How to get into your BIOS and change settings

Sooner or later you will have to go into your computers bios and change certain settings and especially if you want to format your computer. The bios is the first piece of software on your computer before the operating system is installed. Without the BIOS you would not have a working computer.  The BIOS (basic input operating system) is a set of programs, which controls the PC hardware and is stored in a memory chip on the motherboard. The chip is a Read Only Memory (ROM) chip, which keeps its contents even when the power is off. When a computer is turned on, the CPU will execute all of the instructions in the BIOS, which are stored in the ROM. These instructions will then load the Operating System.

What is the main reason you would enter the BIOS?

The main reason I go in there is to set the boot sequence or boot order of the computer. This means that you tell the computer to boot up to C: drive (windows on the computer) or to a cd or dvd drive. For example you might want to boot to an operating system CD when you format your computer with Windows XP. Different computer makes and models have different version and types of bios however they all have the common basics, but may call them different things. I do not know why they could not follow the same menu and features but don’t panic because they are similar.

How to access my computer BIOS?

To access any bios on any computer you must watch the startup screen on the computer. It will usually say “To enter setup press…….” Some common keys you may have to press are F1, F2, F10, or maybe the delete key. You must press this key when the startup screen is showing. There will be a message on the bottom of the screen flashing by saying “press ??? to enter setup.” If you miss this you have to restart again.

Tips to getting in your BIOS:

  1. Watch the screen when you are starting the computer. Be calm and don’t worry if the computer starts before you get to press the right key and the keyboard.
  2. Restart the computer and now that you know the key to press, have your finger on it ready to push when you see the details screen.

Some examples of different brands of bios software:

In the screen shot below you can see a Phoenix BIOS. You need to select the boot menu at the top, then get the CD rom to the top of the list you see there to make it the first boot device.

bios-menu

With the American Megatrends Bios, choose Boot from the top menu, then click on Boot Device Priority. Then you will see a list of devices and you need to make the cd or dvd drive the first priority. To adjust these settings you will see instructions on how to control your keyboard in the right column and also in the bottom bar.

boot-options-menu

Once you have entered the bios there will be a menu to choose from. Some Bios have Boot sequence as a menu item, but if they do not you have to find it under another menu name. As you can see the BIOS brands above have a boot menu. Once you have found what you are looking for, change the cd rom to be the first to boot to, then hard drive as the second. Save and Exit the bios. This is for when you format your computer. To change it back, repeat steps and change it to boot to hard drive 0.

NOTES on how to get into your BIOS and change settings:

  1. For tips on how to control, change, and save bios settings look at the bottom of the screen. It tells you which key to press.
  2. Do not change anything you are not sure of. Changing the settings can easily cause your computer to stop working or have major annoying problems.
  3. When you are not sure what you have done you can go in and choose to restore to system default settings. This is a good way to get out of trouble.

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Comments

  1. says

    My XP-SP2 32-BIT HP LAPTOP NOT HAVING STAND BY OPTION, IT DOES NOT HIBERNATE TOO, HENCE HESITATING TO GET BIOS CORRECTION. KINDLY SUGGEST WHAT SHOULD BE MY FIRST STEP TO BE FROM SCRATCH TO FINALIZATION OF SETTING XP-SP2 WITH OTHER TIPS4PC TO COME ON EXPRESS WAY TO YOUR SITE.HOPING REPLY OR LINK TO ME

  2. Henry says

    I have this problem. My computer does not display brand name on start up, so am unable to access the bios settings. The starting windows comes on when it is switched on.

  3. vikash says

    I want to install XP and windows7.
    My laptop have window7 already.
    So how I will install both please
    Send me steps….

  4. Kumar says

    current operating system in my laptop is FEDORA. i am trying to uninstall that and i want to install windows7. while doing installation of windows7, itself it not showing partitions of fedora…Help me here…

  5. Musthafa says

    Actually in my HCL LAPTOP if i made booting priority first as cd drive means, my booting screen doesnt shows me “PRESS ANY KEY TO BOOT” and also my cd is also not booting, mainly Os Cds are not booting, more than one month my laptop is annoying me, i cant able to format, it is full of virus, i installed windows 7 Os , there s lots of settings is missing, OS is not working properly, i tried almost everything, but i cant found any solutions, pls give me any solution

  6. Techie Salsan says

    The machine may turn useless if the BIOS are not configured properly. The users who are not familiar to all the BIOS settings should not alter it anytime and be very careful when you enter into the BIOS.

  7. A.S. Murty says

    I got into this problem recently. Then I switched off the power to CPU and switched on again. then it started booting. But the problem still continues. I repeat the same medicine i.e., “switch off” and and switch on after few seconds. I wish to share this with you all.