cancel
Showing results for 
Search instead for 
Did you mean: 

Memory Compatibility

N/A

Memory Compatibility

I recently bought 1GB DDR 1 RAM PC 3200 DDR 400 MHZ off Ebay. I checked before buying it on http://www.crucial.com for compatibility with my motherboard and got the following result.

http://www.crucial.com/uk/store/listparts.aspx?model=GA%2D8IE533

After installing it my machine began to randomly crash.

I emailed the seller telling him that the memory I bought appeared to have errors and that I would like to return it. He finally, after two attempts in trying to contact him, replied asking what motherboard I used. I emailed him telling him I had a Giga-Byte GA-8IE533. He emailed back saying that my PC runs at ddr266, and to go into my BIOS and change the FSB to 400MHz and that I may need to update my BIOS. I've updated my BIOS with the updates available on the motherboard webpage but am unable to change the FSB to 400MHz.

What I want to know is, is he correct telling me that I need to change my BIOS FSB to 400MHz? I believed that DDR ram was backward compatible and that the speed of the PC3200 would adopt the slower speed of 266MHz.

System Summary of my computer

OS Name: MSXP Pro Service Pack 2
OS: Manufacturer Microsoft Corporation
Motherboard: Giga-Byte GA-8IE533
System Type: X86-based PC
CPU: x86 Family 15 Model 2 Stepping 4 GenuineIntel ~2019 Mhz
BIOS Ver/Date: Award Software Int, Inc. 6.00 PG, 11/11/2002
SMBIOS Version: 2.3
Total Physical Memory: 1,280.00 MB
Available Physical Memory: 749.75 MB
Total Virtual Memory: 2.00 GB
Available Virtual Memory: 1.96 GB
Page File Space: 1.86 GB
Adapter Description: Sapphire RADEON X700
Adapter RAM: 256.00 MB (268,435,456 bytes)
Installed Drivers: ati2dvag.dll
Driver Version: 6.14.10.6601
9 REPLIES
Community Veteran
Posts: 38,307
Thanks: 972
Fixes: 57
Registered: 15-06-2007

Memory Compatibility

I don't know for sure whether the memory is backward compatible although it should be but one thing which may need fixing is the memory timings. It is possible that the timings are too aggressive for your motherboard and need to be backed off.
I would also run memtest to check for memory errors. This version runs within windows
Quote
Instructions for use:

1) Please visit - http://hcidesign.com/memtest/download.html

2) Download the zip file by clicking the 'Memtest.zip' link

3) Save the zip to a suitable location (i.e. Desktop or my documents)

4) Extract the contents (Windows XP users, right click the file then select extract all)

5) Once the files have been extracted, open the new folder and then run the file 'memtest.exe'. Please note this will not install any software on your system

6) Once the program has loaded click 'OK' then 'Start'

The HCI memtest program will now start testing the memory. Please let the program test the memory until it has passed at least 500%. If there are any problems or faults with the memory, HCI memtest will display an prompt with details of the error.
Denzil
Grafter
Posts: 1,733
Registered: 31-07-2007

Memory Compatibility

How much memory in total have you fitted now? This motherboard can accept a maximum of 2G. My PC here at work claims to accept up to 2G, but when I tried to upgrade it recently it kept crashing or refusing to start with 2G, but works fine with 1.75G, as if it is flaky when at the limit.

You can't change a 266MHz MB to a 400MHz by changing BIOS settings - it is a limitation of the hardware. However, in theory faster memory should work in a slower MB, just at the slower speed.

You could also try swapping the memory cards around in different slots - some MBs can be very fussy.
Rich
Grafter
Posts: 184
Registered: 30-07-2007

Memory Compatibility

From your summary you now have 1280Mb installed RAM. I assume that you now have your old RAM (256Mb) plus the RAM purchased on Ebay (1024Mb). My guess is that the two are incompatible.

I suggest trying with the old RAM removed - it may be that the old and the new are incompatible with each other.

Regards
Richard.
N/A

Memory Compatibility

Actually that summary was done when I had the 1Gb ram in but I have since removed it and back to my old two 256Mb sticks. Yes I have tried just the 1Gb stick on its own and in each slot available. I’ve checked the BIOS is up-to-date from the motherboard web page yet the computer and software crashes still occurred about every 20 – 40 mins. I downloaded a copy of memtest86 (www.memtest86.com) and let it run all last night and it came up with 14 errors. Not being an expert on computers or memory I can’t be 100% sure that it is the 1Gb memory module I bought that is faulty, but I think that I’ve done enough to show that it is more than likely it is. I’ve emailed the seller on Ebay again asking him to accept a return and surprise surprise I’ve not got a reply. So now I’ll use the dispute facility on Ebay and provide the seller with some deservedly bad feedback.

I’ll put this down to being my fault for buying cheap ram from a questionable source such as Ebay. I was only saving £8 getting it from Ebay over buying a branded name of ram from a reputable on-line shop. I’ve now possibly lost £40. Hope my loss might help prevent someone else making the same mistakes.

:x

Thanks for everyone who replied to my post.

[Moderator's note by Jonathan (chillypenguin): Full quote of the preceding post removed.]
N/A

Memory Compatibility

im not 100% but it was my belief that if memtest returns any errors then the memory is faulty
Community Veteran
Posts: 38,307
Thanks: 972
Fixes: 57
Registered: 15-06-2007

Memory Compatibility

When my Crucial Memory failed memtest there was an immediate RMA from Crucial - no question at all
Community Veteran
Posts: 14,469
Registered: 30-07-2007

Memory Compatibility

Quote
im not 100% but it was my belief that if memtest returns any errors then the memory is faulty


Not necessarily as over aggressive (i.e. manually set) timings can cause failures when you run them 'out of spec' for either the memory its self or the mobo.

When you get errors, I would rest the BIOS settings to their default value, ensure the memory timings are set automaticvally and try the test again. If you still get errors then the memory may be faulty or not compatible with the memory controler / mobo.
jrgrahamcov
Grafter
Posts: 160
Registered: 01-08-2007

Memory Compatibility

Normally faster DDR RAM will work in a slower motherboard but you have to be carefull of the difference between what the motherboard says it will accept and what it actually does. My old motherboard wouldn't see some newer DDR ram I bought but the motherboard I replaced it with has no problem at all.

I would be carefull of buying things off EBay if for a few extra pounds you can get a new one from a normal retailer.
N/A

Memory Compatibility

Thanks for everyone's replies. I still think that the memory itself has errors. However after filing a dispute on Paypal the seller has emailed back saying he will exchange it for a PC2100 module. I have decide to accept the exchange and I have returned the PC3200.

He does seem to continually delay his response to emails and it has been a few days now past when I expected to receive the PC2100 module.

Its possible he's hoping that I'll let it go past the 20 day deadline for escalating the dispute to a claim (25 May). Unless I get the a working PC2100 module in my computer before then I will make sure I make the claim in time. Also I have yet to write a feedback for the seller. :twisted:

I've learnt my lesson with Ebay, but having said that I have always limited my purchases to values that I can afford to lose. I would recommend that anyone else using Ebay applies the same rule.