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Thread: Thought experiment: GA-M57SLI-S4




  1. #1
    Join Date
    Feb 2008
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    22

    Default Thought experiment: GA-M57SLI-S4

    I have a dead GA-M57SLI-S4 BIOS. It seems that it is so dead that the boot block is wiped. Now I don't mean to be rude - I just want to save a lot of well-meaning people some time and energy - but before anyone jumps in with their myriad solutions, this thread is NOT about fixing this problem. I've scoured this forum (as well as the rest of the internet) for information regarding Virtual Dual BIOS and how it works and doesn't work. A new motherboard is on the way. This is just to give you some background info so you can see where my thoughts are going.

    It got me to wondering:
    If, somehow, I was able to get my hands on a second BIOS chip, could I just solder into the extra BIOS slot and end up with a TRUE Dual BIOS setup? (And as a side effect, would the secondary BIOS reprogram the dead chip as a true Dual BIOS setup would?)

    I think there is a pretty good chance it would work because if I were to program the Xpress BIOS Rescue application, for scalabilitiy's sake I'd make the program universal, and cover all the different virtual/true Dual BIOS options. That way, the base code is easily revised. Therefore, it would recognize that I now have two BIOS chips and act accordingly. It would also be a waste of precious ROM space to keep a list on which BIOS gets what options. If this were true, assuming I had a good primary BIOS chip, I could even get a blank chip and solder it in and the primary BIOS chip would reflash the blank chip the next time the primary BIOS was found dead (via the HDD, I would imagine). Of course, if a BIOS reflash doesn't change the boot block - and I've heard that this could be the case - then it wouldn't produce a duplicate good BIOS, would it?

    So, if I applied this reasoning to *my* problem, theoretically I could solder a good BIOS chip in the secondary position, and upon reboot, the secondary BIOS would reflash the primary BIOS and it has a good chance of being a true Dual BIOS setup. Alternatively, it would leave me with a board that continuously rebooted itself as it would keep trying to (unsuccessfully) re-flash the dead BIOS.

    I guess the real question here is: Could a *HEALTHY* GA-M57SLI-S4 be modified into a true Dual BIOS setup by adding in a second BIOS chip?

    Bill

  2. #2

    Default Re: Thought experiment: GA-M57SLI-S4

    How does the virtual dual bios work anyway?
    GA-Z77X-UD5H # F16-mod8
    i5-3570K # 4.1Ghz
    32GB Geil DDR3-1600 Evo Leggera
    Gigabyte GTX 660 OC
    Seasonic G-550

  3. #3
    Join Date
    Feb 2008
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    22

    Default Re: Thought experiment: GA-M57SLI-S4

    Quote Originally Posted by Rewl View Post
    How does the virtual dual bios work anyway?
    It is my understanding that Virtual Dual BIOS is a hobbled form of true Dual BIOS. In true Dual BIOS, there are two physical chips. If the primary BIOS chip is not working, it boots from the secondary BIOS and attempts to reflash the primary. If both are bad, it searches the HDD for the last known good BIOS, which is automatically written after each successful boot. Failing that, it seeks the CDROM and floppy drives for any compatible BIOS images. (The driver CDROM should have a good BIOS on it - one good reason not to use them for coffee mug coasters after you load all the drivers!)

    Virtual Dual BIOS follows the same processes, except that since there is no secondary BIOS, you can skip that part.

    I hope I've explained it clearly, and more importantly, accurately. If anyone has more knowledge of this, or knows I am mistaken, PLEASE feel free to jump right in!

    Bill

  4. #4

    Default Re: Thought experiment: GA-M57SLI-S4

    Thanks for the explanation and sorry about the bother.
    One more thing though: "search on hdd" where the heck would it find/write bios files on my drive?

    I remeber an older GB board coming with a manual management of the dual bioses, meaning you could determine the content of each and i think even set the one to boot from..what a huge step back that we're locked out of that now...that's so microsoft

    As to your theory, if you can get your hands i'd bet my money it would work actually. That's pure gut-based though, pardon :p
    GA-Z77X-UD5H # F16-mod8
    i5-3570K # 4.1Ghz
    32GB Geil DDR3-1600 Evo Leggera
    Gigabyte GTX 660 OC
    Seasonic G-550

  5. #5
    Join Date
    Jan 2008
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    24

    Default Re: Thought experiment: GA-M57SLI-S4

    ummmm I think that your idea would be good for my situation XD: http://it.youtube.com/watch?v=7fXGV30adeA

  6. #6
    Join Date
    May 2008
    Posts
    5

    Default Re: Thought experiment: GA-M57SLI-S4

    Quote Originally Posted by billko View Post
    It is my understanding that Virtual Dual BIOS is a hobbled form of true Dual BIOS. In true Dual BIOS, there are two physical chips. If the primary BIOS chip is not working, it boots from the secondary BIOS and attempts to reflash the primary. If both are bad, it searches the HDD for the last known good BIOS, which is automatically written after each successful boot. Failing that, it seeks the CDROM and floppy drives for any compatible BIOS images. (The driver CDROM should have a good BIOS on it - one good reason not to use them for coffee mug coasters after you load all the drivers!)

    Virtual Dual BIOS follows the same processes, except that since there is no secondary BIOS, you can skip that part.

    I hope I've explained it clearly, and more importantly, accurately. If anyone has more knowledge of this, or knows I am mistaken, PLEASE feel free to jump right in!

    Bill
    Well about hobbling (i'm not familiar with non literal meaning did you mean crippled) "Virtual Dual BIOS" and actual "Dual BIOS" the only same thing that they have in common is the few words put together for the sake of marketing confusion about well known dual bios setup which for Gigabyte boards (crappy boards imnsho) were well known in the past.
    Dual BIOS actaually has a boot routine inside that code that is put into that silicon and if the first chip fails to boot routine automatically boots from other chip and reflashes the first one with last good one that's insed first one.
    On the other hand Virtual DB is just catchy name that allows us thatboard boots with last good settings that were stored somwhere in BIOS (not on HDD) so that we dont need to find that ClearCMOS pins (and in fact they are so cheap that they didnt give us a jumper for that). Well that works pretty well if you didnt tweak your memory settings to tight or lower memory voltage to much. so in fact helps us not to reset clock, boot setup, voltages, timings etc. The same thing have all AM2 MSI boards and probably older ones but thy dont sell that under some crappy catchy aready well known name like DualBIOS.
    Similiar thing, for yeras now, have overclocker enthusiastic DFI boards when we push "insert" during bootup so we dont have to open our case and clearcmos. But it's better cause it resets all but time and even if we fail with the memory we dont need to open our case :And that's something tully enthusiastic especialy if we have sealed case for some reason.

    On the other hand better thing than Virtual Dual BIOS, have MSI, Abit, DFi and they call it Corecell, uGuru (look for DFis name) but only on higher end boards and those are storage chips that can save some BIOs presets (up to 5) depending on board

    Well back to Dula BIOS we cant simply put another bios chi on mobo even if theres place on pcb for it cause we need that Dual BIOS auto rutine.

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