IDF — For more than nine months, Gigabyte has had the unflattering distinction of being the only big-name motherboard maker to eschew the UEFI. The firm has endowed motherboards based on Intel's business-oriented Q67 chipset with UEFI goodness, but only because the new firmware interface is a requirement of that particular platform. Everything else in Gigabyte's mobo lineup, from budget models targeted at penny pinchers to ultra-high-end designs aimed at people with more money than sense, has been equipped with an old-school BIOS.
We quizzed Gigabyte about this increasingly glaring omission at the Intel Developer Forum, and the company assured us that its upcoming X79 boards will offer a proper UEFI implementation. Gigabyte isn't leaving the BIOS behind completely, though. The new motherboard firmware is called UEFI DualBIOS, which just invites confusion... sort of like the Hybrid EFI branding of Gigabyte's current BIOSes. What's wrong with calling it DualUEFI?
Unfortunately, we haven't had the chance to poke around in the UEFI ourselves. Gigabyte told us it wasn't permitted to give the press that level of access to X79 systems at IDF, and unlike MSI, whose new UEFI was demoed on a Z68 board, the Gigabyte UEFI is X79-only for now. The picture above was provided by Gigabyte, and that's about as much of the UEFI as we've seen thus far.
Although the picture reveals little more than the basic GUI, we do have a couple of additional details to share. The interface will offer basic and advanced modes similar to Asus' UEFI. The firmware is based on code from AMI, and Gigabyte is working to ensure that mouse flickering isn't a problem. With nine months to observe the successes and failures of competing UEFI offerings, let's hope Gigabyte can avoid some of the issues that have plagued other implementations.
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