Latitude D610 request - fix for 137GB BIOS limit

Discussion in 'BIOS Mods' started by LATD610_please, Sep 16, 2010.

  1. tqhoang

    tqhoang MDL BIOS Modder

    Apr 29, 2008
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    Ack...I think I just bricked it trying to hack with the XPS M140 / Inspiron 630m BIOS (aka MXC051). Somehow my bootblock got updated and now the recovery just looks for the MX51???.HDR or BARB???.HDR file. If I try to name the original D610 A06 HDR to "BARBA06.HDR", it appears that the USB floppy is reading for a while, then the laptop powers off...when I power on, it just shuts off now.

    FWIW, my A51 and A81 BIOS'es that I posted should be able to do the USB floppy recovery fine.
     
  2. kizwan

    kizwan MDL Member

    Mar 6, 2010
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    Did you flash BIOS in DOS mode, using phlash16.exe with /bbl switch? If you didn't use /bbl switch, the Boot Block should be intact. Maybe the CMOS is messed up. Try reset CMOS & try recovery again.
     
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  3. kizwan

    kizwan MDL Member

    Mar 6, 2010
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    @tqhoang, which module responsible in HDD size limit?
     
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  4. tqhoang

    tqhoang MDL BIOS Modder

    Apr 29, 2008
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    I'm not sure of exactly which one, but I couldn't get a stable BIOS until I swapped all these modules (01, 03, 04, 05, 07, 08, 15) with the D510 & D810.
     
  5. shakeyplace

    shakeyplace MDL Addicted

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    #48 shakeyplace, Oct 16, 2010
    Last edited by a moderator: Apr 20, 2017
    Tqhoang, sounds like it is looking for a recovery file but rejects the one it finds, possibly checks system name or recovery names in the hdr file. This is a long shot, but here is my suggestion. as you know the bios recovery strings for the MXC051 looks like
    Code:
    Offset      0  1  2  3  4  5  6  7   8  9  A  B  C  D  E  F
    
    00008CF0      42 41 52 42 3F 3F 3F  3F 42 49 4E 00 42 41 52    BARB????BIN.BAR
    00008D00   42 3F 3F 3F 3F 48 44 52  00 42 41 52 42 3F 3F 3F   B????HDR.BARB???
    00008D10   3F 48 44 43 00 4D 58 35  31 3F 3F 3F 3F 42 49 4E   ?HDC.MX51????BIN
    00008D20   00 4D 58 35 31 3F 3F 3F  3F 48 44 52               .MX51????HDR
    what I think may help is the string BARB????.HDC. Here is my theory (I haven't tested but may be worth a try). Dell refers to the bios upgrade executables as "Hard Drive Containers" (HDC), therefore I suspect that if the original bios executable (for the MXC051 of course) were put on the bios recovery floppy and named BARB????.HDC or possibly BARB????.EXE then it should run, you could replace the gzip in the MXC051 executable with the D610 bios and it may run the executable, ie, flash the D610m bios. Long shot, but that string must exist for a reason and I suspect it is to run the bios executable in recovery instead of just reading the extracted hdr file it can run the executable
     
  6. tqhoang

    tqhoang MDL BIOS Modder

    Apr 29, 2008
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    #51 tqhoang, Oct 16, 2010
    Last edited by a moderator: Apr 20, 2017
    I never knew what the HDC was...at least I have another thing to try. Thanks for the info.

    I'm gonna try using Apokrif's split.exe and hex edit some of the outter modules to see if I can make the D610 HDR look like the MXC051. I have a suspicion that the bios recovery is still checking to verify something even though the filename is good.

    Reason I think this is because after the floppy stops getting read, the laptop shuts off. IIRC, the laptop used to take a couple seconds to write the flash and then shut off.

    UPDATE: I tried renaming the D610 A06 BIOS executable to BARBA06.HDC but it did not work.
     
  7. shakeyplace

    shakeyplace MDL Addicted

    May 5, 2007
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    thought so, what I think may have a chance is to use the XPS M140 / Inspiron 630m executable to overcome the built in checks, but first replace the gzip bios file packed in the executable with your working D610 gzipped bios. Do this by searching for 1F 8B 08 00 and replace from there to end of file (except last four bytes of executable, 5C 00 10 00) with the gzipped working bios from your D610, then rename it and place on usb stick... Did it read the USB like it did with the hdr file?
     
