Motherboard Tattoo

What Does Motherboard Tattoo Mean?

A motherboard tattoo is a type of unique identification code stored within a computer’s BIOS to identify the motherboard and the computer/system in which it is installed. The motherboard tattoo is a vendor-defined code that enables and ensures that only authorized compact disks are used with the designated motherboard in system diagnostics and recovery processes.


Techopedia Explains Motherboard Tattoo

Motherboard tattoos are primarily used as hardware identification mechanisms by independent hardware vendors (IHV) to distinguish their motherboards and line of computer systems. Typically, a motherboard tattoo is stored within an eraseable programmable read-only memory (EPROM). Each motherboard tattoo is programmed with a unique code and description of the motherboard and the system. The motherboard/system will recognize and accept only a vendor-supplied diagnostic and maintenance CD that’s specific to that motherboard or the motherboard tattoo. If the system’s motherboard is replaced, the EPROM must be reprogrammed or replaced with the new motherboard tattoo.


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Margaret Rouse

Margaret is an award-winning technical writer and teacher known for her ability to explain complex technical subjects to a non-technical business audience. Over the past twenty years, her IT definitions have been published by Que in an encyclopedia of technology terms and cited in articles by the New York Times, Time Magazine, USA Today, ZDNet, PC Magazine, and Discovery Magazine. She joined Techopedia in 2011. Margaret's idea of a fun day is helping IT and business professionals learn to speak each other’s highly specialized languages.