On 2013-Dec-27, 21:41 , Philip Rhoades wrote:
I have been on this list for some time lurking - just because I think
it is interesting that a bit of firmware can allow hardware to be
actually useful! I haven't done more than read the occasional post
that was of interest but the thought occurred to me again about
replacing the BIOS that is on my current machine with something that
is open so I went back to the OpenBIOS home page but was a bit puzzled
to see on the Download page: "Do not try to put OpenBIOS in a real
boot ROM, it will not work and may damage your hardware!". After a
little more looking around I am still confused - the ultimate aim of
this software is to eventually allow people to replace their
proprietary BIOSes right? I have an Intel MB DG45ID but I couldn't
Google much overlap with OpenBIOS . .
I'm not one of the OpenBios team (I do OpenBoot at what was Sun
Microsystems, so I pipe up occasionally with tidbits I've seen), below
is my understanding of the direction of OpenBios. One of the OpenBios
folks might speak up and phrase it better.
There are two parts to a boot ROM - initializing the platform-specific
hardware, and then booting the operating system. OpenBios fits in the
latter part. Most x86 vendors have their boot ROMs containing highly
proprietary code to initialize their CPUs, memory and io bridges, before
they get to the common function of trying to boot their operating system.
Since the code for initializing cpu boards is so highly proprietary (and
so different board from board), that kind of code isn't in OpenBios. If
you flash OpenBios into your Boot ROM, your hardware won't get
initialized and your system will perform the operation we call "turn
into a brick".