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System Setup

Dell™ Dimension™ 9100 Service Manual

  Clearing Forgotten Passwords

  Clearing CMOS Settings


Overview

Use system setup as follows:

Before you use system setup, it is recommended that you write down the system setup screen information for future reference.

NOTICE: Unless you are an expert computer user, do not change the settings for this program. Certain changes can make your computer work incorrectly.

Entering System Setup

  1. Turn on (or restart) your computer.

  2. When the blue DELL™ logo is displayed, you must watch for the F2 prompt to appear.

  3. Once this F2 prompt appears, press <F2> immediately.

NOTE: The F2 prompt indicates that the keyboard has initialized. This prompt can appear very quickly, so you must watch for it to display, and then press <F2>. If you press <F2> before you are prompted, this keystroke will be lost.
  1. If you wait too long and the operating system logo appears, continue to wait until you see the Microsoft® Windows® desktop. Then, shut down your computer and try again.

System Setup Screens

The system setup screen displays current or changeable configuration information for your computer. Information on the screen is divided into three areas: the options list, active options field, and key functions.

Options List — This field appears on the left side of the system setup window. The field is a scrollable list containing features that define the configuration of your computer, including installed hardware, power conservation, and security features.

Scroll up and down the list with the up- and down-arrow keys. As an option is highlighted, the Option Field displays more information about that option and the option's current and available settings. By pressing <Enter> or the left and right arrow keys, you can toggle between a primary topic (collapsed) and subtopics (expanded).

Option Field — This field contains information about each option. In this field you can view your current settings and make changes to your settings.

Use the right and left arrow keys to highlight an option. Press <Enter> to make that selection active.

 

 

 

 

Key Functions — This field appears below the Option Field and lists keys and their functions within the active system setup field.

 

 

 

System Setup Options

NOTE: Depending on your computer and installed devices, the items listed in this section may not appear, or may not appear exactly as listed.

System

System Info

Displays the System name, BIOS Version number, Service Tag, Express Service Code, and Asset Tag.

Processor Info

Displays the following information for the processor installed in the system: Processor Type, Processor Clock Speed, Processor Bus Speed, Processor Cache Size, Processor ID number, whether the processor is Hyperthreading or Multiple Core Capable, and if the processor has 64-bit Technology.

Memory Info

Displays the amount of Installed Memory, Memory Speed, Memory Channel Mode, and a description of the Memory Technology. This option also displays a table that describes the memory size, whether the memory module is ECC capable, single or dual rank, type, and organization.

PCI Info

Displays the contents of each PCI slot.

Date/Time

Controls the system's internal calendar and clock.

Boot Sequence

Determines the order in which the system searches for boot devices during system startup.

NOTE: If you insert a boot device and restart the computer, this option appears in the system setup menu. To boot from a USB memory device, select the USB device and move it so it becomes the first device in the list.

Drives

Diskette Drive

Enables and disables the floppy drives and sets read permission for the internal floppy drive. Off disables all floppy drives. USB enables the USB floppy drive. Internal (the default setting) enables the internal floppy drive. Read Only enables the internal drive controller and allows the internal floppy drive read-only permission.

NOTE: Operating systems with USB support will recognize USB floppy drives regardless of this setting.

SATA Drives 0 through 3

 

Enables or disables a SATA device (such as a hard-drive). On (the default setting) enables the interface so that the device can be used.

Displays the Controller type (SATA), Port number the drive is using, Drive ID number, Capacity, Link Speed, and whether the drive is controlled by the BIOS.

PATA Drives 0 through 1

 

Enables or disables an ATA device (such as a CD or DVD drive). On (the default setting) enables the interface so that the device can be used.

Displays the Controller type (ATA), Port number the drive is using, Drive ID number, Capacity, Link Speed, and whether the drive is controlled by the BIOS.

SATA Operation

Determines the integrated SATA controller's operating mode:

RAID Autodetect/ AHCI (the default setting) – RAID if the drives are signed, otherwise AHCI
RAID Autodetect/ ATA – RAID if the drives are signed, otherwise ATA
RAID On – SATA is configured for RAID on every boot.
Combination – combination mode, which offers compatibility with versions of the operating system that do not support SATA drives.

