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How to access boot sequence in Compaq...

Trish's Escape from Hardware Hell Help Board » Setup and Configuration » All the Rest » How to access boot sequence in Compaq BIOS « Previous Next »

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Posted on Wednesday, January 9, 2002 - 6:21 pm:   

This is a Compaq 1725, which seems to be missing some key settings in the BIOS. I want to change the boot sequence, disable floppy test and memory test, but BIOS shows no way to do this. I don't know Compaq very well and the little I know I don't like a whole lot, so if someone out there is a Compaq guru please let me know how I can change these settings? Or is this Compaq's way of getting people to pay them for repairs? Ugh. Thank you in advance.
Posted on Wednesday, January 9, 2002 - 9:53 pm:   

Depending on your configuration some Compaqs have a very small partition setup on the harddrive which in turn stores all bios features of normal motherboards such as comport setup/printer port configuration ETC ETC. I agree that this isn't a very functional method, but IMO, Compaq doesn't seem to care about individual users preferances at all. If your hard drive has this non-Dos partition press F10 when the cursor flashes in the corner of the screen. This explains it a little more in detail. Taken from Compaq faq:
A lot of Compaq hard disk drives are usually partitioned into two or three depending on their size. One or two DOS partitions and a small (12MB) non DOS partition.

This non DOS partition contains the BIOS setup utility and settings and other tools and is accessed by pressing F10 at start up when the cursor flashes in the top right corner of the screen.

The machine needs this partition information to run and so it is a good idea to make a back-up, particularly if you plan to "fiddle" with the hard drive at all.

A backup can be made using the "Create a Diagnostics Diskette" option from this very setup screen. It is very simple, two floppies are required (one labelled setup and the other labelled diagnostics) all instructions are given on screen and the process takes about 5 minutes. These disks are used to recreate the non DOS partition as below.

These disks are also available (in a compressed form) as sp7781.exe (Diagnostics) and sp2141.exe (Setup) from the softpaq page.

Creating Non DOS Partition

Boot from Setup disk sp2141.exe
Message states that there is no Diagnostics Partition, recommends there should be and gives the option to create one.
Accept this and you are prompted to reboot from the Diagnostics disk sp7781.exe.
Follow prompts to switch between Setup and Diagnostic disks several times, this takes about 5 mins.

Apparently this needs to be done on a new drive install, a Compaq deskpro 2000 for instance, has the ability to function and boot up normally without the partition on the drive but there is no way to set anything, configuration wise, without it.
Posted on Thursday, January 17, 2002 - 6:06 am:   

Thanks for the help so far. Only problem is, the Compaq Diagnostics themselves do not seem to have the settings I am looking for. It tests the memory, but does not allow me to disable the mem test at boot. It tests the drives, but doesn't allow me to disable the floppy drive seek at boot. Anyone know why?

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