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Monday, February 6, 2012

PCI Expansion ROM Execution Environment Peculiarity

This post is related to the x86 Segment Descriptor Cache stuff I posted a while ago. In my previous book, this fact is not included. So, what's the weird thing about the PCI Expansion ROM execution environment? Well, it runs in "big-real mode"/unreal mode. It may not sound obvious but this is the excerpt from a related specification:
"When control is passed to an option ROM from a BIOS that supports PMM, the processor will be in big real mode, and Gate A20 will be disabled (segment wrap turned off). This allows access to extended memory blocks using real mode addressing."
 To put things in perspective, I plan to just combine it with the upcoming POST Memory Manager article on my website. I haven't had enough time to finish that one.
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