  8. tqhoang

    tqhoang MDL BIOS Modder

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    #53 tqhoang, Oct 17, 2010
    Last edited: Oct 17, 2010
    Oh thank goodness...I'm kind of back online. What finally got it working was the following:
    - Take original D610 A06 HDR file and rename to "MX51A06.HDR".
    - Changed all "Latitude D610" strings to "MXC051" and pad out with nulls (0x00) where necessary.
    - Fix up the ROM checksum

    Now my D610 is running the D610 A06 BIOS, but I the BIOS recovery still looks for the MX51???.HDR or BARB???.HDR filenames. Gonna play around with it until I can get it back to recovering with the AZED???.HDR.

    Perhaps the -readgzfile that got me into this whole mess is the final piece to re-write the BIOS recovery...crossing fingers again.
     
  9. tqhoang

    tqhoang MDL BIOS Modder

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    #54 tqhoang, Oct 17, 2010
    Last edited: Oct 17, 2010
    Ok, I'm fully back to normal. It turns out that I only needed to swap strings for the last instance. This equates to the 04-01-00.bin part of the HDR at offset 0xF4054.

    So it appears that in order for me to flash another BIOS using the USB floppy recovery, I only need to update that string, fix the checksums and name the file AZED???.HDR.

    Now that has me thinking that I could just use the real D510 or D810 BIOS HDR files and just mod the string at offset 0xF4054 and the checksums. But I've had enough anxiety for a few days...time to take a break. :)
     
  10. JUSTANOTHERUSER

    JUSTANOTHERUSER MDL Novice

    Jan 25, 2010
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    I have several d610 laptops and I have 320 gigs in them. At first Windows XP SP3 would not start into windows after copying files. What I did is just created a small 80gb partition during Windows install process (or you can use gparted live cd or parted magic or any other Linux Distro) and installed Windoze in it and AFTER running ALL my security updates, I went ahead and expanded the partion to take up whole 320gb drive and it worked just fine. I laso did this on some Dell d800/d810. I am not sure if this is for this section, but I read the six pages and it looks like there is an issue having Windows installed. Either way, just let me know if this helps anyone.
     
  11. shakeyplace

    shakeyplace MDL Addicted

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    #57 shakeyplace, Oct 28, 2010
    Last edited: Oct 28, 2010
    Hi tqhoang, I got my test board and flashed with your first test bios, sorry no luck, unless you consider successful recovery luck... If you come up with any more I will of course be happy to test.. I will make a few attempts myself as well when my time perrmits but I don't expect to make too many in the next while unless you come up with some..
    wait a sec, the one I tried was your first one. is there any major differences between that and your latest? I will likely get to it tomorrow..
     
  12. tqhoang

    tqhoang MDL BIOS Modder

    Apr 29, 2008
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    Yes, the first one might not even have all the right modules...I just swapped the same ones as I did with the D510 BIOS (with AndyP's PhoenixTool). The 2nd one completely replaces the chained modules portion of the D610 A06 HDR with that of the D810 A05...so the entire BIOS should be intact...used WinHex for that one.

    Any idea which module might contain the code that initializes the Intel MCH or ICH?
     
  13. gabiz_ro

    gabiz_ro MDL Member

    Feb 2, 2010
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    Try search for vendor id 1028 01CD which is Dell ones then replace with something else 1025 .. 1029 then maybe you can locate few parts that setup chipset registers.
     
  14. shakeyplace

    shakeyplace MDL Addicted

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    #60 shakeyplace, Oct 29, 2010
    Last edited: Oct 29, 2010
    Well, better than the first attempt, it seemed to start up but no video, it didn't shut back down, lights stayed on, but no display...

    note, recovery went fine, as a test I attempted to boot from usb drive, drive lights flashed as if it were booting from usb, therefore I believe the ATI X300 bios must be broken somehow? not sure exactly what it was you done, but it does appear to boot from USB but display screen does not light up,
    Maybe try keeping the ATI bios from the D810? I see you never replaced the very beginning or the part with the ATI X300 bios, something must be broken there with the X300, maybe try keeping the video bioses from the D810 as well?