View Full Version : Rom Flashing????

02-18-2001, 03:49 AM
Could somebody explain to me what 'flashing the ROM' means and what/how a firmware update is?
Just learning about this stuff.


02-18-2001, 11:49 AM

Many common devices like SCSI cards, video cards, modems, etc. have flashable (upgradable) onboard ROM, sometimes called flash ROM, also known as EPROM, or firmware. It is code that resides in non-volatile memory on the card. This code is necessary for the basic operation of the device and contains information such as supported resolutions for a video card, not what your monitor can do, what the video card can do. The contents of Flash ROM remains in the card's memory even when the computer is turned off.

The manufacturer improves this ROM code to make the device faster or more compatible with hardware/software or with new versions of the OS. So they issue a firmware update to flash the ROM of the device.

Some updates are easily done via an updated control panel which, when you open it, asks to update/flash the ROM to the newer version. Other methods require you to take the firmware update, put it in the same folder as a small application, and launch the application. There are a variety of ways that manufacturers use to do this. You must follow directions to the letter. I have an old SupraSonic modem that was particularly finicky about following the directions. If you short circuited any steps or house power failed (a particular feature in California) during the update, you could plan on sending the modem back to Supra or whatever they are called now.

That is all I can remember except that you must be sure that the update applies to your exact hardware. k