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Upgraded RAM - now fs2004 crashes!

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Help!I just added a PC2700 512MB stick of RAM to my machine. It registered fine, no user intervention required in the BIOS, and windows XP shows the new memory added.Now then, I've been using fs2004 this evening and it crashes all the time - 12 times so far within 5 - 10 mins of launching fs2004! Sometimes it gives the error report (details mention panel.dll) sometimes it suddenly crashes to desktop in an instant and twice it caused an instant reboot with a subsequent disk check. No other applications on my machine have crashed tonight so far (OE6, IE6 and Excel 97). I've played with addon aircraft, default aircraft, slewing, different locations, weather and it crashes. Mostly it happens when I change view to the outside but other times its simply happened out of the blue - highly inconsistent.I've added the crucial.com stick of ram to the first slot. The second and third slots are occupied by two sticks of PC2100 256MB Ram. I asked crucial before purchasing and they said that the faster speed of the module will just default to the slower speed of the other two modules.Now the only other change has been the installation of editvoicepack 3.0 last night, but I doubt this is the problem as so far there have been no postings about problems with it.My specs:AMD Athlon 2100+1024MB PC2100 & PC2700 RamMSI Ti4200 - 64MB with 44.03 driversMSI KT3 Ultra 2 MotherboardWindows XP homePlease help!Anthony Dyer

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I would hazard a guess at the RAM you have installed is not compatible with your already installed memory. Take out the two 256's and see if your machine runs OK with the one stick of 512. If it does then you need to have all your memory modules running at the same speed. Just because people work in computer shops doesnt mean they know anything about computers!I myself had problems when I added another 512 to my system, same kind of problems. Turned out to be a dud stick.Regards,Markyboy.

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Regardless of what Crucial says, I've never seen successful mixing of RAM speeds. But I could be wrong this time. Pull out the other two chips, and see what happens. It could be a zapped RAM chip... You may also want to post in the H/W forum, as this is not a FS2004 issue per se'-John

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> Take out the>two 256's and see if your machine runs OK with the one stick>of 512. If it does then you need to have all your memory>modules running at the same speed. OK, I've done that. It runs fine with just the new 512mb stick. I've run fs2004 for half an hour, using different planes, panels, views, actions and there have been no problems.I then add the two other sticks and hey presto, it suddenly reboots when I pan down to some crt gauges in an A320 virtual cockpit (Project Airbus with Eric Marciano's gauges).I hope it can be fixed with some BIOS tweaking, failing that I hope dabs.com can have a good returns policy!I'll repost this in the hardware forum - never knew it existed!Anthony Dyer

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Hi,what I think might be a little more troublesome is the mixture of one 512 MB RAM stick with two 256 MB sticks. I've experienced it on various systems that configurations of that kind usually caused a lot of trouble.To keep it plain and simple: Most mobos don't like it very much, if more than two of their DIMM-banks are used - especially if it's RAM of different specifications. I've seen this causing instabilities even back in the era of PC66/100 SDRAM. Actually none of the sticks was really zapped - but when I put them in my machine alltogether the 'puter went completely berserk. And it repeated on my current system with a similar configuration like yours.Using two sticks of the same specification (512MB/PC333) the machine's running perfectly now.Regards, Thomas :-wave

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I haven't had stabilty problems with mixing of different RAM sizes--and that applies to my home system as well as the roughly 200 or so workstations I had to upgrade at my office last year. In both instances, I have 256 meg chips coexisting with 128 meg chips. But--the chips are from the same mfr and are the same speed. My home system hasn't had a lockup in I don't know when, although I was panic stricken when our A/C failed the other night and my cpu temp rose from it's 39 C norm to 49 C....expected a lockup for sure. My workstations at the office don't lock up, but they aren't for 3-d gaming either :)I have done this however--when I populate the banks with the chips, I populate from highest to lowest. -John

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I agree with John here the problem is the difference in ram speed it won't work ;-)1024 or 512 or 256 or 128 can coexist preferable from the same mfr and same speed :-)Have only had it working on different nodes with PC100 and PC133 but that even depended on the mobo :( (daily experience in a large network) SuccesAndr

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I've mixed speed, put 133 in with 100 in a system that only supports up to 100, the 133 just slows down to the maximum speed of the system. Your board will go up to 333/2700. It may be trying to push the 266/2100 up to 2700, when it see's the 2700 installed. Best solution would be buy more 2700 and loose the 2100, if budget allows. The manual does show you can set the speed manually instead of letting it detect. Chapter 3 page 3-14. The way I read it, you would use configure sdram timing by user and set sdram frequency to hclk+66. I don't know your board and I'm guessing at what I'm reading. If this was my system, I'd call MSI and ask them. They should have the right answer, or just say no way, you can't mix.

