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Old 06-02-2009, 12:49 PM   #1
Rob Williams
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Default Gigabyte's Upcoming Software Makes Good Use of the BIOS

From our front-page news:
Out of all the motherboard vendors, the company who seems to care most about bundled software would have to be Gigabyte. While some others release software that's entirely clunky and not fun to use, Gigabyte tries to refine theirs as much as possible, in order to make them both look good, and easy to use. Such new software was shown off at Computex, and I have to say, if it's not all entirely useful, it is at least interesting.

A new software bundle in some upcoming motherboards is called Ultra6, and it's comprised of Smart DualBIOS, QuickBoost, QuickBoot, Recorder and TimeLock. One of the more interesting of the bunch would have to be DualBIOS. For this feature, Gigabyte expanded the physical size of the BIOS to about 16MB, in order to allow users to save additional information within.

What kind of information may change over time, but the demo they had gave an example of saving your collection of passwords. For example, when using the feature, you could type in your passwords and also the site names for each, then save it to the BIOS. If you happen to forget a password later on, you can use this feature and input the master password in order to see whatever is stored. This will undoubtedly be a niche feature, but it's neat nonetheless.


Then there is Recorder, which acts as a system logger. Here, the software can record a variety of information, including what was done on your PC recently, such as copying files to a thumb drive. We also have Recovery, which is set to compete with such technologies as Time Machine from Apple. If this software works well, it would prove to be a great addition to Gigabyte's boards.

There's also QuickBoot, which somehow improves both the boot speed of the POST process and also the Windows' loading. Aside from these, there were other software tools shown, such as updated and worthwhile overclocking tools, and we'll be sure to take a look at all of them when they hit upcoming P55 and revised X58 motherboards.
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Old 06-08-2009, 06:49 AM   #2
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Odd, but innovation is innovation so I won't complain.

Gigabyte's X58 boards feature a BIOS setting for HDD discovery amongst a few other things... usually on anyone's motherboard this monitor will turn on while the GPU BIOS information is still displayed on the screen. With the X58 they've done more than just set the HDD discovery time to "0" seconds, because the screen hasn't even resumed from standby mode before it's scanning the DMI pool info after a reboot. I have to be pressing the Delete key before the monitor even shows a status signal and the LED turns green, if I want to enter the BIOS setup.

Gigabyte's P35 and all of their older boards were definitely not this snappy despite the same GPU and same monitor... so I find it hard to believe this "Quickboot" can make anything still quicker unless they discovered a way to overclock the HDD.
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Old 06-14-2009, 12:06 PM   #3
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I'm also curious about speeding up the boot sequence, because you'd imagine it would have been done long ago. Removing the need to scan the RAM each time is a good one, but that accounts for only a few seconds. Quite frankly, boot time doesn't bother me too much... 2 minutes is plenty of enough time to go grab a coffee.
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Old 06-16-2009, 11:29 AM   #4
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Rob Williams View Post
I'm also curious about speeding up the boot sequence, because you'd imagine it would have been done long ago. Removing the need to scan the RAM each time is a good one, but that accounts for only a few seconds. Quite frankly, boot time doesn't bother me too much... 2 minutes is plenty of enough time to go grab a coffee.
Two minutes?? What are you using, a nettop? I did some quick testing on my Gigabyte UD5, boot times are a consistent 34-35 seconds just with a basic 750GB Seagate 7200.11 hard drive.

Entering the BIOS disables the quick boot as it will scan for changes, making voltage changes usually requires one of those miniboots, and a complete removal of power means the board will spend awhile scanning hardware. But for simple, warm reboots it takes just 34-35 seconds to reach the log-in screen, and just a couple more for the desktop to have fully loaded.
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Old 06-19-2009, 08:28 PM   #5
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Kougar
Two minutes?? What are you using, a nettop? I did some quick testing on my Gigabyte UD5, boot times are a consistent 34-35 seconds just with a basic 750GB Seagate 7200.11 hard drive.
Nah, it's the regular Linux desktop. It takes a bit longer to boot up for some reason... has a lot to check, and it also takes care of the network mounts during that time. I'm not quite sure it's 2m... I'll test it on the next reboot.
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Old 06-20-2009, 02:31 PM   #6
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Hm, bit of an update. Warm boot is 32-34 seconds... cold boot is exactly 51 seconds. With a cold boot the motherboard spends 20 seconds before you even hear a post beep, then it flies through the boot process like normal.
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