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SDRam not working...any ideas?

Posted on 1998-12-30
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Last Modified: 2013-11-10
I have a motherboard with the i430vx chipset, which supports both SIMMs and DIMMs. It uses an AWARD BIOS. My CPU is a p166.

I'm trying to replace my 48MB of EDO RAM with one 64MB DIMM.
I removed the old RAM, installed the DIMM (which is PC 100 compliant), and set the jumper on the motherboard to the 3.3v position.

However, when I boot with the DIMM in, my system just beeps. I had a similar problem with a DIMM when I tried once before, and am wondering if I'm missing some kind of jumper setting or BIOS setting or something. Or am I using the wrong kind of DIMM?

Any input on this would be appreciated greatly.
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Question by:magitek
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by:larbel
ID: 1014347
You shouldn't have set the jumpers to 3.3V, the voltage jumper is for your CPU!  Set it back to 3.4/5V where it was in the first place.  You don't need to set voltage for Ram!!!
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by:magitek
ID: 1014348
As written in my motherboard manual:

7. Synchronous DRAM ( SDRAM JP7 ) must set to 3.3V position
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by:khemicals
ID: 1014349
Larbel:
SDRAM does need a voltage set unless it is auto configured.

Magitek:
in some systems they require the memory to be in a particular location.. bank 0... try moving the RAM to bank 0
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by:larbel
ID: 1014350
Sorry guys, I did jump into conclusion having just answered a similar question...

Magitek, can you verify with another machine to see if the DIMMs' good?
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by:SAGWAYMAN
ID: 1014351
Did you remove all the EDO before you put the SDRAM in? if not you may have damaged the SDRAM (see similar question: http://www.experts-exchange.com/Q.10100681 )

Also, Do you know if your motherboard requires low density/double faced dimms. In which case it cannot use the high density/single faced dimm that 64mg you have probably IS (because most ARE).

IN WHICH CASE your answer is, place new 32mg (double sided/low density) in BOTH of your dimm slots and see if that don't do it for ya.
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by:SAGWAYMAN
ID: 1014352
reference:  low/high/single/double faced typs of SDRAM see similar question:
     http://www.experts-exchange.com/Q.10112647

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Author Comment

by:magitek
ID: 1014353
SAGWAYMAN, your answer sounds reasonable, and I'll be sure to try what you've stated.

I'll post again if it turns out to be the solution to the problem, and if that's the case please post your answer again and I'll be sure to award you the points.

In the mean time I'd like to keep the question open for more feedback

Thanks
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Author Comment

by:magitek
ID: 1014354
Also, I did make sure I removed all the EDO RAM before installing the SDRam.

As my motherboard is somewhat old, however, it could require the low density/double faced dimms.

Do all 32MB DIMMs come like that, or is there something special I need to look for on packing and what not?

Thanks again!
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by:SAGWAYMAN
ID: 1014355
How to tell by looking at the product description is the rub. I'm going/been through the same thing. I just finshed looking at ads with a new eye. Now I'm guessing that if it says "P100" that's the High density. If it say's "66mhz SDRAM" that's the Low density.
You can tell with the dimm in your hand easily. If it's got real thin chips on just one side, it's HD. If it's got chubby chips on BOTH sides, it's LD.
The only way to be sure in advance is to ASK the Vendor.
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by:magitek
ID: 1014356
The RAM I purchased only has chips on one side.
I've emailed the Centon tech support department (brand of RAM I purchased), with my problem and your idea on it. I'll be sure to post their reply.

Thanks again,

Jared
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by:SAGWAYMAN
ID: 1014357
Whoops. my bad, Chubby chips are EDO RAM. The single or double sided rule still applies however.
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by:syzygy
ID: 1014358
Make sure it's not 4 clock SDRAM... most older systems only take 2 clock.  if you have EDO slots as well, it's quite likely this is the case with your MBD

My MBD (Tyan TX) takes both EDO and SDRAM, and manages to work with both together fine, but will only use 2 clock RAM.  (2 cloack can be a little tricky to find, most new RAM is 4 clock)

