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Basic Input/Output System

BIOS (Pronounced "bye-oz") is an essential part of the PC (but not Macs). The BIOS is located in the Read-Only Memory, or ROM. It is a pre-programmed chip embedded on the motherboard that performs several critical functions.

The CPU, or processor, initiates BIOS at boot-up. The BIOS then checks all of the computers components and locates all devices that are connected to the computer. If all is well, BIOS will then load the operating system and completes the boot-up process.

After boot-up, the BIOS is responsible for the transfer of data between the hard drives and hardware devices.

See Firmware.

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