upgrading bios for WinXP SP2 install

Discussion in 'Dell' started by Jeff Gillan, Oct 2, 2004.

  1. Jeff Gillan

    Jeff Gillan Guest

    Hi group,
    Dell recommends flashing your bios to make sure you have the latest one, if
    you install XP SP2.

    Is that really necessary? I've heard nothing but horror stories about
    flashing bios, and since I've already upgraded to SP2, I'm not having any
    noticable problems.

    Do I need to upgrade my bios? (I have a Dell Dimension 8250.)

    Thanks in advance for your advice,
    Jeff
     
    Jeff Gillan, Oct 2, 2004
    #1
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  2. Jeff Gillan

    joe_tide Guest

    If everything is running OK let it alone.

    I've also flashed many BIOS without a problem.
     
    joe_tide, Oct 3, 2004
    #2
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  3. Jeff Gillan

    Ron Reaugh Guest

    Yes, always flash the latest BIOS carefully.
    Just old wives' tales.
    Always flash the latest BIOS carefully.
    Yes.
     
    Ron Reaugh, Oct 3, 2004
    #3
  4. Jeff Gillan

    Ron Reaugh Guest

    NO, don't wait for a problem. Preempt any problems. Always flash the
    latest BIOS carefully.
    Exactly, if done carefully there is only a tiny risk.
     
    Ron Reaugh, Oct 3, 2004
    #4
  5. Jeff Gillan

    David Casey Guest

    Wrong answer. As is the rule for anything with computers, if it's working
    fine now why mess with it?

    My 8400 has worked fine with the original BIOS (A01) since I got it. I
    wouldn't suddenly flash the BIOS just because it's there. What if a
    problem develops because of the new BIOS? Now I have to flash back to the
    old. That's twice now I've risked rendering my system unusable just
    because "it's there".
    I'd be willing to bet if you rendered a motherboard inoperable you wouldn't
    feel this way. ;-)

    Dave
    --
    You can talk about us, but you can't talk without us!
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    David Casey, Oct 3, 2004
    #5
  6. Jeff Gillan

    Ron Reaugh Guest

    You are wrong. That's 1998 think. All the true computer experts figured
    about 2000 that flashing the latest BIOS was always the best procedure.
    That is not now nor was it EVER anykind of computer rule. The rule has
    always been much closer to keep current or it will bite you.
    DUH, flash back to the old one. The likelihood of a new BIOS causing
    problems is LOW.
    Clueless. The risk of flashing carefully is miniscule.
    HUH! It most cases it's relatively easy to recover from a flash gone bad.
    90% of the time an interrupted flash(unlikely to happen) does NOT render a
    mobo unusuable or unflashable. How much does a mobo cost..maybe $100? How
    much does a replacement BIOS cost...maybe $50?

    The greatest cost of a system is the maintenance and debugging time. Just
    once get a problem and work on it for a few days to find that a simple BIOS
    flash is all that was needed. THEN you'll always flash the latest BIOS
    preemptively.
     
    Ron Reaugh, Oct 3, 2004
    #6
  7. Jeff;
    If I knew in advance a BIOS flash is recommended, I would probably
    flash the BIOS.

    However your case is different.
    You have already successfully installed SP-2 and have no problems.

    As long as the latest BIOS has nothing else to offer, stay where you
    are at.
    The old rule "If it is not broke, don't fix it" applies with a BIOS
    flash more than many other things in a computer.

    A bad flash. however remote, can turn a motherboard into a
    paperweight.
    There may or may not be fixes available depending on what goes wrong.
    The chance is slight, but there is a chance.
    And with nothing to gain and a motherboard to lose, leave it be.
     
    Jupiter Jones, Oct 3, 2004
    #7
  8. Ron;
    What is the source for this?
    Your use of the words "All" and "always" are strong indicators to the
    falsehood of this statement.
    Or perhaps you have a different definition of "true computer experts"
    than others?
     
    Jupiter Jones, Oct 3, 2004
    #8
  9. Jeff Gillan

    Tom McCune Guest

    Although it has been a long time since doing so, I have had a few BIOS
    upgrades. All went well, except that one on my Dimension 4100 that just
    wouldn't actually do anything - no upgrade, and no damage from trying.

