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AMD/ATI Flashing Guide

AsRock

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#26
Cheers, a little preoccupied today.

EDIT: No it just came up with a page fault.
 
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Solaris17

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#27
saving via ATIflash came up with a pagefault?
 
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#28
He must be using a Win98 boot disk image or something. Anything with a dos memory manager load produces a pagefault in ATIflash.
 

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#29
He must be using a Win98 boot disk image or something. Anything with a dos memory manager load produces a pagefault in ATIflash.
Be better of using FreeDos or some thing then ?, The bootable drive was made with MSDos
 

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#30
He must be using a Win98 boot disk image or something. Anything with a dos memory manager load produces a pagefault in ATIflash.
thats odd mine works fine with 32gb of ram and i dont use remap
 
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#31
thats odd mine works fine with 32gb of ram and i dont use remap
No, I mean a dos memory manager. It has nothing to do with the amount of ram it has something to do with whether or not one loads at bootup. Win98 bootdisks and similar load one in the config.sys, to support more than 640k of ram. It's NOT needed and breaks things.

Be better of using FreeDos or some thing then ?, The bootable drive was made with MSDos
Rufus has a MSDOS distro that works every time for me. Try it.
 
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#32
Rufus is way better than that old ass HP tool.
 

Solaris17

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#33
Rufus is way better than that old ass HP tool.
Indeed it does seem to work better for some people. It has been noted in the OP and the instructions for a RUFUS build are included at the bottom of post 2.
 

Mussels

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#34
only bit of advice i'd love to add into here is making a batch (.bat) file to make the flashing easier in dos.


make a flash.txt file on your USB drive that you're flashing the BIOS from

insert the command line you'd use to flash it such as

atiflash -f -p 0 tahiti.rom

and then rename the text file to flash.bat


when in DOS you simply run the flash.bat command to make it involve less typing, and easier to 'blind flash' if needed - nothing stopping you having a stock.bat file that flashes your stock rom, for example.
 

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#35
only bit of advice i'd love to add into here is making a batch (.bat) file to make the flashing easier in dos.


make a flash.txt file on your USB drive that you're flashing the BIOS from

insert the command line you'd use to flash it such as

atiflash -f -p 0 tahiti.rom

and then rename the text file to flash.bat


when in DOS you simply run the flash.bat command to make it involve less typing, and easier to 'blind flash' if needed - nothing stopping you having a stock.bat file that flashes your stock rom, for example.
This is a good idea. I can probably implement some kind of logging too. I will write something up tonight and give me a few days to test and ill include it!

Guys,

I require support and a shoulder to weep on while I drink and dream of the days were my card use to work.

Short version:
I got a second hand reference PowerColor 290.
Had some black screen issues (like so many of our brethren).
Contacted PowerColor who sent me a new BIOS, flashed it, and consequently sorted out most of the issues.
Still had to underclock the card a wee bit, but all-n-all a win.
Card was rock solid through the entire story line of GTA V (albeit loud as a banshee)

Then the card turn on me, it started with small little taunts filled with nothing but malice.
The card wouldn't wake the monitor up after sleep. The fans would go balls to the wall every
now and then followed by the famous "Graphics Adapter has stopped working but recovered".
She grew stronger with each passing day, more terrifying, fueled by nothing but hate.
Now, all I get from her is a "VGA Not Detected" beep sequence. My old GTX460 is currently carrying her on
his tiny little shoulders.
If I boot into DOS (HP - not Rufus) to ATIFlash, she is not even detected (Adapter not Found)(Neither is the 460, but presumably ATIFlash only detects ATI cards). Her cooling equipment is working, and the top side LED flashes intermittently (somewhat dimly, but its not something I use to stare at, so nothing to compare it with really), but essentially just a very warm and power hungry paper weight. And switching between the two BIOS chips makes absolutely no difference.

I have opened the card up, (she is honestly close to mint condition) there was however, what looked like a bit of corrosion on the bottom bios chip pins, which I cleaned up, but still nothing. I'm aware there are some folks doing bubblegum (PIN) methods on the TPU forums, but no-one with 290's. I just need to know which bios pins to bridge and whether it has to be done on both bios chips simultaneously? I cannot find a single relevant datasheet for the bios chips on the card ( 25Q10T CE5NOW CH1338 ).

This is utter bullsh*t since I didn't change a thing, was working the evening, next morning -nothing :( Has she gone to a better place?