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>Best solution would be buy more 2700 and loose the 2100, if>budget allows.I'll do that, but not right now - my bank account needs to recuperate!>The manual does show you can set the speed manually instead of>letting it detect. Chapter 3 page 3-14. The way I read it,>you would use configure sdram timing by user and set sdram>frequency to hclk+66. I see that, it's currently set to SPD. However the manual doesn't elaborate as to what HCLK, HCLK+33 and HCLK+66 are. I'll try what you recommend tonight.>I'd call MSI and ask them. Their website doesn't seem to have a UK number. Is email response timely with them?Crucial.com recommends updating the bios before coming back for help. However, reading MSI's website - it looks tricky, something called 'flashing to bios'. I get the impression that it's an expert job, and if it goes wrong, then you're in trouble as the old bios is erased. (also can you create a DOS boot disk in windows XP?)One of my friends who looks after web servers. He reckon's it's lack of power. I think my PSU is rated at 300W but I'd have to check as I'm at work on lunch right now.Whilst I'm at it, I've got a few other upgrade projects for my machine. I want to upgrade my CPU to the XP3200+ or the XP3000+. However the manual says the cpu clock can be configured upto 220Mhz (it's currently at 133Mhz). Does the XP3200+ have a high enough core/clock ratio for this? Thanks for your help, I'm learning a bit more :-)Anthony Dyer

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Well, if anyone told you that it's fine to use not only different speed DIMM's (sticks) of RAM but also different size's of DIMM's together and 98% of the time get away with it they don't know anything about RAM.Never do that, not only should you get the same size and speed RAM, but also same make and same batch, AND not only that but with Crucial website you can get RAM tested for your specific MotherBoard for compatibility, not nice when you want to add to what you already have in your system, but if you want to be sure it works thats what you do.You might be able to get away with it from time to time, but the chance of problems like you have had is a lot higher otherwise.Another thing to consider is some motherboard's (though its less and less a problem now) have problems if you use all of your RAM slots, you may have 3-4 slots but some don't like you to use them all. (Like my Soyo Dragon+ MB thats only about 1.8 years old)So, best tip I can give ya though you wont like it much, is if you want 1Gig of RAM is to buy another 512Meg stick, the exact same one you bought, another one and stick that in slot 2 and don't use those 2 sticks of 256 in your system at all, realise this too, even if it did work, mixed speed and size like that you would probably have to run the RAM at the slower speed of your 256Meg sticks and the 512Meg stick wouldnt be going as fast as it's able, and that's only if your MB allowed you to change the speed independently of your FSB speed.As for Flashing BIOS, it's not hard, I had to DL the Bios file, and the Award Flash program file and then copy those two to a floppy, go in BIOS and use the reset to defaults and make sure the floppy was set up to be checked on start up so it would take a look at it when i had that floppy in the drive, save and exit out of BIOS and then it will restart and will see the floppy disk in the drive, i think then you are in DOS, so you have to type in whatever to run the flash program on the floppy, but you should have some instructions on your MB makers website for doing this, go get the files and print out the instructions.It's not difficult, but two tips, make sure you have your MB's manual at hand just in case you have to reset the CMOS, I had to do that once I think, cos the BIOS didnt go in as smoothly as other times I upgraded it (I've done it three times so far).Another tip, the last time I upgraded BIOS it killed my main HardDrive when it rebooted, the BIOS installed ok, but it didnt reboot right, so maybe unplug your HD's before doing it and plug them back in after (switching off the PC first after the reboot after the BIOS install first ofcourse :-) ).As for upgrading CPU, well you might be able to run a 220 FSB speed, that doesn't mean your MB can run a CPU that high speed as a 3000+ or 3200+, in fact I think it can't as those CPU's might be using 333 or 400 FSB speeds, I don't know though so I might be wrong on that one, if you go to your MB's makers site the info on what it can run will be there, my MB has a 1900+ in it but even with latest BIOS it will only run up to a 2000+ or 2100+ CPU.

