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Unlocking Laptops

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1 Unlocking Laptops on Wed Sep 09, 2009 12:20 pm

After much frustration with non-validated windows and the like, I decided to take the same approach that any bored student would take while sitting in class: to try to gain high level access to the laptop. For this, I limited myself to only software modifications. Nothing was done to the hardware

After much googling, I was eventually able to gain access to the bios. Basically, if I want to, I can now format the machine (not that I am going to)

The kicker? It took 30 minutes.

Only half an hour to gain admin access to bios. This means that all kids will be able to begin reinstalling windows in less than one class. Using only the internet.

Now, the last thing I am going to is post the steps up here, since this is a public forum and I really don't want to make it too easy for the kids. But this is a serious security flaw in the DER laptops.

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2 Re: Unlocking Laptops on Wed Sep 09, 2009 3:56 pm

Matt,

If you post the method, DET will be quite happy to look at it and think of a solution. As you said this is a serious security flaw. I myself have found numerous problems and vulnerabilities with the system and as we all know, security is only as strong as its weakest part.

I am quite intrigued as to your accessing of the BIOS though. If you don't mind could you tell us which sort of direction you went into, anything short of physical manipulation, which would void the warranty.

Thanks,

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3 Re: Unlocking Laptops on Thu Sep 10, 2009 4:12 am

I'm going to get another laptop and try the 'hack' (for want of a better word) before I report it.

However, I'll send you an email detailing the steps to see if you can reproduce it.

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4 Re: Unlocking Laptops on Thu Sep 10, 2009 6:27 am

Thanks

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5 Re: Unlocking Laptops on Mon Sep 14, 2009 7:06 am

I haven't been able to reproduce this on another laptop

EDIT: And I just reproduced it on the original laptop. It seems to be an intermittent thing, so it could be a malfunction with this machine

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