    My Dimension 8100 came with A05 or A06 (I don't recall which at the
    moment). I think the upgrades ended with about A10, before starting the
    BIOS upgrades meant for Windows XP. When I decided to go from WinME to
    WinXP, I did not upgrade the BIOS - even now with WinXP Pro SP2
    installed, it continues to work great.
     
    Tom McCune, Oct 3, 2004
    #9
  10. Jeff Gillan

    Ron Reaugh Guest

    One never knows what a new BIOS has to offer. Most of the changes, fixes and
    new features in a new BIOS are NOT documented. Ever see a listing of which
    CPU microcode version is contained in any given BIOS?
    WRONG! Catch-up.
    Turning a mobo into a paperwight is vastly less likely than even a bad flash
    which is ALSO rather unlikely if done carefully. You are taking a totally
    unfounded chicken little position.
    There is a much bigger chance that always keeping your BIOS current will
    save much more money than EVER suffering the miniscule chance of a mobo
    replacement(~$100).
    There is MUCH to gain. Do you know anything about BIOSs at all?

    Do you turn on Automatic Updates as MS recommends. Do you install the
    latest device drivers? Do you install the latest program updates? All are
    things that most have found to be the best policy. BIOS are NO different.
     
    Ron Reaugh, Oct 3, 2004
    #10
  11. Jeff Gillan

    Ron Reaugh Guest

    Common snese and all the best computer experts around since baout 2000
    allways flash the latest BIOS.
    No, they are strong indicators of ignorance by the nay sayers.
    Go back to school.
     
    Ron Reaugh, Oct 3, 2004
    #11
  12. Support your statements with facts.
    What is your source?
    Or is it just your opinion?
    Your opinion is one thing, but you have made these statements as
    facts.
    If you can't support your own statements "Common snese" dictates you
    do not really know.

    Who are "all the best computer experts around since baout 2000"?
    Who are they?
    I asked this question before and you ignored it.
    Why?
    You don't know?

    Look at your original statement again.
    "Common snese" is not a reference.

    "No, they are strong indicators of ignorance by the nay sayers"
    Really? They are your words.
    So you are saying you are ignorant?

    If you can not prove your statements, they are your opinion at best
    and should not be taken as fact.
    You are a long way from the authoritative source necessary to validate
    the statements you have made.

    Can you answer the question?
    Or is your answer simply "ignorance by the nay sayers"?
     
    Jupiter Jones, Oct 3, 2004
    #12
  13. Can you personally guarantee a BIOS upgrade will not render a
    motherboard a paper weight?
    If yes, put in a legal document for all to hold you accountable.
    If not, you apparently agree my statement is true "A bad flash.
    however remote, can turn a motherboard into a paperweight."
    This time notice the words I wrote "...however remote..."
    That does not suggest a high probability or even a specific
    probability.
    And it is not "chicken little".
    People need to know there is risk however remote the possibility when
    something is done.
    Why do you think people should not be informed?
    Do you think people are not smart enough to make an informed decision?
    You even say "rather unlikely if done carefully."
    Can a bad flash happen or not?
    That is a yes or no question.
    The % of success can be debated elsewhere.

    BIOS IS different.
    None of the other things have turned a motherboard a paper weight.

    And no, I leave Automatic Updates off because I can do the job better
    on my computers.
     
    Jupiter Jones, Oct 3, 2004
    #13
  14. Jeff Gillan

    Ron Reaugh Guest

    Ok, so for all to see you jumped-off into wackodom.
     
    Ron Reaugh, Oct 3, 2004
    #14
  15. Jeff Gillan

    David Casey Guest

    Interesting. The folks I know say flashing the BIOS isn't a good idea
    unless you have a problem and need the new BIOS to fix it. My sources are
    the fine folks on the forums at www.amdmb.com among other online forums.
    Hey, it's your money. ;-)
    Typical. If you can't bring any facts, attack the person you're replying
    to. I was merely expressing my opinion. If you don't like it that's fine.
    You do things your way, the rest of us will do them ours. :)

    Dave
    --
    You can talk about us, but you can't talk without us!
    US Army Signal Corps!!

    http://www.geocities.com/davidcasey98

    Remove IH8SPAM to reply by email!
     
