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[UNLOCKED] Unlocking amd-v for Aspire AO725
Can someone pleasehelp me with acer aspire one 725 bios that have amd-v menu, so amd-v can be enabled... I realy need that fuction working for doing my research... I aleardy search anywhere but I dont found how to enabled the amd-v...
thank you before for any help.....
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Ok, so I got amd-v working but I think i broke everything else. Acer now has a new bios for UEFI/Windows 8 (no upgrade). While the new bios has UEFI enbabled it doesn't turn off amd-v or any other extentions. This part is currently working on my laptop.
It isn't for upgrade and the bundled flasher doesn't allow upgrades from previous version. Flashrom (flashrom.org) let me overwrite the old bios with the new one zeroing out my old bios, SLIC, serial number, and mac address. The only deal breaker for myself is the mac address that has to be set at boottime from software. While I have a backup I could use to piece together with the update to put everything back, I haven't gotten that far. More importantly, it works for me so I'm less interested in a better solution.
The new bios however only enables amd-v while in UEFI mode, so I've had to repartition and have installed grub. It boots Linux just fine from systemrescuecd.org, didn't used my distro's packaged bootloader and just copied grub from the cd after it booted.
Anyway, this looks like my last purchace from Acer, so good luck everyone.
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I have wrote to Insyde for investigating on the missing options in this BIOS. Insyde's techincal support have tells that each manufaturer customize the BIOS and I must to contact Acer.

I have wrote to the Acer support (the Italian support, because i'm italian) to take some information about the missing options in this BIOS. Acer tells me who the BIOS actually doesn't support AMD-V and if there will be new firmware there will be available on the Acer website.

I think it is important to reach a number of request. Also you must send a message to Acer for ask this feature. (I remember who Sony enabled the VT feature only after a consistent number of requests.)

now, some technical details

I have bought an Aspire One 725 with Windows 8 (AMD C-70), shipped with a 2.x version of the BIOS. I don't know if my machine it's able to boot with an 1.x version.

differently to stonefoz I have experienced that the AMD-V is disabled in both (UEFI/Legacy) boot modes. I have tested this feature on Linux.

I came from a self-made work (maybe, others has already reached my result)

I have downloaded the 2 bios available on acer website

v2.04 http://global-download.acer.com/GDFiles/...SC=EMEA_17

v1.05 http://global-download.acer.com/GDFiles/...SC=EMEA_17


I have found in the second archive (v1.05) the BIOS file named ZHGBIOS.FD

this file is named also in the technical service manual http://www.manualowl.com/m/Acer%20Comput...ual/288275

Then I look it with an hexeditor, this file start with the sequence

78 16 00 00 2E

and has a lenght of 4194304 bytes (0x400000)

The last BIOS (v2.04) is not in the SFX archive, it's attached (without compression) in the executable. I found the same sequence (781600002E) at the position 0x1656FD of the ZHG204.EXE file.

The extracted file started and ended with the same bytes contained in ZHGBIOS.FD but they are equal only for the 46% of the content (I have compared the 2 files with a binary diff)

At this point I am unable to disassemble the BIOS, to locate the variables.

I have thought to try with a dump of the memory (on Linux) for extract more times the BIOS with some variables changed (and the locate the the variables area, with a comparation) but I don't find a Live distribution of Linux with /dev/mem unlocked

hints and tips are welcome
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I haven't seen any AMD-V stuff in there, but you can try this, should give you some more menus and options. Report back and post some pics.


Attached Files
.zip  Acer Aspire A0725 - BIOS 2.04 'unlocked'.zip (Size: 3.51 MB / Downloads: 742)

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uh, It's Christmas! :-) thanks!

I am tempted to try but there are some kind of "unclear"....

