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I have a pair of HP DC7700 's that I'm about to deploy to a computer lab here. Because it's a public lab situation I'd like to prevent users from entering the BIOS. This works fine on one of the machines, but the other won't accept a password. It allows me to enter the password and save and exit the BIOS, but on reboot does not enforce the password I just created.

I've tried restoring factory defaults first, but that didn't help.

Any ideas?

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Check the motherboard manual for a jumper regarding bios configuration or password requirements.

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Is the clock not keeping the right time?

If this is the case perhaps the battery is bad.

  • The clock time is fine. – Joel Coehoorn Jul 27 '10 at 18:55
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    Did you try unplugging the computer and then checking? I've seen computers with bad batteries which show correct time until they lose power for some time. – AndrejaKo Jul 27 '10 at 19:05
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In the end I have other identical PCs, and so we swapped this one for another that would allow us to set a password. This one will go in a private office with no real need for locking the bios. No real solution was found :(

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Check for the jumper settings for BIOS in motherboard guide and otherwise the battery is bad.

One other option is that Intel allows automatic unassisted upgrade of BIOS available from their drivers page. Your motherboard vendors website might have such options. Do check it out also

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This is caused by the missing password jumper on the motherboard. On HP 6005 PRO there is a jumper near the SATA connectors, it's label is PSWD. In normal circumstances there is a large green jumper on it. This jumper does NOT clear the passwords, its function is just the opposite! If it is missing, then the BIOS clears the passwords when the machine boots.

This jumper was missing on one of our kiosk machines. I had no jumper on hand, but there is a workaround: Enter the BIOS, set the password, and then set the Security / Password Options / Stringent Password option to Enable. This setting means that the password cannot be deleted even by the removal of the PSWD jumper.

Note that this is a dangerous option! If it is set and you lose the password then - as far as I know - there is no way to reset it, except by replacing the chip.

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