Alienware vendor ATI 5870 gpu in Clevo W860CU

Discussion in 'Sager and Clevo' started by neol, Jan 30, 2018.

  1. neol

    neol Notebook Consultant

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    hello there,

    its been a while since i posted here, my problem is that my aging yet well performing W860CU GPU (Nvidia GTX 470m) is dying, and since im a student, i can not afford to buy a new laptop or powerful card, so i bought ATI 5870, however upon installing the card the laptop would produce two beeps and give a black screen, i tried everything and eventually contacted Sager which after investigation, concluded that the card vBIOS is not compatible with my notebook, upon contacting the seller it turned out the card was actually pulled from an Alienware laptop...
    i have now spent one complete week trying to BlindFlash the clevo vBIOS for the 5870 into the card but alas with no success.
    i wanted any help or direction to seek from the experts here at NBR.
    thanks in advance
     
  2. t456

    t456 1977-09-05, 12:56:00 UTC Moderator

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    Use rufus to create a bootable MS-DOS stick and drop these files to its root:
    autoflash_ati_2018_01_30.7z

    It'll write a new folder, beep, force-flash the Clevo vbios and beep a second time. With a bit of luck the current vbios is simply an Enduro/switching version and the W860CU is a pure dGPU system. In this situation the new vbios will fix that.

    However, not all Dell cards are compatible iirc. It may be that it'll boot with the new vbios, only to shutdown after half a minute due to presumed overheating (thermal sensor mismatch). If so then you'd best resell the card and try baking the 470M instead. Usually have good results myself for both ATI and Nvidia cards.
     
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  3. Meaker@Sager

    Meaker@Sager Company Representative

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    It's always tricky with the older systems, if the blind flash does not work as above then then there is not much hope, just remember to flash it back and backup the vBIOS before doing so.
     
  4. neol

    neol Notebook Consultant

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    I'm really sorry for the late reply, i was traveling to my village which had no internet at all, so i could not comeback online to check.
    thank you very much for taking the time and effort to create that file for me.
    i will try it today or tomorrow and hopefully it will work...
     
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  5. neol

    neol Notebook Consultant

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    unfortunately the Blindflash did not work, however it logged the issue:
    Code:
    -----------------------------------------------------------------------------
            ------------------ ATIFLASH v4.17 Log File ------------------
    -----------------------------------------------------------------------------
    Sat Feb 10 16:28:11 2018
    Command Operation without options: -pa 5870M.rom
    
    BIOS file: 5870M.rom
    
    0 adapters updated
    Adapter not found
    
       ERROR  : press '1' to continue
    
    so it does not detect the new card ? i tried to remove the card and the laptop would not even start, i removed the heatsink and the laptop would shutdown after ~30 seconds or so which logically would say the card is detected and is overheating so it shutdown... now im really puzzled, it seems that the laptop is able to recognize the gpu but atiflash cant ?? is there anything that can be done ?
    EDIT: i also noticed that it did NOT beep at all, not sure why but it seems like proceeded into the next line of code without beeping.
     
    Last edited: Feb 10, 2018
  6. t456

    t456 1977-09-05, 12:56:00 UTC Moderator

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    Try 'atiflash -ai'. This system is a pure dGPU system, so it should always detect the MXM card, regardless of the settings in the bios.

    If it can't detect any card then either the card needs to be baked or, very slim chance, it's merely that its eeprom isn't recognised by this particular atiflash version. Use the same bootable dos stick and drop a copy of FPT on it and use 'fpt -list':
    fpt v8.1.10.1286 and flashrom v0.9.8-r1896.7z
     
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  7. neol

    neol Notebook Consultant

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    since i can't see anything i also added the -verbose to log the output:
    Code:
    Intel (R) Flash Programming Tool. Version:  8.1.10.1286
    Copyright (c) 2007 - 2012, Intel Corporation. All rights reserved.
    
    Number of LPC Devices supported: 174
    LPC Device Id: 3B03.
    Platform: "Intel(R) PM55 Express Chipset" is not supported in version of program.
    
    Error 201: [FPT.exe] cannot be run on the current platform.
    Please contact your vendor.
    
     
  8. t456

    t456 1977-09-05, 12:56:00 UTC Moderator

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    And 'atiflash -ai'? If it can't detect anything then you might still flash it with a programmer. It isn't particularly hard if you have some patience and, of course, the proper tools. Could do that for you, but you're a bit far off (I'm in Europe).

    Could also look into baking the 470M. Set oven to 240°C/465°F (see reflow window) and keep it there for a minute or two. Thermals sensors of domestic ovens are awful though, so using a dedicated thermal sensor is a good idea. Either way, let it cool down and try the card. If it doesn't make a difference then add +10°C, retry and so on.
     
  9. neol

    neol Notebook Consultant

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    apologies i forgot to mention that it, i tried the "atiflash -ai" however it gave me:
    Code:
    -----------------------------------------------------------------------------
            ------------------ ATIFLASH v3.99 Log File ------------------
    -----------------------------------------------------------------------------
    Sat Feb 10 21:28:38 2018
    Command Operation without options: -ai
    
    Adapter not found
    
    as for the 470m i already baked it a while ago in a nearby workshop hoping it would stay with me until i finished my studies, but it only lasted a few days and then started to give purple, green and red taints and also it turned the screen into 4 small screens...
    ironically atm it started working fine but not sure for how long.
    could you elaborate on the
    i think its at my last resort...
     
  10. t456

    t456 1977-09-05, 12:56:00 UTC Moderator

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    You need a soldering iron or heat gun, an spi programmer and, preferably, a soic8->sop8 adapter (to interface it with the programmer). The adapter or alligator clip has to accommodate 150mil chips, not the wider 200mil used by the me and bios eeproms. This listing has both the adapter (150mil converter) and test clips, which may or may not work without having to desolder first. Try searching the forums for 'eeprom programmer' and you'll find lots of pointers, report back if anything's unclear. Btw, all pcbs now use lead-free solder, which require a higher temperature for the iron, so make sure to get a somewhat decent model (and a fine tip).

    Mind that it's almost Chinese New Year, so any orders from China will not be handled/shipped for the next two weeks.

    Could also try finding a shop nearby that could do the soldering for you. A generic electronics or smartphone repair shop ought to have the necessary tools.
     
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