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Mixing single sided RAM and double-sided RAM

Discussion in 'Hardware' started by Shawn 2000, Feb 11, 2007.

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  1. Shawn 2000

    Shawn 2000 Thread Starter

    Joined:
    Nov 29, 2003
    Messages:
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    I have a MSI motherboard (MB) with 4 slots for RAM. The MB came with one stick of Corsair Value Select 512MB400 RAM (184-pin DDR). I cannot remember if that stick was single sided or double-sided. I have since purchased and installed 3 more sticks of Corsair VS512MB400 RAM. I do not remember if the first one was single sided or double sided, but the last two were definitely single sided. (I make these purchases on line and don't see the actual stick until it arrives).

    Now I have three out of four DIMM slots installed with with single sided RAM (i.e., one side of the stick does not have any of the black modules). Those sticks reside in DIMM slots 1,2, and 4. The double-sided stick resides in DIMM 3 (that stick has the black modules on both sides).

    The slots for the RAM are color coded as follows: DIMM slots 1 and 3 are green; while DIMMS slots 2 and 4 are purple.

    My computer seems to be fine but, in reading the MSI manual, I noted the following: "Users can install either single- or double-sided modules to meet their own needs. Users may install memory modules of different type and density on different-channel DDR DIMMS. However, memory modules of the same type and density are required while using dual-channel DDR, or instability may happen."

    Even though I have not noticed any instability, would I be well-advised to buy one more stick of the same 512MB Corsair RAM so that all 4 sticks are the same? Or, if I inadvertently get another double-sided stick, can I use the double-sided 512MB sticks in DIMM 1 and DIMM 3 and be safe?

    Any suggestions would be appreciated. Thank you!!
     
  2. jmtechserv

    jmtechserv

    Joined:
    Jan 22, 2007
    Messages:
    42
    Having different configurations of RAM will still work with DDR. However, your
    Motherboard will “downstep to the slowest speed module. Also, you will not have
    The capability of using the RAM in “Duel Channel” mode. They will operate as
    4 single modules with a combined amount
     
  3. Shawn 2000

    Shawn 2000 Thread Starter

    Joined:
    Nov 29, 2003
    Messages:
    6
    Thanks for your response. All of my sticks are 512MB, with one of out of the 4 being double-sided.

    Some quick (admittedly simplistic) questions: What is the benefit of using a dual channel mode? If I get another stick of either single-sided or double-sided RAM, and have slots 1 & 3 using the same sided RAM, and slots 2 & 4 using the same sided RAM, will I then have a dual channel mode?

    My thanks in advance!
     
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