Q: Is there any way I can find out the manufacturer and model number of my motherboard if these are not printed on it? Is there a program I can download that can help me find out this information?
On a separate, but related point, would updating the BIOS enable me to access all 20GB of my hard drive, as opposed to the 7.99GB that I can currently use?
A: While a quick scan of the board usually gives you the information you’re after, sometimes you’ll come up empty handed. In these instances, you need to turn to other indicators that should help you track down your motherboard. Each motherboard carries a BIOS ID String that can be used to track down the manufacturer, provided you have the right tools to get at this string and that you have access to a database that can turn this string into something a little more useful. Take a look at the tutorial below to see if this can point you in the right direction.
If this doesn’t help, you’re going to have to resort to typing part IDs into the search engine found at http://search.msn.com, to see if you can track it down this way. Just have another good look at that motherboard and write down anything with a number on it.
Identifying a motherboard can often be frustrating, but keep with it and you should eventually turn something up.
1. Install SiSoft Sandra 2001, available from www.sisoftware.com, then run it and select the Mainboard Information icon. If you’re lucky, it should be able to search your BIOS for the model number and present you with it at the top of the form. Failing that…
2.BIOS Agent is a small program available from www.biosupgrades.com that can be used to help identify your motherboard. The program is actually designed to help sell you a replacement BIOS, but rather handily gives you the BIOS String ID.
3. Download and run BIOS Agent. Simply press the Get BIOS Info button to have the program search your BIOS for the required information. The number you are interested in is the BIOS ID. Write this number down along with the BIOS Type.
4. You can search the Internet with this number, but you’ll find hundreds of unrelated results. Instead, pop along to www.motherboards.org, select Mobo Tools, Mobo ID Tools, and type the figure into the Find BIOS String ID searcher.
5. If you’re lucky the manufacturer will be returned, along with a link to the Web site. Don’t give up hope just yet if you still haven’t had any success. There is one more tool you can use to track down the elusive BIOS String ID.
6. Click the link on this site to download CTBIOS. Although it’s written in German, you should be able to decipher the information you’re after. If it does detect the motherboard correctly, it will even tell you which Web site you should look at.
Article ID: 835843 - Last Review: Jul 8, 2008 - Revision: 1