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Noob needs help upgrading BIOS


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#1 curtis73

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Posted 07 September 2009 - 12:02 PM

I got an evaluation copy of Windows7 that I plan to put on my desktop. Its an older model, but was tip-top of the line back in the day. Here is the basic configuration

2g DDR memory (upgradable to 4g)
ASUS P4C800 MB
3.2g Intel P4

During this upgrade I plan on upgrading the 250g HD by adding a 1TB drive in addition; maybe using the old 250 for backup. I also plan on 4g memory. But someone told me that if I don't upgrade the BIOS there is a chance it won't recognize more than 3g memory and it might not dig the 1TB drive either. I've never upgraded bios and figured this is a good time to do it.

So I went to ASUS's website and found what I think to be the right download, but the proceedure is confusing; save a file to floppy (who has floppys anymore?) then restart in DOS and then it just says something like "xcopy all files to the root something something, but be sure to backup all files first in case of nuclear explosion rendering your motherboard useless" or something like that.

Now when I go to the ASUS site I can't find the bios upgrade anymore... almost like they stopped supporting the P4C MB

Help?

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#2 boopme

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Posted 07 September 2009 - 02:36 PM

Moved from General Chat to System Building and Upgrading for better assistance.
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#3 hamluis

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Posted 07 September 2009 - 03:34 PM

What makes you think that whatever BIOS update you have...is going to change anything you want changed? Did you read the description of the BIOS update?

Generally (very) speaking...it's only the Dell/Gateway/HP, etc. systems...which may need BIOS updates to increase functionality of a system.

The operating system (XP and beyond) is what determines the size of hard drives which can be accommodated by a system...it's been that way since SP1 was released.

Unless you have a system that predates that release, there should be no question about hard drive size which the system can/does support. Do a Google for "BIOS support for 1TB drives" and see how many hits you get.

IMO, it's always a bad idea...to use the largest hard drive...for a Windows partition.

My XP Windows partitions are 20GB and my Win 7 RC1 partition is 40GB for O/S, critical updates and installed programs.

I have 4GB of DDR2 installed (XP Home, 32-bit) and my system sees all of it. You need to understand...an awful lot of persons express opinions on the Internet concerning things of which they only have 2d-hand info. And they are often wrong.

Your motherboard specs will tell you the maximum amount of RAM it can support. If you want to double-check, you can login at www.crucial.com and give them the pertinent data for your board...and they'll look up the number of slots, largest module those slots can accommodate, etc.

Louis

#4 DJBPace07

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Posted 07 September 2009 - 10:09 PM

To build on what has been said so far, I agree with Louis. A BIOS update may not be the best approach to this. That PC is old and you may be better served by saving cash to get a new one if you want performance. 32-bit Windows, the consumer versions anyway, can see that a PC has 4GB of RAM but it cannot use it. Instead, it will see 4GB minus one to two GB for addressing. Only 64-bit Windows can use 4GB or more of RAM. To use 64-bit, your CPU must be x64 capable, which it is not. Some motherboards have an option for memory hole remapping, but that won't work unless you have a 64-bit capapble processor. You can continue to install Windows 7, but it will not see much more than 3GB of RAM and you should be fine with a 1TB drive, though I wouldn't use it as the primary partition.

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