What Is The Full Form Of UEFI?

The full form of UEFI is Unified Extensible Firmware Interface.

UEFI defines the software interface between platform firmware and an operating system (OS). It replaces the legacy BIOS (Basic Input/Out System) and connects the computer’s firmware to the OS. UEFI has the ability to support remote diagnostics & repair of computers- even with no OS installed in the device.

Both BIOS and UEFI are low-level software. They start when you boot the PC before booting your OS. But when compared, UEFI is a better and more modern solution. It gives faster boot times and supports more security features, larger hard drives, graphics, and mouse cursors.

History of UEFI

  • The very first EFI came in the mid-1990s during the early developments of the initial Intel–HP Itanium systems.
  • Intel stopped developing the EFI after the 1.10 version in July 2005. They gave it to the Unified EFI Forum- later evolved as the UEFI.
  • Version 2.1 was released back in 2007. It supported network authentication, cryptography, and user interface architecture.
  • The latest version of UEFI was finally approved in March 2019.

Characteristics of UEFI

  • The variables provide a way in which one can store data (particularly non-volatile). It is shared between the OS and platform firmware or in the UEFI applications.
  • UEFI is software-based.
  • It uses a lower-level OS and resides between the computer’s OS and startup firmware.
  • UEFI resides in a folder in the flash memory of the motherboard. It can also reside in the network drive or storage drive.
  • Any platform can be supported by UEFI by the E (Extensible) and recompiling the boot code. It means that the functions can be added and enhanced in UEFI.
  • It can perform authentication, diagnostic, encryption and can detect malware as well.
  • People are more familiar with BIOS than UEFI.
  • At startup, it displays UEFI BIOS. It is because people still refer to UEFI as BIOS (due to its familiarity).

UEFI Classes

The UEFI machines may have one of these classes that made the transition to UEFI easier. Intel finally ended the Legacy BIOS in 2020.

  • Class 0: The Legacy BIOS
  • Class 1: No UEFI booting. UEFI in CSM-only mode
  • Class 2: UEFI with CSM
  • Class 3: UEFI without CSM
  • Class 3+: Secure Boot Enabled UEFI

Benefits of UEFI

  • It is an architecture that is CPU-independent.
  • It holds the ability to use large disk partitions along with a GPT (Guild Partition Table).
  • It provides forward and backward compatibility along with a modular design.
  • UEFI includes network compatibility and has a flexible pre-OS environment along with GUI.
  • The pre-OS environment is 32-bit or 64-bit.
  • UEFI is a CPU-independent driver.

Limitations of UEFI

  • UEFI is more complicated than BIOS.
  • Its biggest issue is the requirement of support from software programs and hardware.
  • Some power customers who tend to overclock their structures may face various issues with UEFI.
  • The software program that works with UEFI systems may prevent older systems from getting upgraded to the modern OS.

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