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Update BIOS/firmwares on Linux

How do I flash my BIOS using ubuntu 9.10 Linux? I know how to do it in windows but I'm still not sure with Linux. If you could list the steps I would be very grateful.


  • mfillpot
    mfillpot Posts: 2,177
    That is a tough issue, I have been in the same boat and had to revert to using the floppy disk update method since my mobo manufacturer only has update agents for windows and from a floppy boot.

    What kind of computer and motherboard do you have?
  • God thats another issue lol, how do I find what type of motherboard I have when using linux? The best I can tell you right now is I have a dell inspiron 1545
  • mfillpot
    mfillpot Posts: 2,177
    If you run the following as root you should get the mobo information:
    dmidecode |grep "Base Board" -A 5

    And the next command will give the BIOS info:
    dmidecode |grep "BIOS Information" -A 5
  • heres my System Board information:

    Base Board Information
    Manufacturer: Dell Inc.
    Product Name: 0G848F
    Serial Number: .{Moderator removed Serial Number}
    Heres my BIOS:

    BIOS Information
    Vendor: Dell Inc.
    Version: A13
    Release Date: 10/23/2009
    Address: 0xF0000
    Runtime Size: 64 kB

    on a side note, how do you keep track of all those commands mfillpot :S lol
  • gomer
    gomer Posts: 158
    Dell has supplied tools for flashing the BIOS on their devices using a disk.


    Firmware tools can also be used.


    Both are made for working with Dell hardware and Linux.

    Let me know if you need more help / explanation than what they offer.
  • mfillpot
    mfillpot Posts: 2,177
    Thanks for beating me to the punch, it saved me some research.

    I prefer command line operations for the massive amount of functionality and information. After writing enough scripts to utilize sepcific command you start to remember them. I recommend checking out the output of "dmidecode|less" you would be amazed by how much your OS knows about your hardware.
  • Thanks guys, I can flash my BIOS now :woohoo:
    and ya the command line is more powerful then I can comprehend :cheer:
  • gomer
    gomer Posts: 158
    want to know more about your hardware than you ever thought was possible?

    lsusb (USB bus)
    lspci (PCI bus)
    lshw (All hardware busses and controllers)
    dmidecode (DMI data)
    smbios-sys-info (other similar commands, for SMBIOS on some platforms
    hwinfo (extremely verbose)

    And TONS of goodies in /proc.


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