If you switch on a Toshiba L350 and get the message “Enter Password” with a blue background and white writing then a BIOS password has been set. You may not have done this especially if the laptop has not been used for a long time.
Switch the computer off and remove the main battery and power connector.
Open the memory compartment. On an L350 you can see the two solder points that you need to short. I have circled them.
On an L300 you have to take the memory out and lift the black plastic cover.
The two solder points are labelled B500 and I used a small flat bladed screw driver held at an angle to short the contacts. Once shorted insert the power adaptor and press the power button, make sure you keep the two points shorted. You should not see the screen asking for a password. If you do then you did not have a proper contact. Switch the laptop off and try again.
I had the opportunity to directly compare and normal hard drive (hdd) with a solid state hard drive (ssd) as I had two identical laptops in for sale. The laptop on the left is fitted with an SSD the one on the right with a HDD.
Watch the difference a SSD makes by restarting the laptops.
This video has not been edited in any way, no titles, graphics or cutting. Just a direct comparison of two identical Dell E5410 laptops, one with a SSD and the other with an HDD!
So you have decided to install Windows 8 from a DVD or USB stick and not a recovery partition. You have removed the previous partitions so that this will be the only operating system on your hard drive. You get nearly to the end of the install when you are then presented with the screen “Your computer ran into a problem and needs to restart”
Your computer ran into a problem and needs to restart
You try different media and get the same error. It looks bad, it looks like this laptop is going back to Windows 7. However the solution may be simpler than you imagine. It looks like there is a problem with the WiFi driver built into the installation media.
Simply disable your WiFi card in the BIOS (if the option is available) or completely remove it from the motherboard whilst you install Windows 8. The WiFi card looks like this:
Laptop WiFi Card
If you are very lucky then the WiFi card will be easily accessible under one of the compartment covers on the underneath of the laptop. The card is held in by one or two screws with one or two wires (aerials) connected to it. In my example though the card was difficult to access under the keyboard and top panel of the laptop.
The screw securing the WiFi card in place is circled and the arrows point to the aerial cables that need to be lifted off.
Once the card is removed, install Windows 8, install the correct driver for your WiFi card (from the laptop manufacturers website), shutdown the laptop and then put the WiFi card back in. All should now work properly.