BIOS Password Bypass Techniques Modifying Jumper Settings

Another approach is to modify the jumper settings on the motherboard. Settings are usually easily obtained via a quick Internet search to the motherboard manufacturer, which makes it possible to speed up BIOS password removal.

Changing the jumper settings to the manufacturer-specified option for password recovery makes it possible to boot the machine and remove the BIOS password. The

Figure 4-1 Jumper settings

information, shown in Figure 4-1, was obtained from a quick Google search of Intel's website:

Password Clear (J9C1-A)

Use this jumper to clear the password if the password is forgotten. The default setting is pins 1-2 (password enabled). To clear the password, turn off the computer, move the jumper to pins 2-3, and turn on the computer. Then, turn off the computer and return the jumper to pins 1-2 to restore normal operation. If the jumper is in the 2-3 position (password disabled), you cannot set a password.

(from http://www.intel.com/support/motherboards/desktop/AN430TX/sb/cs-012846.htm)

As any systems administrator who has forgotten a BIOS password and needed to gain access knows, it generally takes less than a few minutes to get around this obstacle. If a BIOS password is successfully removed, attackers can simply edit the BIOS settings and allow booting from removable devices. From that point, they can boot to any form of removable media and reset the password on the machine.

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