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Methodology Of Programming BIOS On Different Motherboards Using A Common Set Of Data Disclosure Number: IPCOM000014494D
Original Publication Date: 2000-Aug-01
Included in the Prior Art Database: 2003-Jun-19

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For both OEMs and large customers, managing BIOS update files is a real challenge. Every different type of motherboard requires a different BIOS programming file. This disclosure describes a technique that allows one to have a single set of data that can be used on a wide variety of platforms, and insures that the correct BIOS is loaded on the right system. There are 4 requirements to implement this solution: A way for a BIOS programming program to determine a particular motherboard type (model ID bytes in CMOS or EEROM is one example, board S/N, DMI data fields etc. are other methods that could be used). A BIOS programming program that is capable of recognizing the motherboard identification method described above, and is capable of actually programming the specific motherboards that are to be updated (this program could be a combination of specific programs for specific motherboards, and the entry point to the program just checks the motherboard ID, and passes control to the specific programming algorithm. Binary BIOS data files that represent the actual BIOS to be programmed into the motherboard. There must be some way to identify a particular type and level of BIOS, either the file naming convention. (Our solution uses the first 2 characters of the file name to indicate the motherboard type, while the last two characters indicate the revision level.. Examples are C01.BIN and C02.BIN are two different versions for one motherboard, while D01.BIN and D02.BIN are for a different motherboard.) A single ASCII text file that the BIOS programming program checks to see which version of BIOS should be programmed into a particular motherboard. (In our implementation, we call this file BIOS.PRO. The format of the file is a very simple id version where id is some unique model ID of the motherboard that is known to the program...we just use the model number of the system unit version is the name of the file to be programmed In order to describe the way this works, for simplicity's sake, assume that a DOS bootable diskette has been created that has the name of the BIOS programming program contained in the Autoexec.bat file, along with all the prerequisite files described above. The diskette is taken to a terminal by a person with zero PC skills with only a single instruction....insert the diskette into the terminal and turn it on. The