Man checking the BIOS information on his laptopThe Basic Input/Output System, commonly known as BIOS, is a crucial component of a computer system that already comes pre-installed. By contrast, the user, vendor, or manufacturer could either install the OS or operating system of a computer system. It is a program that the microprocessor could access on an EPROM or erasable programmable read-only memory chip.

Below are some of the most basic BIOS functions you need to brush up on when preparing for a CompTIA A+ certification exam, as the objectives for the A+ 901 902 exams found in the PDF file CompTIA released includes BIOS and related hardware:

What Does BIOS Do?

Once you turn on your system, BIOS takes control from the microprocessor, which is found on a specific location on the EPROM chip. When BIOS starts up or boots your system, it will first figure out whether attachments are in their right places and functional so it can load the OS — its key components — into the system’s RAM or random access memory from either a diskette drive or pre-installed hard disk.

Because of BIOS, the OS and all installed applications in the system won’t have to understand and process specific information, like hardware addresses pertaining to attached I/O devices, such as the hard disk, network adapter, video adapter, mouse, keyboard, and printer. Due to this, if device information changes, you only need to tweak the BIOS (usually during system startup or setup), while the OS and/or applications stay the same.

It’s also vital to note that while BIOS is the main intermediary between I/O data flow and device control and the system’s microprocessor. BIOS could likewise arrange for data flow to be directed to memory devices that need quicker data flow to operate.

Summing Up

BIOS is an important program used by a computer system’s microprocessor for booting up the system after turning it on. Mainly, it makes certain that the startup process is successful and that the OS is loaded correctly into the memory. It likewise functions to manage the flow of data between the OS and various attached I/O devices. It is an integral component of computer systems and knowing how it works could help you with troubleshooting your machine in case it malfunctions.

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