power comes on can you hear/feel the HDD spin up? Is there any more activity on the HDD you notice? 30-40 seconds of HDD read activity like the system is trying to boot from the HDD?

Do you have an external monitor you can attach? There might be a Fn+Key combo needed to activate the external screen.
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May 28, 2012 8:48:56 PM

I tried connecting the laptop to an external LCD but it doesn't do anything. I have also tried booting it up without the hard drive and then without the DDR.The hard drive did heat up a bit.

I tested the USB's by plugging in my phone and it did charge. Could this mean that it's not hardware related?
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a c 572 D Laptop
May 28, 2012 8:52:58 PM

You should be able to hear or feel the HDD spinning, plus hear/feel HDD activity like read/write operations.

A phone taking a charge off the USB port would not mean that some other component on the motherboard might have failed.
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a c 572 D Laptop
May 28, 2012 8:54:48 PM

You can test using a bootable CD or DVD if you have one.
That should allow you to bypass a possible problem with the HDD.
But a problem with the HDD alone should not keep the LCD from displaying or keep you from entering BIOS with the F2 key.
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May 28, 2012 8:59:06 PM

So if my laptop behaved the same when I removed the HDD, is there really a point in trying to boot it up with... let's say... a linux dvd? Not sure if I can find one today.

I am, however still thinking about doing that reset CMOS thing but I'm not quite sure how could I short up those two contacts and in what conditions. Should the laptop be plugged in, powered on, does it matter if the CMOS battery is there etc.
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a c 572 D Laptop
May 28, 2012 9:01:47 PM

You've already seen the CMOS reset procedure use for the BIOS password reset. It does reset the CMOS in addition to clearing any password. At this point I see no harm in using it.
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May 28, 2012 9:06:00 PM

Yes but that procedure involves removing the CMOS battery. Won't it harm the battery if I leave it on the motherboard? What do you think my problem could be? Hardware failure?
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a c 572 D Laptop
May 28, 2012 9:09:15 PM

That procedure did NOT involve removing the CMOS battery.

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May 28, 2012 9:32:53 PM

Isn't the RTC battery the same thing as the CMOS battery? Check No. 2
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a c 572 D Laptop
May 28, 2012 9:40:08 PM

It's the only battery.
(RTC battery = CMOS battery)
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May 28, 2012 9:50:26 PM

Yes and it says in step 2 to remove the RTC battery.
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a c 572 D Laptop
May 28, 2012 9:51:50 PM

Where do you see that? I see "Disconnect the RTC battery cable"
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May 28, 2012 9:55:29 PM

Isn't that the same thing? Don't want to be rude or.anything. I just want.to make sure it won't catch on fire.
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a c 572 D Laptop
May 28, 2012 9:56:58 PM

You have more info than I do - you can look at your motherboard figure stuff out that I can only guess at.
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