Flash Your BIOS

September 18, 2006

BIOS (basic input/output system), a chip on your motherboard, contains the first program that runs on your computer. The program tells your computer how to recognize and read the hard drive so it can boot your operating system.

When you flash your BIOS, you change the BIOS program. You shouldn’t do it unless you have a specific issue you need to deal with — when you’re installing hardware the old BIOS won’t recognize, or if your manufacturer tells you to do it, for example. If something goes wrong during the flash, including a power outage, your computer won’t work. The hard drive will be fine and you can put it in another machine.

The safest way to flash your BIOS is to visit the website of your motherboard manufacturer, find the exact model of your motherboard, and locate the downloads for that motherboard, and download the upgrade to your BIOS from there. It should come in an .exe file. Simply double-click it, and follow the instructions, then restart your computer to finish the installation.

Sound Card Will Not Work

September 9, 2006

Is there integrated audio (built into motherboard)? If there is, try disabling it from the device manager (right-click My Computer > properties > hardware tab > device manager). To disable (right-click > disable).Make sure that the new audio card is showing up right (ie: no “!” or “?“). If either symbol shows up for anything listed, either re-install the device driver, or find a more compatible driver.

Chances are, the old audio is still the dominant driver in this situation. The sound card should automatically disable the on-board audio, forcing Windows to use the sound card. If the on-board driver is not disabled, try manually disabling it (right-click > disable) in device manager.

Also double-check the audio connections again in the back. More often that not, people plug their speakers into the mic outlet or something to that effect by mistake.