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"The computer book of the month is The Bios Companion by Phil Croucher. Long-time readers of this column will recall I have recommended his book before. This tells you everything you ought to know about the BIOS in your system. Post codes, options, upgrades, you name it.

Years ago, I called an earlier edition of this invaluable and I see no reason to change my view. Recommended.
"

Jerry Pournelle
Byte Magazine

"Croucher's book was invaluable 20 years ago and remains so today...... Every one of the 468 pages holds useful information, the author having zero tolerance for padding."

Davey Winder
PC Plus Magazine

"You've completerly impressed me with the quality and scope of your guides - extreme care has obviously gone into their research and preparation."

Jeremy Fleming

"His style is lovely: clear, jargon-free where possible, chatty and friendly with beautiful short paragraphs. It [Communications & Networks] joins my list of 'I wish I'd written it' books. I haven't come across such a good subject book in a long time at this price."

Lorna Kyle
Personal Computer World

"To any micro owner who wants to know what this comms business is all about, [Communications & Networks] is certainly one of the best around. ... Croucher is not only knowledgable about his subject, he's interested in it and communicates that interest to you. "

Ron Peck
New Computer Express

"There are few books about which explain as accurately and comprehensively as [Communications & Networks] does what communications are all about. The glossary is excellent."

Micro Decision

"...any PC user with a genuine interest in using his machine to its full potential will recognise [Communications & Networks] for the completely invaluable tool and often the inspiration that it is."

Yvonne Taylor
Which PC

"[Communications & Networks] is the type of book you can read on a bus or train without getting a headache from trying to understand what it means."

Network

"As a recently reformed computer illiterate myself, I appreciated the author's straighforward yet humourous and light-hearted style of writing. He manages to strike the balance between too much and too little information. ... [Computing Under Protest] is never in danger of either boring or confusing the reader."

Emma Tyrrall
Practical PC

"Good documentation is important for any software, but even more so for an operating system - the documentation [for DOS 386 Professional] has some exceptionally clear explanations. Altogether, the documentation is an example of the right way of doing things, and other software manufacturers would do well to take note."

Matthew Holbrook
Computer Shopper

"The DOS 386 Professional manual sets arrived at 2130 local time today. We have had a brief look at them and wish to congratulate IMS on the excellent, clear and concise manner in which they have been presented."

Fred Parker
ETL Soft

"I remain impressed by Mr. Croucher's fluid writing style, practical orientation, enthusiasm, and strong technical knowledge."

Lance A Leventhal
Slawson Communications, Inc



JAR Professional Pilot Studies

"Its real value lies in taking the plethora of booklets and ring-bound photocopies associated with commercial examinations and condensing them into an attractive and portable form. The guy really does deserve a medal ~ he has made a genuine contribution to the body of professional aviation literature assembled during the course of the last century.

I heartily recommend it to students of commercial flight, if only as a souvenir of their efforts... "

Colin Hilton
Pro Pilot's Rumour Network

"(The) Book is quite a good compliment to our notes for students. We will be recommending all our students buy the books.... "

Chris
Naples Air Centre

"I got your book last month and am in the process of ploughing through it! Actually, I really like it and find it very interesting and easy to read."

Simon Rouse

"So far I have found your book an extremely helpful reference manual to carry around in my flight bag."

Blair Clubley

"I wish to commend you on a "work of art". I wish the CAA would produce a quick reference easy to read manual such as yours. Truly wonderful!"

Ebrahim Parkar

 
Post Codes
 Acer
 ALR

 AMI
 Arche
 AST
 AT&T
 Award
 Chips & Technologies
 Compaq
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 Eurosoft/Mylex
 Faraday A-Tease
 HP
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 Intel
 Landmark
 Microid/MR
 NCR
 Olivetti
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 Phoenix
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 Supersoft
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 Zenith

NCR POST Codes

Purchased 1991 by AT&T. 3 main types of board: OEM from AMI, AT and Microchannel clones. See AMI pre-0490 for PC386, and below for others. All NCR-designed systems send codes to LPT1, but see table.

Note: Not all POST codes are included below - the latest information is in the The BIOS Companion, which contains over 100 pages of them.


