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System BIOS Control
System Control At The BIOS Level
Beyond the complexities of designing and manufacturing board-level sub-systems and fully integrated computers, engineering application-ready computing solutions relies on control of the system BIOS (Basic Input/Output System). In many applications, a technical issue may arise that requires a BIOS modification in order to reach proper levels of performance, stability, and functionality. It's absolutely critical that you have complete system BIOS control in order to maximize system flexibility and maintainability.
System BIOS determines the sequence in which devices are initialized and any configuration commands initiated. While every Trenton single board computer and embedded motherboard is designed with a standard version of system BIOS, the inclusion of high performance cards, such as graphics sub-systems, GPU computing cards, analog & digital data acquisition cards, virtualization technology or network interfaces, often requires BIOS modifications.
Trenton's BXT7059 single board computer is an example of an SBC where the BIOS is completely under revision control. This revision control ability enables Trenton Systems to provide documented BIOS modifications that may be required for some system implementations.
The BXT7059 uses the PICMG 1.3 form factor and supports a dual-processor configuration featuring 2 Intel® Xeon® E5-2400 CPUs and support for PCI Express 3.0 I/O cards, DDR3-1600 Mini-DIMMs and maximum system memory capacity of up to 96GB. This advanced SBC also features SAS and SATA/600 ports, as well as multiple I/O and communication interfaces including PCIe 3.0.
When dealing with feature-rich single board computers, such as the BXT7059, it's not enough to simply understand the BIOS – at Trenton Systems we control the BIOS revision to deliver an unprecedented level of system flexibility and customization capability based upon your exact configuration.
System BIOS Settings
- System Launch Settings
- Boot Option Priorities
- PCI Sub-System Configuration
- CPI Settings, CPU Configuration
- SATA/IDE Configuration
- Super IO Configuration
- Password Protection
- Serial Port Addresses
- Parallel Port Address
- USB Configuration
- CPU Configuration
- PCH Configuration
Common System BIOS Modifications
Change Standard Defaults
From changing processor operational parameters to device interface types, this is our most common custom BIOS request and one of the simplest to implement. The payback can be enormous in terms of simplifying the end user system deployment process.
Increase Device Bus Capacity
For customers with a lot of I/O cards in their system, this custom BIOS change can be a lifesaver in terms of preventing unnecessary hardware expenditures.
Match Specific IRQs
Sometimes certain system components must reside in precise system locations within memory. Changing the IRQ to match the needs of the system sub-component can save hours of troubleshooting and work around headaches.
Custom Retry Logic
Sometimes a specific combination of I/O cards requires changes in the BIOS retry logic. A BIOS change like this can prevent system lock ups during data traffic bursts along the system's I/O communication interface bus.
Adding Booting Delays
Legacy peripheral I/O cards sometimes have problems booting in a system with the latest multi-core processors. This custom BIOS change enables the cards to boot in the correct sequence and save the costs of re-engineering in a new card that may not meet system requirements.
Change Reset Pulses
Adding extra reset pulses within the BIOS sometimes enables a customer to prevent having to change an I/O card model type due to system initialization issues.
Modifying Memory or I/O Resource Requests
Frankly, I/O cards can behave strangely when requesting system memory or I/O resources. Oftentimes the requests make no sense and cause system misbehavior that can be eliminated by making a BIOS change that ignores unnecessary resource requests.
Changing Boot Priority
Some customer systems require a specific boot priority in the event that the bootable device configuration is changed. This is a simple way to meet these requirements without incurring undue re-engineering expenses.
Reduce System Boot Time
When system boot time is a critical factor BIOS settings can play a role. For example, setting boot priority to the hard disk and disabling booting from DVD drives, USB ports or network can save precious seconds. Launching only those drivers necessary for reaching the boot target can also reduce boot time.