What is BIOS (Basic Input/Output System)?

Basic Input/Output System is abbreviated as BIOS. The BIOS is the computer’s microprocessor, which works to start the computer system when power is supplied. BIOS has a vital role to play in a computer’s functioning. All the attached devices to a computer, such as a keyboard, hard disk and mouse, get the data flow connection with the computer screen through the BIOS.

Brief History

  • BIOS came into existence in 1975. The founder of BIOS is Gary Kildall, who was a computer scientist and hailed from America.
  • The first personal computer of IBM got introduced with BIOS in 1981, and the BIOS became more popular and incorporated into several other computers with time. Since then, BIOS has become an essential and significant part of computers.
  • Intel announced finishing the BIOS services and replacing this system with UEFI (Unified Extensible Firmware Interface).

Benefits and working of BIOS

  • BIOS’s prime job is to create an interface between the computer’s hardware with the software of the computer.
  • BIOS manages and controls the flow of data between the input/output devices of the computer and its hardware.
  • The data flow can be done directly to the memory from the attached devices.
  • The BIOS system is embedded as a chip in the motherboard.
  • BIOS supports the memory called the Erasable Programmable Read-Only Memory (EPROM).
  • When the power is supplied to the computer, then the system’s command is sent to the BIOS system by the microprocessors.
  • When the computer booting is done, the BIOS checks whether all the necessary devices, such as the mouse and keyboard, are correctly attached to the laptop and working perfectly.
  • The computer starts working with the boot device. A boot device contains all the files and necessary information about the computer hardware.
  • BIOS’s primary function is to load all the files of the boot device into the Random Access Memory of the computer.

Functions of BIOS

There are three primary functions of BIOS.

  • Firstly, the BIOS system locates the hardware of the computer.
  • Once the BIOS locates the hardware of the computer, then it checks the configuration of all the files of the BIOS system.
  • When the configuration is done correctly, the BIOS system allows the computer’s hardware to connect with the operating system.

Manufacturers of BIOS

IBM manufactures the BIOS. Phoenix technologies had taken the idea from BIOS to create their own BIOS. In recent times the list of companies that manufacture the BIOS chips embedded in motherboards are:

  • Ricoh
  • AMI (Amazon Machine Images)
  • HP (Hewlett Packard)
  • Asus

BIOS settings and security and its scope


  • If the users want access to the BIOS, it can be done with the BIOS setup. The setting access of BIOS truly depends on the type of computer it is. Access to BIOS settings can be done by following the simple steps:
  • When the power supply to the computer is turned on, it redirects the users to the option’ BIOS setting’. The option may be some but different than the given because the wording of the option varies with the different types of computers.
  • This option has a press-able key that directs the users to the BIOS setting after the key is pressed.
  • Once the users enter into the BIOS settings, they can make specific changes such as changing the memory setting, changing the boot device, changing the password of BIOS, etc.


  • The BIOS security is critical to keep the BIOS safe from hackers and introduce malicious material into the computer’s operating system.
  • Another security issue that BIOS faces is the trouble in transferring data to the computer’s memory.


  • The aspirant computer engineers must have in-depth knowledge of BIOS and its working. Knowledge of BIOS is essential for those who want to make a career in computer hardware.
  • The information technology hardware courses and degrees deal with providing the details knowledge about the computer’s hardware, including the BIOS.
  • Computers are a significant part of any company or industry. So, computer hardware engineers are always in demand.
  •  The career of a computer hardware engineer starts as a computer engineer in the company. With sheer hard work, they can get promoted to IT managers and beyond.

Steps to update the BIOS

The adaptation of BIOS depends on the BIOS manufacturing companies. One must visit the official website of the computer manufacturer of their PC to get the full details of the need for updating of BIOS for their computer. Generally, the updating of BIOS includes the following simple steps:

  • The buyers need to visit the official website of the computer manufacturer. One can download the latest version of BIOS that the computer will support.
  • Unzip the codes of BIOS and download the configuration on a USB.
  • Then restart your PC and enter into BIOS settings.
  • Choose the option BIOS update and wait as the updating process usually take some time to complete.

Frequently asked question

1. How to know the details of the BIOS of my PC?

To know about the version of the BIOS installed on your PC, you need to press the windows button with R. Then, the run dialogue box will open. In the run dialogue box, press ‘msinfo32’ and press ok. This command will direct you to the system summary of that PC. You can read the information about the version of BIOS and the date of its installation.

2. What is the location of BIOS in the computer hardware?

BIOS is located in the motherboard of the computer. The software of BIOS is embedded in the read-only memory chip. This chip can be re-written while attached to the motherboard.

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