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List of materials and tools for creating a BIOS chip reader / board with USB and DVI outputs?

unseen_rider

Feb 19, 2017
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Hi I have a I would like to create an electronics device that would allow me to read the contents of most common types of BIOS chip in computers.

It would need to have USB and DVI outputs. Initial budget is £100.

I am inexperienced in electronics.

Questions:
1) How would I do this?
2) What materials and tools would I need?
 

(*steve*)

¡sǝpodᴉʇuɐ ǝɥʇ ɹɐǝɥd
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Jan 21, 2010
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BIOS chips are typically EEPROMS. All you need is a reader for these chips (and pretty much any device capable of writing/programming them is going to be capable of reading them).

What would the USB and DVI outputs need to do?
 

unseen_rider

Feb 19, 2017
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Ok I have earlier read the wikipedia article on EEPROM.

I would like to create a reader for the BIOS chips from scratch, ie PCB soldering etc.

Intended purpose currently is to check integrity of BIOS chips (eg malware), and computer forensics.

I don't want an Operating System in the new device since I want to ensure integrity of it.

The USB would be for connectivity, and DVI so output could go to a monitor (just ideas).
 

CDRIVE

Hauling 10' pipe on a Trek Shift3
May 8, 2012
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I don't want an Operating System in the new device since I want to ensure integrity of it.

The USB would be for connectivity, and DVI so output could go to a monitor (just ideas).
If you don't want an OS with this then IMHO you'd be prudent to abandon these two requirements. They are both Driver/DLL/OCX based technologies that are dumb as a box of rocks without an OS to communicate with them. You'd be better of using an older technology that relies far less on computing power.

Chris
 

(*steve*)

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An EPROM programmer?
 

unseen_rider

Feb 19, 2017
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Would this result in a catch 22 since the programmer itself would need to be relied upon to check the integrity of devices fitted to it? I have seen various EPROM programmers on eBay, however most of these seem to be USB which wouldn't be desired with my requirements. What are your thoughts?
 

(*steve*)

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It is no more a catch 22 situation than having a car which can drive you to place AND have windows so you can see where you're going.

The programmers have a USB port because PC's these days don't have serial ports, and because (in many cases) I removed the need for a power cable. London to a brick your find a USB to serial (or similar) chip inside them (or a microcontroller having that function built in).

And your original requirements DID include USB.

You could search for a very old serial or parallel programmer, many of which didn't have microcontrollers either.

You sound as if you're working in an ISO 13485 environment. If true, the worst you'd need is a programmer from a company which is ISO 13485 compliant.

If you don't want to risk writing to the chips and the chips have a dedicated write enable line then you can disconnect it and/or connect it to a level to keep the chip in a read state.
 

Qualcomm_inside!

Jan 27, 2017
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Reading the contents of an eeprom is one thing. Executing the code they contain is a different animal..

An EEPROM reader is just a dumb device that requires a computer connected via serial/ USB to do the actual ' reading '.
To execute code stored on a PC BIOS chip, and display any video therein would require a full on i386 compatible microprocessor?
 
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