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How do I know what type of RAM is in my computer?


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#1 bit_by_bit

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Posted 16 July 2018 - 08:21 PM

Without physically opening my computer, how can I find what RAM is in my machine?  From the DELL build sheet: DUAL IN-LINE MEMORY MODULE, 1GB, 667MHz, 12X72, 8, 240, 2RX8 --- with that said, I know the size of each DIMM @ 667MHz, 240 pin.  I also learned that Registered and fully buffered memory is not supported.  Other than that, how do I match the correct memory to increase the total RAM?



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#2 britechguy

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Posted 16 July 2018 - 08:41 PM

Take a snapshot with Speccy (www.piriform.com) or CPU-Z (www.cpuid.com).  The latter is more detailed in what it reports and is available in portable form (and I think that Speccy has a portable form, too).


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#3 MadmanRB

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Posted 17 July 2018 - 01:05 PM

There is also looking up the model number of your machine.

Usually the model number is on the front of the machine, simply saying "its a dell" does us no service.

Other than that there is speccy, cpu-z, NZXT CAM, HWinfo

 

Also keep in mind depending on how old your machine is the less RAM it can take, its best to research what hardware you have before doing anything.

If the machine is too old its going to be time to replace it, i mean you dont need state of the art hardware but anything pre 2004 is really pushing it these days due to the heaviness of a lot of modern OS's and 32bit OS support slowly being killed off it may be better to invest some of the money into a newer machine.

Anything post circa 2006 is still considered worthy by modern standards because at least you can run a modern linux on them as opposed to being stuck with windows XP and the hardware running like a slug with windows 10.

Anything that is capable of 64bit and can take at least 4GB of ram is acceptable


Edited by MadmanRB, 17 July 2018 - 01:06 PM.

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#4 bit_by_bit

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Posted 18 July 2018 - 06:29 AM

MadmanRB, thank you -- which of these do you prefer; speccy, cpu-z, NZXT CAM, or HWinfo? PS: this machine is capable of 64bit and can take 4GB of RAM.



#5 bit_by_bit

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Posted 18 July 2018 - 06:51 AM

MadmanRB, I forgot to say the machine is a Dell Precision T3400 Workstation.



#6 Platypus

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Posted 18 July 2018 - 07:18 AM

https://www.dell.com/downloads/ap/products/precn/precision_t3400_au.pdf

 

http://www.crucial.com/usa/en/compatible-upgrade-for/Dell/precision-workstation-t3400

 

https://www.ebay.com/bhp/dell-t3400-memory


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#7 MadmanRB

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Posted 18 July 2018 - 09:46 AM

MadmanRB, thank you -- which of these do you prefer; speccy, cpu-z, NZXT CAM, or HWinfo? PS: this machine is capable of 64bit and can take 4GB of RAM.

 

Speccy is preferred as it has the capability of giving fully detailed system specs and has a nice way of posting screenshots to the web

 

https://www.ccleaner.com/speccy

 

https://www.ccleaner.com/docs/speccy/using-speccy/publishing-a-speccy-profile-to-the-web

 

As for your hardware if what you said is accurate than your system is capable of taking 8GB a pretty amazing feat for machines at the time.

 

I would get 4GB as 4 gigs is reasonable, if you are willing to trust ebay you could get 8 gigs and that would work just fine.

8 gigs would put it more in line with modern standards.

 

Now one other thing to consider popping into this machine:

 

Put in a SSD, your machine seems to have a lot of internal SATA connectors so that means you have an avenue to add in a SSD

 

A SSD will drastically help boot time and the general performance of your machine.

 

SSD's are much faster than standard platter drives as they are essentially flash drives, no moving parts inside just some microchips involved.

One could use the SSD as the main OS drive and use the platter drive for storage, high capacity SSD's are still very expensive so its better to use both.

 

Its a very worthwhile upgrade as even if your machine dies the SSD is transferable to a new machine, SSD's have recently gotten quite cheaper and one can pick up a decent one for around $70 and not a bad investment I may add:

