How to Use Your PC’s Setup Program

During the startup process, a message appears on the monitor, telling you a certain key combination to enter the Setup program. You don’t always need to run or access the Setup program, but it’s good to know how to get to the Setup program when you do need it — for example, when you’re adding more memory to the PC, updating some types of hardware, or disabling chipset features — technical stuff, and rare, but often necessary.

Write down the keys used to access the Setup program on something that you won’t lose.

The Setup program is part of your computer’s hardware; it’s not part of Windows. And it might also be known as the BIOS Setup utility.

With the Setup program, you can apply a system password for your computer. Although you should use passwords on the Internet and for your computer accounts, don’t set a system password in the Setup program. Unlike with those other passwords, if you forget the system password, there’s nothing you can do, and your computer is pretty much useless.

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