Robert McLaws: Windows Edition

Blogging about Windows since before Vista became a bad word

Toshiba BIOS Upgrades and Windows Vista

If you're running Vista RTM on a Toshiba Tecra M4, DO NOT UNDER ANY CIRCUMSTANCES upgrade your BIOS to either interim version 2.01 or the currently-released 3.1. Both versions are poorly designed, and will cause a catastrophic crash of the video card if you try to bring the system back from a reduced-power state. Your best bet is to stay on version 1.70 until Vista is available to consumers in January... and even then I'd recommend waiting.



  • It's not the BIOS that's poorly designed :(

    Hint: it's the thing that actually crashes. I'm seeing on 4 (FOUR) different PCs right now. Even with external AGP cards on desktop PCs.

    It happens you wake "it" from hibernation or when you use S3-Suspend (Deep Sleep) mode (configured in the BIOS). "It" simply doesn't recover right from having the power switched off to all the various components of the PC - unlike XP, Linux, Mac OS X, BSD, or SkyOS.

    December 9, 2006 11:25 PM
  • That's a power driver issue. Will be fixed after RTM.

    December 10, 2006 12:33 AM
  • Yeah, I hope so too ;)

    December 10, 2006 1:42 AM
  • phreaki said:

    If your from one camp, you'd said never use any sleep or hibernation and say Toshiba is the worst one in the world for that. (No kidding, I've heard this).

    Or you'd be like the Toshiba owners I see, and use it when it works and be grateful to update BIOS and or Drivers or OS patches so that it all works fine like it does most of the time.

    By the way, I still think it's possible in pre-vista for poorly designed virus scanners and drivers to cause some issues with sleep or hibernation, but with vista and good driver certification, it could all go away?

    December 10, 2006 10:20 AM
  • Adam Hill said:

    I have discovered a workaround for waking up a Tecra M4 in Vista.

    When the screensaver puts the laptop into S3 and you hit a key to wake it up the screen begins to 'corrupt' (either random dots or streaks running from the bottom to the top), at that point I move the power switch to the right, putting it into old sleep mode and the orange light begins to pulse. After that happens move the power switch to the right again, this 'hard wakes up' the Tecra and after a few blinks of the screen everything is back to normal.

    Now, one thing that is a killer for the batter is the fact that Speedstep seems not to be working at all and you cannot change the screen brightness so the battery is dean within about 1.5 hrs and there is no low battery notification.

    December 10, 2006 10:26 PM
  • Alex Danvy said:

    Hi Adam,

    You can change the screen brightness of your tablet pc running Vista. I personnaly use the Windows Mobility Center. I have the same problem of screen flickering and off screen on wakeup. Two devices can't find a driver.

    December 14, 2006 5:09 PM
  • Dajaun said:

    This is sorta off topic, but i've looked everywhere else. And i saw Toshiba Bios and Windows Vista so i figured it was sort of related.

    Here's a good one for you. I was running xp on a Toshiba Sattelite M40X RH4, I started getting some hardware errors (blue screen of death) I tried to resolve them but i couldn't find any problems. So i reformatted and thought i'd try out the latest version of Vista RC1 at the time. Installed it, it worked for about a month then crashed. I'd get an NMI Parity Check error. Read into it found next to nothing. Eventually discovered that it is a problem with memory. So i tested my ram extensively and found absolutely no problems. Within a week my system completely died, now i can't even load any windows install disk, i instantly get an NMI parity check error.

    Despirate i try wiping my drive clean with linux, it works, after much fiddling around trying to get windows to work i gave up and now I run ubuntu, which works flawlessly. I haven't had any errors or any problems with the system. It has to be a hardware error but I can't find out what. I thought of updating the bios, but that requries a floppy drive, something that this laptop doesn't come with.

    I'm ok running linux but it would be nice to get back into windows there are a few programs i miss running. Any ideas?

    December 29, 2006 1:27 PM
  • Graham Fluet said:


    First of all, I'm not sure what happend with the install.

    Second of all, if you liked the look of XP (silver) try Kubuntu. it is basically Ubuntu with KDE (originally ment to stand for Kool Desktop Extension).

    Third, try WINE @ to use windows apps in Linux.

    January 10, 2007 4:12 PM
  • March 10, 2007 11:54 AM