PC SPECS MB: Asus P7P55D-E (bios updated to 1504)
CPU: i5 750 (standard clocks)
RAM: 8GB Corsair XMS3 1333
SSD: Trancend 370 128GB
PSU: Antec 900W (80+)
GPU: R9 290 :( :( :( :(

Anyone with grand ideas and/or recommendation would be prayed for and loved, forever
Regards
Unfortunately this is not a support thread please start your own to get better assistance and to keep the information here clear.
 
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#36
This is a good idea. I can probably implement some kind of logging too. I will write something up tonight and give me a few days to test and ill include it!
i just used the files from this thread to flash a modded bios to my 280x (a working one! at last!) and used the batch file method out of laziness before realising it wasnt actually mentioned in the thread.
 

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#37
i just used the files from this thread to flash a modded bios to my 280x (a working one! at last!) and used the batch file method out of laziness before realising it wasn't actually mentioned in the thread.
Its definitely a good addition! Definitely useful in a blind flash scenario for sure.
 
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#38
I use it to save writing down on paper the correct format of the command, less prone to errors. Next time I flash I'm going to make a stock.bat for blind flash following above advice (just in case).
 
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#39
Hi Everyone!

If you are reading this the guide is probably for you!!! This guide is an updated refresh based on or in part by other similar threads throughout TPU and my own personal experience (I used to be an nvidia guide but this 290x is too fun) it also covers all current information based off of the latest ATIFLASH.
(4.17 as of writing R9 compatible.)
All testing was done on windows 10 64bit.


After flashing my own I thought it might be a good idea to write an in-depth guide to help those out that may have fell to the wayside during their flashing endeavours, or maybe you're just curious!

Lets get started!

First and foremost. Lets talk about why you would want to read this guide or flash your card. For most people this boils down to three different reasons.

1. I want better performance out of my card but I want a more permanent solution than using OC software. (Clocks/Fan ramps)

2. I want to update my bios for a feature. (UEFI Support)

3. I've bricked my card probably attempting one of the above and now I'm stuck because I never thought it would happen.


To help with all of these situations I have split them into different problems that we can tackle one by one for you. This guide is filled with humor satire and I think Pizza sauce on my keyboard. (ain't life a bitch?) Lets start with getting better performance.

If you are at all uncomfortable with flashing your card the easiest way to get performance is using third party software to increase your clock rates so that you can drive better FPS and memory bandwidth. There are a lot of different ways to do this and a lot of different tools. If you are new to overclocking in general don't be discouraged by all the information, but don't set unrealistic goals either.

As the saying goes "Overclocking is a silicone lottery." Some chips will overclock better or worse than others even if they are the same in every way. That said try to take everything with a bit of salt.

Here are some overclocking software links that are commonly used and a link to some guides you can use to try your hand at lady luck.

OK! With that out of the way let's digest things a bit! First please understand any of these guides can get outdated or unnecessary. If you're unsure just ask in the relevant sub forum of the GPU forums! moving on good luck!

Now lets start with GPU Flashing the primary point. This section will be broken up into several sub sections to help with clarity and timelining. Some of these skills or instructions will be needed as explanations become harder to understand. If you have any questions please ask them but please attempt to read the section(s) in their entirety as it may have already been explained.

Is probably the single most important part of all of this aside from doing your own backup. This GPU BIOS DB is the most comprehensive list and collection of GPU bios' you can find anywhere on the internet. For simplicity the above title is linked to the AMD/ATI section of the DB but you can access the whole database HERE.

First a rundown for those of us not interested in the scary things that come later in the guide such as bad flashing a bios, bricking your card, your grandmother walking in on your session of lonely space vixens, or losing your skyrim save data.

I want better performance out of my card but I want a more permanent solution than using OC software.

Welcome to the world of BIOS flashing your card! Most people generally do this for experimentation or because they first found stable OC settings and would like to make them more permanent. There is nothing wrong with either but lets get some SUPER basics down first.

  1. NEVER FLASH UNTIL YOU HAVE BACKED UP YOUR CURRENT BIOS!
  2. NEVER FLASH VIA WINDOWS!
  3. NEVER FLASH OVERCLOCKED!
  4. TRY NOT TO FLASH WITH MORE THAN 1 GPU!
Have you read that? good read it again..awesome lets tackle them one at a time.

Never flash until you have backed up your current bios!

