corrupted BIOS due to Intel SPI bug in kernel

Bug #1734147 reported by tobia antoniolli on 2017-11-23
This bug affects 139 people
Affects Status Importance Assigned to Milestone
linux (Ubuntu)
linux-hwe-edge (Ubuntu)
linux-oem (Ubuntu)

Bug Description

An update to linux kernel on Ubuntu 17.10 that enabled the Intel SPI drivers results in a serial flash that is read only in Intel Broadwell and Haswell machines with serial flashes with SPI_NOR_HAS_LOCK set.

 * BIOS settings cannot be saved
 * USB Boot impossible
 * EFI entries read-only.


Fix: The issue was fixed in kernel version 4.13.0-21 by configuring the kernel so it is not compiled with Intel SPI support. But previous affected machines still suffered from a broken BIOS.

Repair: If you still can boot into Ubuntu, you can recover your BIOS with the following steps:

1. Boot into Ubuntu
2. Download
3. Install the downloaded package:
  $ sudo dpkg -i linux-image-4.15.0-041500rc6-generic_4.15.0-041500rc6.201712312330+20170103+1_amd64.deb
4. Make sure the kernel is installed without any error. Once installed, reboot.
5. At grub, choose the newly installed kernel. You can choose the "recovery" mode.
6. Reboot and go to BIOS settings to confirm your BIOS has been recovered.
7. In case your BIOS is not recovered, reboot to the new kernel, then reboot *once again* to the new kernel, do not enter BIOS settings before the reboot. After the second reboot, check BIOS.
8. If your BIOS issue remains, download another kernel from, and use dpkg to install it, then repeat steps 4 to 6.

After your BIOS is fixed, the kernel packages you just installed are no longer needed, you can remove it by running 'sudo dpkg -r linux-image-4.15.0-041500rc6-generic'.

The patch used to build the linux v4.15 kernel in step 8 can be found at


Test Case: Fix has been verified by our HWE team on affected hardware.

Regression Potential: Minimal, it's unlikely anyone is actually doing anything which requires this driver.


Affected Machines:

Lenovo B40-70
Lenovo B50-70
Lenovo B50-80
Lenovo Flex-3
Lenovo Flex-10
Lenovo G40-30
Lenovo G50-30
Lenovo G50-70
Lenovo G50-80
Lenovo S20-30
Lenovo U31-70
Lenovo Y50-70
Lenovo Y70-70
Lenovo Yoga Thinkpad (20C0)
Lenovo Yoga 2 11" - 20332
Lenovo Yoga 3 11"
Lenovo Z50-70
Lenovo Z51-70
Lenovo ideapad 100-15IBY

Acer Aspire E5-771G
Acer Aspire ES1-111M-C1LE (fixed following your new instruction (thank you))
Acer TravelMate B113
Acer Swift SF314-52 (Fixed by 4.14.9)
Toshiba Satellite S55T-B5233
Toshiba Satellite L50-B-1R7
Toshiba Satellite S50-B-13G
Toshiba Satellite L70-A-13M
Dell Inspiron 15-3531
Mediacom Smartbook 14 Ultra M-SB14UC (fixed with official fix)
Acer Aspire E3-111-C0UM
HP 14-r012la


Affected serial flash devices by manufacturer part number, JEDEC ID (SPI_NOR_HAS_LOCK set in drivers/mtd/spi-nor/spi-nor.c)
/* ESMT */
   f25l32pa, 0x8c2016
   f25l32qa, 0x8c4116
   f25l64qa, 0x8c4117
/* GigaDevice */
   gd25q16, 0xc84015
   gd25q32, 0xc84016
   gd25lq32, 0xc86016
   gd25q64, 0xc84017
   gd25lq64c, 0xc86017
   gd25q128, 0xc84018
   gd25q256, 0xc84019
/* Winbond */
   w25q16dw, 0xef6015
   w25q32dw, 0xef6016
   w25q64dw, 0xef6017
   w25q128fw, 0xef6018


Original Description:

Basically on Lenovo Y50-70 after installing Ubuntu 17.10, many users reported a corrupted BIOS.

It's not possible to save new settings in BIOS anymore and after rebooting, the system starts with the old settings.

Moreover (and most important) USB booting is not possible anymore since USB is not recognized. It's very serious, since our machines do not have a CDROM.

Lenovo forums at the moment are full of topics regading this issue.

Thank you!!

tobia antoniolli (tob79) on 2017-11-23
information type: Private Security → Public
Launchpad Janitor (janitor) wrote :

Status changed to 'Confirmed' because the bug affects multiple users.

Changed in grub2 (Ubuntu):
status: New → Confirmed
britgreek (britgreek) wrote :

The problem also affects Lenovo G40-30. I have just installed Ubuntu 17.10 in legacy mode (dual boot with Windows 10) and the boot from USB option is gone. Very serious issue, as there is no way to format our hard drives and reinstall an OS. There was no reference in the documentation for such a serious problem that would alter/corrupt our bios.

bruno (bruno-js-carvalho123) wrote :

I have the same problem with Lenovo U31-70. Since I upgraded to Ubuntu 17.10 i'm unable to save any changes made to the bios.

tobia antoniolli (tob79) on 2017-11-24
summary: - Ubuntu 17.10 corrupting BIOS - Lenovo Y50-70
+ Ubuntu 17.10 corrupting BIOS - many LENOVO laptops models

I have the same problem - Lenovo Y50-70 - I took my laptop to a professional repair shop and they could not fix it.

