Peplink Balance 305 boot issue

No its not!

Can you get it to boot using the serial cable method mentioned above?

Connect a console cable and you will likely see it is stuck at a screen saying the config is incorrect. If you press f1 or f2 then press enter (or enter the wrong password 3 times) the device should boot and will work until the next reboot. The front panel will continue to show blocks

The cr 2032 battery has most likely died and so the BIOS config is lost. Replacing the battery won’t help though as you would need to enter the bios and save it for it to work correctly again.

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Which Peplink devices use a battery?

Had a 305, created a support ticket. It was out of warranty, so they told me to just buy a new one. Bought one off eBay to get things back up and running. It also has a black screen, but was working before being shipped 2 days ago. I have 4 other Peplink routers running at other locations, but really starting to worry about reliability with these. Especially after reading all these posts.

Out of interest can you get it to boot using the method I describe above? If the cmos battery has been dislodged in transport then it could be that the clock has been reset. If you can get it to boot using the serial cable it should work fine till you next need to reboot it (where you will have to repeat the same process).

Almost all the devices (peplink, pepwave) have a cmos battery but I have only seen the issue on the on the older (6.3.x) 380, 305 and the 580 where the bios requires user intervention after the battery dies and the config is lost.

Unfortunately the bios is password locked (which isn’t reset on battery failure) and so it isn’t possible to go in and save the settings or re-activate the display on the front of the device.

To be honest the nice thing would be if Peplink shared the bios password, I don’t imagine it carries any real risk as I imagine the password is different on these older devices to the newer ones.

The older 710’s use a different bios it would appear and don’t require user intervention when the battery dies. I don’t know about the 1350 or 2500.

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This may be relevant to some of you, and may not. But I just had the same issue with a 380 Hw3, so well out of warranty. In my case, I got the standard beep noise on power up, as you would from an old computer. So, I figured that it is actually working, but it does not start the boot sequence. As there are no easy way to connect a monitor to see what is actually going on, I remember from the old days, that on a bios-halt, you had to press a key on the keyboard for it to continue booting. So I connected a keyboard to the usb connector in the front, waited until after the start-up beep (and then some), then I pressed F1-key. And, magically it started booting. I suspect this started happening due to a completely drained battery.

Please let me know if this worked for some of you. Best of luck.

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Awesome great diagnosis. Did you try to connect up to the console port to see if the console displayed any warnings?

Yes I did, nothing, which I guess is logical, since nothing is running on the machine at that stage.

if you have the console connected before powering on the router you will see the bios prompt to press f1 to continue or f2 to enter the bios. There is a password though if you press f2.

Might have to have a play at some point and see if booting a hirens bootcd will allow the password to be cleared or recovered.