Inspiron Desktops

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2 Bronze

Reinstalled Windows 7 OS with SP1. BIOS shows version A03. Should I update BIOS?

Greetings all.

I just did a fresh install of Windows 7, 64 bit, and SP1 on my Inspiron AMD Athlon II 570 desktop. When I checked my setup via "msinfo32" I saw that the BIOS version is a "03", where my XPS 8300 uses version "06". Should I update the BIOS to the "06" version? If so, what's the best way to go about it? Many thanks. Cheers.

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8 Krypton

Keep in mind that BIOS version numbers are irrelevant between different PC models. So BIOS A06 on the XPS 8300 is totally unrelated to BIOS A06 on the Inspiron 570.

BIOS A06 for Inspiron 570 is here. Read/follow instructions carefully.  It's safer to install this update using a bootable USB stick, rather than inside Windows.

You can create a bootable USB using Rufus (free). Then copy the BIOS .exe file onto that USB. You have to completely power the PC off even if the USB is already plugged into it.  Then power on, tap F12 and when the boot menu opens, look for option to boot from USB.

When it gets to the "DOS prompt", type in the exact name of the BIOS file on the stick and press Enter. Leave the PC alone until the DOS prompt reappears.

Then reboot and -hopefully- it boots with BIOS updated. NOTE: There is always a risk that a BIOS update fails and bricks the motherboard, so you do this at your own risk...

Ron

   Forum Member since 2004
   I'm not a Dell employee

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3 Zinc

The easiest way is download the bios file to my downloads folder and double click to run.  Windows 7 is no longer supported and won't get security update.  If you don't have any specific applications which required windows 7, I suggest to do a windows 10 fresh install and activate it with your windows 7 product key.

2 Bronze
2 Bronze

Thanks, Chino de Oro. I'm happy with Windows 7 and am not overly worried about the security updates. I'll update what I can once I get a WiFi card installed. I just helped someone that had a computer meltdown. She was running W7 too. She lost access to Windows Security Essentials so I had to install another aftermarket antivirus. It may be Avast. I can't remember for sure. I'm not sure what I'll install on my Inspiron. Presently it's no worry at all, as I have no internet access, so it has no access to me through that machine.

I'm fighting Windows 10/11 because I like to maintain a bit more control of what I download, and when I do it. It's my understanding that updates are automatic whether one likes it or not. Well, I don't like it. But that's just me tilting at MS windmills.

So I guess I can get the updated BIOS from Dell support? If so, I'll give it a shot. Thanks for that info.

Oh, and one other question that somebody might be able to answer for me. I installed Samsung 4x2GB DDR3/1066 memory in the Inspiron. This was the maximum shown in the 560/570 user manual. But for some reason when I checked the real numbers using freshly downloaded Speccy, it shows the RAM being 8.00 GB Dual Channel DDR3 @533MHz (7,7,7,20). It looks like something knocked the speed down by 1/2 somehow? Any input, anyone? Many thanks. Cheers.

 

regarding Windows security essentials, it's actually called Microsoft Security Essentials and it's still available for download from this Microsoft page (for Windows 7)

Thanks for the link, 3 Argentum. It actually looked promising at first, but now I'm not so sure. I tried installing MSE twice through the link. It may have partially worked, but it would stop near the end of what looked like a successful updating and sent me to a MS page that said MSE was not longer available. I installed w/o the updates, but the console shows that real-time protection won't be enabled either w/o updating. Then, of course, MS blocks the update. Thanks anyway.

2 Bronze
2 Bronze

I found what looks like a good explanation regarding "double clock speeds". According to the author, the memory is working fine. So I guess that part of it is solved. Link:

https://www.ricksdailytips.com/ram-operating-at-half-speed/ 

Re: I like to maintain a bit more control of what I download, and when I do it. It's my understanding that updates are automatic whether one likes it or not

If you install Win 10 Pro you could set up group policy to disable automatic update.


Re: It looks like something knocked the speed down by 1/2 somehow

it is normal because it is DDR3 memory which stands for double data rate

The data rate (in MT/s) is twice the I/O bus clock (in MHz) due to the double data rate of DDR memory.

Standard name Memory clock I/O Bus clock
DDR3-800 100 MHz 400 MHz
DDR3-1066 133 MHz 533 MHz
DDR3-1333 166 MHz 667 MHz
DDR3-1600 200 MHz 800 MHz


8 Krypton

Keep in mind that BIOS version numbers are irrelevant between different PC models. So BIOS A06 on the XPS 8300 is totally unrelated to BIOS A06 on the Inspiron 570.

BIOS A06 for Inspiron 570 is here. Read/follow instructions carefully.  It's safer to install this update using a bootable USB stick, rather than inside Windows.

You can create a bootable USB using Rufus (free). Then copy the BIOS .exe file onto that USB. You have to completely power the PC off even if the USB is already plugged into it.  Then power on, tap F12 and when the boot menu opens, look for option to boot from USB.

When it gets to the "DOS prompt", type in the exact name of the BIOS file on the stick and press Enter. Leave the PC alone until the DOS prompt reappears.

Then reboot and -hopefully- it boots with BIOS updated. NOTE: There is always a risk that a BIOS update fails and bricks the motherboard, so you do this at your own risk...

Ron

   Forum Member since 2004
   I'm not a Dell employee

Community Accepted Solution
7 Thorium

The SMBIOS Version reflects the capabilities of the BIOS and essentially corresponds to the current capabilities at the time the system was manufactured. The BIOS Version is model specific and increments when BIOS Updates are installed (these do not change the SMBIOS Version). BIOS Updates are essentially firmware fixes made by the models manufacturer. Some systems will receive a lot of BIOS Updates as they have a lot of firmware fixes and other systems may have very few. 

Both the Inspiron 570 and XPS 8300 are Legacy Models. The Last BIOS Version for either is A06 (which is a coincidence) and the BIOS Versions here are not related.

In general the BIOS Update should make the system perform well but on older models such as the two listed there is a chance of a failed BIOS Update. This is a relatively rare occurrence but a failed BIOS Update will brick the motherboard. New systems have a UEFI BIOS with numerous BIOS Recovery Options to prevent this issue.

Dr Philip Yip
Tech Enthusiast and Author of the Unofficial Dell Windows Reinstallation Guide

Windows FAQs and OEM Downloads


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