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Acer C710 BIOS Chip Replacement

I have been working nonstop on my Acer C710 Chromebook since it arrived a few weeks ago. I have already gone through the steps of installing ChrUbuntu on it, and have been mostly pleased with the way it has operated thus far.

 

That being said, I would thoroughly enjoy running Windows on this device, but have reached (as far as I can tell) a dead end.

 

However, through my research, a question has been ringing in my brain:

 

Would it be possible to simply purchase a BIOS chip for an Acer Aspire AO756, replace the C710's chip with the AO756, and then flash a compatible BIOS to it? Or is that simply out of the question?

 

Soldering, flashing, and programming do not scare me, so do not rule objects in such categories as impossible. It's responses like that that make people despise technical support in the first place.

 

I believe I can construct the proper drivers from scratch if need be, and my testing environment is fully cabaple of testing this configuration. Intelligent, thoughtful, and knowledgable replies will be greatly appreciated. Thank you all.

Answers

  • Acer-TommyAcer-Tommy Posts: 6,317Member Seasoned Specialist

    You have already taken the system outside what we are able to support.

     

    Modifications to the system as shipped, again, are not supported.

     

    We do not sell BIOS chips for our systems.

  • androsiliciousandrosilicious Posts: 15Member

    That was NOT an answer to my question. This question did not apply to sales, and I never asked if Acer sells BIOS chips.

    This is a hypothetical scenario targeted towards individuals with hardware technical knowledge, and, as stated, I am not interested in canned replies telling me that this is an unsupported situation. I am well aware that Acer does not support this concept, hence my posting in this community-based forum.

    On a side note, I must say that I am quite displeased with Acer's technical support; each individual I have spoken with has been technically inept, and has not helped me in any way. I have received better answers and more knowledge from standard users on this site than from any "expert" or moderator. So, when you have an answer for me that falls within the criteria I have conveniently laid-out in the original post, feel free to deliver some real support.

  • ronelsronels Posts: 1Member

    Hi Androsilicious,

       I am just now looking into this [just got one today]. This has been my thinking on it, and I do very much like your verve and HW / SW / driver coding savy. First off, do you have a schematic of the C710? Or, at least do you know the part number of the bios flash? I am wondering if it is a programmable device like most flash memory. If so, it should not be difficult to burn new code into it. Or to buy several from Mouser and burn them and mount [solder] one onto the C710 mother board. I have not yet fully dissambled mine yet, but will soon. Still mostly browsing the web for knowledge, but I like your intentions the best of any that I have seen thus far. Good luck and I hope to hear more of your adventures in this vein. I too want full OS freedom. Cheers...   Ron

     

  • danzungdanzung Posts: 3Member

    Hi

     

    I am computer dumb....I know to click a mouse......but does following link help...it says you can flash your own image.....perhaps an adapter bios or an adapter to windows....???

     

    Dumb idea......????

     

     

    http://dev.chromium.org/chromium-os/developer-information-for-chrome-os-devices/acer-ac700-chromebook

  • androsiliciousandrosilicious Posts: 15Member

    Not a dumb idea, my friend, but this is old news unfortunately. Using some of these steps, we are able to install a modified version of Ubuntu Linux, called ChrUbuntu. However, we need to be able to flash the BIOS and bootloader to remove the ironclad grasp of Google on this device. 

  • danzungdanzung Posts: 3Member

    Hi

    It is me again, computer dumb bummer.....see if this helps

    http://cr-48.wikispaces.com/Windows8

     

  • androsiliciousandrosilicious Posts: 15Member

    That's a very good resource to start with. I've used it quite a bit in my research as of late. The problem lies in disabling the write protection on the BIOS chip itself. With the CR48, one can simply use a piece of electrical tape. That does not work on the C710. Even removing the TPM chip and replacing it with a similar one has yet to work. 

  • androsiliciousandrosilicious Posts: 15Member

    Also, as the guide for the CR48 states, 

    Please note that EVERY step is critical and skipping ahead could render your computer unusable. Also, this guide ONLY applies to the Cr-48 and is WILL NOT work for any other Chromebook.
  • bigbadtommybigbadtommy Posts: 1Member

    I am trying to do this with my HP Pavilion Chromebook 14, but I think the method may be very similar to your Acer. My hair-brained idea is to somehow set up a false server that fools Chrome bios updater into thinking that it's a legit bios updater and Trojan horse a standard bios into the Chromebook in that way. In other words, you make a fake server in your home frome which Chrome gets a bios update thinking it's talking to the mothership at Google. But really, it's your server and your bios. Then you run windoze or linux or whatever you want.

  • cwatkincwatkin Posts: 2Member

    I recently purchased an Acer C710 and figured I would be able to load Windows by reflashing the BIOS or similar.  I looked at various ways of emulation under Linux or flashing with Coreboot.  The problem with Coreboot is that not all features work properly under Windows or Linux for that matter.  I came up with a very simple and elegant solution that will allow my Acer C710 to become an AO756 without compromise for between $10-20.

     

    Since the C710 and AO756 are essentially the same, the motherboards are completely interchangeable.  I am going to pruchase an AO756 motherboard for $50 or a little more off eBay and do the swap.  Then I can sell the C710 board for $40 or so to recoup some of my costs.  I have replaced a fried AO756 motherboard in the past and it wasn't a big deal.  Another nice thing is that the replacement board comes with a 1.4 GHZ CPU while the stock C710 comes with a 1.1 GHZ CPU so this is a slight upgrade too.

     

    I will just keep the packaging when my new MB arrives and use it to ship out the C710 board.

  • cwatkincwatkin Posts: 2Member

    I just replaced the motherboard in my C710 with a pull from an AO756.  It works like a champ except that the touchpad doesn't work with Windows and you must use a USB mouse of some kind.  This doesn't really bother me as I thought the touchpad on this stunk anyway and I always used an external.  It appears that Google uses proprietary mouse hardware in their Chromebooks for some reason.  I have read that this is very common.

    Conor

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