If you’ve the owner of a Lenovo IBM T61 7XXX model, and ever tried upgrading the internal mini pci-e card to something like 802.11BGN (N) you will find yourself running into an error that says:

1802 - Unauthorized network card is plugged in - power off and remove the mini pci network card

Well this error is because IBM added a whitelist to its BIOS, which basically means you are limited to only a few authorized mini pci-e devices, so the moment you see this error it means you cannot get past it. The error simply halts the boot process and won’t let you proceed until you remove the ‘offending’ device from your laptop.

There are a number of ways to thwart this error, but the easiest that I’ve found is via this post:

I was able to quickly update my BIOS by using the modified BIOS v 2.29-1.08. Inside the archive (that you download) is an `.ISO` file that you want to burn (using a utility like IMGBURN) to a blank CD-R. Boot your laptop using this CD-R and then it will run the flash process and restart your machine (as always the necessary precautions are: grab the right bios file! I’m not responsible for you messing up your system). If you need a more hand holding approach to this, just follow the quick guide.

Once I flashed the BIOS, I was able to confirm that I was running 2.29-1.08 via the BIOS config (F1 on boot).

This allowed me to utilize a cheap Monoprice WIFI device for my hackintosh build (which worked great, altho the device shows up as an ETH2 device, and not wifi, but still works 100%). If you want to get the same device, here are the details. If you are also making a Hackintosh, you can grab the necessary files for this device from this thread: http://www.tonymacx86.com/viewtopic.php?f=19&t=42271.


4 Comments to “Adding a non-standard WIFI card into an IBM T61 laptop”

  1. Kannweg | August 17th, 2012 at 7:53 AM

    Uh … finally someone who seems to have managed to convert a T61 into a Hackintosh – great!
    Since I’m also the proud owner of a T61 and planning to do the same: May I kindly ask if you followed some tutorial? If you did, which one? Have there been any complications on the way, or was it fairly “easy” (well, whatever that means … 🙂 to install MacOS?

  2. Kannweg | August 17th, 2012 at 7:55 AM

    BTW, I already did the BIOS update – but that was rather because of the SATA Problem. I’m now using an SSD, and the T61 is suddenly flying again. Well worth the ~80 Euros that I had to spent!

  3. Jakub | August 17th, 2012 at 9:49 AM

    @Kannweg, you can try the guide here: http://www.osx86.net/downloads.php?do=file&id=2695
    I’m in the process of trying to get Lion running as SL is way too old now to be of any real use for any sort of development.

  4. Jakub | October 30th, 2012 at 12:02 AM

    @Kannweg, I found a new guide and updated my T61 to Lion 🙂

    Hope that helps anyone else!

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