Mod a WYSE Sx0 thin client BIOS?

Discussion in 'BIOS Mods' started by Galane, Mar 1, 2017.

  1. Galane

    Galane MDL Novice

    Feb 11, 2013
    46
    5
    0
    It's a small file. I don't know what brand of BIOS it is or if it's a custom one. https://www.sendspace.com/file/bicegz

    I'd like to find out if the BIOS has any hidden functions. All that's available to change is the boot order and how much video memory. Boot order default is IDE USB PXE. When it boots from IDE it resets the boot order back to default.
    Default password is Fireport.

    One thing I'd like to hack is how it "disables" the IDE controller when booted from USB. It's not actually disabled, an operating system can probe for it then use it. See the bottom of this page http://www.parkytowers.me.uk/thin/wyse/s10/Linux.shtml

    A mod would need to increment the version number to make the USB flasher utility update it. The 1.15 displayed in the minimal setup screen is not what the updater goes by, there's a number flashed on the upper left corner of the display during boot. Highest is 4.6. I had one of these that showed 1.15 in setup but 2.3 during boot. The 4.6 version also shows 1.15 in setup.

    The WYSE Sx0 thin clients used an AMD Geode GX500 366Mhz x86 compatible CPU. Does not have PAE. Combining video, north and south bridge, USB 2.0, IDE, AC97 controller and more is the Geode Companion CS5536.
    The AC97 codec chip is a Realtek ALC655. Ethernet is Realtek RTL8100.

    Maximum RAM is 512 meg in a single PC2700 CL 2.5 SODIMM.

    The original version had RAM soldered to the board and used a proprietary Disk On Module for other than ThinOS versions. The second revision (which had at least two identically operating versions, can tell without opening by the black or silver CPU heat sink and on the black heat sink version the network LEDs glow through the top grille) added the SODIMM socket and 44 pin 2.5" IDE header.

    S10 = ThinOS, S30 = Windows CE, S50 = Wyse Linux V6, S90 = XP Embedded.

    There were kits to install XP Embedded on ones that didn't come with it. They included a CD-ROM, a 512 meg flash module and a 512 meg SODIMM. There was also a kit to install ThinOS onto the S30, S50 or S90. It used the IDE flash module.

    Switching among the operating systems WYSE used on the Sx0 series is easy. There's an XML file with a plaintext key code. One code each for ThinOS, Windows CE, WYSE Linux, and Windows XP Embedded. ThinOS was installed in an oversized BIOS chip while the others used an Apacer IDE flash module, varying in size from 32 to 512 megabytes.

    Switching among the operating systems WYSE used on the Sx0 series is easy. There's an XML file with a plaintext key code. One code each for ThinOS, Windows CE, WYSE Linux, and Windows XP Embedded. ThinOS was installed in an oversized BIOS chip while the others used an Apacer IDE flash module, varying in size from 32 to 512 megabytes.

    I have three S30's. After updating them all to the last released Windows CE 6, I switched the one with a 128 meg flash to WYSE Linux V6, that's where I found the XML key. Copied and pasted the code from the WinCE update file to the Linux update file.

    I got a 4 meg Apacer module for one and put 512 meg in it and the one with the 128 meg flash. The one that still has only 64 meg flash is going to get FreeDOS so I can see if old MS-DOS CNC control software for a benchtop milling machine can run on it. All the mill uses is a single RS232C connection to a control computer, which can be anything back to an IBM 5150, with as much EMS RAM as it can be setup with.