From time to time friends ask me help for their computers.
One such recently asked help for her laptop. It appeared her ex had set a password in the BIOS, no biggie however he had disabled the built in Wifi!
So I set about call the manufacturers help line; after about 10 minutes going through the phone menus, I had a technician on the line.
He told me to try and enter a wrong password and after a while the system would give and error code. So I typed at random and pressed enter, during this I asked how many times, no answer, so I guessed he did not know... after the sixth and seventh attempt, still not blocked so I said okay leave it I will try to look myself.
Upon a little research on the internet it seems their are many sites offering to help but at a price ranging from $8 - $34.99, I guessed most are scams including the ones on ebay.
So finally I opted to and use Hiren Boot CD (http://www.hirensbootcd.org/download/) and see if their were any tools I could use (has helped in the past) and sure enough some tools in the Dos programmes including ones that will try a bruteforce search (this could take a while)
After letting the programme do a whole night of searching no luck, so tried one of the Windows programmes BIOS Master Password Generator
It gave me a password and even in the help mentioned that the keyboard layout would be English-American ie QWERTY, which is not the same as the same as my friends laptop.
So I rebooted into the BIOS and entered the password given and set a blank and confirmed a blank password and the system is now unlocked!
So why is said computer support line so slow to give assistance or even the wrong type of assistance, yet a programme found on the internet able to help in a couple of seconds, who knows all I can say is my friend has back the functionality of a her laptop.
Update seems the same software is listed here http://dogber1.blogspot.com/2009/05/table-of-reverse-engineered-bios.html but even quicker is to use http://bios-pw.org.ua/ with the source code here https://github.com/bacher09/pwgen-for-bios, gives the same unlock password.