BIOS update (1.4.4) messed up my laptop

Discussion in '2015+ Alienware 13 / 15 / 17' started by cyberlasha, Feb 13, 2018.

  1. Papusan

    Papusan JOKEBOOKS = That sucks!! STAHP! Dont buy FILTH...

    Reputations:
    12,398
    Messages:
    18,522
    Likes Received:
    27,926
    Trophy Points:
    931
    Will Dell cover up and fix it if you flash valid firmware from Dell’s download site? Aka if you brick your laptop and it’s out of warranty?

    Have always been do it on your own risk with mod vBios/sBios. This is Not new. Up to the people.
     
    0lok and Vasudev like this.
  2. 95TA

    95TA Notebook Enthusiast

    Reputations:
    9
    Messages:
    45
    Likes Received:
    23
    Trophy Points:
    16
    In regards to BIOS flashing, if you use their utility, under their required parameters of usage, and you flash a Dell/Alienware authorized BIOS update and it reduces the functionality of the system (ie, it is a faulty BIOS, one that has reproducible flaws on other "known good" systems) then, yes, they are required to provide a "fix" to return the system back to full functionality.

    If that BIOS update causes "known good" systems to brick (ie, if it is likely that an end user, following their procedures has a known "risk" of causing the system to brick doing the update) then, again, yes they are responsible for "fixing" the system to make it functional again.

    Most companies are not ignorant to the flood of litigation they are opening themselves up to in providing such flawed updates, so they will, most times, have the end user send in their system and "fix" the reflash under good will. It has happened where certain manufacturers have had to replace entire motherboards because of a faulty flash and they cover the cost.

    It is worth pointing out that some companies have also totally screwed their end users and end up charging them for the repair time. They may end up eating the cost of the motherboard, but they end up charging to do the swap and the cost to send the laptop back to the end-user. Again, this causes ill-will and ends up costing the company in the long run with burning end users that end up costing them in future hardware sales. Some companies are just arrogant like that. (ie, some will handle "corporate" customers with kid-gloves and bend over backwards, but retail consumers are treated like second class citizens because they don't view the profitability to be there to pander to them).

    Honestly, I would expect Dell/Alienware to have a better track-record than that and if you can prove your system is unmodified, with Dell/Alienware authorized hardware/software (ie, SSDs/HDDs/memory/no custom BIOS/no override software used to modify running parameters vs what Dell/Alienware supplied, etc) and if a BIOS update reduces functionality (instability) or bricks entirely that they would have you send it in and evaluate it to make sure you didn't do something on your own to compromise your system and would end up working with the end user to make things right, especially if they know the supplied BIOS update causes issues...

    As it stands 1.4.4 causes a whole lot of problems, regardless of MEI FW... There are consistent reports of it breaking the ability to use a Alienware Graphics Amplifier at all as just one example of a known "problem" of that BIOS.

    At the moment I think they will deal with these things on a case-by-case basis. Meltdown/Spectre are still unresolved "formally" and everything that is out there is at the very least in a "prototype" stage, so until Intel has had a chance to get long-term feedback and addresses things in a more optimized fashion, those flashing the 1.4.4 BIOS are just guinea pigs for Dell/Alienware.

    I don't think it is too far of a stretch to view the 1.4.4 BIOS being offered as an "good faith action" to show they are taking the Intel flaws seriously more than it is a "known final fix".

    It is just sad that Dell/Alienware has decided to be so knee-jerk on these things. They pulled the BIOS when it was found out that it compromised systems, then re-released it when Microsoft issued a patch for it, all the while knowing it is not a "proper fix"... The big worry is if they "give up" on the Skylake systems and stick all of us with that as the "final BIOS" and abandon any more proper support for these systems. I would have to imagine there are plenty of extended warranty users that have warranties through 2019 at least (if not 2020) on some of these systems so they would almost "have to" deal with it appropriately once the dust settles and a set of proper fixes are implemented. But, again, who knows how long that will take (1 month, 3 months, 6 months, a year)???
     
