Bios Update Needed Before Installing Memory?

Discussion in 'hardware' started by bgfalconboy, Aug 28, 2008.

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  1. bgfalconboy

    bgfalconboy Registered Member

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    The little instructional pamphlet that came with my new Dell 6000 laptop memory says it recommends updating the bios before installing new hardware. Does anyone else think this is necessary? The BIOS update is from Oct. 2005. on the dell support site.
     
  2. KookyMan

    KookyMan Registered Member

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    Well, I'll assume your BIOS is out of date beyond the new "old" BIOS that they want you to upgrade to.

    Read the release notes on the current, and all intermediate BIOS upgrades and see if any of the changes directly affect you. If so, flash it, boot it and make sure it still works, then upgrade the hardware. If not, upgrade the hardware, make sure it still runs right, then if you want update the BIOS.

    Updating two things at once is an invitation for trouble. Especially since it makes it difficult to target what change actually caused the problem.
     
  3. bgfalconboy

    bgfalconboy Registered Member

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    The Dell site where it has the download button mentions the following under the "Fixes and Enhancements" menu. This is for the latest bios update.

    Fixes and Enhancements
    Systems: Dell Inspiron 6000 Series
    Version: A09
    Build Date: 09/28/2005


    Intel 915GM Graphics Video BIOS version 1219
    ATI Mobility Radeon X300 Video BIOS version 8.17M.192.068


    Enhancements:
    =============

    1. Added support for Absolute Computrace Security Solution Feature.
    2. Added support for Battery Health Meter(BHM) in System Setup.
    3. Optimize the battery charging algorithm.
    4. Added a field in System Setup for HDD Acoustic Mode.


    The BIOS release has been validated on the following operating system:
    1. Microsoft Windows XP Service Pack 2
    2. Microsoft Windows XP Media Center Edition Service Pack 2

    I'm running a Dell Inspiron 6000 if you haven't noticed my tag. My dell has the Intel 915GM integrated graphics chip. The level of importance given was optional. BTW , I bought my Dell in June of '05. Also the memory I'm upgrading with is from Dell as well.
     
    Last edited: Aug 28, 2008
  4. JRViejo

    JRViejo Global Moderator

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    bgfalconboy, looking at the Dell Inspiron™ 6000 Service Manual and specifically the Memory Module removal and replacement section, there is no mention of a BIOS upgrade. There's only a 3 month difference between the bought date and the BIOS date so perhaps not much did change. You could use CPU-Z and under the Mainboard tab, you'll see your true BIOS Brand, Version and Date for comparison purposes.

    I agree 100% with KookyMan!!! Do your memory first and leave the BIOS alone for now, unless you find a problem later on.
     
  5. bgfalconboy

    bgfalconboy Registered Member

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    Thanks for the advice. I went ahead with the bios update but I created a restore point before hand just in case. Put in my memory and so far no problems.
     
  6. JRViejo

    JRViejo Global Moderator

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    bgfalconboy, you're welcomed! Your restore point comment is vital info to those Wilders visitors reading this thread, who are contemplating doing the same thing. Great to hear everything's fine. Take care.
     
  7. KookyMan

    KookyMan Registered Member

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    Just so you know, BIOS is outside of windows, so a restore point will do you absolutely no good for this. You'd have to re-flash your BIOS with a previous version.
     
  8. ThunderZ

    ThunderZ Registered Member

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    Very good point. A BIOS flash actually re-writes the information on\into a chip on your motherboard not the hdd. The restore point will do nothing if something were to go wrong with the flash\re-write.
     
  9. JRViejo

    JRViejo Global Moderator

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    KookyMan & ThunderZ,
    I agree with both of you that the BIOS is independent of the HDD, however, my philosophy is: when in doubt, always do a Restore point first.

    For those visitors reading this thread that have not idea what a BIOS is, bgfalconboy's comment of doing a Restore point is sound advice, whether it's needed or not. Hope you agree.
     
  10. ThunderZ

    ThunderZ Registered Member

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    A restore point probably never hurts. But in this case is basically useless. If the BIOS update go`s wrong then in all likely hood the PC will not boot. The restore point is then useless as is everything else on the hdd until a new mobo is purchased.
     
  11. JRViejo

    JRViejo Global Moderator

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    I guess we'll have to agree to disagree on this one. Thanks for your valid input as well.
     
  12. ThunderZ

    ThunderZ Registered Member

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    Just curious as to your reasoning on how a restore point would help in the case of a bad BIOS upgrade. Nothing is written to the hdd during the procedure so nothing will have changed on it after the flash.
     
  13. JRViejo

    JRViejo Global Moderator

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    ThunderZ, I agreed with you, on thread #9, that a Restore point would not help in a BIOS upgrade but my point was/is that if one gets in the habit of doing a Restore point before attempting any PC changes, you can't go wrong. Is it a waste of time on a BIOS upgrade? Yes!

    Yet there are visitors to this forum that have no clue as to how their computers work; eager to learn by reading our posts, and if we can SHOUT to them that a Restore point is a valid procedure, we hope that they seek out the knowledge on how to do so, everytime they try to tinker with their systems. That's all I meant.
     
