Jimmy's weblog


My new X230… Backup of the factory default state

Filed under: — jimmy @ 1:46 am

Before I started to modify the original setup I wanted to backup a couple of things because I knew, that most of the steps are not straightforward and I might need to get back (To be honest, I had two other Lenovo machines where I tested the steps before I applied them on my X230 ;-) )
I started with creating the recovery media and Lenovo supports to use usb flash media instead of cd recordables, too. But something told me that I should not fully trust the software to create a bootable usb flash drive. Long story short: The software creates an unbootable flash drive if you do not prepare the flash drive before you start the program :(
Have a look at the instructions at Lenovo’s support site. It’s not only a missing boot flag which I set afterwards, there seem to be other constraints, too. The flash drive, which did not work, had a strange partition table, too. On the working flash drive it looked like this:

Disk /dev/sdc: 15.8 GB, 15804137472 bytes
255 heads, 63 sectors/track, 1921 cylinders, total 30867456 sectors
Units = sectors of 1 * 512 = 512 bytes
Sector size (logical/physical): 512 bytes / 512 bytes
I/O size (minimum/optimal): 512 bytes / 512 bytes
Disk identifier: 0×00000000

Device Boot Start End Blocks Id System
/dev/sdc1 * 2048 30867455 15432704 7 HPFS/NTFS/exFAT

I assume that the starting cylinder is important.

Usually you can create recovery media only once but there’s a hack to do it again, which is very useful if things go wrong. Open command prompt and type:

echo 0 > Q:\FactoryRecovery\RECOVERY.INI:Done

It’s also a good idea to save the mbr and partition table, e.g.:

dd if=/dev/sda of=mbr-backup-sda.img bs=1 count=512
sfdisk -d /dev/sda > sfdisk-sda-dump.txt
sfdisk -l /dev/sda > sfdisk-sda.txt

(Basically the first command is sufficient but I prefer to have different backups)


My new X230… things have changed :)

Filed under: — jimmy @ 6:34 pm

My first Lenovo notebook was a X60s, which is still running quite well but 32 bit is not enough ;-) It came with WinXP preinstalled because there was no option to order it with Linux or without OS. All other notebooks that I used afterwards came without OS so there was no other OS to take care about. My X230 came with Win7 preinstalled so I decided to compare the actual installation with my first one eight years ago (I don’t really need the preinstalled OS so I might as well just make a clean installation but I was interested about the possibilities for our customer installations).
So i will write some posts about certain aspects of the original setup. First one will be about backuping up the factory default state because there the troubles started ;-)


Got my Lenovo X230 without camera :(

Filed under: — jimmy @ 7:51 pm

Take care when ordering your notebook in the Lenovo webshop, you might miss a camera, too. I configured mine and I wanted a builtin camera. Then I decided that the 3×3 antennas would be better than the 2×2 and so I changed the configuration. What I did not see was, that the box for the camera options, where you choose if you want a builtin camera or none, just disappeared and the camera gets unselected. When checking the config again before hitting the order button I checked every option but there was no line like “camera: none” so it looked good for me. When the notebook arrived there was no camera builtin. Reason: The third antenna in the 3×3 config needs the space where the camera would be. Unfortunately there was no hint or warning in the webshop :(
Of course I was able to send it back and order a new one but this process is very time consuming. This happened a couple of weeks ago and in the meantime I got my new X230 but the bug is still not fixed in the shop although I reported it :(
(BTW: I ordered in the shop of Austria but I also checked the US shop which has a similiar problem)

I hope this post helps somebody else not to run into the same problem.