POST Procedures

 

AA 8088 CPU failure
B1 2764 EPROM checksum failure
B2 8237 DMA controller failure
B3 8253 PIT failure
B4 RAM failure
B5 8259 PIC failure
B6 RAM parity failure
BB All tests passed, ready to boot

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AT Codes

 

01 Test the CPU registers
02 Test system support I/O
03 Test BIOS ROM checksum
04 Test DMA page registers
05 Test timer channel 1
06 Test timer channel 2
07 Test RAM refresh logic
08 Test base 64KB
09 Test 8/16 bit bus conversion
0A Test interrupt controller 1
0B Test interrupt controller 2
0C Test I/O controller
0D Test CMOS RAM read/write operation
0E Test battery power
0F Test CMOS RAM checksum
10 Test CPU protected mode
11 Test video configuration
12 Test primary video controller
13 Test secondary video controller
20 Display results of tests to this point
21 Test DMA controller 1
22 Test DMA controller 2
23 Test system timer channel 0
24 Initialize interrupt controllers
25 Test interrupts
26 Test interrupts
30 Check base 640KB memory
31 Check extended memory size
32 Test higher 8 address lines
33 Test base memory
34 Test extended memory
40 Test keyboard
41 Test keyboard
42 Test keyboard
43 Test keyboard
44 Test A20 gate
50 Setup hardware interrupt vectors
51 Enable interrupt timer channel 0
52 Check BIOS ROM
60 Test floppy disk controller and drive
61 Test hard disk controller
62 Initialize floppy drives
63 Initialize hard drives
70 Test real time clock
71 Set time of day in RTC
72 Check parallel interface ports
73 Check serial interface ports
74 Check for any option ROM's
75 Check math coprocessor
76 Enable keyboard and RTC interrupts
F0 System not configured properly or hardware defect
F1 Scan and execute any option ROM's
F2 Call interrupt 19 boot loader

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PC 916 Codes

 

01 Test CPU registers
03 Test BIOS ROM checksum
04 Test DMA page registers
05 Test timer channel 1
06 Test timer channel 2
0C Test 8042 keyboard controller
14 Test disabling speed stretch at port 69h
15 Start refresh timer 1
16 Enable speed stretch at port 69h
17 Clear write protect bit
1B Test 64KB shadow RAM
18 Write and test interrupt descriptor table
19 Verify RAM
02 Verify port 61h
07 Test refresh logic
08 Test base 64KB RAM
09 Test 8/16 bit bus conversion logic
0A Test interrupt mask register A
0B Test interrupt mask register B
1A Check 8042 keyboard controller
0D Test CMOS RAM shutdown byte
0E Test CMOS RAM battery power
0F Test CMOS RAM checksum
10 Test CPU protected mode
11 Test video configuration
12 Initialize and test primary video controller
13 Primary video error
20 Display results of tests to this point
21 Test DMA controller 1
22 Test DMA controller 2
23 Test timer 1 counter 0 840nS clock timer
27 Test timer 2 counter 0 for NMI
28 Test timer 2 counter
24 Initialize both interrupt controllers
25 Check for unexpected interrupts
26 Wait for interrupt
30 Check base 640KB memory
31 Check extended memory size
32 Test higher 8 address lines
33 Test base memory
34 Test extended memory up to 256MB
35 Test RAM in segment E000h
40 Test keyboard enable/disable
41 Test keyboard reset command
42 Test keyboard
43 Test keyboard
F4 Display speed setting
45 Initialize the mouse and enable IRQ 1
44 Test address overrun capability
50 Set up hardware interrupt vectors
51 Enable IRQ 0 interval interrupt from timer 0
60 Test for floppy and hard disk controllers and drives
61 Test disk controller
62 Initialize floppy drives
63 Initialize hard drives
74 Check and execute option ROM's from C8000h to DFFFFh
70 Test RTC
71 Set interval timer
72 Configure and test parallel interface
73 Configure and test serial interface
75 Test math coprocessor if installed
76 Enable keyboard and RTC
F0 Display and logged errors
F6 Test base memory
F3 Got to setup if F1 was pressed
F4 Display speed setting
F5 Initialize counter 2 for speed testing
F1 Test system code at E0000h and copy video ROM to shadow memory
F2 Call interrupt 19 boot loader
F6 Test base memory
F7 Test extended memory


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