Toninetto (toninetto) wrote :

I've had the same problem. After trying different solutions, I had to remove the bios chip with hot air, read the content with a usb programmer, and flash a new chip. So now i can remove the secure boot and saving on exit...
I know this is an extreme solution, but I hope I can help someone find a simpler solution.

davvvidko (jannnas) wrote :

Same problem with Lenovo G50-70

Cannot boot from USB/CD rom

I dont know how we can get this repaired.

tobia antoniolli (tob79) on 2017-11-25
description: updated
Tautedorus (tautedorus) wrote :

I can also confirm this. I use the Lenovo Z50-70 laptop and I have encountered this problem. After installing Ubuntu 17.10 (and other remixes of it) and reinstalling it again, the UEFI BIOS does not save any changes except the date and time. I could not reset the UEFI BIOS settings because it did not save any changes and the CMOS battery is soldered, unfortunately. What is even worse, the UEFI BIOS does not boot any bootable media. I tried booting DVDs, USB sticks and other HDDs with no luck. The only thing that the boot menu shows is the old installation partition name and nothing else. Before that happened I used Manjaro distribution which did not have such problems even after reinstalling it multiple times. By the way, the solution to this problem was the a motherboard replacement... Two times.

The only way to boot bootable devices is to install and properly configure rEFInd: That does not solve the UEFI BIOS corruption problem. It is just a workaround.

Maybe it is a defective Lenovo UEFI BIOS (two motherboard replacements proved that it could be defective "by design"). However, as I mentioned before, other distributions had not caused any of these problems before.

Marcin Ciosek (marcin-p-ciosek) wrote :

This is not Ubuntu bug.
I've created the workaround description (user marcin78 here) and as you can clearly see, it refers to my Antergos installation being the last one writing BIOS.
I think (I'm not system expert) that this can be related to the way the kernel update scripts (modules rebuild or mkinird or any other) is handling the process. It could be that other system users don't do so many BIOS rewrites (Windows is updated in a different way) and this problem is not affecting most of PC users. Although there are reports also from Windows installations.
So far the fix is replacing the chip. Far beyond most of our skills and definitely won't come cheap from Lenovo service.
Hope the rEFInd tip can serve you for now.

britgreek (britgreek) wrote :

Actually, this MUST be a Ubuntu / Linux bug, as the current Ubuntu 17.10 rendered our Lenovo laptops useless in the long run, without any documentation or warning that the installation would affect the BIOS. This is a very serious issue, both legally and ethically and I think that we should demand an immediate fix. No OS should have anything to do with the modification of the BIOS without the consent of the owner. What will happen if we need to format our hard drives? How will we be able to install the OS that we want? i am not happy with any workaround. I want my computer to function as it did when I purchased it, in terms of its bios settings and booting from USB is an essential feature. What remains to be explained is the reason why it only affects Lenovo hardware and not any other brand.

sultan tell (sultantell) wrote :

Same problem with lenovo Z50-70

britgreek (britgreek) wrote :

Just found a bios update, but it fails to install. I am trying to run the exe from Lenovo website on Windows 10. The laptop just restarts without performing the update.

tobia antoniolli (tob79) on 2017-11-26
description: updated
tobia antoniolli (tob79) wrote :

I am not sure devs are working/have been informed, we need to directly involve them since this is a MAJOR issue as perfectly explained by britgreek on post #9.
Does anybody know how to speed up things here?

britgreek (britgreek) wrote :

@tobia antoniolli

I think Lenovo does not support Linux as an OS, therefore, they will claim that it is not their fault. On Lenovo forums, similar issues with similar BIOS symptoms have been reported since 2016, without any support. On the other hand, I do not see how Ubuntu devs can actually revert the current situation, as Ubuntu theoretically has no access to the BIOS or its code.

In my case, these laptops are used in a private school, and now I am left stranded with machines that do not function as they should.

Lukas Bockstaller (boggy) wrote :

Lenovo Yoga Thinkpad (20C0) is also affected.

tobia antoniolli (tob79) wrote :


I agree with you, Lenovo has nothing to do with this issue, however I think it's Ubuntu devs responsability to take a look and try to fix this issue, since Ubuntu 17.10 has corrupted our bios. Our machines here (different models) reported this issue only after installing Ubuntu 17.10 and if you browse this forum, you would see that many others reported Ubuntu corrupting the BIOS, something that is extremely serious.

description: updated
britgreek (britgreek) wrote :

Update: I contacted Lenovo Greece today, and they said they they had never heard of the problem, despite the posts in Lenovo's forums (some of which date back to 2016), and they suggested that in such cases, a change of motherboard may be the only solution to fix the issue. So, the situation is getting even worse. They also mentioned that Lenovo does not officially support Linux.

reece callister (reecespuffs) wrote :

this is also affecting my bios on the lenovo ideapad 100 15iby however usb booting is still possible.
the troubleshooting steps i have taken are.
1) used lenovo's bios update utility from the drivers site of my bios (direct link)
2)replaced CMOS battery
3)reached out to the staff of lenovo forums and support staff for help and it stumped them
4)tried different OS's (i had ubuntu 17.10 but win server 2016 killed the grub loader (unrelated))
   i tried win server 2016 & win8.1 (the modded version windows 9)
all these were in vein as its still not saving (btw the reason i need server 2016 is to host RDweb applications which you need intel virtualisation on which is how i found this issue)
if anyone has any solution to this pls email me at <email address hidden> or reply to this

reece callister (reecespuffs) wrote :


Changed in grub2 (Ubuntu):
status: Confirmed → Fix Released
reece callister (reecespuffs) wrote :

sorry im new to this forum

tobia antoniolli (tob79) on 2017-11-27
Changed in grub2 (Ubuntu):
status: Fix Released → Confirmed
reece callister (reecespuffs) wrote :

thank you

Alexis Rico (sferadev) wrote :

This is unacceptable, right now my Lenovo G50-80 is a brick.

