System Management BIOS

From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia
Jump to: navigation, search
Not to be confused with DMI.
System Management BIOS
Status Published
Year started 1999
Latest version 3.0.0
February 2015
Organization Distributed Management Task Force (DMTF)
Related standards Desktop Management Interface (DMI) and Web-Based Enterprise Management (WBEM)
Domain BIOS management
Abbreviation SMBIOS

In computing, the System Management BIOS (SMBIOS) specification defines data structures (and access methods) that can be used to read information stored in the BIOS of a computer.[1] Circa 1999, it became part of the domain of the Distributed Management Task Force (DMTF). Before this integration, SMBIOS functionality had the name DMIBIOS,[2] since it interacted with Desktop Management Interface (DMI). At approximately the same time Microsoft started to require that OEMs and BIOS vendors support the interface/data-set in order to have Microsoft certification.

The DMTF released the version 3.0.0 of the specification on February 12, 2015.[3]

Structure types[edit]

As of version 2.7.1, the SMBIOS specification defines the following structure types:[4]

Accessing SMBIOS data[edit]

From Linux[edit]

The Linux kernel contains an SMBIOS decoder, allowing systems administrators to inspect system hardware configuration and to enable or disable certain workarounds for problems with specific systems, based on the provided SMBIOS information.

The userspace command-line utility dmidecode(8) inspects this data. Information provided by this utility typically includes the system manufacturer, model name, serial number, BIOS version and asset tag, as well other details of varying level of interest and reliability, depending on the system manufacturer. The information often includes usage status for the CPU sockets, expansion slots (including AGP, PCI and ISA) and memory module slots, and the list of I/O ports (including serial, parallel and USB).[4][5][6]

From Microsoft Windows[edit]

Microsoft specifies WMI as the preferred mechanism for accessing SMBIOS information from Microsoft Windows.[7][8]

On Windows systems that support it (XP and later), some SMBIOS information can be viewed with either the WMIC utility with 'BIOS'/'MEMORYCHIP'/'BASEBOARD' and similar parameters, or by looking in the Windows Registry under HKLM\HARDWARE\DESCRIPTION\System

Various software utilities can retrieve raw SMBIOS data, including smbiosw[9] and SMBIOS Peek.[7]

From UEFI[edit]

In UEFI, the "SmbiosView" shell application can retrieve the SMBIOS data.[10][11]

See also[edit]


  1. ^ "Libsmbios Library Documentation". 2007-04-11. Retrieved 2016-02-02. 
  2. ^ "Desktop Management BIOS Specification, Version 2.0" (PDF). 1996-03-06. Retrieved 2016-02-02. 
  3. ^ "SMBIOS 3.0 Release Overview Webinar". March 2015. Retrieved 2016-02-02. 
  4. ^ a b Ken Hess (2010-04-23). "Linux System Information Decoded". Retrieved 2016-02-02. 
  5. ^ "dmidecode". Retrieved 2013-10-30. 
  6. ^ Joe Barr (2004-11-29). "dmidecode: What's it good for?". Retrieved 2013-10-30. 
  7. ^ a b wjfrancis (2008-03-27). "SMBIOS Peek - CodeProject". Retrieved 2012-05-12. 
  8. ^ SMBIOS Support in Windows, Microsoft paper, updated April 25, 2005
  9. ^ 2/15/2005 9:27 amContributed By: Darwin Sanoy (2005-02-15). "FREE: SMBIOS Utilities for Windows and Command Line". Retrieved 2012-05-12. 
  10. ^ "smbiosview (HP UEFI System Utilities and Shell Command Mobile Help for HP ProLiant Gen9 Servers)". 2015-09-22. Retrieved 2016-02-02. 
  11. ^ "Tianocore /edk2/ShellPkg/Library/UefiShellDebug1CommandsLib/SmbiosView". Retrieved 2015-01-27. 

External links[edit]