[flashrom] Error Reading BIOS on Dell Optiplex 745

Joerg Mayer jmayer at loplof.de
Fri Jan 8 23:07:09 CET 2010

On Fri, Jan 08, 2010 at 09:06:52AM -0800, ron minnich wrote:
> On Fri, Jan 8, 2010 at 8:32 AM, Adrian Glaubitz
> <adrian.glaubitz at googlemail.com> wrote:
> > IIRC the newer Dell OptiPlex series have a special way for flashing
> > the BIOS. You use a Dell-provided utility to copy the new BIOS image
> > into a special (non-volatile?) memory, then reboot the machine. Once
> > it reboots, it will automatically start to flash.
> wow, how ... special. So you have no visibility into the reflash
> process and no idea of its progress.
> This is the default mode for many new BIOSes, I understand, since so
> many of them are EFI at the core. It's not an improvement for the
> customer, but it's what the vendors are going to provide. It's very
> disappointing.

I see one very good reason to try this (apart from several negative ones):
Malware. If malware manages to program itself into the BIOS, then it will
control what the OS sees - and has possibility to thwart any and all
attempts at detecting/repairing such a program. If the BIOS only accepts
signed BIOS updates for reflashing, then this could prevent that kind
of malware.

Joerg Mayer                                           <jmayer at loplof.de>
We are stuck with technology when what we really want is just stuff that
works. Some say that should read Microsoft instead of technology.

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