USB Boot does not work.
DVD Boot does not work.
BIOS Boot menu doesn't autodetect changes on the hard drive EFI paths.

And during an update grub stopped working, it reported a syscall error of I/O and on reboot I couldn't start the computer anymore. I would normally boot a live cd and boot-repair but guess what UEFI USB Boot does not work and Legacy capabilities won't work either.

And reprogramming the BIOS chip is not a viable solution by the way...

1 comments hidden view all 576 comments
Andy (andyskull-619) wrote :

Just wanted to join in and say that I am also affected by this, the exact same way as everyone else. I updated to ubuntu 17.10 and my bios died.
Like others, I also changed the CMOS battery etc. It was not a battery problem.

I followed user Marcin Ciosek's work around that he posted on the lenovo forums and was able to fix my installation. But the bios is ofcourse still bricked.
I've never experienced this before, I thought it not possible for an OS to brick a bios chip. If anyone knows how exactly this happened let us know.

tobia antoniolli (tob79) wrote :

Hi guys, just to let you know that I sent an email directly to Ubuntu Devs (<email address hidden>)

Probably I won't get a reply from them, but I am trying to get their attention.

tobia antoniolli (tob79) wrote :

I also sent an email to Canonical LTD (legal department) explaining the issue and threatening to take legal action on them. As per my previous post, I am trying to get their attention. I'll keep you informed.

Dimitri John Ledkov (xnox) wrote :

Are the machines dual installed with Windows 10?
Has there been a recent upgrade to Fall Creators Update? Note that many Lenovo machines fail to boot or boot to black screen after such an update. Such an upgrade affects subsequent boots to both win10 and ubuntu.
Can you get into one-key recovery mode?
Can you get to the boot options menu?
Can you get to the bios settings menu?
Can you configure boot entries in the bios settings to boot from the /EFI/BOOTX64.EFI? SHIM? UBUNTU/GRUB2.EFI?
Have you applied all the Lenovo bios/firmware upgrades?

To this point, I am not yet convinced that there is a bug in Ubuntu that causes this.

For one thing, the issue is far too confused here on this report for me to make sense of what is going on. The included links to Lenovo forums do not appear to me as bugs in Ubuntu.

What exactly is the problem?
What settings are changed in the BIOS and appear to not be saved?
Can your system boot into Ubuntu?
If not, what last appears on screen?
If yes, then what does 'sudo efibootmgr -v' report?

Failing to change things in the BIOS does not sound to me like anything that Ubuntu could have caused; but it also seems like there might be confusion as to how booting works on these systems. When systems are booting in UEFI mode, you can't simply add files here and there on the system and expect things to work -- this is why you have named entries in the firmware (the "BIOS") such as "ubuntu": there is some configuration involved, which can be done using 'efibootmgr' on Linux.

If you can't change time/date in firmware, or any other option that is not boot related, you need to consult Lenovo. There is nothing I can do about those. If you are having issues changing boot entries in firmware, it's possible that it is simply not supported -- the firmware might not allow you to set the ordering; and to disable UEFI you may need to first disable Secure Boot. The best is again to consult Lenovo for help and describe exactly what you want to do. They know how their firmware is supposed to work; and what is and is not possible to do.

Please also try using F12 or Fn-F12 (whatever the key combination is on that particular hardware. I have Lenovo hardware here, but none of the affected systems) to get to the Boot Selection Menu and see if then you can boot to USB or to Windows (if it's still installed) from that menu.

Please avoid using rEFInd if possible, as I cannot provide support for its use. It is known to change settings incorrectly; and that can cause issues on upgrade. The fewer extra changes on a system once it stops working is always better to figure out what is wrong.

Changed in grub2 (Ubuntu):
status: Confirmed → Incomplete
importance: Undecided → High
bruno (bruno-js-carvalho123) wrote :

I dont have a dual boot system, i just have ubuntu 17.10 and since the upgrade (17.04 to 17.10) im unable to save changes made to the bios such as boot order, secure boot, intel virtualization, etc.

I can boot into Ubuntu and the output of 'sudo efibootmgr -v' is:

BootCurrent: 0000
Timeout: 0 seconds
BootOrder: 0000,2003,2001,2002
Boot0000* ubuntu HD(1,GPT,ef50adca-c79c-4471-8c88-4a641917c23d,0x800,0x100000)/File(\EFI\ubuntu\shimx64.efi)
Boot0001* EFI Network 0 for IPv4 (1C-39-47-18-3F-55) PciRoot(0x0)/Pci(0x1c,0x2)/Pci(0x0,0x0)/MAC(1c3947183f55,0)/IPv4(<->,0,0)RC
Boot0002* EFI Network 0 for IPv6 (1C-39-47-18-3F-55) PciRoot(0x0)/Pci(0x1c,0x2)/Pci(0x0,0x0)/MAC(1c3947183f55,0)/IPv6([::]:<->[::]:,0,0)RC
Boot2001* EFI USB Device RC
Boot2003* EFI Network RC

My machine is a Lenovo U31-70.

tobia antoniolli (tob79) wrote :

@Mathieu Trudel-Lapierre (cyphermox)
@Dimitri John Ledkov (xnox)

Hi, thank you for having a look.

To be more clear about this issue:

I had Linux Mint before switching to Ubuntu 17.10 few days ago - no dual boot, just Ubuntu

I can access BIOS (either via f12 or one-key recover mode)

I can change all BIOS settings, but the issue is that when rebooting, the BIOS keeps the old settings so the machine keeps rebooting in safe-mode. Thus usb is not recognized. (bios, boot menu)

before installing Ubuntu 17.10, USB was present as third option under the sub-section Legacy.
Now it's not recognized.

