[coreboot] Replacing Faulty Laptop BIOS

Cristi Magherusan Cristi.Magherusan at net.utcluj.ro
Sat Jul 4 23:27:18 CEST 2009


On Sat, 2009-07-04 at 09:17 +0100, Mike Lothian wrote:
> Hi
> The BIOS on my Samsung R510 is faulty and causes major issues under ANY 64bit OS
> As the laptop has 4G of RAM it' either I use 32bit OS and loose some
> or suffer the consequences
> If the laptop if unplugged (or plugged in) this causes an instant
> reboot. I'm also unable to control the screen brighness.
> I think the BIOS maybe using the 3-4GB range perhaps causing the reboot
32 bit OSes are limited to 3GB, unless you are using a kernel with PAE
support. This thread provides a quite good explanation:
For more you can read the wikipedia page about PAE.

> As I said previously this effects all 64bit OSs (Vista and W7
> included) and Samsung have shown no interest in fixing the problem
> Is there a way to test out coreboot to see if it could replace my BIOS?
Laptops are very tricky to work with, since they usually have some
special chips (called ECs) which do all kind of funky stuff. Those are
barely documented, if at all, so it's quite unlikely to support them,
unless you can invest a few months/years of work to get it done...
Coreboot is a work in progress, current versions work on a few
dozens/hundreds of desktop boards, and most of the time with incomplete
feature support, so don't expect too much of it either.

Also, you should be ready to hack your hardware (like soldering a socket
onto it - http://www.coreboot.org/Soldering_a_socket_on_your_board),
which will void your warranty, ofcourse.

Anyway, I didn't meant to discourage you. Feel free to browse our wiki
and read some docs about porting coreboot to a new platform, maybe you 
will get prepared to do it, but only attempt to do it after you have a
good backup plan and be aware of what can happen by reading the
documentation first.

Here you have some links that worth reading:

> It's an Intel 4 series chipset.
> Thanks in advance for any advice or pointers to HOWTOs you can provide
> Cheers
> Mike

Ing. Cristi Măgherușan, System/Network Engineer
Technical University of Cluj-Napoca, Romania
http://cc.utcluj.ro  +40264 401247
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