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Windows 10 News and User discussion

Discussion in 'Computers' started by Sam Posten, Sep 30, 2014.

  1. Message #881 of 903 Jan 10, 2019
    Last edited: Jan 10, 2019
    Tony Bensley

    Tony Bensley Producer

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    I've tried both with no luck. :(

    In my opinion, it shouldn't be this easy to bung up a system in the first place. Yeah, I'm kicking myself for changing the UEFI setting to Legacy, but I'm also kind of pissed off that Acer didn't make a more failsafe setup. Mere setting changes in bios shouldn't cause irreversible shit like this to occur, in my opinion.

    CHEERS! :)
     
  2. BobO'Link

    BobO'Link Producer

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    What you're seeing is normal on some systems when you switch from UEFI to Legacy. BUT - you should be able to get into the BIOS and switch it back at which point it should start properly. It's possible that model uses a different key to get into the BIOS. Try F10 and/or "esc" as well. If you can't get any of these to work and there's a "Function" key on the keyboard (usually Fn) press and hold that one down that while tapping any of the others. The goal is to get into BIOS. That's usually F1, F2, F10, DEL, or ESC - it all depends on the BIOS manufacturer. Acer is supposed to be either F2 or DEL - but you could have an odd one. You can google the model along with BIOS and get what *should* be correct for your system.

    All that the NTLDR error is telling you is the system can't find the correct file on the HD based on information in the boot partition. With a new drive that shouldn't even be an issue unless it already had an OS on it as that's an OS issue/error and only appears after POST (acronym for Power On Self Test) has completed. To get into the BIOS you have to press the correct function key before POST completes. If the system isn't fully powered off you'll never get into the BIOS, but that shouldn't be an issue here. To make sure you can press and hold the power button for at least 10 seconds. If it's somehow in sleep or hibernation mode that'll force it completely off. Another way to make sure it's completely off is to remove the power brick and take the battery out. While the battery is out press the power button a couple of times to drain any power off the motherboard. Then put the battery back, restore the power brick, and try again

    I really wish you lived close enough for me to lay hands on it - I'm sure we could get it going.
     
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  3. Tony Bensley

    Tony Bensley Producer

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    I really wish that too Howie.

    When I power on the system, it goes to the Acer logo within a second or two at the most. Along the bottom of the screen, it indicates to press <F2> to enter setup, and <F12> to change boot device, BUT neither of those functions are allowing me to bypass the "NTLDR is missing" screen, in order to allow me to get into bios. I've also attempted the 10 second power button hold, which shuts off my Acer Laptop; the battery removal; press power button a few times to drain the remaining power from the Motherboard, and repeat, all to no avail.

    The maddening part for me, is my Windows 10 Installation USB, which does have boot mgr files, does light up when I power on my system, and also shuts off when I press Ctrl+Alt+Del to restart, and then lights up again, which tells me the USB port is functional. If only I could somehow bypass that darn NTLDR screen to get into bios to reset that Legacy setting to UEFI, ugh!

    Very frustrating. :unsure:
     
  4. Tony Bensley

    Tony Bensley Producer

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    When I press the "Esc" key, I do get this screen briefly before the inevitable "NTLDR is missing" display returneth! :rolleyes:
    IMAG0327.

    The frustration continues...
     
  5. BobO'Link

    BobO'Link Producer

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    OK... If you have that USB drive plugged in when you boot and get the NTLDR error - boot without it being plugged in. It's possible the system *is* trying to boot that drive and it's just not set properly for the way the BIOS is configured. You can verify your USB drive by removing the HD from the system and then trying to boot the USB drive - if you still get the NTLDR error then that drive is either corrupt or the BIOS is preventing proper boot. BUT if you remove the HD *and* make sure the USB drive isn't plugged in you should be able to get into the BIOS as there'll be nothing but the BIOS available. Make your changes, save them, power off, install the HD and try again.

    If that's not it or still doesn't work the only idea I have left is to take the HD out of the Acer, put it as a *second* drive in another system (can be a pain) *or* (better) connect it to another system with a SATA-USB cable and use the Windows partition utility to make sure the drive is truly blank and wiped. Using Windows built-in tools is not for the faint of heart. If you're not careful you can get on the wrong partition and wipe a drive you need to keep.
     
  6. Tony Bensley

    Tony Bensley Producer

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    OK, there may be a break through of sorts:

    Removing my hard drive did allow me to access the Windows 10 Installation USB. The following options are presented on two different screens:

    IMG_20190111_143202.

    These are the options presented when I select the Troubleshoot option:
    IMG_20190111_143524.
    I'm assuming that the absence of my main hard drive is why the option that allowed me into Bios to change from UEFI to Legacy via my Windows 10 Installation USB in the first place, is not available here!