The zhgbios.fd included in your archive is 4,4 MB instead of 4 MB (dimension of a normal BIOS) and seems to be an executable (there is a magic number who start with same bytes of a DOS executables)

And a curiosity.... what tool have used to customize this BIOS? I'm unable to open the (original) BIOS with last's EzH20 public version available

edit:
(12-24-2012, 09:25 AM)svl7 Wrote: I haven't seen any AMD-V stuff in there

maybe it is called "svm support" have you seen this during the mod? (see the image)

This image it's not take from my machine, it's take on the web
http://srikrishnadas.files.wordpress.com...8-1847.jpg

2nd edit:

maybe "SVM support" should be located under "Power -> Advanced CPU Control"
I have seen the analysis performed here http://www.bios-mods.com/forum/Thread-te...5#pid36025
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Yes, there is a SVM support entry in there.
And the BIOS file has the proper size. It includes a flashing tool since it's a bios which comes with "secure firmware updating" procedures...
I didn't think about this. You won't be able to flash it the usual way, I bet it will come up with an error when you try to flash it due to the messed up signature.

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I'm confused, need some explanation. I wish to known what tool and techniques has used to mod my BIOS.

if I attempt an extraction (from your zhgbios.fd) of the firsts 4MB of the block who begins with the byte sequence "78 16 00 00 2E", the resulted binary block, that is looks like the BIOS 1.05, is usable to perform a BIOS upgrade in a normal way?
Otherwise, I am able to use this "binary block" (or your signed bios) to perform an upgrade of the bios with the FN+ESC trick? I think this upgrading technique doesn't involve any "secure firmware updating" systems. Should be a dirty upgrade from the first fd file found on USB flash drive.

If you know previous work on this problem, please tell me how to do a correct upgrade.
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Did you already try to just flash it the usual way?
If it doesn't work you could possibly still do it per FN+ESC, but I'm not sure, don't have such a system myself.
Else I can try some more things.

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No, I haven't tried yet anything.

I have made some reasoning:
My machine is th same model used without signed BIOSes (Windows 7, AMD C-60 processor) and with protected BIOSes (Windows 8, AMC C-70 processor)
It's stupid to think Acer has revolutionized the BIOS upgrading mechanism and let unchanged the rest of the system (name "ao725" included). I think there is a dummy upgrading system.

First I am investigating on platform.ini file (provided with official bios upgrade), I see that file is encapsulated (and not compressed) in the ZHG204.exe file (same as the content of the latest bios)

I want to try to modify it with exadecimal editor to force a backup of the BIOS. The resulted backup (signed o not) must be a valid upgrade for me in case of brick.

Also, I see in platform.ini a parameter named "DisableSecureCapsuleFlash" setted to 1 (instead of the default, 0). This parameter is missed, for example, in platform.ini included provided for other most recent machines (example: Aspire S7). The S7 as an upgrade available who contains a signed bios*
This parameter could be the "key" to bypass the protection against unofficial BIOS.

*I think a signed bios is a normal bios content encapsulated in a pseudo-DOS executable (4MB of bios in a file most larger of 400 KB, a blob of 4,4 MB)

I will try, step by step and leisurely, to upgrade my machine with a method who can minimize the risk
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Step_1

I have change only one byte (at the position 0x56635A) in the original executable ZHG204.EXE, I have set (from 0) to 1 the parameter "Flag" on [BackupROM] section in the platform.ini

After the launch of the executable I see the reading of the current used BIOS, then the normal operations of erasing and writing (showed by the window software) and then a reboot. But on reboot I see a message in a blue filled rectangle who alert me on an incorrect attempt to flash a non-secure BIOS.
exactly the message is:

Insyde H20- Secure Flash, Error:Invalid Firmware Image

After this message I can only push any key to continue and the pc start with the previous BIOS.

When I return on windows I found, in the c:\ directory, 2 .bin files: the current firmware (ZHG.bin, 4MB) and the new firmware (ZHG_new.bin, 4.4MB)

I got a very important result here. The ZHG.bin is not equals to the dump extracted form ZHG204.EXE. It contains some additional info (instead of 0xFF bytes) abount my netbook and others indecipherable. This backup could represent a valid signed BIOS, colud be used to unbrick my system, could be usable with FN+ESC technique...

tomorrow I will try to flash my system in "manual mode" using this backup.

edit:
If I try to flash the backup (.fd) file from windows it doesn't work, the windows application stops the process and alerts me on a non-valid 2.x firmware upgrade attempt.

Next days I will take courage and I will try a <Fn+ESC> upgrade operation
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