Flashing my BIOS questions..

Mar 2, 2018
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So I would like to update my mobo's BIOS, i'm familiar with the procedure for my make and model of MOBO, but here's the catch... I live in an area where we get brief but random power outages on a somewhat frequent basis.. Aaargh!

If that happens while i'm flashing my BIOS I could be royally hosed, and I don't want that to happen. Do you guys think hooking my PC up to a UPS might save me from disaster in a scenario where the power blips out like it sometimes does here...??

Also, on average, how long does it take to flash a new BIOS...?? Mobo is an MSI Z370 PC Pro. The BIOS build is about a year old if that makes any difference.

Any ideas or suggestions are much appreciated, thanks.
 

jay32267

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" Do you guys think hooking my PC up to a UPS might save me from disaster in a scenario where the power blips out like it sometimes does here...??
"

....as long as it can keep you powered until the end of the BIOS update IF there is a failure.

"Also, on average, how long does it take to flash a new BIOS...??"

In the neighborhood of a few minutes.
 

jay32267

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Yes it will....so I would be as sure as I could be that the power wasn't going to go out.....or use a UPS and be quick about it.

Let me ask you this....why do you need to update it?

I only update a BIOS IF I HAVE TO because something isn't right....but in general I don't update the BIOS if things are running well.
 
Mar 2, 2018
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Thanks again Jay.

I am no expert on UPS's, i've never had one, and honestly never needed one, but my basic understanding is that they respond automatically and in milliseconds, but I could be wrong about that..

There isn't any "being as sure as I can be that the power wasn't going to go out" where i'm located, it's just a fact of life, and there's no predicting when it might happen.

As for the "need" to update the BIOS, I hear you loud and clear. The main reason was to have support for 9th gen Intel processors, which it doesn't have with the current bios build..
 
Mar 2, 2018
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Very funny...

Help me out here dude... If the UPS doesn't kick in virtually instantaneously, you'd be screwed if you were in the middle of a bios update wouldn't you..?? I mean in a power out "blip" situation your PC would power down in less than 2 seconds, at least that's been my own experience... YMMV

You either need a better UPS or better renters insurance, or both... I think i've got about all the useful info I can expect to get from you, but thanks anyway...

 

jay32267

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"If the UPS doesn't kick in virtually instantaneously, you'd be screwed if you were in the middle of a bios update wouldn't you..?? "

Yes

but the UPS kicks in FASSSSST.

You can unplug a UPS to see how fast.

I don't think it gives the caps in the PSU much time to drain....and that's why it works.
 

ubercake

Splendid
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With a good UPS, your PC is constantly running off clean UPS battery power and the battery is continuously being charged by the power from the wall.

Since your PC is running off the battery from the UPS during normal operation, when the power drops there's no delay. Your PC will keep running for a time based on how much power you're using. Updating the BIOS requires little power, takes a few minutes and may require multiple restarts. Most decent UPSs will handle the task.

I use a UPS on my main PC and another on my entertainment system/center.

I'm constantly upgrading my hardware so I'm continuously checking for and applying BIOS updates to avoid compatibility issues. I haven't had a problem updating my BIOS yet. I also follow directions carefully. Most newer UEFI/BIOSs have BIOS update utilities built into them so it's pretty easy these days. Some BIOSs can also be upgraded by way of Windows utilities. I've used many different options for updating the BIOS and have followed directions in each case with no issues.
 
Mar 2, 2018
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Thank you very much, that was the information I was looking for.

I don't want to seem paranoid, but the brief, and completely unpredictable power outage "blips" that we get here make me extremely nervous when attempting a bios flash update, for obvious reasons.

Is there a reliable way to calculate the specs you would need for a sufficient UPS for a particular system, hardware wise..??

Thanks again.


 

jay32267

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You could size it to your PSU.
The VA rating is generally about 1.7 times the wattage rating .
Edited:
Keep in mind.....this is the input wattage rating of your PSU....so on a 500 watt PSU the maximum input wattage should be greater than that due to the efficiency.

The input power is probably printed on the PSU as volts and amps and you need to multiply these to get the wattage.


 

ubercake

Splendid
Moderator
I agree with jay32267. You want to get a UPS that's ideal for more than just updating the BIOS. You want one for regular operation; especially given your current power situation. Jay's math is also a pretty good rough guideline for the max power your UPS will ever require if your current PSU gets anywhere near maxed out.

For example, I have a 1kW PSU that I've never come close to maxing out. At most, I probably use around 500-550W max, but I bought the power supply when using multiple video cards was a necessity for consistently maintaining greater than 60fps in games I play at resolutions greater than 1080p. GPUs have come a long way in the past 5 years, but when I bought my UPS, I bought a 1500VA unit which can power 900W for enough time to shut the system down safely.

These days, I could probably get by with an 1000VA while running with the CPU and GPU both peaked and get a few minutes to shut the system down safely as necessary. Depending on what you have running on the machine, you could gauge your run time and make your decision based on the information on this page:
https://www.cyberpowersystems.com/products/ups/pfc-sinewave/

I have the 1500VA unit listed on this page and use it for my main system. The power has gone out before and the clock shows based on current wattage usage with a few windows programs open (not any graphics intense game mind you) as around 27 minutes. You could probably expect to get that with this unit with no power while updating the BIOS since the GPU is nowhere near high usage during the boot and BIOS flash process.

I use the 850VA model (CP850PFCLCD) on this same page for my entertainment system which includes a 55" TV, Roku box, Xbox One + external drive, and surround sound receiver. The power has gone out and this unit keeps everything running well beyond long enough for me to safely turn everything off.

I have replaced the batteries ($70 as opposed to buying a new unit) in my CP1500PFCLCD unit one time two years ago in the 8 years I've owned it. Remember the PC is constantly running off the continuously charged battery so that's not bad. This unit has saved my system on numerous occasions.

I definitely would recommend this line of UPS for home or small business use.
 

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