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Different size doesn't matter ;-) but ram speed is a whole other ball game. And I now (and not via one hobby PC) :-)Andr

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"....but also different size's of DIMM's together and 98% of the time get away with it they don't know anything about RAM...."I'm a WAN admin and I manage workstation support over a region spanning six states and about 1500 nodes, give or take. I know a lot about RAM--certainly more than anyone stating that different sizes can't be mixed. It's a fact of life in a company the size of mine. Brands and speeds--that's a line I don't cross. But most of our MB's have a sprinkling of 128 Meg chips mixed in with 256 Meg chips. I haven't had ONE failure related to RAM. Lost a monitor or two, so maybe you can assume the RAM's at fault :) My home workstation has had RAM chips of different sizes for several years. Hmmmm.... 98SE...I should be getting lockups. NOT!!!!!I suggest if you work for a company that depends on you to come up with the right answers, that you don't go by what you hear....practice your trade... Unless you sell RAM, that is...-John

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Umm,maybe that has been my mistake in the past.I can remember that I had mixed speeds as well as sizes in my old P III 1 GHz - CRASH! (Win98SE).On my new puter it were two 128 MB PC333 Infineon which didn't like their Samsung 512 MB PC333 neighbour - or vice versa - CRASH! (WinXP). Now there are two Samsung 512 MB modules working flawlessly.Thanks for the empirically backed info.Regards, Thomas :-wave

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Mixing different speeds 2100 and 2700 will probably not be the issue but the CAS settings(memory settings and speeds)could be the issue. Even though you may have it set to AUTO, the new RAM may need specific settings in order to run correctly in the BIOS. I just built a system for someone that runs DDR400 and we had a devil of a time getting it to run in a stable manner. We finally found some sweet settings and it will now run like a rock for days on end. In fact it has now run Prime 95 for 72 hours straight. I was getting to the point where I was ready to throw it out the window.Tony

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u.r welcome Thomas...Aside from mixing brands which I've seen cause issues, another factor is overclocking. I've seen overclocking stress a chip enough so even if it passes all of the common utilities that are available, the chip will still fail in Windows. I didn't mention it in my first response above. In my experience, once a system is overclocked, all bets are off as far as stability. Some systems run fine, but it's really a shuffle of the cards when it comes to what HW components will fail. And worse, you can take two identical boxes--same components, same cooling....and one may overclock fine and the other may have component failure. Luck of the draw sometimes. And, sometimes I think it's the fact that I've seen some of the kids working in the Big Box stores literally drop a handful of video cards down so they can hustle for their commission.One other issue. Cooling. A marginal chip closest to the cpu (i.e. "heat") may fail. I always suggest a bank swap before giving up the chip. I've seen two chips--same brand, same speed, same size...and together they will "insist" that they be in specific banks. I have to wonder how many chips are marginal when it comes to cooling.-John

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On most systems it gives difficulties odd behavior timing problems etc... believe me ;-)It depends on many factors not only a simple bios setting like cas and latency settings...Bios version, specs mobo, chipset etc....To avoid odd behavior / boot problems with nice beeps :-) / write errors / etc... choose the same speed.But maybe my 15 years of working IT experience fools me :(Andr

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:-lol John our network nodes has to be reset due to ram size lockups noway.... no problem with mixing ram size....Hmm.... maybe my own system with 512 / 256 / 256 DDR crucial 2.5 will have during this writing several lockups...I've read a lot on our forums but this statement is one for in the book odd one ;-) Andr

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>I see that, it's currently set to SPD. However the manual>doesn't elaborate as to what HCLK, HCLK+33 and HCLK+66 are. >I'll try what you recommend tonight.Got back home, and I've tried the above settings - was given the option of HCLK & HCLK+33 (with assistance from my PC vendor). I tried HCLK+33 and the ram on POST showed up as 333MHz. I then tried HCLK and POST showed the ram as being 266Mhz. So I tried fs2004, with Project Airbus and Mr Marciano's panel and it crashed to desktop.I've removed the two PC2100 RAM chips for now. Now I'm just running on one 512MB PC2700. So, I'll do some more research, but I think in the end I'll be selling the old chips and spending some more money on a new 512MB module - making sure it's PC2700!Thanks for the info guys.Anthony Dyer

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Well, if I misunderstood you, I'm ready to apologize. I understood the message as meaning if I suggested mixing sizes was OK, I didn't know what the heck I was talking about. If that's not what you meant, I apologize...you did roll several issues into one sentence, so I imagine you were just hitting at the same issue the rest of us did--the mixing of the speeds.-John

