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    Access BIOS from linux


    Okay, here's the deal...

    I'm really going nuts over this one and I don't care what option you guys can give me to get this to work, but I'm running out of places to turn.

    I am brand new to Linux, but I had an older Compaq pentium 200 that I wanted to set up as a server for local testing on my network at home so I was able to learn to use the shell and stuff like netPBM locally.

    The hard drive in it was shot, so I repalaced it with a used 2 Gig and then installed Red Hat Linux 7.1. The install didn't recognize that I had a nic card (it's the netgear FA310-tx on the HCL) and did not configure it. I called Red Hat tech support and they talked me through a few commands which didn't solve the problem, then mumbled something about third party software and ended the call.

    In my own searches I have found a few people who have said when they turned off plug and play support in the bios it allowed the card to be recognized by Linux.

    This leads me (finally) to my problem. Since I have installed a hard drive that was not original Compaq issue, I cannot seem to get into the BIOS setup when I boot the computer. I have tried all the key strokes I know of, but none of them get into the setup.

    Is there any other way, especially from within the Linux operating system to access the bios to make the changes? Being so totaly new to Linux I am totally stumped at this point and would appreciate any guidance anyone could give me to get my nic card configured and working, otherwise the Linux install is useless to me for what I need.

    Thanks very much to any and all who can help!!!

    ~Butcher~
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    The driver for your NIC is called tulip. I forget where i saw it, but it was called tulip.c, you'll have to compile it, or try and find one pre-compiled. As far as I know there is no way to access your bios from linux. However at boot try f-10 or f-12 (thats what you get for buying a compaq =p )

    p.s. try www.google.com/linux and search for your NIC
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    search on the compaq homepage for the bios setup. in older pcs they did not include it in the rom!

    and for the cmos access from linux, do you know what /dev/cmos is for?

    the tulip driver came with my distro (suse7). which one do you use?
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    Thanks M.Hirsch

    I did get the rompaq from the Compaq site that's supposed to take care of the bios. My problem is access to the bios as the normal f10 isn't doing it.

    I don't know about /dev/cmos (forgive me, I'm new to Linux) but it sounds promising. Are you saying I can mount the cmos like any other partition? If that's the case and you have the time to elborate I would be greatful.

    I'm hoping that after I get into the bios and turn off PnP that the Linux install will recognize my nic card and install the tulip module. If not, I'll be back here to ask about compiling and installing a driver.

    Thanks again
    ~Butcher~
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    On the BIOS front, I once worked on a batch of Compaq Pentium 90s, and found you have to download a boot floppy disk (well, actually two) to be able to reach the BIOS. If you search around their site you should find it... that's if my experiences apply to your newer box of course

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