Question HP 260 G1 - updating BIOS using HP support website seemingly gone wrong.

Frooby

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Hi.

Bought an USFF HP 260 G1 DM - a basic Celeron-powered PC - and gave it a fresh Win10 install. All went smoothly and I went on to carry out all the required updates via Windows 'update' in Settings. I then signed up to HP's own support service and downloaed its diagnostic tool. It came up with a list of further required updates for my machine including BIOS (the existing BIOS was from around the PC's build date, 2015 or '16 - it had a new one dated 2018 or '19. )

This was supposedly an automatic process so I clicked on it to download the BIOS.exe and proceed - it all appeared to go as planned and I just sat back and watched as it went through its business, until it finally said 'restarting'. It shut down, but did not restart.

It was left with the power light on the PC illuminated, but at what I think is a lower level as if it were asleep, but it wouldn't respond to mouse or key presses. This was late last night so I left it like this overnight in case it needed time... This morning, with things unchanged and the PC not waking up with a mouse click or keyboard press, I had no option but to press the power button; the HDD light gave a brief flash and the following appeared an the otherwise black screen:

>Checking Media Presence......
> Media Present......
>Start PXE over IPv6.
Nothing happens when I click t'mouse or jab at the F keys.

Could someone guide me on what steps to take next, please?

Thanks :)
 

Frooby

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Development...

I left it running one time and when I came back to it a blue info window had appeared. This told me I had no OS and to get one installed if I knew what was good for me.

I chucked in my USB stick with Win10 media and got this to start loading. All went well until it got to the stage where I had to select which drive I wanted to install it on - and pointing out I had no drive to chose from. It said to load the drivers for any installed drive, so I'm trying to track down the driver from HP.

Blimey, I seem to have lost everything during this BIOS update - OS and even the most basic of drivers...
 

Frooby

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Thanks - and rats...

This is where I am now. I have reset the CMOS using the on-board button as I was getting nowhere.

If I go in to Device Config in BIOS, nothing appears there. If I go to 'Boot Order', I have the following list:

UEFI Boot Sources
USB Floppy/CD
USB Hard Drive
UEFI: IPv4 Realtek PCIEe GBE Family Controller
UEFI: IPv6 Realtek PCIe GBE Family Controller

Legacy Boot Sources: Disabled.

I have TWO SSD drives in the machine which both worked before - one is a 32GB m.2 (original fitment) which had the Win10 OS on it, and the second is a mini-SSD of 64GB size which I had installed and formatted ready for use to store files. Both were working fine until I did the HP BIOS update.

Can you suggest how to proceed in order for the BIOS to find these drives, please? Can I install an updated BIOS via a USB if this would help?

Thanks.

(It's still showing Legacy Support - disabled and Secure Boot - enabled)
 
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Frooby

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Looking at the HP forum, it seems that 'bricked' PCs following a BIOS update is not uncommon. I've yet to see one thread on there where HP have come up with a solution, and the only fix I've seen achieved by an owner has been to have the BIOS chip removed from the mobo for reflashing...

This surely cannot be right?

Since this attempted BIOS update, neither of my two SSDs are discoverable by the PC.

HEEEEEEEEELLLPP!
 

Frooby

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It's the original 32GB M.2 SSD and was working perfectly - with updated Win10 1903 installed - up until I tried HP's BIOS upgrade. I had also added a mini-SATA 64GB SSD for file storage and this, too, was working exactly as it should. Both have 'disappeared' in BIOS since the failed update.

I tried reinstalling Win10 from a USB (becuase one of the messages I got when trying to boot up was 'no O/S...', and this started off fine until it came with to the 'chose drive to install on....' and none were listed.

I have also - just to make sure - tried another 32GB M.2 I had but this made no difference.

I am, worryingly, finding quite a few threads and comments about BIOS update failures on certain HP machines, causing such an issue.

I am trying to get help from HP themselves via their 'chat', and they are taking me through the very basics - trying Win+B on start-up to get in to BIOS setup, etc - but this doesn't work. I CAN get in to the normal BIOS menu (I think it's 'Esc' I press on start-up) but this doesn't give me the option to update/flash BIOS.

Since I cannot boot up the PC in to Windows (so I could update BIOS that way) and neither can I get in to BIOS setup via Win+B (for ditto), I tried following the instructions on the HP support site to make a USB Flash drive on my other PC, but I couldn't even get as far as making this USB as the option for 'making a USB flash...' didn't appear during the process, so that's another thing I need to ask them about...

Thanks.
 

Frooby

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Update - a few 'chats' with HP's service department has concluded that my 'system' is 'corrupted' and needs a new MOBO - would I like an out-of-warranty repair quote? Obviously I ain't going there with a £35 PC...

I have very little doubt that this was caused directly by the BIOS update service provided on their website. I also have very little doubt that - should I wish to pursue this - I could make HP pay for the repair. The 'chat' suggested that they would have repaired this had it still been under warranty, and that - by turn - is a pretty clear suggestion that they were not blaming the owner for this fault. Ergo - they are effectively admitting responsibility.

If my PC had been worth a reasonable amount, I would have done this; paid for the repair and then sued them using MoneyClaim.org; they would have a near-impossible task of trying to prove it wasn't them, given the facts of how it occurred and the numerous other cases on t'net, and in reality they almost certainly wouldn't even bother trying.

Amusingly (I lie - it wasn't funny), when I responded to the technician's news that my MOBO was knack'ed with 'Blimey, what could have caused this - it happened following the BIOS update from your website just like many other HP PC owners?', the chat was ended due to a 'network failure'.

Anyhoo, out of curiosity, could anyone explain what 'bricked' means?! What seemingly 'physical' issue happens to the MOBO (BIOS chip?) to render it incapable of being updated via software/firmware and requires a replacement? (Pure curiosity).

Before I 'Bay the PC as 'spares or repair', can anyone suggest any other things I can try? I can get in to the normal 'BIOS' menu ('Esc'), the HP 'Setup Facility', the 'Hardware Diagnostics UEFI' (which cannot find the hard drive...), but not in to BIOS setup via 'Win+B'.

Thanks.
 

Frooby

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I sold the PC and am pleased to report the buyer was able to sort this issue - although he found it a real challenge.

Following the BIOS update I'd made via the HP website, the chip had a mix of old and new BIOS versions on it, so it could not recognise the SSD or memory. All the 'usual tricks' he tried to sort this didn't work for him (I presume he means flashing from a USB and similar), so he ended up spending a few hours 'building an external drive that would load Windows, and then re-built the BIOS from there'.

Hope this is of help, although it's clearly a fairly advanced process - it would have been beyond me even with guidance. However, I hope it might also show that these faults don't necessarily require a new BIOS chip or even a whole MOBO.
 

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