    This is the screen I get with no hard drive or USB stick connected:
    IMG_20190111_144106.
    Sadly, neither F2 nor F12 selections seem to be of any help in this case, either! The only selection that I've found to change anything is <Fn> <F6> which merely makes the screen go black, which I can get out of by pressing any key.

    Other than perhaps connecting one of my external hard drives or memory sticks which hopefully might give me the change UEFI settings option via Windows 10 Installation (As getting in via F command options appears to be utterly hopeless, unless I'm missing something!), I'm not sure what to try next.

    Any more suggestions, Howie?

    CHEERS! :)
     
  7. BobO'Link

    BobO'Link Producer

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    You should be able to get into the BIOS with no drive installed/attached. You may be pressing F2 a bit too late. Start tapping the key (don't hold it down - do a press of the key every half second or so) as soon as you turn it on.

    What's happening is there's an OS on that HD and with the BIOS changed it can't boot properly. It also has a mini routine on it that's providing access to the BIOS *after* POST. If it's installed you should still be able to get a boot priority screen to come up pressing F10 (possibly F12 - don't know for sure on the Acer) and simply select the USB stick to continue the boot rather than the HD. Same goes for the BIOS - if you're hitting the correct key early enough during POST you'll get to the BIOS setup. Once the system boots/tries to boot from a device, internal or external, it's usually too late for BIOS access.
     
  8. Tony Bensley

    Tony Bensley Producer

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    Perhaps I "SHOULD" be able to access the bios with no drives attached, but unfortunately, in following your suggestion to hit the F2 key early, plus holding the F2 key even before powering on, along with repeated pressing, it just isn't working for me. What does happen is I'll get a very brief flickering of the Acer Logo screen, followed briefly by the upper left hand corner Acer PC specs, before it goes to the DOS screen as seen in my last post.

    So far, the only success I've had is in trying the boot into the Windows 10 Installation USB stick method, which I'm only able to access when I have my main hard drive disconnected, which is a huge problem as I'm unable to install Windows 10 on any other devices according to the following message:
    IMG_20190111_160340.
    I should also note again that previous connecting of my wife's functioning Windows 10 hard drive to my Laptop didn't work for me either, as I got the same "NTLDR is missing" screen that came up with my empty 60 GB hard drive, ever since I switched from UEFI to Legacy mode via my Windows 10 installation setup, and no, that option is still not presenting with this current attempt, either.

    How else can bios be accessed on a laptop when absolutely everything else has failed? I'm thinking that Acer pulled this crap on purpose just so that servicing would be required for something that should otherwise be fairly simple and straightforward, or am I mistaken? :blink:
     
  9. Message #889 of 903 Jan 11, 2019
    Last edited: Jan 11, 2019
    BobO'Link

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    Do you have a SATA to USB adapter?

    Here are a few inexpensive ones:

    https://www.amazon.ca/NewBull-Adapter-Cable-Laptop-Drive/dp/B00YBMVIUE/ref=sr_1_32?ie=UTF8&qid=1547242464&sr=8-32&keywords=sata+to+usb

    https://www.amazon.ca/QICENT-Adapter-Converter-Detachable-Support/dp/B01M6VY0HF/ref=sr_1_15?ie=UTF8&qid=1547242434&sr=8-15&keywords=sata+to+usb

    https://www.amazon.ca/ELEGIANT-Converter-Adapter-Supports-III%EF%BC%8C10CM/dp/B00TH1B250/ref=sr_1_6?ie=UTF8&qid=1547242434&sr=8-6&keywords=sata+to+usb

    Using one of those would allow you to connect it to your wife's working system and use diskpart to blow out the existing partitions. Since it'd be blank your external USB would boot and you'd then be able to install Windows on the now clean/empty partition.
     
  10. Message #890 of 903 Jan 11, 2019
    Last edited: Jan 11, 2019
    Tony Bensley

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    For the record, I just did the F2 on my wife's identical Acer Laptop, and bios came up instantly.

    I believe it was the changing of the UEFI setting on this screen that has caused all of my troubles!
    IMG_20190111_164703.

    CHEERS! :)

    P.S. What I may also do later is remove the hard drive from my wife's Acer Laptop to see whether also having the main hard drive connected factors into being able to enter the Acer bios at all.
     
  11. BobO'Link

    BobO'Link Producer

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    Yep... it's worth a shot - just don't make any changes! ;)
     
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  12. Clinton McClure

    Clinton McClure Casual Enthusiast
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    Tony - What happens when you hold F10 while powering on your laptop? Don’t continuously press it, just hold it down. If your bios is an “Acer” bios, it should restore it to a bootable state.
     
