I Bricked My Computer With a BIOS Update. But There’s Hope!


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The display screen went black, then nothing.

The notification in my activity tray prompt a driver replace, and I had a while, so I acquiesced. This explicit alert prompted me to replace the BIOS, and the handy Intel Driver and Support Assistant let me do that proper from Windows. I not often up to date my firmware; nevertheless, for the previous two years, I’ve been having fun with the Hades Canyon NUC, an ultra-small kind issue machine the dimensions of a paperback novel succesful of low-end AAA gaming.

This bastard of a tool is the love little one between Intel and Radeon graphics processors, with two graphical brains cleverly parked in a single pc physique. Intel handles the day-to-day visuals, and Radeon takes over for visually intensive work. It’s a slick machine, however preserving the drivers and firmware present has ensured regular operation. Prior updates from this device relieved a litany of bugs earlier than they grew to become too annoying to troubleshoot. So I ran the replace with out a lot thought.

How It All Began

Several minutes handed. The display screen indicated the flash replace accomplished efficiently simply earlier than it went clean. As the minutes pressed on, the mild hum of the pc sounded boring and inanimate. I grew nervous that I’d missed a essential step. Darkness pouring from my display screen, I searched the web for BIOS replace directions. “Do NOT at any time power off the computer at this stage”. Intel’s directions for this two- to five-minute process went on: “If a BIOS update process is interrupted, your computer might not function properly.” I used to be being mocked by the person guide.

An hour later, I restarted the pc. The display screen’s final data displayed earlier than going darkish learn, “Flash update has completed successfully”; I remained doubtful. When I pressed the smooth glowing plastic energy button, the lights on the case fluttered to life. The monitor, nevertheless, remained naked. The lights confirmed energy was attending to the machine, however nothing extra. For just a few moments, I’d yielded to the omnipotence of the Intel Driver and Support Assistant, not even taking just a few moments to again up vital recordsdata. The show glowed simply sufficient to exhibit it was powered on, providing no data from its host.

Several choices remained for reversing course. I ready a bootable flash drive with the most recent model of the BIOS, though I didn’t have the prescience to attach the replace to my distress. The frantic run to a neighbor’s home to arrange a flash drive on his pc certainly confused him, although he consented. Most of the restoration choices required operational BIOS menus, and my machine wouldn’t even get there. I had by no means carried out both of the viable remaining choices; an influence button menu replace or restoration by safety jumper. The energy button menu replace concerned holding down the facility button and releasing at precisely the best second to primarily power a menu choice for these unable to entry a menu. The safety jumper concerned opening the case and bodily shifting items round on the motherboard. In an effort to protect the pc’s innards, I opted to begin with the facility button menu replace.

Success! Blackness yielded to the facility button menu. The white terminal typeface greeted my eyes like a beacon of hope. I hurriedly chosen BIOS restoration earlier than it disappeared. The display screen was a facade, mocking me with an unreachable carrot on a stick. Keystrokes triggered no response. Unsure if I’d by chance pressed the fallacious button in my haste, I rebooted with comparable outcomes. The surgical strategy remained my solely possibility.

Oh, No: Time for Surgery

I gathered my miniature screwdriver set to aim the replace by way of safety jumper. This course of concerned eradicating the case of the pc to seek out the minuscule CMOS battery in addition to a near-microscopic yellow piece of plastic, each on the motherboard. The plastic wanted to be faraway from just a few delicate steel prongs and positioned on two completely different, simply as fragile spikes. This maneuver felt additional difficult with the ultra-small kind issue NUC and its tightly compacted parts. I used to be out of the blue conscious of my lack of consideration to element and precision as I set to work.

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