I hope this make things clearer.

The USB option is not present obviously even when pressing f12 at startup (for selecting the boot source)

Ubuntu 17.10 is working properly for me, and within Ubuntu USB ports work properly.

Let us know if you need more details, thanks

tobia antoniolli (tob79) wrote :

If I run 'sudo efibootmgr -v'
the message is: EFI variables are not supported on this system.

Alexis Rico (sferadev) wrote :

@Mathieu Trudel-Lapierre (cyphermox)
@Dimitri John Ledkov (xnox)

My Lenovo G50-80 was running a Ubuntu 17.10 with no dualboot. The BIOS didn't allow me to change ANY of the options and USB/DVD boot did not work for a few weeks or maybe months (I don't check BIOS every day).

Also it seems that grub failed when doing an apt upgrade (gave me a syscall error I/O) and the laptop turned itself into a brick because the "ubuntu"EFI entry also stopped working.

Right now I've set up a PXE server and I'm trying to install Windows 10 over LAN. If I can get it to boot, I'll try to apply the latest BIOS patch (only available for install through Windows) and see if everything goes back to normal.

Alexis Rico (sferadev) wrote :

Status update: Attempt to install Windows over PXE won't work.

The BIOS is really derped. The error of Windows Installer is: "Windows could not update the computer's boot configuration. Installation cannot proceed.".

I'm out of ideas...

reece callister (reecespuffs) wrote :

wow idk who stuffed it up but they stuffed up bad
i guess im lucky i can boot from usb and optical drive i just can change my bios settings
(lenovo ideapad 100 15iby)

reece callister (reecespuffs) wrote :


Steve Langasek (vorlon) wrote :

Bruno's efibootmgr output from comment #29 shows the same damaged boot entry syntax that has previously been seen on Acer laptops.

To my knowledge this is not compliant with the EFI spec.

Did Lenovo recently switch firmware vendors on this product line?

@tobia; contact Lenovo support. If USB does not show up, it's not an Ubuntu issue. Your USB system may be failing, or the USB key is not recognized (which would make it not show up as a boot option). You might want to try with a different USB key. Was 'ubuntu' listed before under UEFI? You should also not change the boot settings unless you know what you are doing, as doing so can obviously keep your system from booting correctly. If things are being reset at boot (presumably after a few seconds of delay at a blank screen), then you might be dealing with a bad firmware; you should contact Lenovo for help to upgrade or revert the last firmware update.

@Alexis Rico (sferadev); I suspect your hard drive is failing, or you are dealing with a bad firmware. GRUB would not cause this. What options are you trying to change in BIOS? What happens exactly when you try it? Is there an error, does it allow you to save, but then you get a blank screen for a while, and the system "reboots" again?

@bruno; as above: what happens? What settings do you try to change? What happens exactly when you do? What precise steps do you take?

In general, if you are unable to save setting changes in BIOS, you *need* to contact Lenovo support, especially if at "reboot" you see a blank screen for a while before anything happens. This may mean the firmware is confused, and its safety mechanisms will attempt to recover by settings back to their defaults.

bruno (bruno-js-carvalho123) wrote :

@Mathieu Trudel-Lapierre (cyphermox)

My problem is very much like @tobia described, I make some changes in the bios (like disabling secure boot or enabling legacy mode) press Save and exit then the computer reboots and bios settings go back to default.
I guess that the reason why @tobia doesn't see the USB drive listed in the boot options is because he cant disable secure boot.

And I dont see any blank screen, the boot process seems pretty normal.

@Steve Langasek (vorlon)

Im sorry i dont really know what lenovo is doing. As far as I know I didnt do any bios upgrades.

Alexis Rico (sferadev) wrote :

@Mathieu Trudel-Lapierre Yes, I have two issues:

1) BIOS Doesn't work fine. Same problem as @bruno USB Boot doesn't work, DVD boot doesn't work and saving bios settings are lost of exit and save. No white screen just the changes don't persist across reboots.

2) The hard drive failed leaving system non-bootable.

Today I've also tried installing the OS on a new drive and a different computer, booting through PXE to a Ubuntu Live CD and trying to insert a new entry for the new os through efibootmgr.

So far I've learnt that efibootmgr is unable to create a new entry as it errors No such File. And deleting the old EFI entries seems to work but when rebooting to bios the old EFI entries are still there.

On Tue, Nov 28, 2017 at 08:57:08PM -0000, Alexis Rico wrote:
> @Mathieu Trudel-Lapierre Yes, I have two issues:

> 1) BIOS Doesn't work fine. Same problem as @bruno USB Boot doesn't work,
> DVD boot doesn't work and saving bios settings are lost of exit and
> save. No white screen just the changes don't persist across reboots.

> 2) The hard drive failed leaving system non-bootable.

> Today I've also tried installing the OS on a new drive and a different
> computer, booting through PXE to a Ubuntu Live CD and trying to insert a
> new entry for the new os through efibootmgr.

> So far I've learnt that efibootmgr is unable to create a new entry as it
> errors No such File. And deleting the old EFI entries seems to work but
> when rebooting to bios the old EFI entries are still there.

All of this appears to point to a firmware implementation that does not
conform to the EFI standard. If Ubuntu is doing something "wrong" here, it
is very difficult to discern what it is.