  14. ThunderZ

    ThunderZ Registered Member

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    Understood now and agreed with 100%. :thumb:
     
  15. Hairy Coo

    Hairy Coo Registered Member

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    JRVIERO,

    You have a bad habit of posting wrong or dubious information,(also Google post)then conveniently changing your tactics when informed of this.

    No amount of lame excuses will change the fact that you believed a restore point would cure a bad BIOS flash

    The best policy is just to admit you are wrong-it doesnt hurt.

    Please no more lame excuses in the future.
     
    Last edited: Aug 30, 2008
  16. Dark Shadow

    Dark Shadow Registered Member

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    Funny I was thinking the same thing very good point indeed.:thumb:
     
  17. Hairy Coo

    Hairy Coo Registered Member

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    You certainly can ,as you may be lulled into a false sense of security.

    Under XP for example you cant restore if Windows isnt bootable,a bad problem- and not all data is restored.

    In all cases a vast amount of disk space-up to 15% is necessary for restore data.

    In short,a user is infinitely better off with a good backup app,ATI,SP etc.

    Backing up is essential,but thats another topic.

    Wrong!

    The whole point of BIOS flashes are to update the computer about certain functionalities,such as which RAM will be compatible with the motherboard.

    Also generally ,BIOS updates improve certain aspects,for example in this case ,battery charging.

    Usually BIOS flashes are completely trouble free and easy,if instructions are observed,mainly not interrupting the Flash if its slow.

    Some problems are reported,but its becoming rare.

    It is wrong to suggest otherwise and creates uneccesary fears

    Well done, bgfalconboy for having in fact updated
     
    Last edited: Aug 30, 2008
  18. JRViejo

    JRViejo Global Moderator

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    First of all, it is JRViejo, not what you keep writing every time you respond to me.

    New people who post here looking for help, sometimes do not give enough info about their systems and it takes awhile to zero in on the question at hand. To say that I have posted wrong or dubious information in the course of trying to help someone is erroneous at best.

    Because I did not express myself clearly in thread #6, I don't think that's a reason to apologize. In thread #9, I clearly agreed with KookyMan & ThunderZ points of view and tried, once more to explain my reasoning behind a Restore point. It was not until thread #13 that I was finally able to make my point. I do apologize that it took me 3 threads to say what I originally wanted to say but I'm still convinced that what I said was correct and there is no reason to say I'm sorry for that.

    That's exactly what a Restore point is and on topic to this post.
    Hairy Coo, if you had taken the time to read the info I provided in thread #4, under Memory Module, you'll see that even Dell does not state that a BIOS upgrade is/was needed to remove and replace a memory module.

    Now, my final question to all is:

    Is there a group so entrenched in this forum that you will not allow a newcomer like me, to assist someone who posts for help?

    All any of you needs to say is that my presence is not welcomed here and I will go away as quietly as I came in.
    I'm a 60 year old man and I can take a hint, so if I'm not wanted here, go ahead, step to the plate and say it.
     
  19. Hairy Coo

    Hairy Coo Registered Member

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    Please dont indulge yourself in creating maudlin blackmail situations-completely inappropriate .

    Your new tactic now is-dont criticize me or I will quit:thumbd:

    What is required is an attempt at accuracy ,for the sake of all.

    If a mistake is made-its best to just acknowledge this as a fact-rather than a convoluted reply,when others are apologizing to you.
     
  20. JRViejo

    JRViejo Global Moderator

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    The question, and it's a simple one, still stands:
    If my presence is not welcomed here, go ahead, step to the plate, say it and I will go away.
     
  21. Hairy Coo

    Hairy Coo Registered Member

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    OK-I will say this-you obviously are able to make a contribution,but please keep in mind at least some of the things I have mentioned.
    Good tactics!!
     
  22. KookyMan

    KookyMan Registered Member

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    Well, nice to see someone like me who would immediately jump down my throat with a nice big WRONG. It's not WRONG, at most its wrong. At best its following the motto, which I don't care who you ask when it comes to working on computers, "If it ain't broke, don't fix it." Sure, if you are someone who knows your way around a system then you will always be upgrading drivers, BIOS, firmware, etc to try and eek out every bit of performance possible. For the average person though there is absolutely no harm in the "If it ain't broke, don't fix it" mentality. For the OP, what was "Broke" was the amount of RAM that he had. He wanted more, so he was working on that. Throwing in a BIOS update was not necessary, so it doesn't make it right or wrong. He needed to upgrade his RAM. He didn't need to flash his BIOS.

    I wasn't creating unnecessary fear. Was anyone put into a state of fear by me saying don't do it? I doubt the OP was. I stand by my advice, and will repeat it if the same situation comes up in the future. Everyone has their own views and ways of working with these wonderful PCs. And everyone's view works for them.
     
  23. Hairy Coo

    Hairy Coo Registered Member

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    KookyMan,

    Actually wasnt referring to your post,but now reading it I guess it could be appropriate if you disliked updating BIOS.

    Updating your BIOS and then adding RAM isnt really an invitation to trouble at all because all the update would do is add more types of RAM to become usable by the motherboard.

    Thats no doubt the reason that Dell recommended it-BIOS regulates the usable hardware.
     
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