    0lok likes this.
  3. Vasudev

    Vasudev Notebook Prophet

    Reputations:
    3,305
    Messages:
    6,330
    Likes Received:
    4,134
    Trophy Points:
    431
    Last time I checked when I download ME FW for 15 r3 the bin files were the same for 15 r2,17 r3,15 r3,13 r3 and 17 r4. And Prema Bin was same. With Same file meaning the SHA1/2 Hashes were one and the same as Win-raid link which is Stock Intel MEFW.
    @VICKYGAMEBOY If you read at AMI aptio site which allows you to download their flasher utility, I think Dell missed /ME parameter.
     
    VICKYGAMEBOY likes this.
  4. Vasudev

    Vasudev Notebook Prophet

    Reputations:
    3,305
    Messages:
    6,330
    Likes Received:
    4,134
    Trophy Points:
    431
    I just got a reply from Plutomaniac from Win-raid that BIOS and MEI are separate entities and can be updated w/o any issue.
    Do you really think AW/Dell allow you to flash modded BIOS/MEI FW? You're wrong you simply can't w/o using programer with Alligator clip or standard BIOS chip solder/de-solder.
    There are heavy fortification on Dell and Lenovo BIOSes which needs unique Signatures for the flash to work and not to mention Boot Guard function on newer AWs.
    Anyway there's a new MEI FW update 11.8.50.3448, so Dell can work it out to ship it.
     
    VICKYGAMEBOY and 0lok like this.
  5. 95TA

    95TA Notebook Enthusiast

    Reputations:
    9
    Messages:
    45
    Likes Received:
    23
    Trophy Points:
    16
    Oh, I know the MEI is separate, the issue is that it is a "firmware level update"... ie, it is NOT meant for end-users to flash it regardless if Alienware can stop users from doing it or not...

    The BIOS and the MEI is a matched set, since if it is unmatched (and even you could add OS-level drivers as a third-level of configuration) you can cause serious issues. THAT is the whole point.

    Basically, everyone should wait for Dell/Alienware to do their jobs and engineer a proper solution. Until then the rest of this is moot since it is absolutely no different than flashing a custom BIOS to your built-in GTX980, it can be done, but it WILL void your warranty. Worst part is, if you screw up and brick your system, expect to pay a hefty repair bill with Dell/Alienware for your own stupidity.
     
  6. Papusan

    Papusan JOKEBOOKS = That sucks!! STAHP! Dont buy FILTH...

    Reputations:
    12,398
    Messages:
    18,522
    Likes Received:
    27,926
    Trophy Points:
    931
    Good luck with that if you are on EOL model or out of warranty. I'ts a luck of draw. All depends on how many machines who is bricked by the firmware.
    Let's say 100 out of 3000 or 5000 machines being bricked by firmware, this won't justify "fixing" the system to make it functional again (free MB and repair). And it's up to you to convince Dell that you did it properly. They don't work with charity.

    Intel has confirmed that the Microcode for Skylake work as intended. The reason Dell re-post previous firmware for downloads. MCU Recommendations. Intel.com
    [​IMG]
     
    Last edited: Feb 14, 2018
    0lok and Vasudev like this.
  7. Alienware-K_Castro

    Alienware-K_Castro Company Representative

    Reputations:
    5
    Messages:
    41
    Likes Received:
    15
    Trophy Points:
    16
    Hi. Please send me a PM with your service tag to check this for you.
     
    0lok, Vasudev and Falkentyne like this.
  8. Manuel Munguia

    Manuel Munguia Newbie

    Reputations:
    0
    Messages:
    2
    Likes Received:
    1
    Trophy Points:
    6
    i've got the same problem. could you please help me?
     
    Vasudev likes this.
  9. cyberlasha

    cyberlasha Newbie

    Reputations:
    0
    Messages:
    5
    Likes Received:
    1
    Trophy Points:
    6
    Seems like I'm not authorized to send PM
     
    Vasudev likes this.
  10. Vasudev

    Vasudev Notebook Prophet

    Reputations:
    3,305
    Messages:
    6,330
    Likes Received:
    4,134
    Trophy Points:
    431
    I think you need 5 posts to avail PM.
     
    VICKYGAMEBOY likes this.
Loading...

Share This Page