In the past, we have seen problems with the Linux kernel filling up the
firmware's available nvram space and as a result causing boot problems.
This could be another instance of that problem, but that doesn't seem to fit
with the idea of efibootmgr successfully allowing boot entries to be

Steve Langasek (vorlon) on 2017-11-29
affects: grub2 (Ubuntu) → linux (Ubuntu)
Changed in linux (Ubuntu):
status: Incomplete → New
Changed in linux (Ubuntu):
status: New → Incomplete
tags: added: artful
tobia antoniolli (tob79) on 2017-11-29
tags: added: apport-collected wayland-session
description: updated
description: updated
Changed in linux (Ubuntu):
status: Incomplete → Confirmed
tobia antoniolli (tob79) on 2017-12-01
description: updated
description: updated
Changed in linux (Ubuntu):
importance: High → Critical
Changed in linux (Ubuntu Artful):
importance: Undecided → Critical
status: New → Confirmed
tags: added: kernel-key
description: updated
description: updated
description: updated
Pouria Maleki (pouria1) on 2017-12-11
description: updated
Tasos (tkatsoulas1) on 2017-12-11
description: updated
description: updated
kevh (kevhennessey) on 2017-12-12
description: updated
MAX KOVALENKO (hawo0451) on 2017-12-14
description: updated
description: updated
description: updated
Steve Langasek (vorlon) on 2017-12-15
description: updated
description: updated
description: updated
description: updated
MAX KOVALENKO (hawo0451) on 2017-12-18
description: updated
Rushabh Shah (rmshah99) on 2017-12-18
description: updated
Seth Forshee (sforshee) on 2017-12-18
description: updated
description: updated
Changed in linux (Ubuntu Artful):
status: Confirmed → Fix Committed
Changed in linux-hwe-edge (Ubuntu Artful):
status: New → Invalid
Changed in linux-oem (Ubuntu Artful):
status: New → Invalid
Changed in linux (Ubuntu Xenial):
status: New → Invalid
Changed in linux-hwe-edge (Ubuntu Xenial):
status: New → Fix Committed
Changed in linux-oem (Ubuntu Xenial):
status: New → Fix Committed
Changed in linux-hwe-edge (Ubuntu):
status: New → Confirmed
Changed in linux-oem (Ubuntu):
status: New → Confirmed
tags: added: verification-needed-artful
nic00 (nic00) on 2017-12-19
tags: added: verification-failed-artful
removed: verification-needed-artful
tags: added: verification-done-artful
removed: verification-failed-artful
Artur (radium88) on 2017-12-20
description: updated
Jeremy Keiper (jkeiper) on 2017-12-20
description: updated
Changed in linux (Ubuntu Artful):
status: Fix Committed → Fix Released
status: Fix Committed → Fix Released
Paul Sladen (sladen) on 2017-12-20
description: updated
Paul Sladen (sladen) on 2017-12-20
description: updated
allen (krell) on 2017-12-20
description: updated
allen (krell) on 2017-12-21
description: updated
Steve Langasek (vorlon) on 2017-12-21
description: updated
Elena (itzuki87) on 2017-12-21
description: updated
Changed in linux-hwe-edge (Ubuntu Xenial):
status: Fix Committed → Fix Released
status: Fix Committed → Fix Released
Changed in linux-oem (Ubuntu Xenial):
status: Fix Committed → Fix Released
status: Fix Committed → Fix Released
description: updated
description: updated
oussama saghiri (osm1) on 2017-12-22
description: updated
description: updated
description: updated
description: updated
allen (krell) on 2017-12-23
description: updated
description: updated
description: updated
Alexis Rico (sferadev) on 2017-12-27
description: updated
no longer affects: linux (Ubuntu Xenial)
no longer affects: linux-hwe-edge (Ubuntu)
no longer affects: linux-hwe-edge (Ubuntu Artful)
affects: linux (openSUSE) → ubuntu-translations
no longer affects: ubuntu-translations
no longer affects: linux-oem (Ubuntu)
no longer affects: linux-oem (Ubuntu Artful)
Changed in linux-hwe-edge (Ubuntu Xenial):
importance: Undecided → Critical
Changed in linux-oem (Ubuntu Xenial):
importance: Undecided → Critical
allen (krell) on 2017-12-29
description: updated
description: updated
Juan Felipe (hacktt) on 2017-12-31
description: updated
Seb (seb-y) on 2018-01-01
Changed in linux (Ubuntu Artful):
assignee: nobody → Seb (seb-y)
assignee: Seb (seb-y) → nobody
description: updated
description: updated
description: updated
Changed in linux (Ubuntu):
assignee: nobody → ramdas chormale (ramdaschormale)
Derek Ashby (delsubuntu) on 2018-01-02
Changed in linux (Ubuntu Artful):
assignee: nobody → Derek Ashby (delsubuntu)
Changed in linux (Ubuntu Artful):
assignee: Derek Ashby (delsubuntu) → nobody
Changed in linux (Ubuntu):
assignee: ramdas chormale (ramdaschormale) → nobody
description: updated
description: updated
tags: added: patch
tags: removed: kernel-key
description: updated
description: updated
description: updated
Walter Lapchynski (wxl) on 2018-01-03
summary: - Ubuntu 17.10 corrupting BIOS - many LENOVO laptops models
+ corrupted BIOS due to Intel SPI bug in kernel
Walter Lapchynski (wxl) on 2018-01-03
description: updated
allen (krell) on 2018-01-04
description: updated
description: updated
Changed in linux (Ubuntu):
status: Confirmed → Fix Released
Steve Langasek (vorlon) on 2018-01-06
Changed in linux (Ubuntu):
status: Fix Released → Fix Committed
description: updated
Changed in linux (Ubuntu):
status: Fix Committed → Fix Released
496 comments hidden view all 576 comments
Paul (sabret00the) wrote :

Just to clarify, the fixed kernel got released via both software update and ISO right? I'm asking because if that's the case, my issue still persists.

