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08-06-2020 06:46 AM
I just brought used, but really nice Z620 Workstation, but i can't access in any way to the BIOS.
I tried F10, and all other "F", ESC i tried before reboot, shutdown stay one minute...
Also i tried many different USB ports for the keyboard and still same.
The BIOS its the last version, the seller upgraded everything but i want change some things and i can't. For example i can't change the virtualization options at the processor and i can only do with 32 bits OS. Also i want see how is the BIOS of a Workstation, its my first.
08-06-2020 08:13 AM - edited 08-06-2020 01:51 PM
I also have seen this, very rarely in some of our Z620 workstations. The workaround I've used is to get a HP PS2 keyboard from eBay (any brand should do) and cold boot with that attached instead of using a USB keyboard. That has gotten me into BIOS when a USB keyboard failed. For all of my clean builds I start by using a HP PS2 keyboard and HP PS2 laser mouse. They are more primative, but get the job done from a different pathway than USB, and allow me to do things that booting with a USB keyboard may not allow (especially if the box likely does not have factory BIOS settings). You can easily find those new, inexpensive, on eBay. That might take you too much time, so start with the idea below.
Another approach that might work is to clear the CMOS the complex way we have posted about here assuming that the CMOS (BIOS) settings are corrupted and that way you will get back to factory defaults. This includes unplugging everything, taking out the CMOS battery, pushing the front on button to discharge capacitors, and pushing the CMOS reset button, and repeating a few times. You can have bad BIOS settings but you truly can have corrupted BIOS also. This method may get you back to what you need when nothing else works.
There is a feature in HP workstations called Replicated Setup, and that allows capture of your settings, saving them, load of another set of BIOS settings (sent to you by email) and going back to your originals later. You can print out those 2 files to see side by side the differences. I have specific hand-tuned settings for fastest boot and best speed, for example.
Good luck on your project, and welcome.
08-07-2020 06:04 AM
A second approach is to download and install the HP Performance Advisor software. This allows you to view and edit the BIOS settings from within Windows. It may help in finding the cause of why you are unable to enter the BIOS with a USB keyboard during the boot POST.
08-07-2020 01:27 PM
Thank you both. HP Performance Advisor looks really nice but from there i can't change the virtualization configuration. I don't know if its a hardware issue or i have to use the real bios for something like this.
I will try to find a PS2 keyboard. Sure i can find in ebay.
Really thanks guys!
08-07-2020 01:39 PM
You will want to bookmark the HP Z620 Support page in your browser. It has tons of detailed information on these workstations. If you go to the manuals section, you will find the HP Z220 SFF, Z220 CMT, Z420, Z620, and Z820 Workstations Maintenance and Service Guide. This has a detailed section on the BIOS settings and may help configuring your Z620 BIOS, (once you get your hands on a PS/2 keyboard). e.g. some features in the BIOS can not be enabled unless other BIOS settings have been enabled or disabled, so it's worth checking the BIOS section in the above manual just in case.
08-07-2020 10:48 PM - edited 08-07-2020 10:56 PM
May I add... Brian is truly a master of these workstations. Take a minute and see the performance he has been able to extract from what you have, at the bottom of his post He and I have a bit different approach. His approach to BIOS is at a high level; my approach is more mundane but works well. I'd suggest this.... get a Replicated Setup file from Brian and one from me... after you unlock the BIOS issues you are facing. Try both. My prediction is that his will perform better and that mine will also get the job done. Brian and Bambi have much to offer you.
Let us all know if you have a version 2 of this workstation, based on its boot block date. That is important.
08-08-2020 02:01 AM
First of all. Thanks for all the info are you bring me. When i bought this workstation i didn't know so much about. I just read basic information and i got a good price for a nice one. eBay lucky bet. Right now its a Desktop/Gaming with other projects in short time future. All this information its helping me a lot.
Initially its v2, but i'm not 100% sure. When i was looking i seen the v1 usually have v1 Xeon processors and v2 have v2 & v3 Xeon processors. But i can be totally wrong.This world of the workstations looks quite easy when you first look at the internet but it's complex and not really documented (or i don't find so much) Just found this forum and its amazing how much information is everywhere.
When i can check the BIOS i will try both replicated setups. More performance? I never got so big changes between computers since maybe 486 8 mb ram vs p3 2gb... Its amazing how it works and still without trying to use it with FreeBSD or some all compiled Linux.
08-08-2020 10:55 AM
The v2 motherboard has a 2013 boot block date, whereas the v1 motherboards have a 2011 boot block date. You can check the boot block date either by checking the BIOS, or using the HP Performance Advisor software. Using the HPA software, click on Your Computer then click on BIOS Settings. Then clcik on the small arrow beside File then on the small arrow beside the System Information. The boot block is listed about 2/3 of the way down the page.
A v1 motherboard only supports Xeon v1 CPU's - NOTE: There isn't actually a v1 version of the CPU, i.e. the v2 CPU's are listed as E5-1680 v2, etc. but the v1 are listed without any revision. i.e. a E5-1680 CPU is a v1 version. (It simply sounds better referring to the CPU models as v1 and v2, as opposed to calling them v0 and v2).
The v2 motherboards (boot block date 2013) support both the v1 and v2 CPU's, but only specific CPU models as listed in the HP Z620 quickspecs.
E5-16xx CPU's will only work in single CPU configurations. E5-26xx CPU's can be used in dual CPU configurations.
The v3 and v4 CPU's only work in the HP Zx40 series workstations, i.e. the next generation of HP workstations.
08-08-2020 01:28 PM - edited 08-08-2020 01:31 PM
There are tons of cheap new and used PS/2 keyboards on ebay. Or Amazon if you want it next day.
Just search for PS/2 keyboard, not PS2 keyboard - the / is important.
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