Eee PC Fast Boot- Boot Booster & EFI


By Wang Da-Fu, March 2009


It only takes one setting to speed up your Eee PC boot-up process by nearly 10 seconds and save a few hours for your life; this article is here to help you out!


Computer Start-up Process- BIOS

Upon power-up, BIOS (Basic Input-Output System) is activated for start-up process to run some hardware tests and configurations. When Eee PC starts up, you will see the BIOS screen display, as shown in Figure 1.


Figure 1 BIOS Screen


Computer Start-up Process- OS Start-up

Once BIOS hardware tests pass and configuration is correct, the start-up process of various operating systems such as Windows or Xandros (Linux) is initialized with the boot screen, such as the Windows boot up screen shown in Figure 2.


Figure 2 Windows Boot Screen


One of Eee PC's Features- Boot Booster

Eee PC offers faster boot feature, which saves you nearly 10 seconds for BIOS testing and configuration; it skips BIOS start-up screen (Figure 1) and directly activates boot process (Figure 2) of Windows XP, Xandros (Linux) or other operating system.

Maybe a few seconds sound nothing to you. However, it saves you 10 seconds for each start-up. Let’s say that you turn it on twice or three times a day; that will be nearly a thousand start-ups for one year or two; 1000x10=10,000 seconds =166.67 minutes. This is how much time you can save with just one setting.


Waiting nearly 10 seconds for each start-up can really get on people's nerve. With this feature to speed up Eee PC boot time, you will not need to worry about it for nearly a thousand times. Surely, for those who have ample time and patience, this is not a concern.




Boot Booster Configuration

Next, let us see how to configure Eee PC for a faster boot-up! Turn on your Eee PC and press [F2] on the keyboard. Tap [F2] quickly and repeatedly until a BIOS setup screen opens, as shown in Figure 3. If Boot Booster has been [Enabled], the BIOS screen as in Figure 1 will not be displayed; instead, you will see the operating system screen like the one in Figure2, so press [F2] repeatedly and quickly a few times to enter BIOS setup on bootup.



Figure 3 BIOS Setup Main Screen


Once you are in the BIOS setup utility, use the right arrow key to highlight [Boot], as shown in Figure 4; use down arrow key to select [Boot Booster] and press [Enter] to [Enabled] this item.


Figure 4 Boot Tab of BIOS Setup


Press [F10] after [Enabled] is selected to save the new setup, and then select [OK], as shown in Figure5. After pressing [OK], the computer will reboot.

In your first try for a reboot, Eee PC will still take nearly 10 seconds for hardware test and configuration, so the BIOS screen will still be displayed like the one in Figure 1. After that, with the special mechanism, Eee PC no longer needs to spend time for various tests and configuration. Therefore, the operation system's startup process will directly be activated instead of entering BIOS screen in Figure 1.


Figure 5 Press [F10]; Then Select [OK] to Save.


Boot Booster Fundamentals

You now know how to speed up your Eee PC start time. You can read on for more if you have not fallen asleep!

At the end of the article, we will look at the fundamentals of a fast boot up!

Click [Settings] on the [Start] menu, and then click [Control Panel]. Click [Administrative Tools], click [Computer Management], and then select [Disk Management].


In Disk Management, the computer's partitions and volumes are displayed. On Disk 0, an [EFI system partition] is at the end of the disk, as shown in Figure 6, and you will learn how it works in the following paragraph!


Figure 6 EFI system partition


Extensible Firmware Interface (EFI) is actually used for other purposes, but some smart RD guys at Asus use it to store BIOS data. Therefore, you only need to boot up from BIOS the first time, which caches related test and configuration data on the EFI partition; so after enabling the feature, it will skip BIOS testing and configuration at each boot.


However, BIOS needs to test and configure again whenever there is change of hardware, so data stored on the EFI partition only writes once at this time. After that, it only needs to read data from the partition instead of writing it on the partition again. Therefore, for SSD (Solid State Disk) users, they need not to worry about wasting too many “write to disk” for this.


Last but not least, if [Boot Booster] is enabled and you wants to upgrade 512MB or 1GB DDR2 SDRAM memory on your Eee PC to 2GB, be sure to enter BIOS setup for hardware reconfiguration. Otherwise, the new memory may not be recognized.