BIOS and UEFI – All you need to know

bios vs uefi

Have you ever seen some information when turning your PC on or ever heard a beep when you turn it on? Yes, that’s not the only job of BIOS. It is responsible for many more functions. We’ll be also discussing BIOS vs UEFI – Which one is better? What is BIOS? What is UEFI etc. Let’s start.

BIOS and UEFI – What these actually are?

BIOS and UEFI are simply the firmware of motherboards. There is a small IC having about 1MB of space as flash memory, to store the data of BIOS or UEFI. These does the job of booting the computer up, initializing the different components like Processor, RAM, Disks etc.

After the POST or Power On Self Test is performed, the firmware handovers your system to the Operating system like windows or Linux, whatever you have installed.

BIOS – Is old really Gold?

BIOS

Basic Input Output System
bios screen

Introduced in 1980s by Intel. There were very much hassles to boot the computer up before that. We have to check and do a lot of job manually which BIOS-Chip was able to do within seconds. So definitely, initially it was found very useful, when developed.

BIOS is written completely in assembler using Assembly level language. It do not supports GUI or Graphical User Interface that simply means you have to operate it completely with a keyboard only. Besides these, we had a lot of options and settings to play with. In the same vein, these were very useful as well at times.

BIOS-Chip can also found in most of the old computers and laptops. The main limitation of BIOS was that it do not support mouse integration and also cannot be used to boot from a disk, greater than 2TB, which is again, common now a days where disks upto 8TB are available in market.

UEFI – Better than BIOS?

UEFI

Unified Extensible Firmware Interface
uefi screen

New hardware technology demands new software to have support. That’s why UEFI was set to replace BIOS, in 2007.

It’s written in simple C Language. It works with the things a little differently. Instead of saving the data or startup code to initialize, on the firmware, it saves it inside the disk itself by making a separate partition called ESP or EFI System Partition. Likewise, this partition also stores some data that is required to boot the operating system.

Settings can now contain animations. It also have a large number of controls and settings. Looks beautiful on display. Let’s discuss some of its features.

Security

Security is definitely a big concern. Secure boot made possible with the help of UEFI. Secure boot prevents any malware and spywares to boot along with operating system. It takes use of a digital license, which is verified with kernel.

GUI Support

GUI or Graphical User Interface comes with UEFI. The settings page now can have animations and mouse integration for easiest operations. BIOS had simple interface with only keyboard operations and black and white screens.

UEFI boosts Speed

bios vs uefi

In most of the cases, UEFI tends to boost the boot speeds of operating system up to a large extent. That’s why, UEFI boot should be enabled with use of SSD.

Limitless Storage Support

You can even boot your system from largest size available in the market. Yes, UEFI supports to boot from 13 Zetta Bytes of drives! Thanks to MBR or Master Boot Record.

Conclusion – BIOS vs UEFI

To sum up, we can say that UEFI is very much useful, easier, secure and beautiful as well. You don’t need to choose from BIOS and UEFI now. You’ll be getting UEFI by default even if you are buying a cheapest motherboard. So, choose UEFI and go in flow with development of technology. Ofcourse, UEFI wins the BIOS vs UEFI race. On the other hand, Microsoft is no more supporting BIOS from 2020.


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Related: Complete Guide to select perfect Motherboard for Intel CPU – H, B and Z Series Chipsets

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Author: Prateek

Technology Enthusiast, Computer Science Student

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