Updating Bios for K7VZA in Windows XP

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Joined: Fri Apr 19, 2002 1:56 am

Does any one have advice on updating my bios? Here's the background. My motherboard is an ECS K7VZA with Award Bios version 3.2 and has a date of 3/14?/2001. (March of 2001 definite but not day)
The processor is an Athlon 1.4MHz w/ 512 MB RAM and I have a 40 GB hard drive with 3 partitions, all of which are NTFS formatted.

Since I have installed XP, my computer has consistently restarted at the beginning or during the installation of software I am trying to load. I recently disabled the option to restart windows after a major error occurs and this allowed me to check what is going on in the event viewer. Looking in my event viewer log I found that the error has been:

ACPI Bios is attempting to read from an illegal IO port address (0x71), which lies in the 0x70 - 0x71 protected address range. This could lead to system instability. Please contact your system vendor for technical assistance. (Sometimes the memory ranges are different but all the ones listed are on the list of protected memory that I will mention in a sec)

Going to Microsoft's site for help, I found an article that talked about how Windows XP makes certain ranges of memory protected and recommending board manufacturers take this into account.

Link: http://www.microsoft.com/hwdev/tech/onnow/BIOSAML.asp

Knowing this, I found the update for the bios that I need from the ECS website.

I have also found the WinFlash program that will run in Windows XP.

My question is, is this the proper way to go about updating the BIOS considering that Windows XP does not acknowledge the existance of DOS and won't allow me to boot from a Win 98 boot disk or a DOS disk that I made in Win XP?

If anyone has had a similar situation, is this the way to go?

Thanks for your help.
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Joined: Fri Apr 19, 2002 1:56 am

Hand it to ECS to not provide instructions if you can't update through DOS and my lack of skills to find information on how to use the Award WinFlash utility in Windows XP.

Link to the BIOS update - http://www.ecs.com.tw/download/flash.htm

Reading the how to use .pdf file it shows that there are 4 blocks that can be updated; boot block, ESCO block, DMI block, and main block.

Link to how to file - http://www.ecs.com.tw/download/bioswin.htm

I'm not sure what specifically the update will do so I am tempted to just have the program update them all. Should I update them all?

And what about CMOS? Do I clear CMOS as well?

And finally, what if I get the message saying that my BIOS doesn't support WinFlash. I know I am not as computer literate as I should be so I'm confused and I really don't want to mess it up.

Any suggestions or insight would be greatly appreciated. Thank you in advance.
El cheapo dude
Posts: 3048
Joined: Sat Mar 23, 2002 12:41 pm
Location: Madrid, Spain

Booting off a bootable floppy will totally bypass (and not care about) any OS installed in your system. I've even flashed a few boards with the bootable diskette Windows XP lets you prepare.

There have been 6 BIOS releases after yours. The latest is of 3/19/2002. It's version 3.6a.

You'll see they made a mistake with the release date of it (it says 2001), while the main page does show the right date:

Note: you'll see they've "toyed" with ACPI in the latest releases, and Windows XP is VERY picky with it.
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