How to Flash my BIOS with a BIN File on USB Boot Drive

Tug

Member
Dec 7, 2021
19
3
Dnever
Hi,

My Alienware Area-51 R2 Specs:
  • Intel Core i7-6800K CPU @ 3.40GHz 3.40 GHz.
  • 64-bit operating system, x64-based processor.
  • Windows 10 Home.
  • Intel c610 series/X99 chipset (stock).
  • NVIDIA GeForce GTX 1080 (stock).
  • Samsung 970 Evo Plus (boot SSD drive w/M.2 to PCIe adapter).
  • 16GB RAM (stock).
  • BIOS A14.
I want to flash my BIOS to the new A14 but I want to do it via the one-time boot menu (F12) and with the A14 BIN file. I do not want to do it the traditional way via Windows OS or using DDDP Dell provides. I am doing this because I am having issues with my POST and Windows updates along with an incorrect system firmware that a normal BIOS update will not fix. I am also going to do a clean Windows installation right after I update my BIOS.

I have been doing a bunch of research on how to use the A14 BIOS BIN file extracted from the Alienware BIOS exe file from the Dell Support site as the file I can update my BIOS with. I am not very confident so I would love to hear someone who has more knowledge on this as well as my particular device.

I have found that I could use awdflash on the boot USB and it will update my BIOS to A14 using the BIN file. However, I cannot find much out there on this.

Does anyone know if awdflash would work for me? Or do you have a different method?

Thank you in advance for the help or for just taking the time to read this!
 

Tug

Member
Dec 7, 2021
19
3
Dnever
I figured out how to do this and it is pretty easy. I will elaborate on how I did it.

First off, you need to know if your BIOS is AMI or AwardBIOS. Mine is AMI so Awdflash will not work.

I want to credit user Ifb6 via the Win-Raid forum for guidance. I bricked (or so I thought) my motherboard and restored it using a stock A14 BIOS. This meant that my Windows key, service tag, and all other machine specifics were gone. Ifb6 took my "bricked" BIOS image that I backed up and wrote up a new BIOS that would restore my machine specifics to the NVRAM stores. Indeed it restored everything.

Now, there are AMI flash programs like AFUWIN or FPTW among many others you can use to flash (or dump) your BIOS. AFUWIN and FPTW are for flashing your BIOS in an OS so if you want to flash it from the Command Prompt vis Windows, you can. You would just need to either cd to the folder that contains AFUWIN or FPTW, or right-click then open the folder in Command Prompt (not Powershell). Then just run the command to flash (or dump) your BIOS image to your chip. If dumping your BIOS, you will need to name the file it is going to be saved to. Since Windows writes always to NVRAM when flashing, that could interfere with the update to that region.

I did a BIOS region flash via DOS. I used an ME v9.1 FPT DOS program via my bootable USB drive that I configured with RUFUS. I then ran the fpt -bios -f myfilename.bin command and it wrote the new firmware to the chip. I shut down my PC and cleared CMOS. Then, I turned my PC on and went into BIOS and restored optimized defaults and changed everything back to UEFI but I booted back into the USB drive before I booted into Windows and dumped my BIOS to make sure the NVRAM stores were restored (you don't need to do this).

All in all, my BIOS is now back to what it was!