AMI Bios upgrade possible ???

11 replies [Last post]
pegasusvideo
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Joined: Aug 29 1999

I have an (old) TXPRO chip motherboard, and the manual says it will accept drives up to 8.4 GB. I have checked the AMIBIOS site, and it seems it could be possible to change the ROM to "upgrade" to 8.4GB+ capacity .... but helpfully the companies quoted don`t stock the AMIBIOS upgrades. Or if they do, not prices are quoted.

Anyone any ideas ??

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bcrabtree
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Joined: Mar 7 1999

Normally, you can get Bios updates free of charge from the motherboard maker's web site.

Find out what make your motherboard is - it's usually at the bottom of the page in the first start up screen - then do a search of the net for that brand.

You can press the Pause key to give you time to write down the details you see on screen.

If the brand name is not obvious, you may have to open up the PC and look at the motherboard itself. Of course, the information may be in the motherboard manual, if you have one.

Be careful, though, that you do get the right updater for the make and model of motherboard you have.

Bob C

David J
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Joined: Nov 23 2000

Another way of tackling the problem might be to use the MaxBlast software that Maxtor offer as a way round the drive size constraint in older BIOS.

Haven't used it myself, so no recommendation. But must be worth investigating.

Ken W
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Joined: Apr 9 1999

Try here to track down your motherboard and available bios upgrades.

motherboards.org/spot.html
Ken

bcrabtree
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Joined: Mar 7 1999

I'm not sure that Maxblast will work with drives other than Maxtor - but would be interested to know the answer.

The reason for my interest is that I saw the latest version being used during the week, and it can set up a boot drive in next to no time - many times faster than using fdisk and format.

It also has an option to copy the boot drive intelligently to the new drive.

Bob C

pegasusvideo
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Joined: Aug 29 1999

Hey, thanks for the comments guys (Why didn`t my email tell me I had replies waiting like it used to ??)

Anyway, by using various utilities / websites, I have found out
its ...

revision 51-0505 of TXPRO
made by Hsing Tech Enterprises 001437
with 00111111 (??)
dated 071595
and that the chips are MI531 and M1543 (Ali)

...so armed with that, I will check the above sites. I`m also considering the Promise board as I have 2x6.4GB drives (New Prem 5.1 will only work with one disc as I see) or I can upgrade to a 17GB drive.

Ken W
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Joined: Apr 9 1999

To all interested parties, just downloaded this from Maxtor site, (one Maxtor drive needed in the system.)
Yes - it may run with one Maxtor drive in the system, but will it "COPY" to non-Maxtor drives? Or only copy to the Maxtor drive? I intend to find out - now where did I put that old Maxtor 36gig?

>>MaxBlast Features:

One step installation and setup.

Allows up to four IDE devices in the same system.

EZ-Copy lets you make an exact duplicate of you existing hard drive.

Breaks the Capacity Barriers of 528 MB, 2.1 GB, 4.2 GB, & 8.4 GB.

Fast ATA and Enhanced IDE compatible.

Windows '95, '95b & 98 compatible.

Detailed jumper settings for all common IDE hard drives.

Extensive context sensitive help.

Creates a bootable floppy diskette.

There must be at least one Maxtor Hard Disk Drive installed in the system for MaxBlast to run.

If you are trying to setup a new drive and it cannot be not found by MaxBlast, you will be directed to a troubleshooting section.<<

Regards
Ken

david fuller
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Joined: Jun 19 1999

pegasusvideo

I had the same problem; a TX board made by Hsing Tech enterprises. You can benefit from my hours of research.

Hsing is parent, or subsidiary, of PCChips, and its their website you need. I can't find their web address, but a search engine should find them. The site describes all the boards they make, INCLUDING A PICTURE, and this is how you can identify your board and the appropriate BIOS. Mine is an m550.

Note, however, in my case I did not update the BIOS. Frankly I was unnerved by the disclaimers and warnings, and advice to get a new EEPROM(?) blown etc. given at the start of the process. Moreover, the upgrade was dated only some 6 months later than the original and no info given about the changes. I've decided, in order to get the full 36GB, to get a Promise card in stead. (See also a plea for help I'm going to post as a new thread on this board in the next few minutes) I'll let you know how it goes.

Call me on david.fuller@virgin.net for any further info on this.

Regards, David Fuller

John Harrison
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Joined: May 18 1999

Hi,

The PCCHIP web URL is pcchips.com, a bit slow but useful.

Regards, John

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bcrabtree
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Joined: Mar 7 1999

SNIP

[This message has been edited by bcrabtree (edited 08 November 1999).]

Ken W
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Joined: Apr 9 1999

Follow up to my pre-posting.

Yes - Maxblast does work with third party drives, but only IDE not scsi, (after all this is a "free" IDE utility).
On one of my systems, system drive Maxtor - second drive Quantum fireball, copied everything over perfectly. Quantum drive booted fine when installed as system disk.
Tried it with Maxtor > SCSI (what a fool!), of course it didn't work. Use Norton Ghost for IDE > SCSI or vice versa.
My advice? if you own a Maxtor, then download this utility immediately. If you don't own a Maxtor, still download it and make your next upgrade drive a Maxtor, this is a little gem of a programme.
Word of warning though! if you are already running a previous version of Maxblast to support your drive, uninstall this old version first, this was probably a version of Maxblast provided by Ontrack disk manager. The new version is provided by EZ-Drive and not compatible.
Regards
Ken

pegasusvideo
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Joined: Aug 29 1999

This is getting interesting.

Thanks to BobC, I visited MaxBlast, which helpfully also states this is a "doctured" version of EZ-Drive by StorageSoft
http://www.storagesoft.com

Their site doesn`t explain a lot, so I thought I`d ask how easy it was since the site also mentions EZ-BIOS which can be difficult to remove.

Their one line of "advice" was "see our web-site"! Of interest, this will work with all drives of any make, and costs about $20 for a downloadable software.

BUT...it says it will work with EIDE, and FAST ATA....but doesn`t mention anything about UMDA which we need for vid. Is EIDE the same ??? (showing my ignorance!)

Anyway you guys, many many thanks for the input. (I may have 2X6.4GB drives for sale soon if I upgrade to the 17GB drive and use these fixes above)