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by:SAGWAYMAN
ID: 1014359
siiiigh.... first "High Density" vs "Low Density" then "Simple-Faced" vs "Double-faced" NOW "2 clock" vs "4 clock" dose ANYONE know any terms for this stuff that's ACTUALLY used in COMMON PRODUCT DESCRIPTIONS?? Might I suggest that everyone here please review the the question history (link to follow), it also contains links to TWO very helpful FAQ links on this exact subject. { http://www.experts-exchange.com/Q.10100681 }
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by:SAGWAYMAN
ID: 1014360
syzygy: don't get me wrong, "2 clock" or "4 clock" may well be another good tip.  Thanks.
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by:Icey
ID: 1014361
Check that the dimm is seated correctly. If it is.....
If your using a p166 your board probably doesn't have a 100Mhz bus on your motherboard.
The PC100 Dram may not work with your slower motherboard. Try exchanging it for the regular 64 SDRAM, it will probably save you a few bucks as well.

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by:istal112898
ID: 1014362
I think that you need to get a different type of memory. I do not understand why you are using PC-100 in a system that do not support it. depending on the kind you use. Single density memory as the one you have will not work in the future if you upgrade to a BX motherboard. type. also, the timing of the memory you bought it is not supported by your motherboard which is a 430VX chipset. PC-100 runs 4-1-1-1 or 5-1-1-1 , like your motherboard might not go as high as that it will need a 66mhz type of memory in order to work correctly. my belief is that the memory will work in a modern motherboard but not in yours. so you need is to return it and get a DIMM 66MHZ that runs with a timing of 3-2-2-2. also, make sure, that you get 10ns. your system might not support 8ns or lower as well. PC100 run at 8ns or lower. (the real PC100). so exchange it for another one.
check this article : http://www.tomshardware.com/guides/ram.html
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by:rmarotta
ID: 1014363
magitek,
I don't think that answer is entirely correct.  The faster-rated PC-100 DIMM will work just fine with a slower clock frequency.

I don't know how to determine what you have, but I've seen references to 2-clock vs. 4-clock motherboard compatibility before:

Q: What is the difference with the 2 clock and 4 clock operation on a SDRAM module?

A: A 4 clock module is designed to support 4 clock motherboards where the loading of the synchronous RAMs are spread out over 4 clock lines. Some of the early versions of the VX and TX motherboards used a 2 clock interface and therefore will only accept 2 clock SDRAM modules.

Q: What motherboards can use SDRAM?

A: Most motherboards based on Intel’s VX, TX, LX EX, BX and the new GX chip set are configured to use SDRAM DIMMs. Additionally there are Digital based motherboards that use the Pyxis chipset and of course the chip sets supporting the K6 and Cyrix processors - VIA, and SIS. We have a cross reference to many of the major motherboard manufacturers for your review.

Source:  http://www.corsairmicro.com/sdramfaq.htm

Regards,
Ralph
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Author Comment

by:magitek
ID: 1014364
Good idea, but I'd like as much feedback as possible.

Please post only comments, and when I solve the problem I'll be sure to post who has the correct answer so that they can answer it and I can award points

Thanks,

Jared
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by:syzygy
ID: 1014365
AFAIK SDRAM is dived into 4 major types:

2 clock 66 Mhz
2 clock 100 Mhz
4 clock 66 Mhz
4 clock 100 Mhz

4 clock ram will not work in 2 clock boards.  2 clock ram will work in 4 clock boards providing all ram is 2 clock. (you cant mix)

Most 66 MHz buses with run 100 Mhz RAM (at 66 Mhz) but I know of at least one board that requires a BIOS patch to be able to do this.  VX (being a bit older) may not be able to take 100 Mhz at all...
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Author Comment

by:magitek
ID: 1014366
This was my reply from Centon tech support:

Your problem stems from the fact that the Intel i430VX chipset can not see more than 32MB of SDRAM memory per socket. This part will not work in your system. The most you can use is two 32MB modules. If you would like to go any higher than this, you will have to use EDO memory in either SIMM's or DIMM's.

==
It seems as if SAGWAYMAN had the correct answer to this question. If you please post your answer I'll be sure to award points.

Thanks,

Jared


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Accepted Solution

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SAGWAYMAN earned 110 total points
ID: 1014367
I learned as much as anybody. I had PART of the right answer "IN A FORM". If I could, (if it was me) I'd give it to the Centron tech.) my,

A.) Put a (NEW or known good) 32mg (SDRAM DIMM) in each bank. =64mg. Best Case.  
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