Dapper corrupts Dell laptop BIOS!

Francisco Borges f.borges at rug.nl
Tue Aug 29 11:30:11 UTC 2006

» On Tue, Aug 29, 2006 at 03:35AM -0700, Tod Merley wrote:

> Hi Francisco Borges!

Hi Tod Merley!

> First of all, my regrets at the loss of your time and efforts.
> If it were me, I would switch distro or OS immediately.  You do not
> have time for this.  The PhD is more important, simply!  Linux is
> "volunteer" software without any promise.

Will you, *please*, spare me from comments of how to run my life?

Will you, *please*, stop with the provocative personal attacks and focus
on the bug?

It makes me a bit confuse, you see. So far, it's not very clear if your
point is to help solving a problem, or attacking me (like a fanboy) for
making critics to the distribution.

> Still, if you want to pursue this I would:
> [...]

As far as I can tell, you have not spend any of your time giving any
serious thought about this bug, nor trying to help to track down the
bug. I have this impression, since you are so focused on suggesting a
battery failure, I think that you would not be saying this, if you had
read the bug report.

Let me explain some things:

1. The hangs are all cause at the moment that the computer checks the
   BIOS for consistency; which by default is only done after editing the
   BIOS itself.

2. that explains why the problem is hard to diagnose. the damage may
   have been caused months ago, but it will only stop your computer once
   you edit the BIOS. (*probably* resetting everything to default values
   and reediting the whole BIOS could be a way to avoid locking the

3. The BIOS are all corrupted the same way, giving the same error
   message. AFAIK it would be hard to have this if it was just a poor
   battery (or not?).

> 0. Change out the CMOS battery.  They do go flaky.  Also check the
> connections to the battery!!!
> 0.a Update your flash BIOS!  This may have been fixed by this time or
> a mistake corrected (an unlikely crash of mistakes now corrected).
> 1. Go to www.dell.com - obtain the service manual for my machine -
> read the critical pages on the CMOS battery - replace the battery.
> 2. Google the bug (looks like you have) and specifically your machine
> (with particularly HW - they have options) and try to get a handle on
> what in the world tromps on CMOS in what settings (shadow - no?!?).
> This is a strange bug!  And apparently hard to verify.  We all would
> like to know what causes it.

I guess, that if you had read my emails carefully, you would have
noticed that I had either done or considered all of this
already. Anyway, thank you for the suggestions.

> 3. Consider what you need Linux for.  If business simply try FC5.  If
> you need a Debian flavor but have not the time to deal with Debian
> consider Knoppix.  There are a lot of other options out there.

What? Ubuntu is now for fan-boys only?

> May the thesis go well!

Thank you.

Have a nice day, Tod.

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