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Tutorials | How do I clear the CMOS

Publish date: 18:57 Thursday, 28th July 2005
Written by: Postcode
Audience intended for: Hardware
Category: Computer Hardware

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Clearing the CMOS can be done a few ways. The most common way is to use the jumper on the motherboard. This jumper has two settings. Normal and Clear. Moving the jumper to the Clear setting will erase the settings stored in CMOS. It does not remove the BIOS itself, only the user defined settings within the CMOS. When you clear the CMOS you will most likely see the error message "CMOS Checksum Error" on the next reboot. You can enter the BIOS setup at this point or before and reconfigure the settings.

Another method is to remove the CMOS battery from the system. Removing the battery is usually the second method as it may take anywhere from 15 minutes to 8 hours in order for the CMOS to loss the settings. Once the CMOS is clear, you should know by the "BIOS checksum error, press F1 to continue ", or "CMOS Checksum Error - Defaults Loaded" message at bootup.

You may also be able to clear the CMOS in some cases by forcing a system configuration change. Changing hardware, such as adding or removing a few SIMM's may cause a CMOS error and allow you to proceed to the BIOS setup.

On a few systems it may be possible to clear the CMOS by pressing the Ins key during the power up of the system. Holding the Key down may clear the CMOS and restore the defaults. This may or may not work on your system.

On some boards, it must be moved to the Clear position while the power is OFF, then moved back. If you power on the board with the jumper in the clear position, it can damage the board. Thanks for the input Mr. Paul Richards.

 

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