Corrupted BIOS Toshiba L305D
July 22, 2011 5:03 PM   Subscribe

Fuck! I corrupted the BIOS on a Toshiba L305D trying to update it in windows 7 (which i later realized was an incredibly stupid idea). It was a laptop we fixed and we were getting ready to sell it on our floor. Boss wants me to come in Monday with a fix. There seems to be a way to fix it using crisis BIOS recovery. But I need a BIOS.rom file. HELP!!!

So the more complete story is, my boss wanted me to update the BIOS because the computer would freeze when we pressed F2 trying to access the BIOS. He thought flashing the BIOS would fix it and told me to do it. So I went to Toshiba, and found the newest BIOS utility. It had an option to do it in windows, I went through windows to flash a BIOS on a dell laptop a few months back and it was fine. So I thought it would be fine. Shit freezes halfway though and he walks over, and the think is dead froze, mouse and everything, then the screen just goes black but the things still running. He forces it to turn off and the thing just boots to a black screen. Nothing. At first he was pretty ticked about me not using a CD to do it through DOS, later, he calmed down and took it with a "well, shit happens" kind of attitude. But I spent the next hour trying to fix it. I told him there was a way to do it I just need to find the right file. I told him I'll look all weekend for it. :/

I stumbled on this forum thread:

Now read it all the way through because the steps are critical.
I got a Toshiba Satellite A215 PSAFGU (S6814) And after shutting down from overheating during a flash from windows it didn't boot. Black screen and nothing more. Meanning my bios was corrupt
So after lots of trial and error, using an external usb floppy drive I managed to save my laptop.
Maybe people here describe how to do it, but they tell you to download the wrong crisis recovery files and once you try to use your ROM instead of the one on the disk, or try to replace phlash16.exe it just fails. Tried injecting but that didn't work.
Finally I found a good Phoenix crisis copy at :​_Recovery.rar
unrar and go to the directory, then unrar (you'll see it) CRISDISK.rar .
This copy of crisis with phflash16.exe (in the extracted directory) is a good version that can handle the newest versions of bios ROM.
Now copy your ROM file to the crisisdisk directory renaming the file to bios.wph and thus replacing the existing one.(i used the new 2.0 version ROM from the Toshiba site - in this case its called m10a200.rom)
To prevent 'dos path' errors when building the disk, copy the entire directory to a simple one like c:\cirsis
Build your disk now by running CRISDISK.BAT - the process includes quick formatting, copying the three files, and lastly making it bootable, make sure you go through all the steps. ( at first, i messed the last part by not having it bootable and it failed ofcourse)
once it says it created the disk successfully, put it in your external usb drive (or use the disk you created to make a bootable flash drive by using hp drivekey boot utility available here:​oftwareDescription.jsp?swItem=MTX-UNITY-I23839 I didn't have a chance to test it with usb flash drives, but it should work.)
Now once you connected your media to the usb port on your laptop:
make sure the battery is out, power cord out, hold fn+f, while doing that, plug the cord and then push the power button, release the fn+f key once you see the light on your usb drive/usb floppy is starting to blink. it should pause for a few seconds, and then start reading the disk for a while (not just 3 seconds). Process should not take more then 10 minutes so waiting more then that is a waste(trust me). The computer should reboot byitself if everything is fine. Mine took about 5 minutes but give it 10 just to make sure.
After hours of finding, replacing, injecting, only this worked.
This works for sure, if you follow these instructions with your Toshiba Satellite A215. Don't loose hope - you will recover it.
A good sign is when using the fn+f method and it flashed the usb drive/floppy. It means its 99% recoverable.

So, to a techy, its strait forward enough. He said that if the USB starts flashing when you turn the computer on, chances are the computer its "99% recoverable" So thats what I'm clinging to right now. What I'm having a difficulty doing is locating a .rom BIOS that I can use. The exact model number of the laptop is L305D-S5934. I've looked everywhere for a .rom of the bios. I can't find it. I'm going to be looking like all night, but if i can't find it, this is where i need someones helping hand.

This Utility will backup a BIOS in the .rom flavor. If someone out there has a Toshiba L305D, If you could run this and give me a backup of your rom, It would mean the world to me. :D

According to the forum post above, injecting a BIOS simply doesn't work with Toshiba. The Crisis thing seems to work, but if you have another method you want to share with me, that would be great.

Metafilter, help me! :D
posted by NotSoSiniSter to Computers & Internet (12 answers total)
Toshiba's official support page for Satellite L305D-S5934.
posted by Foci for Analysis at 5:25 PM on July 22, 2011

Response by poster: Thats where I got the BIOS update. They don't have a .rom BIOS to give me, nor do they have instructions that would help me fix the problem.
posted by NotSoSiniSter at 5:34 PM on July 22, 2011

Response by poster: I was on the phone with Toshiba, they told me that the ROM file should be inside the .exe that you can download. I already checked and its not in there. :/
posted by NotSoSiniSter at 5:54 PM on July 22, 2011

Well, I just emailed Toshiba and asked them if they could kindly send a .rom file. Will keep you updated.
posted by Foci for Analysis at 6:02 PM on July 22, 2011

Response by poster: He said he talked to a tech supervisor. Yea they might know something. Thank you so much. :D
posted by NotSoSiniSter at 6:03 PM on July 22, 2011

We've flashed lots of BIOSes at work from Windows (admittedly, all Dells). Never a problem.

If the BIOS was already locking up before you flashed it then the flash most likely failed because there was something horribly wrong with the BIOS chip.
posted by sbutler at 9:43 PM on July 22, 2011

Haven't heard anything from support regarding the .rom file...
posted by Foci for Analysis at 3:10 AM on July 23, 2011

I downloaded slc8v180.exe from the support page, extracted it with 7-zip, and found a bunch of stuff inside it. The biggest of the bunch was slc8v180.iso, so I loop-mounted that and looked inside. There was a big file inside that called 2365d180.ima, so I tried extracting that with 7-zip; that worked, and I got 8 files including AUTOEXEC.BAT. So I listed that, and inside was
@echo off
goto bios

: Flash BIOS automatic installation                            :
: Copyright (C) 2009 Toshiba America Information Systems, Inc. :

flashit psap180.fd
So it looks to me like psap180.fd (which is exactly 1048576 bytes i.e. 1MiB, a plausible size) is the ROM image. And there's an identical copy of that in the original set of files extracted from slc8v180.exe.
posted by flabdablet at 10:01 AM on July 23, 2011

Oh, and here's the non-mystery-meat link to the L305D support page.
posted by flabdablet at 10:09 AM on July 23, 2011

Response by poster: Sorry I've been Absent, I've come to the same conclusion, the .fd file is what I need. But my problem is the computer doesn't seem to want to take it. :/ When I follow the steps to do the bios flash, the flash drive will flash for 2 seconds, and then stop. :/
posted by NotSoSiniSter at 11:07 AM on July 26, 2011

I really dislike working on low end Toshiba laptops, so I feel for you.

Is there actually enough BIOS left alive to boot the thing from a CD-ROM?
posted by flabdablet at 8:48 PM on July 26, 2011

Yeah, I've downloaded pretty much everything available from Toshiba for your computer model and after extracting archives from extracted archives from extracted archives (I'm serious: there were like 3+ levels) I haven't found a single .rom file. Also, I haven't gotten a reply from Toshiba support regarding if the could email a .rom file, but I'm starting to suspect that maybe a .rom file isn't the answer to your problem...
posted by Foci for Analysis at 9:53 AM on July 27, 2011

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