On Mon, Jan 15, 2018 at 06:56:05PM -0000, Paul wrote:
> Just to clarify, the fixed kernel got released via both software update
> and ISO right?

Yes, it did.

> I'm asking because if that's the case, my issue still persists.

Per the discussion, booting a fixed kernel does not resolve the problem if
your BIOS is already locked. Have you followed the recovery instructions in
the bug description?

Daniele Bianchin (dbianchi) wrote :

Will this bug ever be solved using windows (or without a kernel update) or my bios will stay broken forever?

Emiko Bellocq (hackerkitty2) wrote :

> #539
> Will this bug ever be solved using windows (or without a kernel update) or my bios will stay broken forever?

I do not think so.

According to this instruction, there is a way to install Ubuntu from internal disk partition without using CD nor USB.

Daniele Bianchin (dbianchi) wrote :


Do you think if i install Ubuntu using that guide and after i update the kernel i colud fix my bios?

Emiko Bellocq (hackerkitty2) wrote :

> Do you think if i install Ubuntu using that guide and after i update the kernel i colud fix my bios?

I think all you have to do is installling the "latest" 17.10 with the big-fixed kernel which is now available for download.

This dualboot setting should not affect your current Windows installation.
But if you have any important data on Windows, I recommend you to make a back up - just in case.

Emiko Bellocq (hackerkitty2) wrote :

I forgot to mention.
Since you have to use Windows for this dualboot setup, it might be easier to use
EaseUS Partition Master Free to create a new partition(s) and EasyBCD to select a boot partition.
I have been using this method for some years to dualboot before I switched to Linux + VM Windows configuration.

Dennis Pries (codemonkey82) wrote :

I've another affected machine: Fujitsu Esprimo Q9000.... Was rendered unbootable....

Daniele Bianchin (dbianchi) wrote :


I've done what you suggested and i think it worked! I can boot into the bios through grub, so it should fixed now.


Emiko Bellocq (hackerkitty2) wrote :

Glad to hear that what little I know about Linux could help other user :).

> Fujitsu Esprimo Q9000.... Was rendered unbootable

Could you describe a bit more detail?
Ubuntu 17.10 itself should still boot even with this BIOS corruption.
Did you wipe the entire drive?
Or there is some OS on the drive, but you cannot access to it?

Davide Prati (davide.prati) wrote :

I wanna let you know that the hardware solution works.

Hope to help someone else, thanks for feedback and suggestions: Mika Westerberg, Edenbar, Alex Friis.

Problem: UEFI mode, secure boot on, can't boot anything except netboot but UEFI doesn't let you install a linux distro in order to update kernel.

My solution: I ordered a new chip bios from ebay, i read the exact chip name on the motherboard. I also ordered a usb flash programmer (CH314A). I dissoldered the original chip from mobo (really easy with hot air solder); i read it with the flash programmer to get a backup copy; I erased its content; I write on the new chip a bios binary file that i found online (feel free to send me an email and i'll provide you the same 100% working file); I soldered the new chip on the motherboard and IT WORKS!!!!

After this I also tried to write the same working bios file on the old chip and I tried to resolder it on the motherboard. I can assure you that it works in the same way! So you don't really need to replace the chip, just erase it and write the new file on it.

If you have any questions pm me and i'll try to do my best to help you!!

Thanks all again

happyjoy321 (jasonbot1179) wrote :

Issue present on my Lenovo Yoga 2 11.

Was using a LiveUSB due to having no internal drive present at the time.

Wanted to try out Ubuntu MATE 17.10 at the time and now I can only boot from this liveUSB, nothing more. Cannot access the UEFI menu either.

Is it possible to create some sort of persistence on the liveusb, install the latest kernel, then change my settings upon reboot? If so, can someone help me with this?

Lars Pedersen (bundybear27) wrote :

I have an ACER V5-571G-53314G75Makk, SSID:23302770966

Installed Ubuntu 17.10.1 yesterday and can longer boot into USB or CDROM. Cannot access BIOS(Phoenix) via F2.

Ubuntu boots fine and works.

I have followed the steps above, installing both kernel versions and the BIOS has NOT recovered. I still cannot enter BIOS on this machine.

Any assistance would be greatly appreciated.

Walter Lapchynski (wxl) wrote :

>Installed Ubuntu 17.10.1 yesterday and can longer boot into USB or

Dot One doesn't even load the module that caused this problem. That said, this should be a different bug. Please file a separate one. Thanks!
       @wxl |
C563 CAC5 8BE1 2F22 A49D
68F6 8B57 A48B C4F2 051A

Kenan Gutić (kenan-gutic) wrote :

My laptop: Mediacom Smartbook 14 Ultra M-SB14UC is fixed with official fix provided in description of this bug report. Thank you <3

description: updated
Hariharan (hariharan22) wrote :

I have a Z50-70. This was my only fix cause i erased my HDD and wasnt able to boot through any media.
-Bought a USB Bios programmer (Ch341A) and a test clip.
-Took back-up of the ROM from the chip itself.(Chip is right next to PCI-E slot)
-Used UEFI tool to remove and replace the BIOS region which is on the back up file.(you can get the ROM file from BIOS Mods).
-Flashed it back to the chip.
-turned on the system, now it detect all kinds of bootable media

P.S- this was an easy $10 fix, rather than taking it to a service center and replacing the Motherboard.

description: updated
Emiko Bellocq (hackerkitty2) wrote :

> #548
> Is it possible to create some sort of persistence on the liveusb, install the latest kernel, then change my settings upon reboot?

As far as I know there is really not much you can do to modify the live USB.
It is designed to be "locked" so that nothing can alter or damage it.
Without creating a persistant partition at the time of creating this live USB, it works just like CD/DVD.

