Old PC says it can take 2Gb of memory, but only sees 1Gb

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StoneAgeMan

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In Brief: I have an old PC (2006), that says it can support up to 2Gb of memory, but only had 512Mb installed. I put two 1Gb modules in but the POST only "sees" two 512 Mb. I have Flashed the BIOS to the latest version. Have I missed something?

Details:
PC is a shop-bought, low-spec model from PCWorld (UK retail chain), in 2006. The make is a brand exclusive to that chain.
Ei Systems 204
Intel Celeron D 356 (3.33GHz)
512 MB DDR2 memory
80 GB Hard drive storage
Unicrome Pro 3D/2D Graphics & Video integrated
Windows XP SP2 (now SP3)

Motherboard is a Foxconn P4M800P7MB which says in the manual;
System Memory
· Two 240-pin DIMM slots
· Supports DDR2 533/400 memory
· Supports 128 Mb/256 Mb/512 Mb/1 Gb technology up to 2GB
The memory modules that I bought were Kingston ValueRam KVR533D2N4/1G, 1Gb PC2 - 4200 CL4 240-pin DIMM, see the specs page here (pdf).
 

StoneAgeMan

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Jun 11, 2008
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What could cause this? Is there anything in a BIOS that I could change on the menu?
 

StoneAgeMan

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I think I've been quite careful to choose the right memory. I checked with CrucialScan and the online resources of the Computer manufacturer, the Motherboard manufacturer and the Memory manufacturer. That doesn't mean I got it right though. :).

Crucial.com System scan says
Our System Scanner couldn't make a complete match, but we can still help you find the right memory upgrade.
Then prompts to enter the manufacturer, Product Line and Model.

Further down the page it says;
The following is a list of what our scan was able to detect:
System Manufacturer: P4M80P
System Model: AWRDACPI
Motherboard Manufacturer: Foxconn
Motherboard Model: P4M800P7MB
Then it describes my system as:
Maximum Memory Capacity: 1048576 MB
Currently Installed Memory: 1024 MB
Available Memory Slots: N.A.
Total Memory Slots: 2
Dual Channel Support: N.A.
CPU Manufacturer: GenuineIntel
CPU Family: Intel(R) Celeron(R) D CPU 3.33GHz Model 6, Stepping 4
CPU Speed: 3319 MHz
Interestingly it shows two 512MB modules installed, DDR PC2-5200. Which is odd, as they are both 1GB PC2-4200.



If I follow the Crucial search function, when I enter the Manufacturer, etc. it takes me on a little journey. "Ei System" as manufacturer gets models 203 and 205, but not 204. "Foxconn" as manufacturer gets a list of motherboards, but not my one. So in this case, Crucial was slightly less than useful.

Checks that I made on the Foxconn site, and the Kingston site, were more... authoritative?... but brought me to this same place.

Kingston showed the following memory modules as being suitable for that motherboard;
Part Number Description
KVR400D2N3/256 256MB 400MHz DDR2 Non-ECC CL3 DIMM
KVR400D2N3/512 512MB 400MHz DDR2 Non-ECC CL3 DIMM
KVR400D2N3/1G 1GB 400MHz DDR2 Non-ECC CL3 DIMM
KVR533D2N4/256 256MB 533MHz DDR2 Non-ECC CL4 DIMM
KVR533D2N4/512 512MB 533MHz DDR2 Non-ECC CL4 DIMM
KVR533D2N4/1G 1GB 533MHz DDR2 Non-ECC CL4 DIMM
 

flavallee

Frank
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StoneAgeMan

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You may have bought single-sided instead of double-sided modules - which is why they show 512 MB instead of 1024 MB(1 GB).--
Funny you mention that. Someone else said to me "As a first guess I would say your motherboard doesn´t support double sided RAM sticks. (banks on each side of the stick)", which could have been the problem if my memory had been double-sided, but it is single-sided. None of the manufacturers or memory scanners talk about how to specify whether the memory modules are single- or double-sided.
 

flavallee

Frank
Trusted Advisor
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82,507
If you get a matched set of double-sided 1 GB modules, I think you'll be alright.

-----------------------------------------------------------------
 

StoneAgeMan

Thread Starter
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Jun 11, 2008
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An update for the curious.
I received another memory module from Kingston (via Amazon.co.uk), which is labelled as the same product, yet it has all different SDRAM packages on the board and the board itself is a different size (height). When I saw it I thought my prayers would be answered for sure. All the websites suggest that the type of memory I bought is the correct type, maybe just the slim version is more densely packed and the motherboard can't read it... well, sadly, the Mobo couldn't read this one at all. On its own in slot 1, or slot 2, the PC wouldn't boot. Also wouldn't boot if the wide card was in one slot and the slim card was in another.

After getting some input from the forums, which has helped me to better understand what is goin on, I have now raised fault reports on the websites for Foxconn and Kingston. I'll let you know how that goes.
 
Joined
Oct 13, 2003
Messages
3,033
just as an FYI, I had a similar problem to get more memory. Cruical helped a bit, since my motherboard is also old and no-name. I ended up finding a LEXAR 1 GB with numbers, that Cruical recommended,
Both Lexar packages from the same store, same day, same descriptions, but they do look different. I had to switch them in the slots until BIOS recognized them. I did not do anything to BIOS>

Except my computer does not run any faster or better. I guess the Celerons (mine is the same as yours) aren't doing anything but what they want disregarding memory.
 
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