UEFI

Short for Unified Extensible Firmware Interface, UEFI is a specification that defines a more modernized model for the interface between computer operating systems and platform firmware during the boot, or start-up, process.

UEFI originated as the Intel Boot Initiative in the late 1990s before being turned over to the Unified EFI Forum, and today the forum and specification remain the result of a collaborative effort between computer processor manufacturers like AMD and Intel and software operating system companies like Microsoft and Apple.

In many ways, UEFI serves as a software-driven, bare-bones operating system that can sit on top of the legacy BIOS boot process, and like BIOS, UEFI is responsible for initializing the hardware of a device or computer before passing control of the hardware to the operating system. Most newer computer platforms support both UEFI and legacy BIOS booting in order to ease the transition to UEFI and accommodate older operating systems that don’t have built-in UEFI support.

The UEFI specification offers advanced features over BIOS such as secure boot, low-level cryptography, network authentication and universal graphics drivers. The Secure Boot functionality in UEFI provides the basis for the Microsoft Secure Boot feature in Windows 8 that enables the OS to detect rootkits and similar malware attacks.

Forrest Stroud
Forrest Stroud
Forrest is a writer for Webopedia. Experienced, entrepreneurial, and well-rounded, he has 15+ years covering technology, business software, website design, programming, and more.

Top Articles

List of Windows Operating System Versions & History [In Order]

The Windows operating system (Windows OS) refers to a family of operating systems developed by Microsoft Corporation. We look at the history of Windows...

How to Create a Website Shortcut on Your Desktop

Website Shortcut on Your Desktop reviewed by Web Webster   This Webopedia guide will show you how to create a website shortcut on your desktop using...

What are the Five Generations of Computers? (1st to 5th)

Reviewed by Web Webster Each generation of computer has brought significant advances in speed and power to computing tasks. Learn about each of the...

Hotmail [Outlook] Email Accounts

Launched in 1996, Hotmail was one of the first public webmail services that could be accessed from any web browser. At its peak in...

HighLevel CRM

HighLevel is a sales and marketing customer relationship management (CRM) solution designed by...

Unified Endpoint Management (UEM)

As enterprise networks become increasingly distributed with growing numbers of remote workers, unified...

Decision Intelligence

Decision intelligence combines business intelligence (BI) and artificial intelligence (AI) models to improve...