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Martin Paul Eve

Professor of Literature, Technology and Publishing at Birkbeck, University of London

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The Lenovo G580 comes with Windows 8. It is possible to permanently lock yourself out of the operating system if you begin with a Microsoft account and migrate this to a local account. Further, you won’t be able to rescue the system since it is impossible to enter the BIOS setup in the machine’s default state if you cannot login to Windows.

To fix this:

  1. Disable “fast boot” mode in Windows 8. You can do this in “Power Settings”. If you don’t do this, you can’t modify the Windows disk partition when booting from a recovery USB.
  2. Update your BIOS. Do it now or you won’t be able to unless you can still login to Windows 8.
  3. Go into the BIOS (shutdown the machine then press the small button next to the power button and select “BIOS setup”). Then, set an administrator password in the BIOS settings. Then, “disable secure boot”. This will allow you to boot from a recovery USB stick such as Kali or Ubuntu.

Urgh. A Catch-22 where Microsoft Windows corrupted a login (thanks, Microsoft) and a hardware defect stops you booting into a recovery medium (thanks, Lenovo).