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Well, you were a bit harsh considering you cut what I said in half there, I did mention speeds too, now I'm the first to admit I don't know all there is to know on RAM, and I don't sell it for a living, but I was just telling him what I knew, don't smash a guy down for trying to help.But, I'm no too bothered, besides if I read it wrong myself I thought his first post said that he had been told what he had bought would work (I will have to look again), now as I said I don't sell the stuff, but I certianly wouldn't have told him it was fine I would have said it might work with different size's but its best to stick to the same, but as for different speed's I would not recomend that at all, now as I said there is a chance you could get it to work with changing the speed in the BIOS, but as far as I know not all MB's allow that, only some, others are fixed to what the CPU is running, again I will say I might be wrong on that but that's what I know from what I've garnered over the last 5 years of using and upgrading a PC, not a techy dude. :-)

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My current machine mixes PC3200 and PC2100 RAM (for the very short term) and runs fine. I have over the last 20 years run other machines with differenct models and speeds of RAM too (even in the days of 256k bit ICs) however it had to be done by RAM bank, that is, two or more slots had to have a matched set of RAM or it is GPF time or the machine won't even boot. I have also had boards where I couldn't mix at all. As far as I can tell current boards don't use banks anymore so that side might not be a problem but there still may be a hardware issue where the SPD setting is determined by the first DIMM then applied to all slots, that would cause problems if the faster RAM is in the SPD tested slot. This is a guess, I don't know how all the MB manufacturers make their boards but a couple of years ago I had a board that seemed to do this.As far as the proffesionals here saying that mixing speeds just will not work call me or others here liars as much as you like (why would we make it up?) but it is possible (though not necessarily all the time, as pointed out) if you know what your doing and you have the hardware and BIOS to support it.The best solution, obviously, is to use all the same speed, no point in slowing down your processor if you don't have to!

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It's not that we say mixing speeds will not work.... But experience shows that it likely won't. There's an exception to every rule. But, it's a longstanding rule of thumb and even if the HW and BIOS supported it, I wouldn't mandate it on my WAN. We've both seen good overclocked setups as well. But we've often heard of overclocked setups being unstable.... -John

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Having done more than 5 yrs tech support for a major software manufacturer ( I won't say who, but they are mentioned on this forum a lot) I also have some computer background.As to mixing ram speed, this is a direct quote from the faq for Crucial Technology, a division of Micron (a major maunfacturer of ram)Description: Can I mix 8ns and 7ns modules in my system? Solution: In general, you CAN mix different speeds of SDRAM memory in the same system. The faster memory will run at the slower memory's speed (in this case 8ns parts). However, there are some systems that will not correctly run this memory configuration. This is rare, but we suggest you contact your computer manufacturer or motherboard manual to be sure.The link to this is:http://support.crucial.com/scripts/crucial...%20ram%20speedsI beleive this is pretty much what I told Anthony, including my personal experience has been with older sdram, not ddr. I would not expect to have a problem with ddr either. Also note my suggestion to contact the manufacturer. Same answer for ddr, and still from Crucial Technologies:Description: Will PC2100 work with PC1600? Solution: Yes. However, if you have a system with both PC1600 and PC2100 modules in it, the system will work, but it will only run at a speed of PC1600. A system will only run at PC2100 if all the modules in it are PC2100 and the system supports PC2100. This is similar to mixing PC133 and P100 SDR SDRAM modules in a system.And that link is: http://support.crucial.com/scripts/crucial...x%20ram%20speedAs to mixing ram in different sizes, also a quote from the faq for Crucial Technology..Description: My computer came with 32MB of RAM. I added 32MB in the second slot. Can I add 64MB or more in the third slot, or do I have to remove the 32MB modules and put in all 64MB modules? Solution: Different sizes of SDRAM modules can be mixed together. In other words, you do not need to fill each memory slot with the same size module, and yes, you should be able to add a 64MB module to the existing open slot on your motherboard. Keep in mind, the largest module should always be placed in the first slot for best performance.The link is: http://support.crucial.com/scripts/crucial...ix%20ram%20sizeand:Description: Can you mix DDR modules of different sizes (in MB)? Solution: Yes! A module's size in megabytes is usually referred to as its "density." You can use DDR modules of different densities in the same system with no problem. For example, you could use one 32MB module, one 64MB module and one 128MB module if you like. To find the total memory in a system, you add together the memory on each module. In the example above, your total memory would be 32MB + 64MB + 128MB = 224MB.The link is:http://support.crucial.com/scripts/crucial...x%20ram%20speedWhite Hawk, you said:Well, if anyone told you that it's fine to use not only different speed DIMM's (sticks) of RAM but also different size's of DIMM's together and 98% of the time get away with it they don't know anything about RAM.I THINK the guys who MAKE the ram just said YOU don't know anything about ram.

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