Q33706: Sample BASIC Code to Display ROM-BIOS Date for an IBM PC
Article: Q33706 Product(s): See article Version(s): 1.00 1.01 1.02 2.00 2.01 3.00 4.00 4.00b 4.50 Operating System(s): MS-DOS Keyword(s): ENDUSER | B_BasicCom B_BasicInt B_GWBasicI H_Mach20 | mspl13_basic Last Modified: 16-DEC-1989 Getting the ROM-BIOS (Read-Only Memory, Basic Input/Output System) date for a computer can be an important clue in diagnosing a variety of potential hardware- and software-compatibility problems. Page 60 of "The Peter Norton Programmer's Guide to the IBM PC" (published by Microsoft Press, 1985) provides the following BASIC program to display the ROM-BIOS date in month-day-year format for an IBM PC: DEF SEG = &HF000 FOR i = 0 TO 7 PRINT CHR$(PEEK(&HFFF5 + i)); NEXT This sample program applies to most Microsoft BASIC products for the IBM PC, including the following: 1. Microsoft QuickBASIC Compiler Versions 1.00, 1.01, 1.02, 2.00, 2.01, 3.00, 4.00, 4.00b, and 4.50 for the IBM PC 2. Microsoft BASIC Compiler Versions 5.35, 5.36, 6.00, 6.00b, for MS-DOS. 3. Microsoft GW-BASIC Interpreter Versions 3.20, 3.22, and 3.23 4. Microsoft BASIC PDS Version 7.00 for MS-DOS. If your IBM PC ROM-BIOS is dated prior to 10/27/82, then the following restrictions apply: 1. You may not be able to address a full 640K -- only 544K or so may be available. 2. The machine will not be compatible with the Microsoft MACH 20 board. 3. Because the ROM-BIOS is earlier than 10/27/82, you have an IBM PC 1 with a 16/64K motherboard (logic board). This machine does not support hard drives, and just supports floppies. 4. IBM no longer offers the 10/27/82 ROM-BIOS upgrade for ROM versions earlier than 10/27/82 if you have a 16/64K motherboard. (IBM does currently upgrade the BIOS for the 64/256K motherboard.) 5. Other BIOS-related restrictions or problems may occur. Another way to determine the age of your PC is to look on the front-left corner of your motherboard (logic board). IBM PC 1 machines are stamped with 16/64K. IBM PC 1 machines usually have ROM-BIOS Versions earlier than 10/27/82, and they don't support hard drives. IBM PC 2 machines are stamped with 64/256K on the motherboard and can optionally support hard drives.
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