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BIOS Recovery Issue For DW Blackjack E-RACK (X9SAE1)

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BIOS Recovery Issue for DW Blackjack E-RACK (X9SAE1)

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Affected Roles:  Administrator, Owner

Complexity:  Medium to High

Last Edit:  April 27, 2021

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BIOS Error Code “AB”

Some SuperMicro X9 boards with E3v1/v2 CPUs have been reported to not allow the System Administrator of the DW Blackjack® E-Rack model to enter the BIOS if the System Date is past December 31, 2020.  Rather than seeing the BIOS or booting to the OS, the Server will instead display a blue screen with the error code “AB” displaying in the corner (see image below).

Typically, you do not need to update hardware drivers or BIOS updates.  This should only be done if an update contains an improvement that you may need or to resolve an issue.  It is important to use the exact version of the BIOS, specifically for your hardware.

This article will outline how to use a USB flash drive to update the system BIOS for an X9SAE1 motherboard.

Supported/Affected Devices:

  • DW Blackjack® E-Rack Series

Prerequisites

  • Latest BIOS release files
  • A DOS-bootable USB stick (to transfer BIOS files)
  • Working computer (to create a BIOS Recovery Drive)

Creating the BIOS Recovery Drive

If the BIOS file of the Server is corrupted and the unit will not boot, this method can help to recover the BIOS image using a USB storage device.  A DOS-bootable USB flash drive can be used for this purpose.

**NOTE:  If you must create a DOS-bootable device, you may use a portable app, such as Rufus, to format and create a DOS-bootable USB drive.  Please be aware that using an external HDD storage drive will not be supported for this purpose.

Download the BIOS Update Files

To download the BIOS update files:

  1. If you do not already have a copy of the latest BIOS version, using a working computer, visit the Super Micro Support web page.

From the web page, enter the motherboard model (X9SAE1) into the Search tool and select the most recent search result.

  1. The support page for the motherboard will display.

Under the Links and Resources section, click on “Update Your BIOS”.

  1. Click on the BIOS File Name.

A EULA window will display.  Click the Agree button to accept the EULA terms and to download the .zip file to the working computer.

  1. After downloading the BIOS update files, the BIOS update files must be placed in the Root Directory of the USB stick and cannot be in a folder.  Otherwise, the Server will be unable to run the BIOS update.

Extract the files from the .zip folder and copy it to a DOS-bootable USB stick.  After copying the BIOS files to a DOS-bootable USB drive, Eject the USB stick from the working computer.

**NOTE:  If you must create a DOS-bootable device, you may use a portable app, such as Rufus, to format and create a DOS-bootable USB drive.

Using the BIOS Recovery Drive

You may use the following directions to flash the BIOS and update the current version.

To use the BIOS Recovery Drive:

  1. After copying the BIOS files to a DOS-bootable USB drive, completely shut down the DW Blackjack® E-Rack.

Once the E-Rack has been completely powered OFF, insert the USB drive that contains the BIOS update files to the unit.

  1. With the USB stick connected, Power ON the E-Rack.

The BIOS recovery should automatically begin. If it fails to start automatically, you may need to force the recovery.

To do so, while the E-RACK is powering ON, press-and-hold the CTRL and HOME keys simultaneously on your keyboard.

until the USB stick’s LED indicator light is illuminated.

Wait until the USB stick’s LED indicator light is illuminated or flashing (I/O indicator) then release the CTRL and Home keys.

The system may begin to display a message and emit beep-codes to indicate that the BIOS ROM firmware is being reprogrammed.

DO NOT interrupt this process.

  1. When the Boot Sector Recovery Process is complete, the system will reboot automatically.

When the DOS prompt displays, please use the command:

AMI.BAT BIOSname.###

Allow the E-Rack to complete the update.  Once the process has been completed, a message will display confirming that the BIOS has been updated.

  1. Shut down the E-Rack and disconnect the USB stick before trying to use the Server normally.

 

  1. If the unit still will not boot to the BIOS or OS, shut down the Server and disconnect the power cable from the E-RACK.

Clear the CMOS of the E-Rack, then reconnect the power cable to the E-Rack.

Press the F1 key on the keyboard to go to the BIOS setup screen.  Once there, press the F9 key to load the default BIOS settings, then press the F10 key to save and exit the BIOS setup.

**NOTE:  If booting issues persist beyond this point, you may contact Digital Watchdog Technical Support for additional troubleshooting.

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  • 29-Apr-2021
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