- Basic configuration

- Options of the BIOS

- Advanced configuration and of the chipset

- Peripheral integrated

- Administration of energy

- Configuration of PNP and slots PCI

- Autoconfiguration of the BIOS

- Other utilities

- To go out of the BIOS

- To update the BIOS

- The BIOS and the battery

- How does the password of the BIOS to to skip

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What is... the BIOS?


Chip of BIOS

BIOS: "Basic Input-Output System", basic system of entry - exit. Program incorporated in a chip of the motherboard that is in charge of realizing the basic functions of handling and configuration of the computer.

Very well, it is already. How, which is small? Bueeno... for the demanding ones, some additional explanations:

When we light the computer, the operating system is or on the hard disk or on a diskette; nevertheless, if it is supposed that it is the operating system the one that must give support for these devices: how might it it do demons if it is still not loaded in memory?

What is more: how does know the computer that has a hard disk (or several)? And the disk drive? How and where he keeps this information, together with the type of memory and cache memory or something so simple but important like the date and the hour? Since for all this the BIOS is.

It turns out to be clear that the BIOS must be able to modify to alter this information (on having added a hard disk or having changed to the daylight saving time, for example); by it the BIOS is implemented in memory. But also it must be supported when we extinguish the computer, since he would not have sense to have to introduce all the information in every starter; that's why there are used special memoirs, which do not resign on having extinguished the computer: memoirs type CMOS, by what often the program that the BIOS modifies is named "CMOS Setup".

In fact, these memoirs yes resign after they lack the electricity; what happens is that they consume so little that they can be supported for years with a simple battery, sometimes of those of button (like those of the clocks). This battery (in fact a battery) is recharged when the computer is lit, although in the end fenece, like all...


Entering the BIOS

First of all, be known. The BIOS is the person in charge of most of these strange messages that arise on having lit the computer, just before "Initiating MS TWO" or Windows 95, NT, Linux, OS/2 or what is. The typical sequence in which they appear (of course, very rapid) is usually:

  • First the messages of the BIOS of the graphic card (yes, the graphic cards usually have their own BIOS: passa a little?).
  • The name of the manufacturer of the BIOS and the number of version.
  • The type of microprocessor and his speed.
  • The review of the memory RAM and his size.
  • A message indicating how to gain access to the BIOS ("Press Del to enter CMOS Setup" or something similar); we will return on this).
  • Messages of other devices, usually the hard disk.

All this happens in only a few seconds; sometimes, if the monitor is cold and is late in lighting, it turns out to be almost impossible to see them, let's not say to read them, so arm with value and begin again several times: but not to the beast! Hope that it should stop starting the computer every time and should use better the Ctrl-Alt-Del (that is to say, to pulsate simultaneously and in this order the keys "Ctrl", "Alt" y "Of" - the "Supr" of the keyboards in Spanish-) that the button of "Reset". Moreover, if it has an advanced operating system like OS/2, Linux, Windows 9x or NT, must do it by means of the option to begin again of the corresponding menu, generally of extinguishing the system (or with the order "reboot" in Linux).

Well, the case is that to the set of these messages he is named POST (Power-On Self Test, literally ignition autotesting), and it must serve to us to verify that error messages do not exist, to see if, grosso way, the memory quantity corresponds to the one that should (it is possible that there are a few hundreds of bytes less, that is normal and it is not an error, the fact is that they are used for other tasks) and for to find out how one enters the BIOS.

Generally it will be done by means of the pulsation of certain keys on having started, while these messages go out. One of the most common methods is to pulsate "Of", although in others there is used the "F1", the "Esc" or another key combination (Alt-Esc, Alt-F1...). Tens methods exist, so he has not left any more remedy that to be I attempt to the screen or to look in the manual of his badge or in the web site of the manufacturer of the BIOS.

Certainly, it is quite strange that a manufacturer of basic badges is his own BIOS supplier, in general they all come from scarcely a manufacturers' fistful: Award, AMI, Phoenix and few ones more.


Basic handling of the BIOS

Well, already it entered the BIOS. And now, what? Very well, it depends on his BIOS in particular. The classic BIOS manages with the keyboard, typically with the cursors and the keys of Intro ("Enter), "Esc" and the bar espaciadora, although also graphic BIOS exists, called WinBIOS, who manage with the mouse in a windows environment, which does not have many advantages but it is much nicer.

The principal screen of a classic BIOS is something like that:

Principal screen of a classic BIOS; pulsate on the paragraphs that he is interested in

While that of a WinBIOS has this aspect:

Principal screen of a graphic BIOS; pulsate on the paragraphs that he is interested in

Apparently almost the totality of the BIOS they come in English, and although some of the most modern allow to change this language into Spanish, it is convenient that he knows something about English or that it is helped with someone who understands it. Anyway, we observe that several common paragraphs exist to all the BIOS:

  • Basic configuration, called generally "Standard CMOS Setup" or "Standard Setup".
  • Options of the BIOS, called "BIOS Features Setup" or "Advanced Setup".
  • Advanced configuration and of the chipset, "Chipset Features Setup".
  • Other utilities, in one or several separated (autoconfiguration of the BIOS, handling of PCI, introduction of passwords - passwords - hard disks autodetection...).

Pulsate in the images on the paragraphs that he is interested in or he keeps on reading for an explanation in depth one for one. The examples will correspond to classic BIOS of those who manage for keyboard, although they serve perfectly for graphic BIOS, who only add more coloring to the operations.

Bear in mind that TO PLAY WITH THE BIOS CAN BE REALLY DANGEROUS for his computer, so I COPIED THE CURRENT CONFIGURATION in a few sheets of paper before touching nothing, and even if he does not think to do modifications; it is never known, remember the Law of Murphy...

And of course, although the advices that will happen serve for most of the cases, nobody better than the manufacturer to speak about their own product, so the manual of his motherboard be read in depth and have it to hand. If they did not deliver it to themselves with the ordering, bad matter. Try that they give it to themselves or that they do a copy to him, although if it is a question of a mark computer sometimes it is almost impossible; fear of that copy his secrets or emulation of having the user tied to his technical service, you are going to know...

Certainly, to go out of a menu it usually use the key "Esc"; also, no change remains engraved until we do not indicate it to him to the computer on having gone out of the BIOS (which is a consolation for the big mitts).


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