Forcing a BIOS Update without the AC adapter attached on a Dell Laptop

Summary: This page describes how to Update the BIOS on a portable system without the AC adapter attached.

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Force flash the BIOS

Duration: 02:16
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This Article provides Information on how to Update the BIOS on a portable system without the AC adapter attached


Forcing a BIOS flash without the AC adapter connected

There are cases where you need to update the system BIOS on a portable system when the AC Adapter cannot be determined or is not available. When you attempt to update the BIOS within Windows, the update program detects if the AC adapter is present or not and will not continue until it is plugged in. If you need to flash a BIOS and the AC adapter is non-functional or unavailable, there is a way for force the flash.

SLN137741_en_US__1icon CAUTION: If the battery charge is less than 10% you may be able to force the BIOS to update from within a DOS environment. A failure during this process may result in your system becoming unusable and users must proceed at their own risk. Dell shall not be liable for any loss, including but not limited to loss of data, loss of profit or loss of revenue, which customers may incur by following any procedure or advice set out in this article.

What You Should Do :

  1. Download the relevant or latest BIOS update file from Dell's drivers home page

  2. Save it in an easily accessible location from a command prompt. (C: drive or root directory would be the easiest)

  3. Click Start. In the Run or Search box, type cmd right click on "cmd.exe" in search results, and select Run as administrator.

  4. If the User Access Control window appears select Yes

  5. In the Command Prompt window, at the C:\Windows\system32> prompt, type in cd\ and press Enter this will return you to the root directory

  6. At the C:\> prompt, type biosflashname.exe /forceit and press Enter.

    SLN137741_en_US__2icon Note: biosflashname is the actual name of the BIOS you downloaded eg. A6540A09.exe and there is also a space between that and the /forceit switch)
  7. After saying YES to the User Access control prompt, the update should commence without the AC adapter warning. Reboot when prompted to complete the update.
SLN137741_en_US__2icon Note: For information regarding the updating of your system BIOS, please see the KB article:



If you require further assistance, please contact Technical Support


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Article Properties

Affected Product

Inspiron, Latitude, Vostro, XPS

Last Published Date

21 Feb 2021



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