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In which order should boot devices be listed in the BIOS?

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November 19, 2012 12:16:43 PM

Folks,

My BIOS gives the following four options for booting up:
Internal Hard Drive
Internal Optical Drive
External Drive, and
Network

In which order should these boot devices be in the BIOS?

Thanks!

JS

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a c 371 G Storage
November 19, 2012 2:38:41 PM

In whatever order you want. Typically it's Optical drive, then internal drive, but others prefer their internal drives first. I have mine set up for optical, internal, USB/external.

Remember, it will skip devices which it can't boot from, so if you have optical then internal and you have no bootable media in the optical drive, it will just skip to the internal.
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November 19, 2012 2:51:56 PM

Hawkeye22 said:
In whatever order you want. Typically it's Optical drive, then internal drive, but others prefer their internal drives first. I have mine set up for optical, internal, USB/external.

Remember, it will skip devices which it can't boot from, so if you have optical then internal and you have no bootable media in the optical drive, it will just skip to the internal.

Thanks for your response.

Just so that I am clear, if Internal Drives option it at the top of the order and something goes wrong and there is a problem with booting up, wouldn't the rescue CD/DVD in the optical drive be unable to boot-up because it is listed after the internal drives? Or would a problem with internal drives automatically give the optical drive the option to try to boot up with the rescue CD?

JS
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November 19, 2012 4:21:28 PM

no, but if there is a problem booting, you can just change the BIOS setting to use the optical drive first, right?
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a c 80 G Storage
November 19, 2012 4:44:48 PM

Many newer machines allow you to hit F12(or something similar) to choose where to boot from - so you may not have to change the bios.

When we had floppy drives, I always removed the floppy from the boot order to get the machine to boot faster. I had to go into the bios if I ever wanted to boot from the floppy again, but this was pretty rare and almost always to re-install the OS. The same holds true for my dvd drives today.
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November 19, 2012 4:51:00 PM

guzuta said:
no, but if there is a problem booting, you can just change the BIOS setting to use the optical drive first, right?

Yes, I just wanted to be sure that I was doing it right.
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November 19, 2012 4:52:43 PM

ss202sl said:
Many newer machines allow you to hit F12(or something similar) to choose where to boot from - so you may not have to change the bios.

When we had floppy drives, I always removed the floppy from the boot order to get the machine to boot faster. I had to go into the bios if I ever wanted to boot from the floppy again, but this was pretty rare and almost always to re-install the OS. The same holds true for my dvd drives today.

Thanks for your response and the clarification.
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November 19, 2012 4:53:04 PM

Best answer selected by jss2020.
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a c 167 G Storage
November 19, 2012 4:55:44 PM

I think it is mostly a matter of convenience vs. performance..

For best performance, put your normal boot device at the head of the list.
That way, the bios does not waste time trying to detect a device that is not there.
If you occasionally need to boot from a different device, you must take the time to change the order in the bios.

If you are constantly rebooting with a dvd or USB, then you might put them first.
But, remember to remove the media before you boot from a hard drive.

I suggest you minimize booting in the first place. Instead of shutting down, use sleep to the S3 sleep state(no hibernation)
The pc will be put into a very low power state, with only the ram powered.
It takes only a few seconds to sleep or wake.
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November 19, 2012 4:58:55 PM

After the Sony rootkit debacle, I always set the optical to be after HDDs. I don't ever want to boot from an optical drive unless I am deliberately trying to do so. With the distribution of malware on a CD or DVD being so easy to do and so hard to detect during the boot sequence, I simply don't want to take the risk. Paranoid? Perhaps. But safer, nevertheless. And as others noted, you can always use your MB's feature to override the BIOS boot device selection.
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November 20, 2012 2:07:57 AM

geofelt said:
I think it is mostly a matter of convenience vs. performance..
<snipped>
I suggest you minimize booting in the first place. Instead of shutting down, use sleep to the S3 sleep state(no hibernation)
The pc will be put into a very low power state, with only the ram powered.
It takes only a few seconds to sleep or wake.

That is very good advice. I am going to follow it. Thank you!
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November 20, 2012 2:10:18 AM

TeraMedia said:
After the Sony rootkit debacle, I always set the optical to be after HDDs. I don't ever want to boot from an optical drive unless I am deliberately trying to do so. With the distribution of malware on a CD or DVD being so easy to do and so hard to detect during the boot sequence, I simply don't want to take the risk. Paranoid? Perhaps. But safer, nevertheless. And as others noted, you can always use your MB's feature to override the BIOS boot device selection.

Thanks for your response. I have modified the BIOS and put the internal hard drives ahead of the internal optical dive.
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