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Bios upgrade

Is it necessary to upgrade ones Bios version and if so why and how? I have run a program called SiSoft Sandra which comments as such ;
ASMBIOS/DMI 2.3 or later compliant BIOS is recommended. Check for a BIOS update.BIOS can be shadowed so check if it is. BIOS is flashable and socketed so it can be upgraded when needed "
Does upgrading ones BIOS improve anything ?
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kannabisCommented:
You don't need to upgrade your BIOS if your system is working fine.  It's not really important what Sandra says, because they're assuming that newer BIOS means better performance.  In many cases it does.....but not always.

Usually when there are BIOS updates available, they are there for reasons such as: Support for newer processors, microcode updates, some newer features perhaps, some tweaking of the main board etc,.

I have spoken with a few people on the subject, and it's not always a good idea to flash a BIOS.  Sometimes, by flashing the BIOS you can actually damage it, and your system won't work.

If you HAVE to update your BIOS (Upgraded processor to something that the current BIOS doesn't support or something along those lines) due to some problems you are having, then I would make sure that I have a current working BIOS saved on floppy, there are utilities now that do most of the "hard" work for you but you can still run into problems if there is a power outage or something in mid flashing.

On the average, most of the popular boards it's fairly safe to flash your BIOS, but like I said before, why bother if everything is working ok?

Hope this clears things up a bit for you

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oddbodCommented:
kannabis can you pls recommend some of these programs that do the hard work for you.  I was thinking of flashing my bios in order to make the motherboard (supermicro) UDMA 66 compatible with my new HD but have not done so for fear of damaging the board completely.

THx.
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kannabisCommented:
It depends on your BIOS manufacturer.  Go to the Supermicro site and find your model number.  They will tell you wether it's Award BIOS, or AMI etc,.  There are utilities by each BIOS manufacturer that save and flash your BIOS with minimal user input.

By going to the Supermicro site, you can find out what has been done to each BIOS upgrade.  

BTW, I don't think that getting UDMA 66 compatibility is as simple as flashing your BIOS (Not for my Asus board anyway) but it's best to check with the manufacturer at http://www.supermicro.com/TechSupport.htm

Flashing the BIOS isn't that big of a deal, according to some electronic techies that I talked to, it's only a real concern if you have a poor quality mainboard, since the BIOS chip itself might not be of the highest quality and not clear the old BIOS properly.

Good luck

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magarityCommented:
kannabis's concerns about poor quality do not apply here, as supermicro is one of the superior brands.

you can't just get udma/66 via a bios flash, sorry.  you can use a udma/66 drive but it will not transfer at its top speed.  if your motherboard supports udma/33 you can probably at least get that speed.

otherwise if you really must get your new drive to run at full speed, you'll just have to get a pci card that is a udma/66 drive controller.
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oddbodCommented:
the same model motherboard that i bought two years ago now has udma sixty six speed so i presume that i can flash it otherwise they would have changed the model number surely
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pjknibbsCommented:
oddbod: UDMA/66 requires a physically different hard drive cable and connector to traditional EIDE, so no, just flashing your motherboard BIOS cannot possibly upgrade it to 66. As for the manufacturer not bothering to change the model number--maybe they didn't think it was an important enough upgrade to bother. You'd probably find a little sticker somewhere on the new version of the board which says "Revision 2" or something.
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oddbodCommented:
I have the 80pin heat shield cable, I dont know if you mean the connector on the motherboard?

I'll give SM a ring and check with them.
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