Slow BIOS run on XP Machine

  mrtreacle 11:45 06 Dec 2008


After an attempt to upgrade Zonealarm free firewall yesterday which locked windows on re-start i had to run system restore from safe start back to 2 days ago
Restored ok but PC now takes long time for BIOS page to run previously bios start page was super quick moving straight to windows loading now stays on screen for 1min 30 then shows mem and drive details
Bios is Phoenix Award 6.0 ver 1.1
Have checked BIOS settings if i enable full mem test it takes even longer
Also Windows is slower to boot once booted pc is super and as quick as normal
Have removed Zone alarm totally and am using router firewall
Checked on Shields Up site and have perfect stealth

Could the Bios be corrupted or could it even be be the internal cmos battery at all ?
Any help much appreciated please


  skidzy 12:47 06 Dec 2008

Installing ZA would have had no effect on the bios settings.
Changing the cmos battery would do no harm and for the sake of a couple of pounds maybe worth the investment.
Maybe run Memtest to check your ram click here let it run at least 10 tests.
Have you considered resetting the bios to default settings ?

  mrtreacle 17:22 06 Dec 2008

Hi Skidzy

Yes didnt really think it was Zone alarm that caused the problem just coincidental
Have run de-frags virus disk check reg scans and done other housekeeps slightly quicker loading windows but still a big delay at the Bios front page
On the memtest link you gave which one do i download please is it a file i run or do i have to make a bootable cd ?
The time and date run fine in the Bios and i hvae reset defaults ok and the changes saved fine so perhaps the Cmos battery is ok

Thanks for your reply

  T0SH 19:16 06 Dec 2008

Check your Ide/Atapi Primary Ide Channel drive controller should be running in DMA Mode, if it is stuck in PIO mode it takes forever to do anything and needs resetting to DMA if available and scan for hardware changes from the right click menu

If it is a SATA drive this does not apply

Cheers HC

  mrtreacle 20:27 06 Dec 2008


Just timed the front Bios screen takes around 2 mins before showing memory and IDE info then carries onto loading windows
Total start time to desktop starting to show icons around 4mins 30 seconds

No error messages pc is quick once booted

Could the Bios be looking for something at the start or a driver or a failing hardware ?
The time and date are spot on in Cmos and Bios appears to save changes ok
can a slowing battery cause such a hold up ?

  skidzy 21:09 06 Dec 2008

Memtest direct download click here burn as iso image using Imgburn click here set your bios to boot from cd as first boot device and place the Memtest disc in the drawer and reboot,let Memtest run at least 10 tests.

DMA reset tool click here does not apply to sata drives.

  mrtreacle 18:09 07 Dec 2008

Hi Skidzy

Great DMA file fix done that one

Also burnt mem test to boot cd tests out ok

Also since ZA attempt had started getting SP3 update even though already on did it and had to put office cd in all ok now

Bios stills hangs at first screen up to 2 mins Windows loads bit quicker


  Rahere 18:23 07 Dec 2008

Is your BIOS registering the correct specs for your pc? For example is the cpu id'd correctly and running at right speed?

I wonder if when the ZA upgrade failed and you uninstalled you're back to an old restore point hence new sp3 etc?

Anyway there's a lengthy uninstall routine for ZA from their website click here just to check you got rid of everything.

no harm in having a clean up Download and Run ccleaner, then defrag

ccleaner click here.

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