ThinkPad T60 Recovery guide

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You can find flashrom under the flashrom/ directory in the Retroboot source code release archives. Build it (from source) using the Retroboot build instructions page.

This section documents how to recover from a bad flash that prevents your ThinkPad T60 from booting. These are the same instructions as what were on the Libreboot website (Retroboot was forked from Libreboot) but will also apply to T60 with ATI Mobility Radeon GPU, as opposed to the Intel GPU.

Brick type 1: bucts not reset

You still have Lenovo BIOS, or you had retroboot running and you flashed another ROM; and you had bucts 1 set and the ROM wasn’t dd’d to copy the higher bootblock into the lower bootblock, for bucts purposes. Or if Lenovo BIOS was present and retroboot wasn’t flashed.

In this case, unbricking is easy: reset BUC.TS to 0 by removing that yellow cmos coin (it’s a battery) and putting it back after a minute or two:

bad rom (or user error), system won’t boot

In this scenario, you compiled a ROM that had an incorrect configuration, or there is an actual bug preventing your system from booting. Or, maybe, you set BUC.TS to 0 and shut down after first flash while Lenovo BIOS was running. In any case, your system is bricked and will not boot at all.

“Unbricking” means flashing a known-good (working) ROM. The problem: you can’t boot the system, making this difficult. In this situation, external hardware (see hardware requirements above) is needed which can flash the SPI chip (where retroboot resides).

Remove those screws and remove the HDD:

Lift off the palm rest:

Lift up the keyboard, pull it back a bit, flip it over like that and then disconnect it from the board:

Gently wedge both sides loose:

Remove that cable from the position:

Now remove that bezel. Remove wifi, nvram battery and speaker connector (also remove 56k modem, on the left of wifi):

Remove those screws:

Disconnect the power jack:

Remove nvram battery:

Disconnect cable (for 56k modem) and disconnect the other cable:

Disconnect speaker cable:

Disconnect the other end of the 56k modem cable:

Make sure you removed it:

Unscrew those:

Make sure you removed those:

Disconnect LCD cable from board:

Remove those screws then remove the LCD assembly:

Once again, make sure you removed those:

Remove the shielding containing the motherboard, then flip it over. Remove these screws, placing them on a steady surface in the same layout as they were in before you removed them. Also, you should mark each screw hole after removing the screw (a permanent marker pen will do), this is so that you have a point of reference when re-assembling the system:

Now wire up the SPI flasher and the test clip (for SO-IC8) with your PSU.
Refer to rpi_setup.html for how to setup the RPi for flashing. Pin 1 on the flash chip is the one on the corner that has the dot.

You can tell because pin 4 is ground, so it will have continuity with a ground plane on the mainboard (when you test it using a DMM in continuity mode)

Regarding 3.3v power rail: DO NOT use the 3.3v power rail from your programmer, or from any other external power source. Instead, plug in the charger to your T60 mainboard but do not power on the mainboard. This will provide 3.3v to the chip. DO NOT connect external power at all, especially when you have the charger plugged in.

Now let’s re-assemble!

Put those screws back:

Put it back into lower chassis:

Attach LCD and insert screws (also, attach the lcd cable to the board):

Insert those screws:

On the CPU (and there is another chip south-east to it, sorry forgot to take pic) clean off the old thermal paste (with the alcohol) and apply new (Artic Silver 5 is good, others are good too) you should also clean the heatsink the same way

Attach the heatsink and install the screws (also, make sure to install the AC jack as highlighted):

Reinstall that upper bezel:

Do that:

Re-attach modem, wifi, (wwan?), and all necessary cables. Sorry, forgot to take pics. Look at previous removal steps to see where they go back to.

Attach keyboard and install nvram battery:

Place keyboard and (sorry, forgot to take pics) reinstall the palmrest and insert screws on the underside:

It lives!

Always stress test (‘stress -c 2’ and xsensors. below 90C is ok) when replacing cpu paste/heatsink:

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