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GA-H61M-S1 (rev. 4.0) BIOS: Improve Your PC Performance with Intel Rapid Start Technology


How to Download and Update BIOS for GA-H61M-S1 Rev 4.0 Motherboard




If you have a GA-H61M-S1 Rev 4.0 motherboard from GIGABYTE, you may want to update its BIOS to get the latest features, fixes, and security updates. But what is BIOS and how do you update it safely? In this article, we will explain what BIOS is, why you should update it, how to check your current BIOS version, how to download the latest BIOS update file, and how to update BIOS safely on your PC.




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What is BIOS and Why Update It?




BIOS Definition and Function




BIOS stands for Basic Input/Output System, and it is a type of firmware stored on a chip on your motherboard. It is the low-level software that the motherboard uses to interact with your CPU, cooling systems, expansion cards, and ports. It also initializes your hardware before booting an operating system from your hard drive or another device.


Some newer computers use a different type of firmware called UEFI (Unified Extensible Firmware Interface), which is the successor to the traditional BIOS. UEFI offers more features and capabilities than BIOS, such as support for larger boot volumes, more partitions, faster booting, and more security options. However, the update process for UEFI is similar to that of BIOS.


Benefits of Updating BIOS




A BIOS update is a new block of code that contains new instructions for your computer's hardware, written into the non-volatile memory chip on your motherboard. BIOS updates can fix problems, add features, provide security updates, and increase stability.


Some of the reasons for updating your BIOS include:


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  • Hardware updates Newer BIOS updates will enable the motherboard to correctly identify new hardware such as processors, RAM, graphics cards, etc. For example, older Intel 600 series motherboards require BIOS updates before they can work with 13th Gen "Raptor Lake" CPUs.



  • Bug fixes BIOS updates can fix known firmware bugs that cause system crashes, errors, or performance issues.



  • Security updates BIOS updates can patch vulnerabilities that expose your system to malware or hackers. For example, the fixes for the infamous Spectre and Meltdown vulnerabilities require BIOS updates.



  • Performance improvements BIOS updates can improve your system's speed, stability, or thermal management by optimizing the settings or algorithms for your hardware.



Risks of Updating BIOS




Updating your BIOS is not without risks. If you update your BIOS incorrectly or encounter a power failure during the process, you could brick your motherboard, rendering your computer completely inoperable. Therefore, you should only update your BIOS if you have a good reason and follow the instructions carefully.


Some of the risks of updating your BIOS include:


  • Wrong or corrupted file If you download a wrong or corrupted BIOS file for your motherboard model or revision number, you could damage your BIOS chip or cause compatibility issues.



  • Power outage If you lose power while updating your BIOS, you could interrupt the flashing process and corrupt your BIOS chip.



  • Windows crash If you update your BIOS from within Windows using a software utility, you could encounter a Windows crash or freeze that could interfere with the flashing process.



  • Custom settings loss If you update your BIOS, you may lose some of your custom settings or preferences that you have configured in your BIOS menu. You may need to re-enter them after the update.



Therefore, before updating your BIOS, you should backup your important data, connect your PC to a reliable power source, and close all other programs and applications.


How to Check Your Current BIOS Version




Before you download and update your BIOS, you need to check your current BIOS version to see if you already have the latest one or not. There are two easy ways to do this:


Using System Information Utility




You can use the built-in System Information utility in Windows to check your BIOS version. Here are the steps:


  • Press Windows + R keys to open the Run dialog box.



  • Type msinfo32 and press Enter to launch the System Information utility.



  • On the left pane, click on System Summary.



  • On the right pane, look for BIOS Version/Date. You will see the name of your BIOS manufacturer, the version number, and the date of release.



Using Command Prompt




You can also use the Command Prompt to check your BIOS version. Here are the steps:


  • Press Windows + X keys and select Command Prompt (Admin) from the menu.



  • Type wmic bios get smbiosbiosversion and press Enter. You will see the version number of your BIOS.



  • Type wmic bios get biosversion and press Enter. You will see the name of your BIOS manufacturer and the date of release.



How to Download the Latest BIOS Update File




Once you have checked your current BIOS version, you can proceed to download the latest BIOS update file for your motherboard. Here are the steps:


Visiting the Official Website of GIGABYTE




The best and safest way to download the latest BIOS update file is to visit the official website of GIGABYTE, which is the manufacturer of your motherboard. Here is the link:


Selecting the Right Model and Revision Number




On the website, click on Support and then select Motherboard from the drop-down menu. You will see a list of motherboard models that GIGABYTE offers. You need to find your exact model and revision number, which is GA-H61M-S1 Rev 4.0 in this case.


You can find your model and revision number on a sticker on your motherboard or on the box that it came in. Alternatively, you can use a software utility such as CPU-Z or Speccy to identify your motherboard model and revision number.


Once you have found your model and revision number, click on it to go to its product page. On the product page, click on Support and then select BIOS from the menu. You will see a list of BIOS versions that are available for your motherboard.


Downloading the BIOS File to a USB Flash Drive




You need to download the latest BIOS version that matches your model and revision number. You can check the description, date, and size of each BIOS version to see what it offers and if it is newer than your current one.


To download the BIOS file, click on the download icon next to it. You will be prompted to save it to a location on your computer. Choose a location that is easy to access, such as your desktop or downloads folder.


The BIOS file will be in a compressed format such as ZIP or RAR. You need to extract it using a software utility such as WinRAR or 7-Zip. After extracting it, you will see a folder that contains one or more files with extensions such as .BIN, .ROM, .CAP, etc. These are the actual BIOS files that you need to flash onto y


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