Updating the BIOS on a HP OmniBook laptop via Linux

Q I have an HP OmniBook 6000 on which I run Mandrake 10.0. When rebooting, the machine freezes. I searched the web and found out there is a fix for the problem: I have to update the BIOS with a certain file from an HP customer care web page. My first problem is that the update is an InstallShield executable file that needs to be run on Windows to create an update floppy- and I only run Linux. That brings me to my second problem: I don't have a floppy drive on this laptop, only a CD/DVD drive. How can I extract the floppy image from this file, and is it possible to make a bootable CD from it?

A Some executable file installers are self-extracting zip files, but this one is not. The only safe way to extract it is to run the program on another computer. This will copy the BIOS update to a floppy disk. Then use the read function of rawwritewin.exe to create a disc image file. Copy this to your laptop. The second part of the problem is remarkably simple, because the original method of making a bootable CD was to embed a floppy disc image in the boot sector of the CD. Assuming your disc image is called bios.img, create a directory called biosupdate and put the image file in it. Then run the following command:

mkisofs -b bios.img -c bios.cat -o biosupdate.iso biosupdate

This will create a bootable CD image. Use Cdrecord or your favourite CD -burning GUI to write this to a CD, which will boot and run the BIOS updater. It is also possible to create the ISO image with K3b, by selecting the disc image file as the boot image. An alternative method is to use the Ultimate Boot CD, from www.ultimatebootcd.com. This is a bootable CD containing over 100 floppy-based diagnostic tools and utilities. It does not contain copyrighted files, like your BIOS update, but the website contains clear instructions for adding your own images.

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