XT-IDE Universal BIOS


XTIDE Universal BIOS makes it possible to use modern large ATA hard disks or Compact Flash cards on old PC's. You can then enjoy quiet or noiseless drives with more capacity than you'll ever need for old computers.

The XT-IDE Universal BIOS provides an “extension BIOS” to the original IBM BIOS, to allow for the use of the XT-IDE Rev02 and other similar cards. For a (possibly incomplete) list of known cards, see below.

List of known XT-IDE-style cards


For XT systems you can use

XT-IDE Universal BIOS Documentation


XTIDE Universal BIOS can be used on any IBM PC, XT, AT or 100% compatible system. On AT systems you can use any 16-bit ISA or VLB IDE or Multi I/O controller.


Some of the features included in XTIDE Universal BIOS are…

  • Supports up to 4 IDE controllers
  • Support for virtual drives via serial port, more information
  • Supports drives with any capacity (MS-DOS 7.x (Windows 9x) or FreeDOS is required to access more than 8.4 GB)
  • PIO transfers with block mode support
  • Hard disk autodetection
  • Autodetected capacity, both CHS and LBA, can be overridden to make drive appear smaller than it actually is
  • Hotkeys and optional Boot menu (included in official 15k builds) for selecting any floppy drive or hard disk to boot from, including hard disks that are not handled by XTIDE Universal BIOS
  • Compact Flash and Microdrive support
  • Support for most 8-, 16-, and 32-bit IDE controllers
  • Native support for QDI Vision QD6500 and QD6580 VLB IDE controllers …and many more.

source and binaries

Official beta releases are now quite old. It is recommended to use SVN builds before new beta is released (unknown when this happens). These SVN builds are hosted courtesy of James Pearce from lo-tech.


Picture 1. User friendly configurator and flashing program for XTIDE Universal BIOS.



The XT-IDE Universal BIOS project was originally hosted on Google Code,1) a product which has now been “Sunset” by Google and put into “Archive Only” mode. The XT-IDE Universal BIOS project is now hosted at RetrobrewComputers.org 2) in order to provide continued access to this information in a place where it will be available long-term and kept up-to-date.

software/firmwareos/xt-ide-universal-bios/start.txt · Last modified: 2021/02/05 23:17 by eluancm
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