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FLASHING the BIOS????????????

Trish's Escape from Hardware Hell Help Board » The Archive » FLASHING the BIOS???????????? « Previous Next »

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Posted on Sunday, September 26, 1999 - 3:23 pm:   

What happens when you flash the BIOS? Why would you do it? Should it be done regularly?

Posted on Sunday, September 26, 1999 - 3:23 pm:   

When you flash the bios you update it with a new bios. You have to look at what type of cmos chip it is though and find the correct flash for it. You would flash the bios if you needed to upgrade it for a new piece of hardware or something. Also if your bios gets corrupted by a virus or just starts going bad then you would also flash it. It is not something you should do often. Only really about once a year or when they come out with a critical update.
Posted on Sunday, September 26, 1999 - 3:23 pm:   

The bios is an integrated circuit with non-volitile
memory on board. This allows it to "remember" simple
instruction sets(actually software) that allow your
hardware to work together (or "boot") until the
operating system has a chance to take over. The
tricky part of flashing (or rewriting) your bios
software is that you need your bios to be functional
in order to access your floppy drive; if the flash
fails for some reason and your computer freezes up,
when you reboot, your bios probably won't be function
enough to enable floppy support. Which means that you
can't reboot OR reflash. This makes flashing your
bios a ticklish business, not for the faint of heart.
If the power goes out, or your floppy disk fails,
or your computer freezes up unexpectedly during the
flash process, you are dead in the water. There are
recovery procedures that may or may not work, but it
is not something you want to find out about first
hand. The long and short of it is: don't fix it if
it ain't broke. If you want to, you can usually check
your manufacturer's website to see if there is an
update for your board that effects you directly. The
exception to this rule is the Y2K bug. If you need
a bios fix to address this, you will want to be
proactive: fix it before it breaks. Your precious
data may be turned into a hopeless quagmire on
January 1 if you don't. Print out your manufacturer's
flashing instructions and follow them EXACTLY. If
you are in doubt about any portion of the instructions,
stop and call/e-mail tech support or post to a help
board. Remember that once a flash fails, you won't
be able to use the machine to access the web. For more
comprehensive coverage of this subject, see:
or click on the link below. BTW, this site is an
excellent searchable database on all things PC
(thanks Trish), bookmark it. Good luck...

The general rule to follow is:
if it ain't broke, don't fix it

PC Guide Flash Bios

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