How to Overclock with BIOS

Level of difficulty: Difficult

One of the cost-effective ways to get the best out of your computer is by overclocking it through the BIOS (Basic Input/Output System). By using the BIOS to overclock your system, you can stretch the performance limit of your computer without buying expensive new hardware. However, there are some risks involved so it is best that you back up any important data from your PC before doing it.

Materials Needed:
- Computer
- benchmark software
Step 1
To begin, turn on your computer and run a benchmark program. Benchmark software, such as Everest, Dacris and 3DMark is crucial in monitoring performance before and after overclocking. These software applications can easily be found and downloaded from the Web.
Step 2
Using the benchmark software, create a benchmark of the computer’s performance. This will be used as a baseline for your computer before it is overclocked.
Step 3
Restart your computer and go to the BIOS screen. Most computer BIOS can be accessed by hitting the DEL key a few minutes after being turned on.
Step 4
Go to the Front Side Bus or FSB Speed tab and raise the speed in 5 to 10 Mhz increments. Restart the computer after every comment to make sure that the Windows Operating System is still able to start properly.
Step 5
If at this point the system crashes, hangs, or simply refuses to start Windows, the memory voltage should be increased. If it still doesn't work, raise the voltage of the chipset and the core voltage slightly. However, if the system still crashes, the FSB speed settings should be reduced a bit and the voltages should be rest to their original values. Be careful in making changes to these settings, as any sharp increase or decrease in the values might lead to permanent damage to the computer.
Step 6
Continue increasing the BIOS settings up to the point that the system can no longer reliably boot up Windows and back off to the original 'stable' mode. Be sure to monitor the processor’s core temperature in the BIOS. If it shows anything above 70 degrees Fahrenheit, shut down the computer immediately to prevent it from overheating.
Step 7
Once you have established the computer’s stable overclocked mode, open up the benchmark program again. The overclocked system should be benchmarked again so you can easily compare its performance results to the baseline established before it was overclocked. If the machine does not finish the benchmark or crashes, the FSB settings should be lowered slightly or the voltages should be raised to compensate. Restart the computer.
Step 8
When a completely benchmarked overclocked setting has been completed, a stress test should be performed for a couple of hours to ensure that the machine is completely stable. If you do not encounter any problems during the test, the overclocking has been successful.