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Just built my computer, do I have to perform any bios changes at ALL?

keep in mind I am a total newbie!

I have a gigabyte ex58 ud4p, i7 920.

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Newbies dont generally build a computer! :) –  Toby Allen Aug 10 '09 at 19:27
    
I built a pc with the Core i7 920 and the Gigabyte ex58-ud5 and Love It! –  Chris Pietschmann Aug 10 '09 at 20:46

4 Answers 4

You might have to set the boot device, but generally no, you don't have to set anything up. I'd still open it up and LOOK at the settings, just to see what's available for changing later.

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+1 - Typically boot devices are all that needs to be changed these days. –  EvilChookie Aug 10 '09 at 19:52

I would make sure you are running the newest BIOS for your motherboard. Check the bios version or revision on boot. Go ahead and go to the manufactor website and check for any updates to that board.

Otherwise, everything you set in the bios is up to you. You do not have to set anything and just use the defaults if you want. I would NOT however, change anything that you do not understand or know what it does. There are some settings in the BIOS that could harm your system if you do not know what you are doing.

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Personally, I'd rather look for BIOS upgrades when I encounter other hardware issues (incompatibility, etc.). The BIOS a new PC has should generally work with whatever hardware's available. –  Isxek Aug 10 '09 at 20:19

I set up recently my computer with a USB keyboard. When I had to mess with the BIOS I couldn't use it until I enabled USB keyboard compability for DOS (undocumented feature), so I needed a PS/2 keyboard to do that. So I think that this is a good idea to change that flag.

And you should check whether the SATA ports are in IDE compatibility or in AHCI mode. I have seen some BIOS version which default to the former, and I advise you to change it to the proper value. Be careful though, check the drivers of your OS.

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+1 for AHCI (en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Advanced_Host_Controller_Interface) which I had to do on my Gigabyte UD5 motherboard. –  ChrisInEdmonton Aug 10 '09 at 21:14

Make sure your BIOS is set to power down if the CPU, etc. overheats. Also, make sure it allows for automatic speed setting of your fans, unless you want to monitor that yourself.

Make sure the RAM timings are set to use SPD values; this should be the default. On my system, the SPD values were substantially slower than the rated speed of the RAM so I ended up going manual, but you'll only really care about that if you run benchmarks.

Make sure HT is enabled. Or conversely, disable it if you don't care to use it.

Others have mentioned AHCI and they are correct. That should be done before you install your OS.

Make sure your boot order is correct.

You may want to enable the extended ACPI power states for your CPU. My Gigabyte UD5 motherboard seems to support C5 and C7 at least, though I haven't tried enabling these.

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