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Old 07-24-05, 11:36 AM   #1
JaXXoN
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Default NVflash and NiBiTor Linux-only Howto

NVflash and NiBiTor Linux-only Howto
====================================

1. Introduction
---------------

This document describes how to use NVflash and NiBiTor on a "pure"
Linux system (means, without having access to a Windows Box).

NVflash 5.13 is a DOS tool that allows to extract the VGA BIOS from
an Nvidia graphics card into a file and to re-flash it.

NiBiTor v2.3 is a Windows tool that allows to modify various settings
in a VGA BIOS rom file settings such as the default 2D and 3D GPU and
memory clock settings, GPU core voltage and Fan speed.

The NVflash/NiBitTor toolset is mostly intended for overclockers.
However, there are situations where you are forced to use
this tools to get at least the performance you have actually payed for,
for example a GeForce 7800 GTX (such as the Gainward Ultra/3500 PCX)
may be limited to 390-415 MHz GPU clock speed due to wrong BIOS settings
and/or incorrect driver implementation.

Please note that you void the warranty of your Nvidia card and may
end up with a dead video chip when applying incorrect VGA BIOS settings.

There are also no warranties that this document will work for you,
however, it has been put together with best intentions and with due
dilligence.

In order to modify the VGA BIOS of your Nvidia card, you need
to perform the following steps that are described in more
detail in the chapters below:

1. Downloading the essential files
2. Creating a DOS boot disk including NVflash
3. Installing NiBiTor
4. Saving the current VGA BIOS
5. Modifying the VGA BIOS
6. Flashing the modified VGA BIOS

*** Be aware that you act on your own risk!!! ***



1. Downloading the essential files
----------------------------------

Create a download directory in your home directory, enter it and
get all necessary files:

cd ~
install -d nvdownloads
cd nvdownloads
wget \
"http://www.computerbase.de/downloads/software/systemprogramme/grafikkarten/nvflash/?url=1599"
wget \
"http://oldfiles.org.uk/powerload/bootdisk/DRDOS703.zip"
wget \
"http://www.mvktech.net/index.php?option=com_remository&Itemid=26&func=dow nload&filecatid=1137"
mv "com_remository_startdown.php?id=1137&chk=58fc8a98 16e5f391a08bb015703e05d4" NiBiTorv23.zip

Just in case the URLs are broken, here are the md5sums for each file
so that you can google alternative URLs and make sure to use the
exact same version that are working fine for me:

bd72f297ffc288f14dede3796c9130a2 DRDOS703.zip
f41768156f06fdb72ff715830b0cb6ab nvflash.zip
3139739299e41c0ab9ac5d3fab82c626 NiBiTorv23.zip



2. Creating a DOS boot disk including NVflash
---------------------------------------------

Stay in the download directory and create a sub-directory. Next, uncompress
the DrDOS 7.03 boot disk and all nvflash realted files. Finally create a
boot disk and copy the nvflash related files onto it. Make sure to
have a floppy disk inserted in the floppy disk drive.

mkdir nvflash
cd nvflash
unzip ../DRDOS703.zip
unzip ../nvflash.zip
dd if=DRDOS703.IMG of=/dev/fd0
mcopy nvflash.exe cwsdpmi.exe a:



3. Installing NiBiTor
---------------------

As a pre-requisite, you need to have wine installed on your Box in order
to use NiBiTor. For Fedora Core 4, the following RPM package works fine
(install with "rpm -i <package name>"):

ftp://ftp.pbone.net/mirror/newrpms.s...c3.nr.i386.rpm

Goto the download directory, uncompress NiBiTor and copy it to the windows
directory:

cd ~
install -d nvdownloads/nibitor
cd nvdownloads/nibitor
unzip ../NiBiTorv23.zip
install -d ~/.wine/dosdevices/c\:/windows
cp NiBiTor.exe ~/.wine/dosdevices/c\:/windows



4. Saving the current VGA BIOS
------------------------------

Boot your PC from the newly created boot disk. Just press Enter when being
asked for date and time during the boot. Then backup the current BIOS, type:

nvflash -b vgabios0.rom

When being finished, boot back into Linux and copy the BIOS file
to the windows directory:

mcopy a:vgabios0.rom ~/.wine/dosdevices/c\:/windows



5. Modifying the VGA BIOS
-------------------------

Start NiBiTor:

wine NiBiTor vgabios0.rom

Now perform modifications in sync with your conscience and with due
diligence. Then save the new modified VGA BIOS as "vgabios1.rom" by
clicking "File -> Save BIOS ...". Make sure to keep vgabios0.rom,
unmodified, not to loose your original VGA BIOS in case you need
to restore it.

Finally, copy the modified BIOS back to the boot disk:

mcopy ~/.wine/dosdevices/c\:/windows/vgabios1.rom a:



6. Flashing the modified VGA BIOS
---------------------------------

Boot your PC from the boot disk. Just press Enter when being asked
for date and time during the boot. To flash the modified BIOS, type:

nvflash vgabios1.rom

Hint: on german keyboards, you have to type 'z' instead of 'y' to
confirm flashing.

Attention: Don't powercycle or reboot the PC during flashing.

Important: If something goes wrong and the PC doesn't boot any more
after flashing, then you need to install a PCI VGA card in order
to be able to re-flash the original VGA BIOS.


Good luck!

Bernhard Kuhn, Sun Jul 24 18:23:25 CEST 2005

Last edited by JaXXoN; 07-24-05 at 01:13 PM.
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Old 07-25-05, 04:05 AM   #2
arokh
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Default Re: NVflash and NiBiTor Linux-only Howto

Ever heard of 'mkdir' ? 'install' is really meant for other things
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Old 07-25-05, 08:13 AM   #3
JaXXoN
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Default Re: NVflash and NiBiTor Linux-only Howto

Quote:
Originally Posted by arokh
Ever heard of 'mkdir' ? 'install' is really meant for other things
cat nvflash+nibitor-howto.txt | \
sed -e "s/install -d/mkdir -p/" > \
nvflash+nibitor_with_mkdir_instead_of_install-howto.txt

Anyway, for this purpose, it does the same thing :-)

regards

Bernhard
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Old 07-25-05, 08:49 AM   #4
arokh
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Default Re: NVflash and NiBiTor Linux-only Howto

It does the same thing, but it's meant for something else entirely, I was just amazed that you actually used install to create a directory Anyways, I won't put more non-sense into your thread, good doc
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Old 07-25-05, 10:00 AM   #5
JaXXoN
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Default Re: NVflash and NiBiTor Linux-only Howto

Quote:
Originally Posted by arokh
It does the same thing, but it's meant for something else entirely,
I understand you objection. The situation is that it's hard to get rid of
old habits: many years ago, i saw makefiles creating directories with
sub-directories using the command "install" in the "install:" section,
and i was too lacy to read the mkdir man page on how to create
a directory structure such as "x/y/z" in one command.

BTW.: you are not the first one complaining about "install" in my
documentations :-)
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