Clearing the CMOS

A client of mine had somehow found themselves locked out of their laptop computer due to there being a BIOS password.

Switching the Toshiba Satellite C50D laptop on would immediately present the “Enter Password” message (before the OS can be instructed to load):

bios_password

After three attempts the system restarts and I was back to the same:

bios_password_fail

Normally I would either short some pins on the motherboard, or remove the CMOS battery for a few seconds to clear the BIOS settings, but this is a new laptop and there is no CMOS battery to remove (just a blank area on the board instead).

I looked online for a solution and found steps (in the form of a Youtube video) for clearing the CMOS on one particular laptop which involved locating two soldered contact points and shorting them (I used a bent paper-clip) for over a minute during a few routines with a RAM module out and then in, powering the laptop with a mains lead for the procedure. I found some tiny contact points labelled JCMOS (not the same as the example I found) but the procedure didn’t work for me.

clearing_the_cmos

Another possible solution was to short each of the contact points in turn with the chunky RAM slot grounding point (near one of the two clips), but still no joy.

Some time later after originally posting this page ‘Raul’ kindly contacted me with the steps he took. His comment is below but in Spanish, so here is how I have translated it – I haven’t had the opportunity to try his suggestion myself but I have heard back from others who have been successful.

[Disclaimer: Dismantling of the laptop may be required; don’t attempt if you don’t know what you’re doing. You attempt any solution at your own risk.]

6 Steps to reset the password/delete the BIOS:
1. Remove the hard drive
2. Leave the RAM installed.
3. Withdraw the battery
4. Get a bent paper-clip and make contact with the two JPW contact points. [Here is an updated image:]

toshiba_cmos_jpw

Remember that the JPW are not those of JCMOS; the JPW contacts are little more away from the JCMOS and are immediately [adjacent to?] JCMOS RAM.
5. With the charger plugged in keep contact with the JPW points, then you have to turn on the laptop while removing [and then remove] the paper-clip. Then appears the Toshiba logo on the screen, and you are ready the password is cleared.


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8 comments

  1. Equipo: Satellite C55D-B5310
    para resetear la contraseña de la bios yo lo que hice fue
    1.- quitar el disco duro
    2. dejar la memoria ram puesta donde esta de fabrica.
    3.-Retirarle la bateria
    4.- conseguir una grapa, de esas que sirven para unir las hojas, el
    objetivo es hacer que los 2 contactos de el JPW hagan contacto, recuerden que son los del JPW y no los del JCMOS, los contactos de el JPW estan poco mas alejados de la JCMOS y la JCMOS estan enseguida de la memoria ram.
    5.- con el cargador enchufado hay que hacer contacto con la grapa en el JPW, luego hay que encender la laptop sin dejar de soltar la grapa. luego aparecera el simbolo de toshiba y listo, ya se habra eliminado la contraseña.

    a mi esto me funciono, si tienen alguna duda contactenme a urquidi7285@gmail.com

    • Gracias Raúl. Fue no mi portátil, por lo tanto no puedo intentarlo de nuevo inmediatamente. Pero si veo un problema como este, tu consejo será muy útil. Brian.

    • I can only guess that there must be a similar process but from the pictures I’ve seen, the layout of components on the motherboard is different so I can’t be of any more help, sorry.

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