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Flashing the BIOS from the F12 One-Time Boot Menu

Summary: How to update the BIOS on your computer using the update .exe file that is copied to a USB drive in the One Time Boot menu.

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Symptoms

No symptoms information.

Cause

No cause information.

Resolution

Table of Contents:

  1. BIOS Update Information
  2. Download the BIOS Update File and Copy the File to a USB Flash Drive
  3. Updating the BIOS from the One Time Boot Menu
  4. Updating Computers with the AgS (White Background) BIOS (2020 and Newer)

BIOS Update Information

The BIOS update can be initiated from inside Windows. If a Dell computer is unable to boot into the Operating System (OS), the BIOS update can be initiated using the F12 One Time Boot menu. Most Dell computers manufactured after 2012 have this function and you can confirm by booting the computer to the F12 One Time Boot menu. If you see, "BIOS FLASH UPDATE" listed as a boot option, then the Dell computer supports this method of updating the BIOS using the One Time Boot menu.

 
WARNING: BitLocker should be disabled before updating the BIOS or the BitLocker recovery key will be needed after the update. More information: 000125409
 
NOTE: Only Dell computers with BIOS Flash Update option in the F12 One Time Boot menu can use this function.


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Download the BIOS Update File and Copy the File to a USB Flash Drive

  1. Browse to the Dell Drivers & Downloads website.
  2. Identify your Dell product.
    1. Click "Download & Install SupportAssist" to auto-detect your Dell product.
      Follow the on-screen instructions to install Dell SupportAssist. For more information, see the Dell knowledge base article Dell SupportAssist (formerly Dell System Detect): Overview and Common Questions.
    2. Or, enter the Service Tag, Express Service Code, or the Serial number of the Dell product and click Search.
    3. Or, click Browse all products to manually select your Dell product from the catalog.
  3. Select the Operating System that is installed on the Dell computer.
  4. Under Category, select BIOS.
  5. Locate the latest System BIOS.
  6. Click Download and save the file to your computer.
  7. Connect the USB flash drive to the computer.
  8. Open File Explorer (also known as Windows Explorer).
  9. Right-click the USB flash drive icon and select Format.
    WARNING: Back up all important data from the USB flash drive. Formatting the USB flash drive will permanently erase the contents in the USB flash drive.
  10. Under File system, select FAT32.
  11. Click Start.
  12. After the formatting process is complete, click OK.
  13. Browse to the location where the downloaded BIOS update file was saved.
  14. Copy the BIOS update installation file to the USB flash drive.
  15. After the file is successfully copied, go to the next step.


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Updating the BIOS from the One Time Boot Menu

Use the following steps to update the BIOS from the F12 One Time Boot menu:

 
WARNING: Dell recommends disconnecting any devices such as external hard disk drives, printers, scanners, and so on (except keyboard and mouse) before updating the BIOS on a Dell computer.
 
WARNING: Dell laptops must have the battery installed and charged to at least 10% before you begin the BIOS update. Dell recommends connecting the laptop to the power adapter before proceeding with the update process.
 
WARNING: DO NOT TURN OFF THE COMPUTER DURING THE BIOS UPDATE PROCESS. Turning off the computer during the BIOS update will cause irreparable damage to the system board (motherboard) of the computer. To learn more about updating the BIOS on a Dell computer, see the Dell knowledge base article Dell BIOS Updates.
 
  1. Turn off the computer.
  2. Connect the USB flash drive to the computer.
  3. Turn on the computer and tap the F12 key several times, until you see One Time Boot menu.
  4. Use the arrow keys and select BIOS Flash Update (Figure 1).
    One time boot menu
    Figure 1: Selecting the BIOS Flash option on the F12 One Time Boot menu.
     
  5. In the BIOS flash menu, click the Browse button (Figure 2).
    browse button
    Figure 2: The Flash BIOS menu browse selection from the F12 menu.
     
  6. In the pop-up window, select the BIOS flash executable file that you copied to the USB drive. For example, E5450A14.exe. The file name varies (Figure 3).
    select the bios update file from the usb flash drive
    Figure 3: Selecting the BIOS flash in the pop-up menu.
     
  7. Click OK (Figure 4).
    click ok to confirm
    Figure 4: After the BIOS flash file is selected, click the OK button.
     
  8. Click Begin Flash Update (Figure 5).
    click begin flash update button
    Figure 5: Clicking the Begin Flash Update button.
     
  9. When the warning message appears, read the message and click Yes to begin the BIOS update process (Figure 6).
    do you want to proceed option
    Figure 6: Clicking Yes in the Do You Want to Proceed warning box.
     
  10. The progress bar may go from zero to 100 multiple times. The BIOS update process can take up to 10 minutes, but generally this process takes two to three minutes (Figure 7).
    BIOS update progress indicator
    Figure 7: BIOS Flash Progress indicator.
     
  11. After the BIOS update is complete, restart the computer.


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Updating Computers with the AgS (White Background) BIOS (2020 and Newer)

Use the following steps to update the BIOS from the F12 One Time Boot menu:

 
Note: Some USB flash drives may must be inserted into the USB port before entering the F12 One Time Boot menu.
 
  1. Turn off the computer.
  2. Connect the USB flash drive to the computer.
  3. Turn on the computer and tap the F12 key several times, until you see the One Time Boot menu.
  4. Click "BIOS Update" (Figure 8).
    AgS BIOS (2020 or newer)
    Figure 8
  5. Click "Flash from file" (Figure 9).
    AgS BIOS (2020 or newer) Flash BIOS
    Figure 9
  6. From the File Explorer, select the device where the BIOS exe file is saved (Figure 10).
    AgS BIOS (2020 or newer) File Explorer
    Figure 10
  7. Select the BIOS update you prepared (Example: Latitude_3410_3510.exe in the Figure 11) and click "Submit."
    AgS BIOS (2020 or newer) File Explorer
    Figure 11
  8. You will be returned to the previous "Flash BIOS" screen. Here you can check the version information of the BIOS that you are trying to update. If you are sure about the version, click "Update BIOS" (Figure 12).
    AgS BIOS (2020 or newer) Flash BIOS
    Figure 12
  9. Click "Confirm Update BIOS" (Figure 13).
    AgS BIOS (2020 or newer) Flash BIOS
    Figure 13
  10. The update will take place after the reboot. When the update is complete, the computer will reboot, so do not turn off the power and wait until the update is complete (Figure 14).
    BIOS Update in Progress
    Figure 14


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Article Properties


Affected Product

OptiPlex, All-In-One, Laptops, Alienware, Inspiron, Latitude, XPS, Fixed Workstations, Mobile Workstations, Wyse 3040 Thin Client

Last Published Date

28 Jun 2021

Version

6

Article Type

Solution