There are quite a lot of sophisticated devices that we can find today, such as computers, cellphones, routers, and so on.
Most of these devices have special built-in programs in order to function normally. The default program is commonly referred to as firmware.
Well, you’ve heard the term firmware but don’t understand what it means? Come on, I will explain below.
Get to know the Firmware
Firmware is a basic program that is stored in a device. Firmware stores user-adjustable settings so that the device can function properly.
Easy analogies like computers and electricity. Without electricity, the computer will not be able to turn on. Well, a device cannot run if there is no built-in firmware.
Firmware is stored in memory based on PROM ( Programmable ROM ) and EPROM ( Erasable Programmable ROM ).
In PROM, the firmware is read-only and permanent. Whereas in EPROM, the firmware is read-only but can still be replaced.
For now, the firmware itself has been developed and has a type of flash memory. This form is easier to use and easier to update.
I have explained a brief description of the firmware function. Next, here are some examples of firmware on computers, cellphones, and modems ( routers ).
1. On a Computer or Laptop (BIOS)
Firmware that is on a computer or laptop is located on the motherboard device. This firmware is often also referred to as BIOS ( Basic Input Output System ).
The function of the BIOS on a computer is as a program to manage operating system and hardware instructions. In the BIOS there is also information related to the computer.
For BIOS with the latest firmware now has a special term. Namely UEFI. The difference lies in the features and its more modern user interface.
2. HP Firmware
Just like computers, the firmware on HP also serves to provide instructions to the hardware and can fix system problems.
Firmware on HP is also responsible for managing and filtering data that has software permission in it.
Oh yes, we can update most of the firmware on HP. This aims to improve performance and add features of HP.
3. On Router
Routers generally have some firmware on them. One of the famous firmware is IPFire which serves to make it easier for users to configure security on the network.
In addition, there is also the m0n0wall firmware which has the same function as IPFire, but with the difference that lies in the features.
What’s the Difference Between Firmware and Software?
Firmware and software are two different programs. Firmware has a meaning as a basic program and is permanent because it is embedded directly into the device.
Because it is fixed, generally you can not delete the firmware. Unless changed, by updating the version.
While the software has a meaning as a program that you can install yourself. Apart from that, you can also uninstall the software without affecting the system on the device.
Here are other differences between firmware and software :
Firmware has a function as a basic function of a system. And it’s available by default. While the software functions are not directly related to the system, and most of them must be installed by yourself.
#2. Memory Usage
Firmware generally has a small size. Most are only a few MB at most. While the software is very diverse. It can even reach tens of GB.
#3. Storage Location
Firmware is located in the built-in memory which is especially available. While the software is stored on the user’s storage device. Examples such as hard drives, SSDs, memory cards, and others.
#4. Data change
Firmware data is difficult to change. Most can only be done through updates. While the software can change the data more easily.
Every device especially those with systems must have firmware in them in order to function.
Well, most people unfortunately still don’t know what firmware is. Therefore, it is hoped that this explanation will help.