Tuesday, October 21, 2008

COMPUTERS - Memory Upgrades

The thing to remember whenever you want to upgrade you system's memory (RAM) is that the memory "stick" (DIMM) MUST be and EXACT match to your motherboard.

Also, the ONLY authority on what RAM to use is the manufacturer of your motherboard. Do not go by a sales-rep recommendations, they are not technicians.

In addition written specifications can be short of very important information. Two examples of Full memory specifications follow:

1GB, DDR2, PC2-4200, ECC, Registered
128Meg x 64, 240 Pin, DDR533, 1.8v, CL=2.5

1GB, DDR2, PC2-4200, ECC, Registered, Fully Buffered
128Meg x 72, 240 Pin, DDR533, 2.5v, CL=2.5

Both of these DIMMs could NOT be installed on my previous motherboard because it was not compatible with "Registered" memory. If I had purchased memory through normal sources, where they did NOT list "Registered" in their specifications, I could have bought the wrong memory.

The best-practice is to use a tool to scan you motherboard and tell you what memory is compatible with your motherboard.

One such tools is available on 4AllMemory's site (see sidebar). You use [Check My System] and they download a small, temporary, applet that scans your motherboard and returns a WEB page showing you what you already have installed, open memory slots, and a list of compatible memory upgrades.

The returned-page will list the actual motherboard memory part number for well known motherboards. For my MSI motherboard, they actually listed the MSI memory part number.

By the way, I was pointed to 4AllMemory by corporate IT.

No comments: