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brandon.lee
Copper

Mobile Precision 7710 BIOS update 1.4.8 failure

I am new to the forum and this is my first post.  Just wanted to give a heads up on an issue I recently discovered.  I haven't found much on this I guess because the system is still pretty new.

I received a brand new Precision 7710 and the first thing I do is complete all Windows updates and do any driver updates that need to be done.


Here are the laptop specs:

Computer:  Mobile Precision 7710
BIOS Version:  1.3.12
OS Version:  Microsoft Windows 7 Professional 64 bit

Manufacturer: Intel(R) Xeon(R) CPU E3-1535M v5 @ 2.90GHz
Clock Speed: 2.9Ghz
L2 Cache Size: 1024

17.3" UltraSharp UHD IGZO(3840 x2160) Wide View Anti-Glare LE D-backlit
6 Cell (91 Whr) Long Life Cycl e Lithium Polymer battery
240W AC Adapter
64GB (4x16G) 2133MHz DDR4 Memory
AMD FirePro W5170M, 2GB GDDR5
1TB 2.5 inch SATA Solid State Drive,MPWS
Win 7 Pro,SP1,No Media,64bit,O pti,ENG
Intel Dual Band Wireless 8260 (802.11ac) W/ Bluetooth
Intel Xeon E3-1535M with Smart Card and Thunderbolt 3

I received this laptop on Monday March 21, 2016, saw that there were approx 4 or 5 driver updates on dell.com/support.


I chose to download all updates to the desktop and update from there as I always do.

I saved the bios update for the next day March 22, 2016 as I wanted to be in my office to do this update.  I am well aware you can easily turn your laptop into a brick if the update goes south.

I come in and begin the update via the Precision_7X10_148.exe on the desktop I had downloaded from dell.com/support for the service tag of my laptop.  The progam runs and all looks normal.  After about 5 mins, the bios update is complete.

Laptop reboots and  I come to a Windows Boot Manager Screen with the following error:

Windows failed to start. A recent hardware or software change might be the cause...

File:\EFI\Microsoft\Boot\BCD

Status:  0xc0000001

Info: An error occurred while attempting to read the boot configuration data.

At this point, when you would reboot there was no dell splash screen and the only thing you could access was the boot menu by pressing F12.  Trying to get into the bios by pressing F2 only brought you to a black screen.

After much troubleshooting with various ways of trying to boot, I found that if I changed the boot config to UEFI with secure boot On and reboot I would get a screen full of snow.  So I rebooted and started pressing F2. I got into the bios but could only see a few inches of the bios.  Like this:

After a lot of google searching I was finally able to find some instruction on this per user MustangChris04 at the following website:
http://forum.notebookreview.com/threads/next-generation-dell-precision-mobile-workstations-press-rel...

His instructions were as follows:

"I was able to recover from the colored snow by repeatedly hitting F2 at boot until you could see the BIOS behind all the snow. The screen remained with the colored snow, but you can see in the attached photo there was about an inch of workable screen. With that, I went to the BIOS, used the arrow keys to go to the Video option and then expanded it to the switchable graphics option and disabled switchable graphics. Once Video is highlighted, expand the tree and highlight switchable graphics.Then, the keystrokes to disable switchable graphics is as follows:

TAB
ENTER
TAB
TAB
ENTER
ENTER
ESC

That should then restart with switchable graphics disabled "

Once I followed his directions the laptop rebooted, saw the dell splash screen, and booted on into windows.  I did reboot back into the bios to disable UEFI with secure boot on.

 In the end it was all a moot point.  Prior to learning the above intruction I had already called the unit in on service.  The tech came out and replaced the mother board and ended up with the same result and I had encountered on the first go around.  The tech called dell and they are currently doing a system exchange.


However I couldn't let it go without further troubleshooting.  So I am posting this here to hopefully help in preventing someone having to make a call to dell.

In my opinion, there is something faulty in the bios update version 1.4.8.  Precision_7X10_148.exe.

8 Replies
hlang75
Copper

RE: Mobile Precision 7710 BIOS update 1.4.8 failure

Wow! You saved me.

I had the exact same issue with the 7710 and the 1.4.8 BIOS.  Motherboard replacement was scheduled for tomorrow.  

I did a search found your post and now my machine is back in business.  No replacement necessary.

Thank you for troubleshooting this and posting the solution.

This is what the Internet is all about.

jds7717
Copper

RE: Mobile Precision 7710 BIOS update 1.4.8 failure

Thanks again for posting this solution.  I had the same problem.  Seems like Dell dropped the ball on this one.

0 Kudos
64dude
Silver

RE: Mobile Precision 7710 BIOS update 1.4.8 failure

I had similar problem when I added RAM to achieve 64GB capacity with BIOS 1.4.8, and then snow. Backing back down to 24GB, no snow w/ this BIOS version. Putting the fourth 16GB RAM back in, snow again. Turning off Switchable Graphics and at 64GB, no snow. Has anyone tried going back to previous version of BIOS, i.e. 1.3.10?

Thanks,

64Dude

0 Kudos
mikemrossi
Silver

RE: Mobile Precision 7710 BIOS update 1.4.8 failure

Looks like Dell pulled the 1.4.8 bios.  1.3.12 is now the latest for the 7710,

0 Kudos
64dude
Silver

RE: Mobile Precision 7710 BIOS update 1.4.8 failure

Updated to BIOS 1.3.12 from 1.4.8 and the snow goes away w/ switchable graphics re-enabled. Now trying to get the Thunderbolt to address all four of my monitors (AMD/Intel drivers from Dell), as seem only three can be concurrently enabled (for another thread).

64dude

0 Kudos
mikemrossi
Silver

RE: Mobile Precision 7710 BIOS update 1.4.8 failure

Not sure if it supports 4 screens.  3 might be the limit.  I am running 3.

see this post here:

https://community.spiceworks.com/topic/1453347-dell-thunderbolt-usb-type-c-availability-compatibilit...

0 Kudos
NDT121
Copper

RE: Mobile Precision 7710 BIOS update 1.4.8 failure

Thank you for posting the solution to the BIOS issue I Really appreciate it!

0 Kudos
75102016
Copper

RE: Mobile Precision 7710 BIOS update 1.4.8 failure

I have the exact same issue on the precision mobile 7510 with the 1.4.14 (1.04.14) BIOS update.

Your solution saved me so thank you so much.  Specifically, thanks for the keystrokes needed as I couldn't have figured that out.

I will have to run with switchable graphics disabled until Dell can fix the BIOS as I'm afraid of more issues being caused by downgrading the BIOS.

Cheers

0 Kudos