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RAM Query

Posted on 2003-11-25
Medium Priority
Last Modified: 2013-11-10
i have 2x 512 M of RAM which i added 1
> > them and the other was already in. i have heard that different speeds could

> > the problem. is this right? i have tried booting my pc up without anything
> that
> > wasnt in there apart from the ram i added, all to no avail. ps: i bought a
> 520W
> > psu thinking this was the problem as per last time. i have also tried
> > monitor. the reason i dont call out the technician is that they only say
> > will be out between 9 and 5 and i have to work, so fat lot of good the
> warranty
> > is to me.
could you please help me? would really appreciate it. jeff
Question by:jt6572
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LVL 32

Expert Comment

ID: 9819037
Hi jt6572,

What motherboard are you using, are you sure it supports 1Gb internal memmory?
What kind of memmory is this?
Is the second one slower than the firs one?

Please give some more information...



Expert Comment

ID: 9819608
hi jt6572,

you can try out to test your RAM if you wanted to,


Expert Comment

ID: 9820169
Hi JT6572,

What operating system are you using?  Windows 98 (as well as Windows 95) only support up to 512 mb's of RAM.  If you go over this number, the increase in RAM will actually slow down your system rather than having benefits.  Windows 2000 and XP support and use over 512 mb's

Lucf is correct in that your motherboard might not support 1 GB of RAM.  Check your documentation or look for release notes on the website of the motherboard manufactuer.

What exactly is the problem?  Is the computer not detecting the other 512 mb or is it simply not booting? From your description of you buying a new psu and swapping the monitor, it seems the computer does not boot at all with the two ram sticks.  Does it boot when you have the original 512 ram stick in it?

Be warned that if you have purchased RAM that is slower than the existing module you had, the ram will not work correctly. My recommendation is to take out the stick which was in the computer and take it to the store where you purchased the second stick.  Have them check it to make sure the ram are of the same type and are compatible.

Good luck,

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LVL 13

Expert Comment

ID: 9823009
I'm trying to understand the problem as well.  Is your PC not booting?  If so, is it giving any beep codes?  Any signal to monitor?  Anything.

We need more to go on, in order to give advice.

thanks Jeff,


Expert Comment

ID: 9824126
RAM sticks need to be the same speed if you want them to work correctly together.

You can discover if this is the problem by trying 1 stick at a time, if both work individually but do then do NOT work together then they are mismatched and should not be used together.

Also you should note that Windows 95/98/ME do not really like running with more than 512mb of RAM.

Expert Comment

ID: 9825509
If the PC is black and not powering on at all, it can mean several things:

1) Your ram modules are not seated correctly.  They should be firmly connected and only the tops of the gold connectors should be showing.  You should also be able to attach the holding clips on either side.  It is a little bit tricky to install RAM, as it doesn't go into the slot very easily.  Try applying pressure to one side of the stick, attaching the clip, and then applying pressure between the middle and far side of the stick until are able to snap on the other clip.

2) Your store-bought RAM is defective and in the process of trying to get it to work, you may have damaged your original RAM stick.  Are you following eletromagnetic static precautions when working inside the cause, as well as when you are handling the RAM?  If you have not, then you might have damaged both of them.

3) A PCI card or cable has come loose while you were working inside the computer.  Check all cards and connections, especially the power connection from the PSU to the motherboard.

4) This is unlikely, but it could be possible: If the RAM you bought is of two different and incompatible types, you may have caused a short circut to your motherboard.  You also may have caused a short circuted your motherboard while working inside the computer if you did not follow EMS precautions.

Remember, computers need RAM to in order to function, so if the computer is not coming on at all, it is most likely your RAM modules.

Try the step I mentioned above.  Put the original RAM stick back in and boot.  Does it work?  If not, which slots for the original ram stick.  Does it work?  Try the third or fourth slots if you have them.  Once you have tried the original stick and can't get it working again, put the RAM aside and try an entirely new stick of RAM (borrowed from a friend or purchased).  If that RAM works, at least your know your motherboard or other component are ok, but it will be likely that both 512s have gone bad.



Author Comment

ID: 9831221
hey guys,
thanks very much for all the help! i really didnt expect such a great response.
sorry bout the lack of info in the original question; was a badly copied and pasted excerpt from the entire problem.
the problem was that (i am quite sure) that i had placed 2 x 512 sticks of RAM that were different speeds in the mobo and yes, i think i short circuited it in my ignorance. :(  this caused the pc to not boot up at all.
anyway, i moaned to my supplier and they are replacing it now.
but how do you tell the speed of RAM?! they look the same to me!
all i thought was that there were 2 types, not different speeds as well.
anyway, i have learnt a valuable lesson...i will take the one i bought to the same shop and buy another exactly the same.
ps: pc is brand new 2.8GHz P4 on XP.... orig mobo to come, so i dont know what it is.

once again, thanks very much.

Accepted Solution

Auriclus earned 200 total points
ID: 9833336
Hello JT6572,

Their is a wide variety of RAM available, from SDRAM, DDR, Rambus, Dual-Channel DRR, as well and many different speeds among these types of RAM.  RAM can also be ECC, Non-ECC, Buffered, Unbuffered, along with other minor variants.  Given the importance of RAM to the functioning of a system, it's always good practice to try and replace or add RAM which is exactly the same as the existing modules.

RAM markings on the modules are often in code, so it can be difficult to tell what type it is and what speed.  Sometimes you can get this information from the manufactuer's website.  If you know the manufacturer for the motherboard, you can look up the supported types of RAM on their website.

Good luck with the new motherboard.  Please come back to this question and accept the answer of the reply which you think helped you the most.


Author Comment

ID: 9838149
good advice auriclus!

thanks very much to you all, but i must say auriclus put in a herculean effort on a badly worded question and ended up telling me everything i needed.

keep up the good work all!


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