On Tue, Feb 19, 2013 at 11:29 PM, Karen Lewellen
<klewel...@shellworld.net> wrote:
> Hi folks,
> slightly off, but here goes.
> One of the 8 gazillion things that makes this dell to dos laptop  project
> I have  been working on such an adventure is the windows hardware
> limitations.
> in this case, a built in modem that is hardwired in the bios to respond
> only to windows.

I don't believe that limitation is in the BIOS.  I recall the days
when I would do things like get a USR external modem, selecting
carefully to get a model that *wasn't* a "Winmodem".  There were an
assortment of modems that relied on Windows to handle in software what
other modems did in hardware.  Winmodems got used because they were

The on board modem is likely a Winmodem, used for lower costs.
Diddling the BIOS won't get around it's lacks.

> Dell does provide a dos bios utility however.
> So here is the question.
> In general what is the role of a bios utility?

Depends upon the BIOS.  BIOS utilities can be used to set defaults in
things where there are multiple possible values.  The factory settings
may not be what you want.  The BIOS in my desktop, for example, can do
overclocking, by changing the default clock and multiplier.  (I pushed
a 2.1 ghz dual core Intel chip to 2.6ghz using presets, and could
theoretically push it faster.)

> If we substitute, assuming we even could do this, the dos utility for the
> present one loaded, would the hardware be freed?
> In this case would com ports 2 and 4 tied up by the built in internal modem
> become available?

What BIOS do you have?  And why do you need the ports?

>   Joyous prospects of all, would the modem itself actually function since
> the rigging would not register a windows focused bios utility?

That would depend on the software you were running, I think.  I'd
prefer to use an external, and turn off the internal (which may be
doable from the BIOS utility.)

> Thanks for the thoughts,
> Kare

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