This is a no brainer really. This is super important and is most importantly EASY TO DO! It also gives you a way to save your ass later if you mess up! Why? Let's face it even if you are 100% certain that the bios you picked will work there is always a chance you need to RMA (you warranty voiding heathen!) re-sell or otherwise manage to botch your flash. This can all be remedied by flashing the original back since well you know...it worked to begin with.

How to backup your bios
Lets start by grabbing GPU-Z a nifty little utility you probably already use to stare at the specs of your really expensive minecraft machine.

Now lets open it up!

Here is the primary screen of GPU-Z here we will dump the bios from our GPU to save at a later time. simply click where I have circled.



This button image or whatever may change with future revisions of GPU-Z but I imagine it will most likely always be next to the bios version string. When in doubt just mouse over the various bits and it will tell you what it does. once you click it we need to name it.



By default it saves as .rom which is good since its the format we will be using to flash. By default GPU-Z saves it as the architecture name. case in point Hawaii.rom however lets change that to orig.rom or original.rom this is an easy way to make sure you always know the name of your backup bios file incase the worst happens.

NEVER flash via Windows

Flashing in windows is a terrible Idea Too many things can go wrong such as interrupts from annoying UAC prompts to updates or spiked CPU load. The options are endless and your chances of success are too slim for this to be worth it. I will explain later how to flash the proper way. It will take you maybe an extra 5min and you should seriously consider doing it. If you decide to not heed this warning and flash via windows anyway and totally scramble your GPUs brains I have a section for that but not sympathy. In Fact I will probably publicly shame you. So just read the guide leave a thanks and not say a thing.

Never flash overclocked

This is another one of the cardinal rules laid out for you. Much like the flashing in windows warning there is alot that can go wrong. Even if you have done your mobo bios another card whatever overclocked I can personally say I have wrecked boards doing this. Most motherboards now have profiles you can save and all of them have a quick menu option to restore to defaults usually on the save/exit page and in almost 100% of cases the default reset key is F9 there is literally no excuse to do it since it's easy and fast to do and easy and fast to revert back. I cannot stress this enough.

Try not to flash with more than 1 GPU

Like the title states. this isn't so much a rule as it is a failsafe against yourself and ease of the process. With the onset of card mixing for physics or performance and the steady upward slope of SLI/Crossfire systems multi-GPU systems are here to stay. The problem in some cases is in fact the damn good compatibility. With certain manufacturers playing nice with others at different clocks its easy to mix cards between brands even if they dont necissarily play well with each others clocks or memory timings the driver takes care of the rest. However a mistake of this type when flashing can leave you with nothing but problems. I generally recommend flashing with only the GPU intended to be flashed instead of the team you may have working for you. This makes the chance of mistake lower and the flashing process a bit easier.

With the rules out of the way let's get started with flashing for the noob. Upto this point please refer to the things learned thus far and we at this point will run under the assumption you have read it understood it and have a perfectly working card that you just want to flash.

To get started go ahead and grab the "flash package" attached at the bottom of this post which contains everything needed to get you started! Unzip it to a directory so you can easily manage the files. After which lets do the following.

Individual files attached below are provided for people that are having a hard time finding specific things. The "Flash Package" contains all of the attached files in one nice package.

If you run into ANY problems saving your bios via ATIFLASH or you have issues flashing some systems respond better to RUFUS


1.) Get a thumb drive 64mb or greater.
2.) Unplug all other removable drives from your machine (USB, SD, External HDD etc)
3.) Run the HP Disk storage tool as Administrator.
4.) In the Tool make sure your device appears under the "Device" drop down list



5.) Check the box "Create A DOS startup disk using system files located at"
6.) click the "..." browse button and navigate to the directory you extracted this from.
7.) Click on the "win98boot" folder and press "OK"
8.) Now click "Start" inside the HP format tool.



9.) After the format completes COPY atiflash.exe and xxx.rom where xxx.rom is the actual name of your bios .rom file. This should be 5 or less characters. Also remember to copy over your original!



10.) After the copy completes Please make sure if your GPU comes with a bios switch it is in position number 1!!!!! If it is not or you are uncertain shut down your machine and make sure of this now! Generally it is marked on the PCB and most times the "1" position is towards the rear of the PC case (assuming card is installed) However it is good to lookup and verify these positions yourself. Please check with your GPU manufacturer for more details.

