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HP ZBook 17 G2 Category: Mobile Workstation System SKU: G6Z40AV

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BIOS password on HP ZBook 17 G2

I have a BIOS password on my HP Zbook 17 G2, which I do not know the password for. Any ideas? It will not let me boot into a DVD or USB, and as such I cannot do a fresh install of Windows 10. I also cannot do dual booting either.

Any ideas on how to get this rectified would be appreciated as these laptops are not cheap, and having a BIOS password is not ideal!

Update (11/01/2021)

Thanks everyone for your suggestions so far! :) I no longer have this HP Zbook G2, but hopefully these steps will go some way to helping other people that have this issue!

@ruggb - HP’s BIOS passwords are stored in non volatile memory that isn’t cleared once you’ve reset the BIOS battery (yes I did check this). HP themselves are useless and no longer supply the files required to reset the BIOS. They recommend an entire new motherboard, which obviously isn’t going to happen.

Now if you have the correct tools for the job, you can use a hot air/reflow station to remove the BIOS chips from the motherboard, and use a programmer to re-program the BIOS, but I don’t have the equipment to do this at present.

@sunflowerthomas removing the CMOS battery didn’t work for me. I tried that, to no avail.

Guy Fawkes - I would have tried this if I still had the laptop. Unfortunately I don’t have the laptop anymore, and I would alos have to load two operating systems onto the machine (windows 7 & 10). Having a M.2 adapter definitely helps (but I didn’t have one when I had the laptop). It might work - I’ll bear this in mind if I ever come across a BIOS locked laptop in the future. (The laptop still booted, but I couldn’t change the boot order, or boot off any external device.)

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Install the OS on another machine. When the install is complete and the system restarts power down the machine. Move the drive over, modify bootrec so it gives a choice menu for OS selection. This is how you get beyond the BIOS password issue on these machines. If you do it right it will even pull the old windows key. Legit. And totally a IT Pro fix

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Hi, thank you for your suggestion! I no longer have this laptop, I ended up returning it in the end for a refund, as it would have been too much work to get the way I wanted. But if I only wanted Windows 10, or Windows 7, and didn't care about any of the BIOS options, then yeah, this laptop would have still been fine.

Only true fix would have been to desolder the BIOS chips off the motherboard, use a programmer to read the data, find the password, clear it, then put the BIOS chips back on the motherboard. I didn't, and still don't, have the equipment to do this.

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do a search for “backdoor bios passwords”

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Seems like HPs don't have backdoor/master BIOS passwords, and in any case, removing and reseating the CMOS hasn't worked, so the BIOS password is not in volatile memory.

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You can’t use your laptop unless you buy a new laptop.

(EDIT)

Video

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Sorry, not happening, there's no way I'm going to completely write off a £300 laptop. If HP want to give me a new logic board free of charge, I'm up for that.

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check this search result

https://h30434.www3.hp.com/t5/Notebooks-...

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HP are completely and utterly useless; they don't supply the BIOS files anymore and would rather you buy a new motherboard and/or scrap the whole PC. IMO this should be made illegal under "Right To Repair" laws etc.

After all, how can you repair a PC when it is BIOS locked and you can't boot to anything?

I'd rather just buy an unlocker and risk manually unlocking the BIOS myself, rather thn give HP the delight of scrapping a perfectly good motherboard. Unless HP will supply and fit the motherboard to my laptop at no charge, that is.

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take out the hard drive put it in a dock and clone the drive from another computer if its win10 it will reconfigure the os to work i did same to mine got drunk and paranoid put a bios password in and forgot it tried thousands of passwords to no avail

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Thank you for the suggestion - I don't have the laptop anymore (I returned it) and have a HP Zbook G1 instead, that does NOT have a BIOS password. :)

I would have needed both Windows 7 & Windows 10, furthermore the boot disk would have been a 512GB M.2 SSD so I'd have needed to first load Windows 7 & 10 onto another laptop, transfer both OSes onto a 2.5in hard drive (the Zbooks have 2x HDD bays as well as an M.2 slot), then transfer the OSes again from the HDD to the M.2 SSD. That would have been too much work...

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If it's any help, I have two Thinkpads which had an unknown bios passwords when I bought them from a university IT surplus. They were cheap because they were considered bricked. I found a procedure to ground the correct motherboard pins with a piece of wire that succeeded in clearing the passwords. Maybe other laptops can be saved in a similar way...

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Hi @dschind,

Perhaps providing the pins' board component designation or their location would also help.

Cheers

Moderator

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Those are history; no backdoor password, like HP. HSW-present Lenovo's can't be easily hacked like you could because of Boot Guard.

TIme for a new motherboard.

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HP is a pain, and essentially requires a BIOS dump; you need to pull the flash ROM data off of the board, backup the original information and then dump it, and then reflash the unlocked BIOS to the laptop. This isn't something a lot of people can do and HP does not support this, so it does not work on all HP laptops with this problem. If that's the case, it's a motherboard replacement. The main thing is DO NOT KEEP ONE COPY OF THE ORIGINAL DATA; make TWO copies and modify the 2nd copy of the original dump.

You dodged a bullet by returning it. I had to replace the motherboard on an HP I got cheap with an unexpected BIOS password with a junk chassis and screen but intact motherboard because I do not have a flash reader which could do the Winbound 256MiB SPI flash the one I did it on can do.

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