?
Solved

'Unknown flash type' when trying BIOS upgrade on Abit BH6 mainboard

Posted on 2004-09-29
12
Medium Priority
?
795 Views
Last Modified: 2010-04-12
I use an old PC for a 'plug things in to test and trial' machine.  It has an Abit BH6 mainboard with 4.51PG BIOS version HN.  I wish to upgrade to the latest / last (still old, but newer!) SS version in order to test a wireless network card.  

The machine as it stands, works fine.  At the end of the boot up POST, 'unknown flash type' appears.  When trying to upgrade the BIOS, the same error appears when using the appropriate Award or third party BIOS flash utilities.  

There appears to be no BIOS lock visible in the setup lists. Note - I have an electronics / IT hardware background and am quite at ease doing BIOS upgrades.

Any ideas / solutions to get the flash type to be able to be recognised would be most welcome.

Cheers,


Stuart
0
Comment
Question by:stunick
[X]
Welcome to Experts Exchange

Add your voice to the tech community where 5M+ people just like you are talking about what matters.

  • Help others & share knowledge
  • Earn cash & points
  • Learn & ask questions
  • 6
  • 3
  • 2
  • +1
12 Comments
 
LVL 8

Expert Comment

by:Sam Cohen
ID: 12186646
see you need to make sure that the right "ver" of that model is selected when you flashed the bios
abit has a program that will do the bio upgrade for you and would have detected early if you installed the wrong
0
 

Author Comment

by:stunick
ID: 12186681
Thanks all4artz.  Yes I'm more than familiar with the version issues, available flash utilities and so on.  To this point I've not yet been able to flash the BIOS owing to the flash RAM not being recognised by the flash utility (whether from Abit, Award or whoever else).  I guess perhaps that the flash RAM device has a perhaps unfixable problem, however that remains to be seen.  Does anyone have any ideas with regard to any 'lock' or other blocks that may exist on the BH6 board and/or pertaining to the flash RAM that is installed on it??  And if so, how to access it and unlock it??  Or any other thoughts and ideas on this issue.  

Cheers

Stu
0
 
LVL 8

Expert Comment

by:Sam Cohen
ID: 12186696
you cant get to the floppy drive boot up to reflash it?
when are you getting the error?is it after the POst the drive and bootupdrvs?
0
Technology Partners: We Want Your Opinion!

We value your feedback.

Take our survey and automatically be enter to win anyone of the following:
Yeti Cooler, Amazon eGift Card, and Movie eGift Card!

 
LVL 8

Expert Comment

by:Sam Cohen
ID: 12186698
do you hav an back up of the original file.
also did you clear cmos?
0
 

Author Comment

by:stunick
ID: 12186722
The error appears after the POST texts.  That is not a problem - the machine itself works OK.  However in trying to run any of the DOS flash utils, they all fail when trying to access or identify the flash RAM type.  Yes, I've cleared the cmos right before attempting the upgrade and always do bios upgrades from the floppy where I do have a backup of the original bios.
0
 

Author Comment

by:stunick
ID: 12186875
Further to the above, using the little 'BIOS Agent' test utilty (BA.exe) from eSupport.com the results show as 'Unknown' for BIOS ROM  'In socket' and 'Size' checks...  (other machines here show the correct answers)
0
 

Author Comment

by:stunick
ID: 12187489
And even more on the above problem...  I got hold of a dead Abit BH6 mainboard and swapped the BIOS module (which had a slightly newer BIOS version QN installed).  Still same problem - the 'Unknown Flash Type' error is displayed at the end of the boot up POST and I cannot do a BIOS upgrade using any of the standard flash upgrade utilities.  So that comfirms its not the BIOS chip that's at fault, directly anyway.
0
 
LVL 69

Accepted Solution

by:
Callandor earned 250 total points
ID: 12189153
I have one of those BH6 motherboards, which I ran up to 1GHz with a Celeron.  You have to be sure you are using the right flash program, or it won't work.  AWDFLASH is the right one, but the program is different, depending on whether you got rev a 1.0 or rev 1.1 motherboard.  Check the PCB lettering on the side.

http://www.anomaly.org.au/bh6faq/Bios_Info/bios_info.html
0
 

Author Comment

by:stunick
ID: 12196772
Yup, well thanks to everyone.  I've got another newer M/board which solved the problem, though still leaves me with the old populated one on the shelf!!
0
 

Expert Comment

by:kwallerjr1
ID: 12350453
Hi Stuart,

I realize that there's an Accepted Answer, however, I thought you might be interested in this.  I had exactly the same "problem" with a K7SEM v1.0 MB.  Just after POST, I would see the Unknown Flash Type message, and when I tried to flash the BIOS with the Award AWD822A.exe utility & the K7SEM11E.BIN file, I would also get the Unknow Flash Type message and the process would terminate.  I found the MB user manual online and noticed that there is a jumper JP3 that is used to enable or disable BIOS Read Only.  After I changed the jumper to pins 1 & 2 (the disable setting), the Unknown Flash Type message at the end of POST was gone, and I was able to flash the BIOS.

Regards
0
 

Author Comment

by:stunick
ID: 12352997
Thanks for your note re the jumper BIOS enable / disable setting.  Yes, I am aware of such hardware jumpers particularly on older M/b's, but try as I might am unable to locate anything on that board that even looks like it may have such a function!  It is the only remaining solution that comes to mind, but, wow, finding it is something else.  Its not mentioned in the user manual and being an older board there is little or no tech support available.  Pity as tho its a slower board, such things are certainly still useful here and there.

Cheers
0
 
LVL 69

Expert Comment

by:Callandor
ID: 12353296
I have flashed my BH6 from the early BIOS versions all the way to SS, and I am sure this board does not have a jumper to prevent flashing.
0

Featured Post

Free Tool: Port Scanner

Check which ports are open to the outside world. Helps make sure that your firewall rules are working as intended.

One of a set of tools we are providing to everyone as a way of saying thank you for being a part of the community.

Question has a verified solution.

If you are experiencing a similar issue, please ask a related question

Like many organizations, your foray into cloud computing may have started with an ancillary or security service, like email spam and virus protection. For some, the first or second step into the cloud was moving email off-premise. For others, a clou…
Windows 7 does not have the best desktop search built in. This is something Windows 7 users have struggled with. You type something in, and your search results don’t always match what you are looking for, or it doesn’t actually work at all. There ar…
Finding and deleting duplicate (picture) files can be a time consuming task. My wife and I, our three kids and their families all share one dilemma: Managing our pictures. Between desktops, laptops, phones, tablets, and cameras; over the last decade…
Do you want to know how to make a graph with Microsoft Access? First, create a query with the data for the chart. Then make a blank form and add a chart control. This video also shows how to change what data is displayed on the graph as well as form…
Suggested Courses
Course of the Month14 days, 22 hours left to enroll

771 members asked questions and received personalized solutions in the past 7 days.

Join the community of 500,000 technology professionals and ask your questions.

Join & Ask a Question