Saturday, January 17, 2015

About Firmware

Firmware is the read-only memory (ROM) chips which function as useful tools storing permanent instructions. It plays an extremely vital role in the operation of the computer because it is the key that boots up the computerized or digital device. On the other hand, it is so powerful in that it does not require a power source to hold its contents for the ROM chips are non-volatile. This characteristic distinguishes it from random access memory (RAM) as the RAM will lose the stored data at shutdown. Generally speaking, people have not much knowledge about firmware. It is possible that the basic input-output system (BIOS) chip is the most well-known fro common users. The BIOS chip on a computer motherboard stores instructions that boot up the hardware when booting up the computer and make sure that the components are working and roll out the operating system to take over eventually.

Users were not able to rewrite the firmware chips in the past. Therefore, people had no choice but to buy a new motherboard as long as the former BIOS was outmoded. With the rapid development of science and technology, this problem has been successfully solved. The new chips are capable of understanding the latest hardware so that users are able to get rid of the limitations of the older drives and other legacy technologies when confronted with unavoidable upgrades.

There is no denying that it would bring about a great deal of benefits if the firmware can be upgraded. With the emergence of the flash memory chips, this is realizable. The BIOS is written to the flash memory chip, which enables the user to connect to the manufacturer’s website. Under such conditions, users are free to download an upgrade and flash the BIOS chip during boot-up to install a new set of instructions. Therefore, all quality motherboards today feature a flash BIOS.