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Old 21-11-2005, 11:07 AM   #1   [permalink]
vlakorados
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Thumbs up Installing RAM

Yesterday I got fed up with my measley 256MB and ordered a GB of RAM. I know it's the right kind so I'm not worried about that. My question for you awesome tech people is: How the heck do I install it in my machine? I'm assuming it's not as easy as the CD burner I installed a while back as I seem to remember some article in Computer Gaming World mentioning something about BIOS or some such junk when you upgrade your memory. Of course that issue came out about a year ago and I don't have it any more...

Anyone wanna walk me through it?
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Last edited by vlakorados; 21-11-2005 at 11:08 AM.
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Old 21-11-2005, 07:36 PM   #2   [permalink]
Schizm
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I thought you just cram it in the slot and that's all there is to it.......Worked for me.

Make sure you wear wool socks and rub your feet on the carpet as you install it.
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Old 22-11-2005, 12:55 AM   #3   [permalink]
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Originally Posted by Schizm
I thought you just cram it in the slot and that's all there is to it.......Worked for me.

Make sure you wear wool socks and rub your feet on the carpet as you install it.
Hahaha I'll take pictures.
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Old 23-11-2005, 01:41 AM   #4   [permalink]
raynebc
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Wear whatever you want (not anything that will drape onto your computer parts though), as long as you have a wriststrap that grounds you to the computer's case. A table is recommended. The memory is keyed to only fit one way on any modern computer they still manufacture memory for. Don't push the memory in any direction except a 90 degree angle towards the motherboard, most of the time, there are little holders on the side that will snap into place on the corners of the memory stick so you know it's in. Brace the back of the motherboard (underneath where you are pressing from the other side) so you don't bend it (you might have to push the memory harder than you think to get it to go in), and try not to touch any metal parts of the top of the motherboard, I think the bottom is OK, I think the bottom just has solder, but I could be wrong about that. If you buy a memory stick, it should have detailed instructions that came with it.

Last thing, put the largest memory stick in the first memory bank, and your smaller one in the second one. It's labeled as 0 or something, or in any case, labeled one number lower than the other. It's an issue with some motherboards, and if you put the smaller one in the first slot, it will recognize your 256MB as the largest capacity memory stick in your system, wasting the rest of your gigabyte stick.
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Old 23-11-2005, 10:34 AM   #5   [permalink]
vlakorados
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Excellent. Thank you very much.

Now I just have to wait for the mailman. *fingers crossed*

**UPDATE**
Damn, that was easier than I thought. 0_o

tears of happiness --> T_T
programs are so fast now...
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Old 23-11-2005, 08:55 PM   #6   [permalink]
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Windows XP only whined at me once about not having enough memory, and that was after having half a dozen web pages open, and transferring a couple torrent files at the same time, listening to Jpop. I only have 256MB, that's the kicker.
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Old 29-11-2005, 11:19 PM   #7   [permalink]
SamIam
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Originally Posted by raynebc
Windows XP only whined at me once about not having enough memory, and that was after having half a dozen web pages open, and transferring a couple torrent files at the same time, listening to Jpop. I only have 256MB, that's the kicker.
The thing is that the recommended amount of ram (of 512 megs) is from a performance standpoint, not a functional one. I've actually gotten XP to run on 64 megs just to see what would happen ... basically it just pages it self to death.

So, 256 megs should work but odds are that 512 will work faster and more efficiently with less wear on your hdd.
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Old 30-11-2005, 12:50 PM   #8   [permalink]
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I'm waiting for some rebates, but when I get them, I'm going to buy a GB stick of memory. That will end my problems, except that the free space on my XP partition is too small to make a page file big enough for XP's preference (1.5 times physical memory). I guess I can always resize the partition to give it another GB or two of free space. But I don't think there's any chance that I'll actually ever use the entire 1GB+256MB of memory with any normal use of my computer (except maybe a memory leak). So the page file shouldn't be used that much.
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Old 10-12-2005, 01:24 AM   #9   [permalink]
hakai
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Hey Raynebc, I heard that some motherboards have problems if your install memory not in even numbers. Is that really true?
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Old 10-12-2005, 08:20 PM   #10   [permalink]
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For regular memory, I don't it usually is, but you might want to check your motherboard documentation.

There are other considerations, for example Rambus memory slots require you to fill all the memory slots with Rambus RAM, or you have to put a special continuity module in each of the empty slots to get it to work right, some kind of physical requirement of that kind of memory.

But for the most common RAM (DDR), I don't have to have a pair, I only have one stick installed. But again, check your motherboard documentation before making a decision, it would tell you of any such requirement.
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Old 12-01-2006, 07:14 PM   #11   [permalink]
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On motherboards that accept dual channel RAM you tend to have two timing options in the BIOS. You can run them at a command rate of 1T if they are in paired sets, and if they are out of synch or unpaired they must run at 2T.

Quote:
Command Rate: This is the setting that selects the speed of the SDRAM signal controller. If set to 1T, then the memory controller is running in synchronization with your bus speed. 1T will increase your memory bandwidth but a LOT of memory brands will really have trouble running this at decent speeds. This setting will have to be played with a LOT while your increasing your FSB speed. It does in fact increase your memory bandwidth but will often lower your max bus speed so much that it just isn't worth using.
EDIT: And it seems I'm only about 1 month late for this discussion.
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Old 13-01-2006, 04:04 PM   #12   [permalink]
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I don't know anything about dual channel memory, because my computer doesn't support it. About the number of memory modules required, I was studying it a little, older memory modules didn't have a large enough data path to match that of the processor. Example:

30 pin SIMM has an 8 bit data path
72 pin SIMM has a 32 bit data path
168 pin DIMM has a 64 bit data path

A 486 processor's data path is 32 bit, and if you're using a motherboard that old, you would have to use either 4 30 pin SIMMs or a single 72 pin SIMM, depending on what kind the motherboard supported.

A pentium's data path is 64 bit. So depending on what kind of memory the motherboard supports (some allowed you to use either kind at the same time), use 2 72 pin SIMMs to fill a memory bank, or a single DIMM.

That's how the number of modules came about, but now it isn't a requirement if you use DIMM, which is the most common kind anyway. You can just put in one at a time without having to worry about it. You just have to worry about whether you're using high density or low density, and what speed you're using.
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Old 14-01-2006, 01:40 PM   #13   [permalink]
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Bad memory? Right kind of memory?
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Old 15-01-2006, 11:05 AM   #14   [permalink]
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Memtest 86 to the rescue.
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Old 24-03-2006, 06:42 PM   #15   [permalink]
raynebc
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On a similar note, I just installed a half-gig memory module in my P4. It will go a LONG way to improving the system performance until I replace the motherboard and processor. And even better, I got PC3200, so I'll throw it in my new mobo when I buy it.

Check out buyaib.com for some awesome prices for memory. I got 512MB of low density (most compatible) PC3200 dual-channel capable memory for a measly $34. They test the memory for you, give you a year warranty, and even ship USPS for FREE. You really can't beat a deal like that. They have options where you can pay a bit more and get name brand memory (slightly less latency, longer/lifetime warranty). My memory arrived today after ordering just shy of a week ago, I highly recommend this company to buy memory from!

I called some local stores and asked if they sell low-density memory. Pretty much all of them said it's rare (whatever) and expensive (whatever). One of the small local businesses I called said they could special order a 128MB of low density for only $80. I rubbed it in their face that I'd buy 4x as much memory online instead for less than half as much.

edit: I forgot to mention that for that price, they included a copper heat-spreader as well. Extra points in my book.
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