While handing out fliers and business cards to the people in line at the Hilton Career faire, somebody told me that their computer had a password put on the bios that they didn’t know. It was really bad, because it wasn’t just protecting the BIOS settings from alteration, but it was actually preventing the computer from booting. I didn’t know off the top of my head how to fix the problem, so I told them I would research it.
First of all, I should have thought of just pulling the CMOS battery out. This will make the CMOS memory loose it’s mind (and any passwords that are protecting it). The only down side it that you will have to put all of the settings back in once the battery is restored. On some motherboards, the battery is actually soldered in. Some of these motherboards will have a jumper that you can move to clear CMOS ram.
I found a really great website that has a lot of “backdoor” passwords that the motherboard manufacturers put into their BIOS programs. It’s here How to Reset a BIOS Password.
You never really stop learning (unless you’re dead. Then maybe there was one last lesson that you should have learned but you can’t because you’re dead and not knowing just killed you).