11.) Reboot your machine and Press F12, F10, F9, ESC, or whatever button brings you to your system boot menu.
12.) Select your thumb drive and hit enter.
13.) You will be greeted with a black and white DOS screen and a blinking cursor.
14.) Run the following command to get the adapter number no quotes please. "atiflash -i"

14b.) If you have not backed up your bios yet via GPU-Z above take this time to do it now using this command atiflash -s 0 orig.rom where "0" is your adapter number!
15.) Prepare to flash your GPU using the following command substituting "0" with whatever device number your GPU is. and substitute xx with your .rom name.
16.) atiflash -f -p 0 xxx.rom

Success! In most cases your system flash has gone smooth especially if you followed the directions above! Most of the time you will need nothing more and if flashing again just follow the instructions again to the letter. minus making the actual flash drive. At this point you can remove and copy bios.roms to and from to your hearts content. However it is not uncommon that after a bios flash you need to reinstall your drivers! Doing so may fix a lot of odd issues after a bios flash so please try that should anything seem off! A Link to the AMD driver page is at the top of this guide!
In step #10, you said "After the copy completes Please make sure if your GPU comes with a bios switch it is in position number 1!!!!! If it is not or you are uncertain shut down your machine and make sure of this now! Generally it is marked on the PCB and most times the "1" position is towards the rear of the PC case (assuming card is installed) However it is good to lookup and verify these positions yourself. Please check with your GPU manufacturer for more details." I have a Sapphire r9 290x with a physical button to switch between 2 modes, legacy and UEFI. So when I power down the PC, should I have the graphics card in UEFI mode, or Legacy mode?
Thanks!
 

Solaris17

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#40
In step #10, you said "After the copy completes Please make sure if your GPU comes with a bios switch it is in position number 1!!!!! If it is not or you are uncertain shut down your machine and make sure of this now! Generally it is marked on the PCB and most times the "1" position is towards the rear of the PC case (assuming card is installed) However it is good to lookup and verify these positions yourself. Please check with your GPU manufacturer for more details." I have a Sapphire r9 290x with a physical button to switch between 2 modes, legacy and UEFI. So when I power down the PC, should I have the graphics card in UEFI mode, or Legacy mode?
Thanks!
Hi! I This is a good point I have worked with a card like this. I will clarify in the instructions a bit later. This setting is COMPLETELY dependent on your computers bios.

There are 3 different possibilities because some motherboards will NOT display video if the BIOS is in the wrong mode.

1. The motherboard (most new ones) can auto sense UEFI or Legacy mode and the GPU BIOS switch can be in either position.

2. The Motherboard was in UEFI mode previously make sure the card is in UEFI mode.

3. The Motherboard was in Legacy/CSM mode make sure it is in LEGACY

If you still do not receive video you must try the other mode on the GPU or Motherboard since some motherboards (Mostly OEM: Dell, Gateway, Acer, HP) will not "auto switch" and require the correct VGA BIOS, or UEFI/CSM setting on the motherboard BIOS.
 
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#41
Hi! I This is a good point I have worked with a card like this. I will clarify in the instructions a bit later. This setting is COMPLETELY dependent on your computers bios.

There are 3 different possibilities because some motherboards will NOT display video if the BIOS is in the wrong mode.

1. The motherboard (most new ones) can auto sense UEFI or Legacy mode and the GPU BIOS switch can be in either position.

2. The Motherboard was in UEFI mode previously make sure the card is in UEFI mode.

3. The Motherboard was in Legacy/CSM mode make sure it is in LEGACY

If you still do not receive video you must try the other mode on the GPU or Motherboard since some motherboards (Mostly OEM: Dell, Gateway, Acer, HP) will not "auto switch" and require the correct VGA BIOS, or UEFI/CSM setting on the motherboard BIOS.
My PC works with both modes. So it doesn't matter which mode it's on? I'm slightly confused :confused:
Also, I have a Sapphire r9 290x (New Edition), and I want to flash a 390x bios on it. I have a link to a modded 390x bios here: https://mega.co.nz/#!dU4AxRLI!zpCi2P-ybfy2ZxkQJ5TM0noSSSv7QoQD1KPvAVt1UVU
However, I have been reading around and people have been saying that if a card has to have a reference PCB for the bios to work on the card. Is this true? My r9 290x has a custom PCB so i'm wondering if it will work or not. I asked this question in another thread, and the response that I got was "The BIOS you flash does not matter, the only difference would be the default clock speeds and voltages".

Thanks!:) BTW your guide is awesome!
 

