Flashing The BIOS & Your Warranty
Before we proceed though, I would like to touch a little on the legality of flashing the video BIOS. While many manufacturers permit the flashing of your graphics card's video BIOS with the latest official BIOS update they release, they frown on anyone flashing the BIOS to mod their cards.
If you flash your card with the wrong BIOS or kill it in an attempt to mod it using a BIOS flash, that voids your warranty. Flashing the BIOS can also void the warranty if your graphics card's manufacturer specifically prohibits the flashing of the BIOS. For example, ATI.
What You Need To Flash The Video BIOS
Here are some things you will need to prepare before flashing the BIOS :-
- A video BIOS image for your graphics card
- A BIOS flash utility (i.e. FlashROM)
- A floppy disk
Obtaining The BIOS Update
Before you can flash the video BIOS, you will need to obtain the video BIOS image you want. This can be the latest video BIOS issued by the manufacturer of your card or a video BIOS that allows you to mod your card into something better.
In this guide, we will be using the ATI Radeon 9800 Pro as an example. For ATI cards, OCFaq has a collection of all their BIOS images. But the most complete collection of ATI and NVIDIA video BIOS images can be found at mvktech.net.
Obtaining The BIOS Flash Utility
You will also need a BIOS flash utility which does the actual job of erasing and reprogramming the video BIOS. In this article, I used FlashROM 1.3 to update my ATI Radeon 9800 Pro's BIOS.
FlashROM 1.3 is an old version but it worked fine for me. You may want to try a newer version but because I only tested version 1.3 myself, I can only offer it as a download here.