  13. Tony Bensley

    Tony Bensley Producer

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    Should I disconnect all externals before attempting this, Clint?
     
  14. Tony Bensley

    Tony Bensley Producer

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    Oh, I've most definitely learned my lesson, Howie! :P

    While I still plan to test entering bios with the removal of the hard drive from my wife's Acer Laptop, I have a very uneasy feeling based on what I read at the end of the link below, regarding Bios (CMOS?) Battery removal:

    https://www.dell.com/community/Laptops-General-Read-Only/Can-t-enter-BIOS-after-changing-from-Secure-UEFI-to-Legacy/td-p/5108327

    I have no idea how readily accessible the Bios battery is in my setup, and I certainly don't want to risk permanent damage in any effort to dig it up. On the other hand, I can't afford to pay for any servicing at the moment, either. Oy vey! :unsure:
     
  15. BobO'Link

    BobO'Link Producer

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    Wow! That's a new one... But I mostly deal with corporate builds and they don't have the issues you've seen by simply changing mode. Basically - getting into the BIOS is never an issue and it's sometimes required to change some of those settings for imaging systems.

    Anyway... with luck the BIOS battery will be obvious on the motherboard. Some have a jumper or switch you can flip/set to put the BIOS back into default mode (essentially doing what Clint suggested via hardware - I'd read that about ACER computers but it seemed rather extreme to fix what should be a rather simple thing). Before looking at it as a possibility I'd do a google with your model number and "replace BIOS battery" as search criteria. That would hopefully get something showing how difficult, or not, that process may be.

    In any case, give Clint's suggestion a try. With luck that'll get you back to where you were before.
     
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  16. Clinton McClure

    Clinton McClure Casual Enthusiast
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    It shouldn’t matter but you might just to be safe. If it works correctly, you should hear two beeps which is confirmation the bios has reset. After that, you should be able to attempt to boot or enter bios again if you wish. Like mentioned above, it’s a less intrusive way of resetting it back to default than cracking it open and moving jumpers on the motherboard.
     
  17. Message #897 of 903 Jan 11, 2019
    Last edited: Jan 11, 2019
    Tony Bensley

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    Unfortunately, it didn't work Clint. :(

    Based on an instructional on YouTube, the BIOS/CMOS Battery for my model is located beneath the upper left corner of the keyboard; in short, a major bloody headache!

    Why would any computer manufacturer make getting locked out of BIOS easy as picking the wrong setting to change within its graphic user interface, and such a massive pain in the ass to get back into at the same time?

    F**K ACER!!!! :angry::angry::angry::angry:
     
  18. Clinton McClure

    Clinton McClure Casual Enthusiast
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    It was worth a shot anyway.
     
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  19. Message #899 of 903 Jan 11, 2019
    Last edited: Jan 11, 2019
    Tony Bensley

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    For the record, what looks likely to be the BIOS/CMOS Battery is located behind the SD Bay on the upper right hand side of this identical to my Acer Aspire e1-522 model as pictured:
    IMG_20190111_202634.

    I guess at this stage, I'm just going to have to accept that my Acer bios fix is apt to be costly, along with hard drive replacement. Hence, I'm at an impasse, at least for the time being!

    Thanks especially to Howie, and also to Clint and Mike for all of your input.

    CHEERS! :)
     
  20. BobO'Link

    BobO'Link Producer

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    Last option - and it's a bit drastic.

    I found that video you reference. It doesn't look too bad... but is a pain. If you go that route be careful with the ribbon connectors as they can be damaged easily if pulled in the wrong direction. Some have a metal lock plate that keeps them in place. Those usually lift slightly to allow the ribbon to be pulled out. You'll also want a spludger (basically a thin metal or plastic flat blade that's used to pry apart the case to pop those friction tabs open without damaging the case or tabs) to help with case disassembly.

    [​IMG]

    Rather than attempting to remove the BIOS battery you might be able to locate and "short" across the CMOS reset jumper pads. This diagram is one I found for the E1-521 model but yours should be similar. The jumper connections are under the RAM, which you'll have to remove to access. Use some hemostats or needle nose pliers to short across the connections and then press the power button. It only takes a couple of seconds following turning the system on for the CMOS to clear using this method. Do not let the pliers touch any connections other than the 2 CMOS pads. If your system doesn't have the pads labeled as CMOS (like in this image) or the location is vague then just don't experiment as you can ruin the motherboard if you short the wrong pins. This will have the same effect as removing the CMOS battery.

    upload_2019-1-11_21-9-49.
     
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