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HOWTO flash BIOS with no floppy.
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davidgurvich
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PostPosted: Thu May 13, 2004 10:27 pm    Post subject: HOWTO flash BIOS with no floppy. Reply with quote

As many know most motherboard manufacturers insist on using DOS and floppies to flash the BIOS, or Windows flash programs. That makes it difficult for those of us who want to flash the BIOS and haven't got either a floppy drive or Windows.
1st) you need a small partition on your HD. Either reformat an existing one or use fdisk to make a fat32 partition. The partition doesn't need to be more than a few M's. Use mkdosfs to format the partition.
2nd) Get memdisk and fdboot.img from the freedos iso, you may be able to use some other source for these that do not require mounting the iso image to remove just these 2 files. Place these 2 files in your dos partition.
3rd) Download and save to the DOS partition any BIOS updates and flash utilities you may need. Remember to unzip -x these files now, as you will not have many tools available later.
4th) Edit grub.conf to contain a new boot option e.g.
title=My BIOS Flash Partition
kernel (hdX,Y)/memdisk
initrd (hdX,Y)/fdboot.img

This will get you to the freedos option menu. Pick the one that gets you a command line. Change to the C: drive. If you type dir you should now see the flash utility and BIOS update that you unpacked earlier.
5th)Flash your BIOS being careful as I know you will that you have the correct update for your motherboard as well as the correct flash utility.

The previous is adapted from GRUB's netboot option.
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nx12
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PostPosted: Fri May 14, 2004 4:41 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Hand-made CD + USB-stick/hard drive is the way to go. I've done one some time ago to make my life easier. BBC Linux, Movix + a couple of other specialized floppy Linux distributions, Windows PE + windows progs like TotalCommander and DOS-tools for HDDs, partition imaging, antivirus, recovery etc.. All in one CD.
Really nice to reanimate PCs. :wink:
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davidgurvich
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PostPosted: Sat May 15, 2004 3:48 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

With this method you don't need anything except a working network connection to get certain files, and a FAT32 partition. Particularly useful on laptops or handhelds with either no floppy or cd drives. I actually have a handheld with no floppy, no cd, no usb, but a working network card. It is certainly possible to install any tools you might want on such a partition, though for the limited uses I had in mind there seems no need.
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Coogee
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PostPosted: Sun May 16, 2004 4:46 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Great tip. Thanks!
Works perfectly here.
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Nimo
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PostPosted: Mon May 17, 2004 12:50 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Here is a guide about how to create a DOS-boot-CD that I stumbled across when I had the same problem: http://www.nenie.org/misc/flashbootcd.html
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