BIOS and UEFI: similarities and differences between the technologies that control the startup of our computers

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BIOS and UEFI: similarities and differences between the technologies that control the startup of our computers

With the Windows 11 arrival in a few days, one of the concepts to which we have become accustomed is the safe start, one of the requirements to install the new operating system that is present in the UEFI of the computers that we can find in the market. UEFI is the successor to the BIOS that we all know and now let’s see how they coincide and how they differ.

UEFI and BIOS. BIOS and UEFi. Two technologies that have the same purpose and that is none other than control the startup of our computer and of all the components that start every time we press the power button.

Both BIOS and UEFI are technologies that control the computer start-up and start of all components. They constitute an isolated and almost inaccessible part of the code that is stored in a separate memory located on the motherboard of the computer.



The BIOS, acronym for “Basic Input Output System” or “Basic Input and Output System”, is the system that is responsible for managing the startup of older computers. Present since the mid-70s (BIOS was created in 1975). The BIOS starts the various components, loads functions such as the computer’s power and temperature management, and launches the PC’s operating system.

When you turn on your computer, the first thing that loads into it is the BIOS. This firmware is then in charge of starting, configuring and verifying that the hardware of the computer is in good condition, including the RAM memory, the hard drives, the motherboard or the graphics card. When it finishes, select the boot device (hard disk, CD, USB, etc.) and proceed to start the operating system, and give it control of your computer.

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In fact, it sure sounds to you that when you start the computer you find a series of instructions at the bottom of the screen. Instructions related to keys such as F10, F2, F12, F1 or DEL that are used to access the BIOS on a Windows computer and that change depending on the manufacturer. If you press the hotkey assigned to the BIOS while your computer is starting, you should be able to see the BIOS setup utility screen that you are looking for.



The term UEFI is the acronym for “Unified Extensible Firmware Interface” or “Unified Extensible Firmware Interface”. It is the successor firmware, written in C, of ​​the BIOS, system that began to succeed in 2005, 30 years after the birth of the BIOS.

The is the result of the agreement of different technology companies (AMD, Apple, Dell, Lenovo, Microsoft …) that created the UEFI Foundation in 2002 to create a system successor to BIOS, more effective and at the same time more secure and visually attractive.

At the time of access UEFI the most practical thing is to do it through the “System configuration” entering the section “Update and security” and in the left area by clicking on “Recovery”. We will then see the option of “Advanced startup” and a “Restart Now” button. Then in “Choose an option”, we select “Solve problems”, “Advanced Options”, “UEFI Firmware Configuration” and then we select “Restart”.

Uefi 2

It can also be accessed from the command prompt by typing the command shutdown.exe / r / o and press “Enter”.

Uefi 22

There are also variants depending on the equipment used and for example on the Surface that I use I can access it while it is off by pressing the volume up button and at the same time, pressing and releasing the power button. We leave pressing the volume up button and when the UEFI screen appears, we release it.

Differences and similarities


The similarities between BIOS and UEFI are many, since basically both have the same objective and do the same thing: to control the boot of our computer. But in turn they hide important differences that we will now see.

  • The first aspect where we see the difference is the interface. UEFI sports a much friendlier design and current than BIOS. While the BIOS sports a design that reminds us of MS-DOS and requires that we use the keyboard to move through the options, the UEFI allows the use of the mouse in a more modern interface similar to that offered by an operating system.
  • With the arrival of a modern design, the UEFi also improves in functions, since can be updated by connecting to the internet.

Safe Start

  • The UEFI has introduced the “Secure Boot” or “Secure Boot” functionality, one of the requirements to install Windows 11. The objective of this improvement is to avoid starting operating systems that are not authenticated to protect it against bootkits hours ago we saw the threat, which run when Windows starts.
  • While the BIOS runs on 16-bit code, UEFI does it on 32 or 64 bits.
  • Computer startup is faster with UEFI than it was with BIOS.
  • UEFI offers GPT file system support.
  • UEFI is modular in design.
  • Independent of CPU architecture and controllers.
  • Supports larger storage drives with up to 128 partitions.
  • UEFI can be loaded into any non-volatile memory resource, which allows it to be independent of any operating system. Third-party extensions, such as overclocking tools or diagnostic software, can also be added to it.

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BIOS and UEFI: similarities and differences between the technologies that control the startup of our computers

was originally published in

Engadget Windows

Jose Antonio Carmona


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