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Acer Aspire All-In-One Locked Hard Drive: No passwords set up; How to fix?

I've been dealing with a Acer Aspire All-In-One that I purchased and have the receipt (02/13/2013) but all of a sudden it went to a black screen and said "Hard Drive is Locked". Nobody has access to my PC but me and I have never put a password on my HDD or BIOS. I put in my thumb drive which has the recovery files on it but it states the HDD is locked as well. Now when I turn on the PC, it says to "Reboot and select proper Boot Device or Insert Boot Media in selected device and press any key". I've looked all over GOOGLE and all I am finding from other's with the same problem is that it is a ploy by ACER to get more money from consumers. Supposedly they lock the HDD and force you to PURCHASE a code to unlock the HDD. I'd like to know if this is true and if not, then I'd like to know how to fix this issue. I spent a lot of money on this computer and have not gotten to use it in over a year now because of this issue. And of course the warranty I purchased was only available for 1-year only so it is now expired.

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