I think your situation is the same as those people who have no bootable OS in the internal disk
- for those cases, the only solution seems to be BIOS reprogramming such as #552 or #547.

gamdow (gamdow) wrote :

> #548
> Is it possible to create some sort of persistence on the liveusb, install the latest kernel, then change my settings upon reboot?

So I had the variety of this issue where I could only boot from the particular Ubuntu 17.10 Live USB I did the original install with (BIOS locked to a particular vendor/iso ID?). After quite a wild journey trying to find a way to update the Live USB kernel (without modifying the ID) I discovered a far simpler solution.

0. Presumably you have an installation of the bad 17.10 on the laptop HDD. If not, use the Live USB to do that (or another USB stick if you like)
1. Boot from the Live USB. When you reach the grub boot menu, hit 'c' to access the grub terminal.
2. Try to find the device id of the partition (e.g. '(hd0,1)') where the Ubuntu installation is located. Probe around with commands like 'ls (hd0,1)', 'ls (hd1,2)', etc. If SecureBoot is preventing you from using 'ls' try 'cat (hd0,1)/etc/issue', it should return something like 'Ubuntu 17.10 \n \l'.
3. Now issue the following commands to set and boot boot from that installation;
  'grub> set root=(hd1,2)' # replace with the id you found in step 2
  'grub> linux /vmlinuz root=/dev/sda2' # While sdb2 is the equivalent of (hd1,2), the root for this command is not necessarily the same as the previous one. The boot drive will be promoted to sda, replacing the USB stick. So root here should be sda2 for an installation with the default partitioning. Getting this wrong will result in init script error along the lines of 'can't mount /dev to /root/dev'. You may be able to figure out the correct root from the (initrmfs) terminal you end up in, try 'ls' there.
  'grub> initrd /initrd.img'
  'grub> boot'
4. Follow the OP's instructions for updating the Kernel, up to and including the reboot. However, you will end up back at the Live USB grub menu, but this is fine an you are nearly done.
5. Execute steps 1 to 3 again. This will boot the installation with the new kernel.
6. Reboot, access BIOS menu and check you can modify settings.
7. Pull the Live USB and burn it in a fire.

At this point, my BIOS was fixed, but I was still booting to the grub menu. So I just did a fresh install of the fixed Ubuntu (17.10.1).

In the description you wrote is you can boot into linux, ofcourse you yourself expecting to explain the solution for users which cant boot to ubuntu, then it is enteresting why the solution is not covering such a problem?

I can just boot with ubuntu live 18.4 , and when i try to install i have grub installation failed and cant install ubuntu.
I do not have any os on my hdd.

Please provide asolution ?

Post #523
Plese explain how to fix it is i cant boot to ubuntu only access to live without previouse OS

sreekumar (sreekumarpr) wrote :

Hi all,
I got the same damage to my LENOVO Y50 70 from Knoppix last Edition ~8.1.
I tried the above resoulution from Knoppix USB Live but i were not able to install that kerenal in Live edition because of some Grub related issue.I erased same drive and put Latest Ubuntu in it and were able to boot in legecy mode pressing F12.(Not able to boot UEFI Mode).Then i installed it to my i connected to internet 4.13 kernal update came,i applied it but still not fixed,so i installed second kernal in the above solution and within a couple of reboots i got back my BIOS settings back.

My question is if Linux kernal which goes to all ditribution itself is like this how can i trust Linux ,it spoiles my expensive hardware.I am losing all my learning interest and trust in linux i am thinking how can i use a linux distro one more time?

gamdow (gamdow) wrote :

> #556
? Please explain how to fix it is i cant boot to ubuntu only access to live without previous OS

It sounds like you have the same issue as me (only boot from Live USB), but you don't have an (inaccessible) installation of Ubuntu on the laptop's HDD? Do you have access to another computer where you could do an installation to the laptop's HDD or another USB stick perhaps? It's pretty straight forward (though I always end up breaking the other computers grub, but you can fix that with 'update-grub'). Once you have the bootable Live USB and another device (HDD/USB) accessible from the laptop with the full installation, you should then be able to follow the instructions in my post, #554 (use the Live USB's grub terminal to select and boot from an installation drive and update the kernel there).

Hi @gamdav

Thanks for suffestion, i managed to install the ubuntu on my hdd,vut the version is 18.4 because only this live version boots.
I am following your post #554 but i have problem in step 2.
In grub menu when i entr to grub shell , the ls command returns nothing and wh3n i tried the cat i get file not find error.,

How should i fix it?

Thanks man

gamdow (gamdow) wrote :


I'm no expert on the grub terminal, but you should be able to access all the attached devices even if you couldn't boot from them. There's maybe a command that lists all the partitions, but I was locked out of using modules thanks to SecureBoot. So I used the following method;

The device id (hdn,m) represents drive number 'n' and partition 'm'. So starting with drive 0, partition 1, try 'cat (hd0,1)/etc/issue'. If you get a 'file not found' error increment the partition, e.g. 'cat (hd0,2)/etc/issue'. If you get a 'drive not found' error increment the drive number and reset the partition, e.g. 'cat (hd1,1)/etc/issue'. Once you find the id that returns something ('Ubuntu 18.04 \n \l', I'm guessing in your case), continue onto step three.

This is the brute force method, but you can probably calculate the right drive number base on the number of devices on the laptop (0=Boot device (USB), 1=HDD, etc.). The partition number will be the partition of the root filesystem '/' where you installed. So, best guess for you is (hd1,2). If that doesn't work you'll have to use the brute force method. If *that* doesn't work, then I'm afraid I'm at the limit of my knowledge. Maybe some research into the grub terminal will help you figure out if you can access and boot from the installed drive. It should be possible based on my experience.


