Wednesday, October 1, 2014

HP EliteBook & ProBook - how to remove the BIOS password set by HP ProtectTools

Here is the scenario:

An employee was fired from the company some time ago and his old laptop has a BIOS password set by HP ProtectTools. Here is the procedure to remove the password and completely remove BIOS security. It assumes you can still login to Windows on the computer with a user with admin rights.

  1. Download the current version of HP System Software Manager (SSM). As of October 2014 it is version in SoftPaq 66796 and can be found here.
  2. Run the sp66796.exe file and accept all defaults.
  3. Go to the C:\Program Files (x86)\Hewlett-Packard\SystemSoftwareManager folder and extract there the file with 7-Zip or another compressed file manager.
  4. Double-click the HpqPswd.exe file
  5. Choose a new BIOS Administrator password (minimum 8 characters), type it in the 2 Password fields and type the name of the password file (I use pass.bin) and click OK.
  6. Download the current HP BIOS Configuration Utility (BCU). As of October 2014 it is version in SoftPaq 65619 and can be found here.
  7. Run the sp65619.exe file and accept all defaults.
  8. Copy the pass.bin file created in step 5 to the C:\Program Files (x86)\Hewlett-Packard\BIOS Configuration Utility folder
  9. Open a Command Prompt and go to the C:\Program Files (x86)\Hewlett-Packard\BIOS Configuration Utility folder.
  10. Type this command: BIOSConfigUtility64.exe /nspwdfile:pass.bin .This will set a new BIOS Administrator password.
  11. Restart the computer and enter BIOS setup (F10 on most models).
  12. Select user BIOS Administrator and type the password you chose in step 5.
  13. In the Security Tab click the User Management option.
  14. In the HP PROTECTTOOLS USERS section select all the users one by one and and click Delete Account.
  15. Go back to the Security Tab and click Change Password
  16. Type the password you chose in step 5 and press Enter 3 times to select a blank password.
  17. Exit the BIOS setup and save the changes.
  18. To make sure that it worked enter the BIOS setup and you should not be asked any password.
Credits: the above procedure is an adaptation from this post to use the available versions of HP SSM and BCU.


Anonymous said...

Hi. I did the exact procedure but It says "attempt to change password, but correct password is not provided." I don't know the current password... how shall i proceed ? thank you

McThePro said...

Did you specify a new password in step 5 ?

Anonymous said...

yes of course. it keeps telling me "attempt to change password, but correct password is not provided." i set 12345678. is there a problem with it ?

Anonymous said...

User Admin receives exception
C:\Program Files (x86)\Hewlett-Packard\BIOS Configuration Utility>BIOSConfigUtil
ity64.exe /nspwdfile:pass.bin

C:\Program Files (x86)\Hewlett-Packard\BIOS Configuration Utility>

Notepad+ shows the file
_HPPW12_ Oñ8ôéÐc T\[éÞ p ×ô4~ äÔ 9q ¤§q

Anonymous said...

i get the message: Unable to conect to HP WMI namespace: 'root\HP'
BCU return walue result =24

what am i supposed to do now?

Anonymous said...

the minimum password should be 10 characters . use 1234567890

Anonymous said...

I followed your guide step by step, but when type the command in CMD it show this message:

I done exactly what you wrote into the guide, tried using password of 8, 9 10 and also more characters.
The pass.bin file it's placed in the same category of the BIOSConfigUtility64.exe but for some reason it seem that it doesn't see it.

Any help?

Yayat said...

Hi Guys,

I also have the same problem on my probook 440 G0, already done like those guided, but got the same "attempt to change password, but correct password is not provided"

Is your problem have been solved. Thank you very much for sharing.

kunte said...

I tried to remove the password in the BIOS on my HP ProBook 645G1. Writes me:

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Anonymous said...

Hi. Had the same problem following your instructions, landing with an error message "no password file is provided". And I just found out why.

In fact, if your BIOS has a password already set, you are requested to provided it, and the command is then C:\Program Files (x86)\Hewlett-Packard\BIOS Configuration Utility>BIOSConfigUtility64.exe /nspwdfile:pass.bin /cspwdfile:oldpass.bin

But, as you and me we are in the same situation, we don't know the existing BIOS password, well, back to square one and try to find a different solution. Good luck to us