    David Casey, Oct 3, 2004
    #15
  16. Jeff Gillan

    David Casey Guest

    Sure you do have an idea what a new BIOS version has to offer. There is
    usually a text file of some sort that outlines the changes from the
    previous version.

    [snip]
    It is still a chance and it's a chance I'd rather not take. Why mess with
    something that is working fine? Do you run your car to the shop and ask
    them to put on new brakes when the current ones are working fine?
    Hmmmm I don't see how a current BIOS will save me any money at home.
    However, I doubt if Dell would be happy to sell me a new 8400 motherboard
    for around $100.
    Like what? If I were to update the BIOS in my 8400 from A01 to A02 what
    exactly would I gain that I need to use?
    The difference is that a problem installing device drivers doesn't render
    the device inoperable. However, on that note about the only device on my
    system which I regularly update the drivers on is my graphics card.
    Everything else works fine so why should I bother until I have a problem
    with something?

    Dave
    --
    You can talk about us, but you can't talk without us!
    US Army Signal Corps!!

    http://www.geocities.com/davidcasey98

    Remove IH8SPAM to reply by email!
     
    David Casey, Oct 3, 2004
    #16
  17. Jeff Gillan

    David Casey Guest

    Yes, we like our systems how they are. Working just fine. ;-)

    Dave
    --
    You can talk about us, but you can't talk without us!
    US Army Signal Corps!!

    http://www.geocities.com/davidcasey98

    Remove IH8SPAM to reply by email!
     
    David Casey, Oct 3, 2004
    #17
  18. Translation:
    Ron can not prove anything he states as fact therefore his only way
    out is an insult to shore up his position.
    But of course it failed.

    You have continued to ignore the questions put before you.
    Good for you!
     
    Jupiter Jones, Oct 3, 2004
    #18
  19. Jeff Gillan

    Ron Reaugh Guest

    There are a number of wackos around who do NOT tell others to do what they
    do themselves. Every person I've met in the last 3 years that works on PCs
    always flashes their own and the ones they work on/maintain.. That should
    be differentiated from some of the patronizing wackos who regard most all
    folks as incompetent morons and go around saying "Oh NO, don't do that..the
    sky is fallin."

    The fact is that the vast majority of folks who have the wherewithall to get
    to one of these NGs and ask the appropriate questions and do the research to
    find out how HAVE NO PROBLEMS flashing carefully.

    NOT FLASHING in the long run will cause more folks more grief and destroy
    more mobos than flashing. YES, mobos do get destroyed while folks are
    pouring through things trying to debug some arcane issue.

    Most often the first thing a tech support person will ask in a debug
    situation is "Have you flashed the latest mobo BIOS." Do it now and don't
    wait until you are in another mess to do flash.

    Don't fall for the bogus argument about trying to find out what the BIOS
    fixes and only flash then if you need the fix. The very first thing one
    finds out with BIOSs is that most all that goes into a new BIOS version is
    NOT documented. Ever see the CPU microcode version documented anywhere? If
    many had followed the wacko advice then we wouldn't have flashed the latest
    865/875 mobo BIOS in July and early August. That BIOS had NO mention in the
    documentation of the fact that it contained microcode necessary for Precott
    CPUs. Most all real techies who select good mobos never saw that
    SP2-Prescott bug because they do things the smart way that AVOIDS
    preemptively problems.

    Catch up.
     
    Ron Reaugh, Oct 3, 2004
    #19
  20. Jeff Gillan

    Ron Reaugh Guest

    Yep and if you'd been around awhile you'd know that such files almost never
    contain the full list of what was done in a new BIOS. Have you ever seen in
    any of those readme's any mention of CPU microcode versions or did you know
    such even existed?
    Only cretins debug and maintain a PC like a car.
     
    Ron Reaugh, Oct 3, 2004
    #20
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