Thank you very much man , i solved the step 2 and my drive number i s (hd1,3).

Now i am trying step 3 but as you said i am getting the error which you mentioned in #554.

I have tryed this:

grub> set root=(hd1,3)
grub> linux /vmlinuz root=/dev/sda3 also i have tried sda2
grub>initrd /initrd.img

But in initramfs page i am getting the error: mounting /dev on /root/dev failed

I am confused how should i fix this part,any idea ?

Thanks man

gamdow (gamdow) wrote :


Happy to hear you're making progress, though I won't be able to help you as much at this stage because your system is setup up differently from mine.

Since you've reached the initrmfs terminal, you just need to locate "vmlinuz" now that the drives have been reordered. That should be wherever the root of filesystem has been mounted (e.g. "/"). Thankfully initrmfs will have all the basic functions of a standard terminal. So try "lsblk" to list all the drives/partitions and their ids, and look for the partition that has the "/" MOUNTPOINT. That should be the name you use for the root in the second grub command.

Failing that, you could use other basic terminal commands like "ls /dev", 'find / -name "vmlinuz"', etc. to figure out your particular setup.

Danny Vilca (daisukedanny) wrote :

Hi everyone, I'm from Peru,
I received the same damage to my LENOVO Y50 70 Touch I was working several months without realizing this bug until I had problems with my ubuntu and decided to install my OS. now I can not start from any device, install ubuntu 17.10.1 on my disk with another computer but it does not start the OS in my notebook I run out of ideas if someone came to any possible solution my whatsapp +51992701807

thanks for your support

Dennis Pries (codemonkey82) wrote :


Sorry for the late response. It even doesn't do POST anymore. I turn it on and all it does is, to start the fan at full power.

Emiko Bellocq (hackerkitty2) wrote :

It sounds like the POST delay of your laptop is currently set to zero second
and the machine is trying to boot from the wrong devise.

Try hitting the [ESC] key repeatedly as soon as you turn on the computer.
This key sequence could be different (mine was HP Probook) - so check the support page for your laptop model.
The hitting motion must be a very quick tapping, not a long pressing.
If you miss the timimg, simply start over.
This should let you enter the BIOS menu where you can select the correct booting device.

I fixed my laptop Acer E5-511-C5QS, it has all the described issues BIOS save won't change and i was unable to boot from a Liveusb, so i follow #554 and i use bruteforce procedure drescribed in #560 and find that my partition was (hd0,9) equivalent to sda9, i get stuck in initramfs, and i use #562 but instead of 'lsblk' i used 'fsck /dev/sda9' (where sda9 is your ubuntu 17.10 partition) then i answered yes ('Y' key) to all requests, when process finished i reboot my laptop and i was able to boot previous installed ubuntu 17.10, then i follow the description fix and that repair my BIOS, i hope this can help someone with the same problem.
P.d. sorry for my bad english.

Dennis Pries (codemonkey82) wrote :

#565 Nope.. Nothing. It's not a Laptop but a Mini-PC ( It even does not seam to detect the USB keyboard (no lights flashing or NUM-LOCK switching possible). Also I've a black screen.

Simply dead. I tried a BIOS recovery in may ways (Data-Sheet says it supports it, but nobody has described how to do it, so try-and-error was the only option), but this also does not work. Reacts to nothing.

Emiko Bellocq (hackerkitty2) wrote :

I think you might want to submit this model for updating the informatin regardng this bug.
As long as I can tell, there has been no othere report that this BIOS bug affects mini PCs.

I looked around Fujitsu site for the information.
The terrible thing is that they only offer the information for BIOS setup in Japanese page.
The key conbination given in this page is pressing Fn2 while powering up the unit.

Dennis Pries (codemonkey82) wrote :

This thing is basically a laptop without a screen and keyboard. I think I can smash the keyboard as long as I want with no effect, because the keyboard is attached via USB and it seams that it does not initialize the USB controller.

How can I submit the model?

Emiko Bellocq (hackerkitty2) wrote :

> This thing is basically a laptop without a screen and keyboard.
It looks like possible to open the unit for repair.
BIOS reprogramming like some people suggested here?
I also saw some ebay shops have pre-flashed BIOS chips.

> How can I submit the model?
I think you can send a request for update to the original Bug reporter.
(there's a link to send a message on top right corner)

Emiko Bellocq (hackerkitty2) wrote :

I forgot to paste this link.
A shop specialized in BIOS chips.

Ruben Gomes (rubengomes) wrote :

Is there anyway of fixing the bios within Windows 10? I cannot boot from a Linux HDD at the moment.

Emiko Bellocq (hackerkitty2) wrote :

See my posts 540, 542, and 543.
If you can boot from the internal disk with Windows OS, you can fix the BIOS by creating dualboot setup.

1 comments hidden view all 576 comments

#562 AND #566

i could log to installed ubntu in my hdd and then install new version of the kernel successfully.
but when i am trying to follow up the original solution in step 4 as :
5. At grub, choose the newly installed kernel. You can choose the "recovery" mode.
I dont see any newly installed kernel and i just see the previously seeing grub menu as :

live ubuntu
install ubuntu
bla bla,
check bla bla

as I guess i have to see something like this :
Ubuntu, with Linux 3.2.0-43 generic
Ubuntu, with Linux 3.2.0-43 generic (recovery mode)
Previous Linux versions
Memory test (memtest86+)

is it true?
if yes or know what is the solution to complete the step 4 or original solution ?

thanks guys

Danny (sofialobo) wrote :

can we fix this bug using wubi?
and if I install the 17.10.1 ubuntu ISO and install via wubi does it repair the bug itself or i have to do whats says in the description?

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