DELL & BIOS update - should I update BIOS?

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  1. Posts : 27
    Windows 10; 64-bit
       #1

    DELL & BIOS update - should I update BIOS?


    Hello,

    I have a Dell desktop XPS 8900, running the latest version (1903) of Windows 10 Pro, 64-bit .
    My new monitor is not detecting my display port cable, so I am using DVI. (The old monitor from 2007 didn't have a DP option.) I decided to check and see if I needed new drivers.

    The Dell support site detected three drivers needed - two were for Intel, and one was for BIOS. I updated the two Intel drivers and will check for new Nvidia drivers as well. But I am wondering if updating the BIOS is safe or necessary?

    These are the fixes that Dell describes for updating BIOS to the newest version: Version 2.6.1, 2.6.1 :
    Fixes:
    - Firmware updates to address security advisories INTEL-SA-00223(CVE-2018-12126, CVE-2018-12127, CVE-2018-12130 and CVE-2019-11091)
    - Firmware updates to address security advisory INTEL-SA-00213 (CVE-2019-0086, CVE-2019-0091 and CVE-2019-0093)
    - Removed the Pre-boot Intel RST Manager Optimized Defaults option.
    (There are no Enhancements.)

    Is it important, or a good idea, to upgrade to the new version of BIOS?

    Thanks!
      My Computers

  2. Try3's Avatar
    Posts : 7,386
    Windows 10 Home x64 Version 20H2 Build 19042.868
       #2

    I have always installed Dell BIOS updates and have never had a problem.

    Denis
      My Computer

  3. FreeBooter's Avatar
    Posts : 3,969
    Windows 10 Pro 64-bit
       #3

    BIOS firmware upgrade can be dangers if anything goes wrong your computer will not power on so only upgrade BIOS firmware if you need it.
      My Computer


  4. Posts : 356
    Windows 10
       #4

    I never install a firmware update if the computer is out of warranty. The only exception would be if the update solves an obvious and important problem, but this has never happened.
      My Computer

  5. Kyhi's Avatar
    Posts : 3,539
    Windows 3.1 to Windows 10
       #5

    As a Lifelong "Dell" User
    Yes Update the Bios................
    If the Firmware Upgrade was to Fail - you can /force the update...
    Although I have never had a BIOS Update Fail............
      My Computer

  6. Berton's Avatar
    Posts : 10,486
    Win10 Pro Versions 2004 and 2009/20H2, Win10 Pro IP_Dev, Win10 Home 1909
       #6

    Anibor said:
    I never install a firmware update if the computer is out of warranty. The only exception would be if the update solves an obvious and important problem, but this has never happened.
    I seldom do it IF the computer is otherwise working fine. And I never do it unless plugged into a UPS [battery backup].
      My Computers

  7. Bree's Avatar
    Posts : 18,617
    10 Home x64 (20H2) (10 Pro on 2nd pc)
       #7

    bluegreen1 said:
    I have a Dell desktop XPS 8900...

    ...
    The Dell support site detected three drivers needed - two were for Intel, and one was for BIOS. I updated the two Intel drivers and will check for new Nvidia drivers as well...

    ...
    Is it important, or a good idea, to upgrade to the new version of BIOS?
    The bios update includes updated Intel microcode for Spectre and other vulnerabilities. You are likely to already have the same microcode patches in a Windows update that's loaded when Windows boots.

    KB4497165 Intel microcode updates for Windows 10 1903 and 1909 Jan. 30

    Is it safe to update the bios on a Dell? Well, I have safely updated the bios on my Dell Latitudes but it's always a worry that something might go wrong. Fortunately for you the XPS 8900 support Bios Recovery, see the FAQ here....

    The following article provides information on the BIOS recovery capability available on select Dell PCs or tablets. These are the BIOS features that let you recover from a corrupted BIOS, and attempt a recovery of a No POST (Power On Self Test)/ No Boot issue....
    Dell Support | BIOS Recovery options on a Dell PC or Tablet
      My Computers

  8. sygnus21's Avatar
    Posts : 5,309
    Win 10 Pro (x64) 20H2 (19042.906)
       #8

    bluegreen1 said:
    Is it important, or a good idea, to upgrade to the new version of BIOS?
    First off laptop BIOS's are usually straight forward since they tend to be locked in their settings. That means a laptop vendor can ship a BIOS without worrying about settings being changed. That is turn makes updating a laptop's BIOS hassle free (as long as the system isn't interrupted during the update). Same "might" be said of store bought (desktop) PC's.

    Desktop PC's, especially custom-built ones, tend to be a bit more challenging as each system may have it's own customized BIOS settings. Here, updating a BIOS will usually result in it being reset to "factory" defaults - a setting that may not even allow the PC to boot, and thus the reason for the "Load Optimized Defaults" setting - a setting designed to detect the motherboard's hardware and enable the system to boot.

    In that vein it helps know something of your BIOS (and hardware) in case you need to reset things. A perfect example is the RAM's XMP settings (mainly applicable to custom built desktop PCs). XMP allows "XMP certified" RAM to run at its peak performance when enabled; However, here updating the BIOS will usually (ex: Gigabyte boards) disable XMP because XMP is treated as an overclock. Thus when a custom builder updates their desktop BIOS, even though they may have "Loaded Optimized defaults", XMP most likely will still need to be re-enabled because it's seen as an overclock feature (and thus why it's usually not included in the "Load optimized default" setting (ex: Gigabyte boards).

    So my point is if you're going to update a BIOS (speaking to the desktop owners) make sure you have some semblance of understanding your BIOS before doing so in case you need to reset it.

    My two cents.
      My Computers

  9. fireberd's Avatar
    Posts : 2,296
    Win 10 Pro, 20H2
       #9

    Only manually download and update the BIOS. Do not use the Dell Support Assist, we have seen a lot of problems on the Dell community forums updating with that.
      My Computers

  10. Berton's Avatar
    Posts : 10,486
    Win10 Pro Versions 2004 and 2009/20H2, Win10 Pro IP_Dev, Win10 Home 1909
       #10

    fireberd said:
    Only manually download and update the BIOS. Do not use the Dell Support Assist, we have seen a lot of problems on the Dell community forums updating with that.
    I usually uninstall the Dell Support Assist on computers Upgraded to Win10 from Win7 as it doesn't seem to work well with the newer OS.
      My Computers


 
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