Onboard Devices

Integrated NIC Controller

You can set the NIC to On (default), Off, or On w/ PXE. When the On w/ PXE setting is active (available only for the future boot process), the computer prompts you to press <Ctrl><Alt><b>. Pressing this key combination causes a menu to display that allows you to select a method for booting from a network server. If a boot routine is not available from the network server, the computer attempts to boot from the next device in the boot sequence list.

Integrated Audio Controller

Enables or disables the onboard audio controller.

USB Controller

Set to On (default) so that USB devices will be detected and supported in the operating system.

USB for FlexBay

This field enables and disables the internal USB for FlexBay.
Off = Internal USB for FlexBay is disabled.
On = Internal USB for FlexBay is enabled.

No Boot = Internal USB for FlexBay is enabled but not bootable.
The factory default setting is No Boot.

NOTE: This USB option appears only if a FlexBay device is installed.

Video

Primary Video

This setting specifies which video controller is primary, PCI or PEG.

NOTE: This only applies to a PCI video controller installed in the 32-bit, 33 MHz, PCI expansion slot. Settings are reversed if a PCI video controller is installed in a 64-bit PCIx expansion slot.

Performance

Multiple CPU Core

This setting specifies whether more than one core is enabled. The performance of some applications may improve with an additional core enabled. The default is On (second core enabled).

SpeedStep

If applicable, Intel SpeedStep® appears in the Options List under Performance.

HyperThreading

If your computer processor supports Hyper-Threading, this option appears in the Options List (defaults to On).

HDD Acoustic Mode

  • Bypass (default) — Your computer does not test or change the current acoustics mode setting.
  • Quiet — The hard drive operates at its most quiet setting.
  • Suggested — The hard drive operates at the level suggested by the drive manufacturer.
  • Performance The hard drive operates at its maximum speed.

NOTE: Switching to performance mode will cause the drive heads to move faster, causing the hard drive to be noisier. However, some drives may not see an increase in data transfer rates.

NOTE: Changing the acoustics setting does not alter your hard drive image.

Security

This section displays available system security options.

Admin Password

Displays the current status of the system setup password security feature and allows a new system setup password to be assigned and verified.

System Password

Displays the current status of the system's password security feature and allows a new system password to be assigned and verified.

Password Changes

This option locks the system password field with the setup password. When the field is locked, you can no longer disable password security by pressing <Ctrl><Enter> when the computer starts. Also, a valid Admin password is required to change the system password (defaults to Unlocked).

Execute Disable

Enables or disables Execute Disable memory protection technology. On is the default setting.

Power Management

AC Recovery

Determines what happens when AC power is restored to the computer. On restarts the computer when power is restored after an outage. Last returns the computer to its last state before power was removed. Off is the default setting.

Auto Power On

Sets the computer to automatically turn on. Choices are every day or every Monday through Friday.

The default setting is Off.

This feature does not work if you turn off your computer using a power strip or surge protector.

Auto Power Time

Sets time to automatically turn on the computer.

Time is kept in the standard 12-hour format (hours:minutes). Change the startup time by pressing the right- or left-arrow key to increase or decrease the numbers, or type numbers in both the date and time fields.

This feature does not work if you turn off your computer using a power strip or surge protector.

Suspend Mode

The options are S1, a suspend state where the computer is running in a low-power mode, and S3, a standby state where the power is reduced or turned off for most components, however, system memory remains active.

Maintenance

SERR DMI Message

Some graphics cards require that the SERR DMI message be disabled. The default setting is On.

Asset Tag

Displays the system asset tag.

Owner Tag

Displays the system owner tag.

Load Defaults

When Continue is selected, this setting restores the computer's default settings. The default setting is Cancel.

Event Log

Displays the system event log.

POST Behavior

Fastboot

When set to On (default), your computer starts more quickly because it skips certain configurations and tests.