 

https://www.amazon.com/dp/B071KGRXRH/ref=twister_B078W32YBV?_encoding=UTF8&psc=1

 

https://www.amazon.com/SanDisk-240GB-Solid-State-SDSSDA-240G-G26/dp/B01F9G43WU/ref=pd_sbs_147_1?_encoding=UTF8&pd_rd_i=B01F9G43WU&pd_rd_r=8445a292-8a9b-11e8-8055-c563715e95aa&pd_rd_w=5wcaQ&pd_rd_wg=3iLIM&pf_rd_i=desktop-dp-sims&pf_rd_m=ATVPDKIKX0DER&pf_rd_p=8702255303818932494&pf_rd_r=WXPXNNR8JYAGGG4M7RQS&pf_rd_s=desktop-dp-sims&pf_rd_t=40701&psc=1&refRID=WXPXNNR8JYAGGG4M7RQS&dpID=41s38USpyiL&preST=_SY300_QL70_&dpSrc=detail

 

Now you would need a adapter for it but those are ultra cheap:

https://www.amazon.com/Corsair-Mounting-Bracket-drive-CSSD-BRKT1/dp/B0090UG55A

 

So yeah something to consider.


Edited by MadmanRB, 18 July 2018 - 10:07 AM.

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#8 britechguy

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Posted 18 July 2018 - 10:14 AM

I'll be the contrarian in terms of preferring CPU-Z over Speccy if all I'm looking for is info on the RAM that is currently installed.

 

I love Speccy to death, but its reports are really long and RAM details are buried near the end.  If you have the snapshot open in a web browser (try this one:  http://speccy.piriform.com/results/snkDMtpR7QcY2EAJHR7TxZp) and try searching on "RAM" you'll find it's a PITA to get to what you want quickly.

 

Compare that to this:

 

cpu-z_memorytab.jpg 

 

and CPU-Z runs much more quickly than Speccy does because it's not getting tons of data extraneous to what you're actually looking for in this specific situation.

 

I'm all about picking the tool for the task, and in this case Speccy is overkill.


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#9 MadmanRB

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Posted 18 July 2018 - 10:31 AM

well both tools have their applications, though yeah speccy is a bit less accurate than CPU-Z but it is more thorough


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#10 britechguy

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Posted 18 July 2018 - 10:36 AM

well both tools have their applications, though yeah speccy is a bit less accurate than CPU-Z but it is more thorough

 

I'm not arguing that Speccy is not more thorough, just that it's overkill for answering the question posed and more difficult to sift through the results to find the actual details that are being sought.

 

If all I want is to know what type of memory is currently installed in my system I simply would not go the Speccy route because I hate having to sift through tons of useless (in context) data.


Brian  AKA  Bri the Tech Guy (website in my user profile) - Windows 10 Home, 64-Bit, Version 1809, Build 17763 

     Presenting the willfully ignorant with facts is the very definition of casting pearls before swine.

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#11 bit_by_bit

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Posted 06 August 2018 - 01:53 PM

Thanks to all that replied! Platypus (or anybody,) in the DELL t3400_au.pdf above - it states: 

Four DIMM slots support up to 8GB1 dual-channel2 DDR2 800MHz or 667MHz non-ECC

and ECC memory

 

1 The total amount of available memory will be less than 4GB. The amount less depends on the actual

system configuration.

 

So is installing 8GB overkill? Thanks!



#12 britechguy

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Posted 06 August 2018 - 06:04 PM

Regardless of what the print documentation says (or it's equivalent, a PDF) it may or may not be accurate based on exactly when the device was produced versus when the documentation was produced.

 

I have never, ever, had the Crucial System Scanner give me anything but 100% accurate information about what is currently resident in my system memory wise (as well as the slots used) and what the maximum is that it can effectively use using all available slots.  The information it gives you is "memory applicable" no matter what maker you might choose for said memory modules.


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     Presenting the willfully ignorant with facts is the very definition of casting pearls before swine.

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#13 Platypus

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Posted 07 August 2018 - 09:17 AM

I think much the same as britechguy. At the time of release of the documentation for the Intel X38 Express chipset used, the memory density available allowed up to 8GB to be supported. The datasheet says:
 
"Using 1 Gb device technologies, the largest memory capacity possible is 8 GB, assuming Dual Channel Mode with four x8 double sided un-buffered non-ECC or ECC DIMM memory configurations.
Note: The ability to support greater than the largest memory capacity is subject to availability of higher density memory devices."

Crucial is normally very accurate in their information, so the fact they quote 16GB capacity indicates to me that they have experimentally confirmed 16GB of the right type of memory will work. Obtaining that memory is a different matter, and the default kits offered deliver the maximum standard 8GB complement from 2 kits. Selecting the option of more brings up some very expensive 4GB memory that is out of stock...

There are not a lot of applications where the average user will get any benefit from having over 8GB of RAM.


Edited by Platypus, 07 August 2018 - 09:25 AM.

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