I found this post on another AMD forum:
"Well after hearing back from Arima's technical support, I was told I had to contact eMachines directly for the newest Bios, since I was told that if I upgraded with a "Generic/Arima" Bios, it wouldn't boot the system, because of the factory HDD image that is used to install the programs. As asinine as that sounded, I emailed back, and explained I'd already formatted my hard drive and have installed Windows XP Professional, so that wouldn't be a problem on my end. So at this point in time, I'm awaiting an answer back from Arima again.
BUT.... I decided to call eMachines (just hung up the phone actually), and have confirmed 2 more product voiding points, where they won't support your laptop.
1.) Flashing the Bios (I was told and I quote, "that flashing the bios can damage the laptop, and the only updates they have, are ones they have, and they don't provide them." When I asked if I could send my laptop in for them to flash, I was told, "No".) I explained that the bios updates are made by system manufacturers, and are for the purpose of fixing known problems/limitations, and for future software/hardware support. I also explained that there is a known issue with CPU and XP that affects the speed when running on batteries, and the new update is suppose to address that issue. Again, I was told "sorry, we don't support it, it'll damage the machine" (friggin' morons!)
2.) Changing your OS from the factory installed, rather it's to Windows XP Pro, ME, 98, etc... since it wasn't the OS provided and installed.
"So, it looks like the only bios updates we'll get is each time they release a new laptop built on the same system specs.
PS: The only plus side, is as of about 2 weeks ago, I'm told that now under the manufacturers warranty, that the "cracked hinge" problem is covered, and no longer considered a "cosmetic defect"."
Kinda messed up customer support?! I would like to update the BIOS... but I'm afraid to botch it.