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Upgrading Ram


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#1 MarieW

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Posted 25 September 2007 - 10:24 AM

Hi if this topic has been discussed before I apologise now and hope someone points me in the right direction to read up on it if not I hope someone can give me some advice.
I am trying to increase the RAM in my computer from 512 (2 x 256) to 1gb,at the moment trying 2 x 512 but considering 1 x 1gb.
The problem is apart from being a little slow and not having quite enough to run some software the 2 x DDR256 PC2700 333MhZ RAM are working fine, but wanting that little more oomph I decided to increase the RAM to 1gb.
I bought my computer from a Computer Fair quite cheap at the time so dont know too much about the motherboard. There are 2 slots for RAM, and I had heard that it was best to balance the slots by putting the same type of RAM in each slot, so this is what I have tried to do.
The first lot of RAM I bought niether would work together which ever slot they were in. I tried them each on there own in each slot and one would not work at all ie no boot up and the other would only boot up the computer not the moniter and would only start up the moniter if I put one of the old 256 RAM next to it.
So I put the old 256 back in and exchanged both 512 RAM for new 512, but the 2 new ones just didn't work at all what ever I did.
I have done all the safety ie anti static so as not to "Zap" the RAM so to speak but I handled the 512 the same as the 256 and the 256 is still performing fine so I am not sure what to do next.
I have heard that sometimes it can work better with 1 RAM stick ie 1gb, sometimes motherboards can be sensitive and prefer a certain brand or that some motherboards wont recognise above a certain size ie 256 or have I been listening to too many old geeks tales or urban blips :thumbsup:

I really hope someone can help Many Thanks Marie

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#2 M...

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Posted 25 September 2007 - 10:52 AM

Hello MarieW,

You might first try Crucial. Click on the link below (it is for the U.K.) and under "Memory Upgrades" (on the left) click on the blue "Scan My System" button to run the the Crucial System Scanner tool. If it can successfully identify your system, it will tell you what memory is currently installed and what options you have for upgrade/replacement/expansion.

http://www.crucial.com/uk/

#3 MarieW

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Posted 25 September 2007 - 11:23 AM

Thanks M... I have tried that now and there doesn't seem a problem with upgrading, it is suggesting that I take it up to 2gb straight away but cannot see why there was a problem with the 512 but I will try that, dont know if you have any other suggestions

#4 M...

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Posted 25 September 2007 - 11:38 AM

It might be that some property of the memory sticks you orginally purchased was not compatible with your system. For example, some mother boards require "non-ECC" memory and they may not operate at all with "ECC" memory. The Crucial tool should at least tell you what is compatible with your system and offer you the appropriate options. Also note that in the results area, there is a list of questions you might have about adding/replacing memory (e.g., "Do I need to install pairs of memory sticks?", etc.). Click those questions to see the answers pertaining to your particular system.

EDIT: Also note that if you purchase the memory from Crucial, selecting only from the choices presented by their scanner, they have a money-back guarantee on what you purchase. I mention this only because some other vendor may tell that their memory is compatible (e.g., non-ECC or whatever), but they may miss one important aspect of the constraints imposed by the mother board in your computer.

Edited by M..., 25 September 2007 - 11:46 AM.


#5 MarieW

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Posted 25 September 2007 - 11:59 AM

Thank you you have been really helpful :thumbsup:

#6 WinCrazy

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Posted 25 September 2007 - 12:02 PM

Hi MarieW.

Computers sold at fairs are almost always built by hand. This means that the motherboard is from a company like Abit, Asus, Gigabyte, etc. The point is that if you can find the make and model of the mobo then you can download the User Manual .PDF file right from the manufacturer. They will say what kind of RAM should be used for that motherboard.

PC2700 DDR memory is not being manufactuered any more. It is actually cheaper to by PC3200 DDR memory instead. It will work fine, but your mobo will only run it at the PC2700 speed, 333MHz. This is OK.

Download and run Everest Home 2.2 (Free). Click on Motherboard. Your mobo make and model should be listed there.

For double-checking purposes, download and run HWiNFO32 to see if the 2 programs agee on their identification.

Post back with the make and model and we'll go from there.

I haope you kept your receipts for the RAM you bought...

Edited by WinCrazy, 25 September 2007 - 12:03 PM.


#7 DaChew

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Posted 25 September 2007 - 01:37 PM

in a custom build computer, bios is often set with manual timings for the ram, premium 333 cas 2 ram

now if you bought cheap 400 ram it would be cas 3 and might not run at cas 2 if the memory speed was set to 333

premium cas 2 400 ram would run

the everest computer/overclock will show what settings are being applied to the ram, bios will show if it's set for manual cas

you could go into bios and change the settings to auto and check the 512's out

best way to upgrade is to post the everest report, have it analyzed then buy ram from a reputable source only
Chewy

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#8 WinCrazy

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Posted 25 September 2007 - 06:37 PM

The vast, vast majority of PC users could never tell the performance difference between running RAM at CL-2.0 verses CL-3.0. It's just not important. There are too many other system factors that swamp the effect of that RAM speed change.

#9 DaChew

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Posted 25 September 2007 - 09:37 PM

I would think whether a computer would boot or not, as the orignal poster specified might be a significant factor.

Something anyone would notice.

matching ram is a more foolproof method than playing pin the tail on the donkey
Chewy

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