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#42
My PC works with both modes. So it doesn't matter which mode it's on? I'm slightly confused :confused:
Also, I have a Sapphire r9 290x (New Edition), and I want to flash a 390x bios on it. I have a link to a modded 390x bios here: https://mega.co.nz/#!dU4AxRLI!zpCi2P-ybfy2ZxkQJ5TM0noSSSv7QoQD1KPvAVt1UVU
However, I have been reading around and people have been saying that if a card has to have a reference PCB for the bios to work on the card. Is this true? My r9 290x has a custom PCB so i'm wondering if it will work or not. I asked this question in another thread, and the response that I got was "The BIOS you flash does not matter, the only difference would be the default clock speeds and voltages".

Thanks!:) BTW your guide is awesome!
Thanks I appreciate it!

If you are repairing another GPU with that graphics card and your motherboard will auto switch is does not matter what BIOS it is using either UEFI or Legacy.

As for the question about the 390x bios unfortunately I don't cover things like that here. Questions like that would be seen and responded too better if you create your own thread.
 

Sarimner

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#43
16.) atiflash -f -p 0 xxx.rom
I recieved a bios rom directly from Sapphire today that will hopefully fix the flickering issue on my R9 270x. The bios I recieved does not have a .rom extension. The file name is "271X0400.O48".

In this case, I am not sure how to proceed with the last step. Should I rename the file/replace the extension to .rom or just replace the command with xxx.O48?

This will be my first time flashing and these are probably some silly questions I'm asking, but I really don't want to screw something up :)

Thanks for an awesome guide.
 

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#44
I recieved a bios rom directly from Sapphire today that will hopefully fix the flickering issue on my R9 270x. The bios I recieved does not have a .rom extension. The file name is "271X0400.O48".

In this case, I am not sure how to proceed with the last step. Should I rename the file/replace the extension to .rom or just replace the command with xxx.O48?

This will be my first time flashing and these are probably some silly questions I'm asking, but I really don't want to screw something up :)

Thanks for an awesome guide.
probably not. Ususally when the bios has an extension other than .bin or .rom it is supposed to be used with a specific program. I would email them back and request a .bin or .rom
 

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#45
heyo, advice me!

My laptop has intel + AMD dual graphics, and if i disable ULPS i can OC the graphics card in windows 7 and 8.1. OCing does not work in windows 10.
I'd rather mod the BIOS and force some OC clocks onto it, since the gains i get are substantial (i saw upto 40% higher in some tests, its badly underclocked at stock)

GPU-Z doesnt support reading its BIOS, what else can i try?
 
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#46
heyo, advice me!

My laptop has intel + AMD dual graphics, and if i disable ULPS i can OC the graphics card in windows 7 and 8.1. OCing does not work in windows 10.
I'd rather mod the BIOS and force some OC clocks onto it, since the gains i get are substantial (i saw upto 40% higher in some tests, its badly underclocked at stock)

GPU-Z doesnt support reading its BIOS, what else can i try?
For starters... fill out your laptop specs? :slap:
 

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#47
For starters... fill out your laptop specs? :slap:
the basic specs were in my specs, down the bottom :p

HP G6-2148TX
i7 3632QM , intel HD4000 + 7670 2GB annoying dual GPU thing
 
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#48
the basic specs were in my specs, down the bottom :p

HP G6-2148TX
i7 3632QM , intel HD4000 + 7670 2GB annoying dual GPU thing
Oh... the GPU BIOS resides as a module inside your motherboard BIOS, the GPU is soldered on board.

And the BIOS is a write locked virgin nun... the only way is using SPI flasher and clips... You can extract the module and edit as a normal vbios then put it back. But... It simply ain't worth the hassle. Just crack why the OC does not work... try regedit mods to catalyst.
 

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#49
Oh... the GPU BIOS resides as a module inside your motherboard BIOS, the GPU is soldered on board.

And the BIOS is a write locked virgin nun... the only way is using SPI flasher and clips... You can extract the module and edit as a normal vbios then put it back. But... It simply ain't worth the hassle. Just crack why the OC does not work... try regedit mods to catalyst.
feck. any tips for the regedit/catalyst stuff? that'd be better than afterburner and disabling ULPS.

edit: ugh i just found a modded driver that might fix the ULPS problem, what a great time to have changed OS's XD
 
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#50
feck. any tips for the regedit/catalyst stuff? that'd be better than afterburner and disabling ULPS.

edit: ugh i just found a modded driver that might fix the ULPS problem, what a great time to have changed OS's XD
Just search regedit EnableULPS the power play and other settings must be near too.