Numlock Key

This option involves the rightmost bank of keys on your keyboard. When set to On (default), this option activates the numeric and mathematical features shown at the top of each key. When set to Off, this option activates the cursor-control functions labeled on the bottom of each key.

POST Hotkeys

This option allows you to specify the function keys to display on the screen when the computer starts.

Keyboard Errors

This option enables or disables keyboard error reporting when the computer starts.

Boot Sequence

This feature allows you to change the boot sequence for devices.

Option Settings

NOTE: The computer attempts to boot to all bootable devices but if no bootable device is found, the computer generates the No boot device available error message. Press the <F1> key to retry the boot, or press the <F2> key to enter the setup utility.
NOTE: To boot to a USB device, the device must be bootable. To ensure that your device is bootable, check the device documentation.

Changing Boot Sequence for the Current Boot

You can use this feature, for example, to restart your computer to a USB device such as a floppy drive, memory key, or CD-RW drive.

NOTE: If you are booting to a USB floppy drive, you must first set the floppy drive to OFF in system setup.
  1. If you are booting to a USB device, connect the USB device to a USB connector (see "Back View of the Computer").

  2. Turn on (or restart) your computer.

  3. When F2 = Setup, F12 = Boot Menu appears in the upper-right corner of the screen, press <F12>.

If you wait too long and the operating system logo appears, continue to wait until you see the Microsoft Windows desktop. Then shut down your computer and try again.

The Boot Device Menu appears, listing all available boot devices. Each device has a number next to it.

  1. At the bottom of the menu, enter the number of the device that is to be used for the current boot only.

For example, if you are booting to a USB memory key, highlight USB Flash Device and press <Enter>.

NOTE: To boot to a USB device, the device must be bootable. To make sure your device is bootable, check the device documentation.

Changing Boot Sequence for Future Boots

  1. Enter system setup.

  2. Use the arrow keys to highlight the Boot Sequence menu option and press <Enter> to access the menu.

NOTE: Write down your current boot sequence in case you want to restore it.
  1. Press the up- and down-arrow keys to move through the list of devices.

  2. Press the spacebar to enable or disable a device (enabled devices have a checkmark).

  3. Press plus (+) or minus (–) to move a selected device up or down the list.


Clearing Forgotten Passwords

CAUTION: Before you begin any of the procedures in this section, follow the safety instructions in the Product Information Guide.
  1. Follow the procedures in "Before You Begin."

  1. Locate the 3-pin password jumper (PSWD) on the system board, and remove the jumper plug from pins 1 and 2.

  2. Place the jumper plug on pins 2 and 3.

  3. Close the computer cover.

  4. Connect your computer and monitor to electrical outlets, and turn them on.

  5. After the Microsoft® Windows® desktop appears on your computer, shut down the computer.

  6. Turn off the monitor and disconnect it from the electrical outlet.

  7. Disconnect the computer power cable from the electrical outlet, and press the power button to ground the system board.

  8. Open the computer cover.

  9. Reattach the password jumper (PSWD) to pins 1 and 2 to re-enable the password feature.

  10. Close the computer cover.

NOTICE: To connect a network cable, first plug the cable into the network port or device and then plug it into the computer.
  1. Connect your computer and devices to electrical outlets, and turn them on.


Clearing CMOS Settings

CAUTION: Before you begin any of the procedures in this section, follow the safety instructions in the Product Information Guide.
  1. Follow the procedures in "Before You Begin."

  2. Reset the current CMOS settings:

    1. Locate the 3-pin CMOS jumper (RTCRST) on the system board (see "Clearing Forgotten Passwords").

    1. Remove the jumper plug from pins 1 and 2.

    2. Place the jumper plug on pins 2 and 3 and wait approximately five seconds.

    3. Replace the jumper plug on pins 1 and 2.

  3. Close the computer cover.

NOTICE: To connect a network cable, first plug the cable into the network port or device and then plug it into the computer.
  1. Connect your computer and devices to electrical outlets, and turn them on.


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