Question about IBM ThinkPad T40p 2373 Notebook

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USB not recognized

I have a Thinkpad T40p I purchased from a friend who told me that the USB was "intermittent;" it didn't really work at all. The drivers are fine, the USB appears to be fine. I bought a port replicator, which didn't work, and was told that a PCMCIA USB card would work, since it runs straight to the MB. It doesn't seem to work either. The only response I can get out of either the onboard USB or the PCMCIA card is that occasionally, if I plug in or unplug a USB device, my laptop will freeze -- so it's seeing the ports, but not reading anything useful from them.

Is there something in my settings or BIOS that I've got set up wrong? I'm really confused, but I don't know what else to try; I need USB for camera / drawing tablet / mp3 player / etc, and I can't afford to buy a new laptop just for the sake of working USB. Any ideas?

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Dear superamy

Hello, your problem is likely to be BIOS/CMOS related, and more than certainly will invole the need to re-install your operative system. The first thing you should be considering about this task, is the need to involve a third party (an approved engineer if necessary) as the following steps are quite technically advanced.

Your first step s to backup all of your data onto a portable hard drive, or other large capacity media, this includes drivers and files you may want to keep.

Your next step is to remove the CMOS// BIOS battery from your system. This typically is a CR2032 cell battery (like a watch battery, only bigger), now in order to do this,, you will need to disassemble your laptop. The reason for removing the battery is to wipe your CMOS/ BIOS settings and return them to original factory settings.


You will need to observe antistatic discharge procedures, and you MUST ALWAYS REMOVE the main supply battery from the system and also the power umbilical cord. It is advisable to ensure you are using an anti-static wrist strap which is grounded to the metal part of your laptop casing before handling any internal components.

Once you have access to the inside of the IBM LENOVO system, you remove the battery, and this should be ideally performed using a 3mm slot head screwdriver or battery extraction tool, and once you have removed the battery you then proceed to the following step

adjust the jumper settings on the motherboard to clear the CMOS/BIOS. you will be looking for three pins on the motherboard that are labelled as one of the following:-


Once you have placed the jumper onto the clear CMOS/ BIOS setting, you then leave it there for a period of 10-15 seconds in order to wipe your current settings.

Once this is complete, you replace the CMOS/BIOS battery ONLY WITH A BRAND NEW BATTERY. the reason for this is largely due to either the battery cell being damaged on extraction, or by general corrosion over a period of time.

Once you have installed the battery CAREFULLY, you rebuild the system, and immediately re-load your operating system, followed by device drivers, then each program individually after that.

Should this prove not to work, then it is likely that you possibly have either a hardware fault with the USB ports or your BIOS/CMOS will need flashing (updating) with the latest firmware/ software, which you can get from

It is advisable to go onto google and get hold of various service manuals and dissassembly guides and read them thoroughly before undertaking this sort of work, as laptop components are expensive and easily susceptable to damage.

If in doubt, do consult an engineer such as myself and explain thoroughly what you intend from the service. If the engineer is any good, they will gladly share information with you about these processes.

Anyway, I do look forward to hearing from you soon, and am hoping for you to tell me how this matter progresses.

Further to this, you can ask me for any opinion in relation to this and another matter relating to a technical issue, and you can do this 24hrs a day 7/365 days a year, here exclusively on this site, and i will endeavour to answer all of your technical needs.

In the meantime, do take care, and good luck with this.

Yours sincerely


Posted on Apr 11, 2008


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