Upgrading laptop from 64MB RAM to 256 or 512MB; Laptop won't boot

Hello I am working on an HP OmniBook XE3, it's a laptop about 4-5 years old. It currently has 64MB PC133 RAM. I am trying to upgrade it to 256 or 512. I have two new 256MB PC133 SO-DIMMs. No matter what combo of both RAM chips, or just one or the other, in either of the two slots, or combining one of the new chips with the old I get the same result - the laptop powers up but I get no display or POST beeps at all.

Help! this needs to go back tomorrow morning.
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zephyr_hex (Megan)DeveloperCommented:
are you sure your original stick of memory is not PC100?
what exact version is your omnibook xe3?
pchservicesINAuthor Commented:
It's an XE3 L

The original chip is PC133 I'm 1,000% positive, lookin at it now... and on a sticker/label inside the laptop when the panel is opened to access the memory banks it says to use PC100 or PC133 RAM.

You're thinking the RAM isn't down clocking or that the lappy can't pick up the new chips @ 133 maybe?
zephyr_hex (Megan)DeveloperCommented:
also, some older computers are really picky about memory.  i have seen some that will not take dual-sided memory (where the black modules are on both sides).  how does the new memory compare to the old memory (are they both single sided, are they the same manufacturer)?

and have you tested the new memory to ensure the sticks are good?
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zephyr_hex (Megan)DeveloperCommented:
there is PC100 and PC100/133 and PC133.
PC133 will not work in a computer that requires PC100, but PC100/133 and PC133 will.

if your computer says pc100 or pc133, then i bet it's PC100... and the sticker should say to use PC100 or PC100/133.
zephyr_hex (Megan)DeveloperCommented:
you can view the specs on your computer at http://www.pny.com.  select the brand, type and model of your computer.

your computer is 133.
so pc100/133 or pc133 should work

my guess is that your laptop is being picky about double sided vs single sided ram...
or perhaps the particular brand.  some memory just wont work in some computers, but works fine in others.

what brand is your current memory, and the new ones?  and is the original memory single sided?  what about the new memory
pchservicesINAuthor Commented:
Yeah the inside sticker says "PC100/133" to be exxact; the good news is that the old RAM is dual-sided. But I bet you're right, the new RAM is just 133 and probably isn't down syncing; I'll buy some older [and more expensive :(  ] RAM in the morning and give it a go, will let you know then, thanks a ton.
pchservicesINAuthor Commented:
Well phooey - I just read your last post... and so the PC133 should work?
...Yeah the old RAM is definatley double sided

Old RAM - MOSEL VITELIC i think is the RAM (this is a European laptop from Scottland, so who knows about all the parts)

New RAM - is 'pqi' brand
pchservicesINAuthor Commented:
I meant to say MOSEL VITELIC is the BRAND not RAM
zephyr_hex (Megan)DeveloperCommented:
hmmm... weird
if the pny website is right, your computer is 133...  strange... because i agree... what makes most sense is that the new memory is not downclocking to pc100...
but it seems that your computer can run at 133 so downclocking is not be the issue.

you've ruled out the double-sided issue...

the only thing left that i can think of is the manufacturer... that your computer just doesnt like the new memory's manufacturer.
or that the new memory is bad (but it's rare to have two bad sticks... one bad stick i could believe... but two... naw...likely not the issue)

you could get pc100/133 and try it out... buy it from a store that has a good return policy like circuit city or best buy... that way, if it doesnt work, you can return it.

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pchservicesINAuthor Commented:
ok, I'll give it a shot tomorrow and we'll see
with laptops, the RAM must match the specs exactly, especially the CAS latency.  Dont use 3 if it calls for 2.5.  Also, most laptop MBs will not take a 256 pair with an existing 64 single.  You will have to toss the 64 module and just use the 256s matched, with the exact specs, for it to work.
Your laptop requires LOW DENSITY memory.
A 256 MB low density module will have 16 chips on it.

Also, when it comes to laptops the front/back compatibility of PC100 and PC133 used in desktops does not always apply.
This is because of the nature/limitations in some of the Intel mobile chipsets.
I have flat out seen warnings that using PC133 in a PC100 laptop will cause Windows protection errors.
Here is one example:
The following link should help you find the correct RAM for your laptop:

PC133 should be fine.

Which OS are you running? If it is Win 98 then you'll probably need to expand the hibernate partition. The manual for this model can be found at http://h20000.www2.hp.com/bc/docs/support/SupportManual/lpi05435/lpi05435.pdf .
The section on adding memory is at page 85.

HP have been known to use non-standard memory, so you need to confirm with your supplier that it is compatible.

Hope this helps

» HP OmniBook xe3-gc Notebook PC
» HP OmniBook xe3-gd Notebook PC
» HP OmniBook xe3-ge Notebook PC
» HP OmniBook xe3-gf Notebook PC

Which one do you have?
zephyr_hex (Megan)DeveloperCommented:
he has omnibook xe3-L
As it turns out the chipset in that model is the 82443ZX chipset which is the same one used in the Gateway laptop I linked you to with the note about about being incompatible with PC-133 memory...
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