RAM memory problem (CAS latency)

Archived from groups: alt.comp.periphs.mainboard.soyo,alt.comp.hardware.pc-homebuilt,comp.sys.ibm.pc.hardware.chips (More info?)

After researching the subject for 3 hours, here's my question:

I had a Pentium III 550 Mhz computer for the last 4 years, running
Windows 98.

Last week I installed XP on it. The old 64 MB RAM was barely keeping
up. So I bought 128 MB RAM. Both memory sticks are working, so I have
192 MB RAM, and the performance is much better.

But I get a new message on boot-up:

<Suggested SDRAM CAS Latency Time "3">

The Usenet is filled with suggestions to go to the BIOS and change the
"CAS Latency" to the suggested value. I haven't quite found that on my
BIOS.

Here's what it shows on the setup of my Soyo SY-6VCA:

.........................
[from Advanced Chipset Features submenu]
Bank 0/1 DRAM Timing: sdram 10ns (selected) ; sdram 8ns ; normal ;
medium ; fast ; turbo
Bank 2/3 DRAM Timing: sdram 10ns (selected) ; sdram 8ns ; normal ;
medium ; fast ; turbo
Bank 4/5 DRAM Timing: sdram 10ns (selected) ; sdram 8ns ; normal ;
medium ; fast ; turbo
SDRAM Cycle Length: 2 (selected) ; 3
DRAM clock: Host CLK [100 Mhz] (selected) ; 67 Mhz ; 133 Mhz

[from Advanced BIOS Features submenu]
OS select for DRAM >64 MB: Non-OS2 (selected) ; OS2
.........................

These are the items in the BIOS that I believe are closest to the
memory latency issue. Incidentally, the last one really intrigues me:
should I change it to enabled now that my memory is more than 64 MB?
This last question is a side-topic.
5 answers Last reply
More about memory problem latency
  1. Archived from groups: alt.comp.periphs.mainboard.soyo,alt.comp.hardware.pc-homebuilt,comp.sys.ibm.pc.hardware.chips (More info?)

    easytoremember123@email.com (Wizard of Ozz) wrote:

    > After researching the subject for 3 hours, here's my question:
    > I had a Pentium III 550 Mhz computer for the last 4 years,
    > running Windows 98.
    > Last week I installed XP on it. The old 64 MB RAM was barely
    > keeping up. So I bought 128 MB RAM. Both memory sticks are
    > working, so I have 192 MB RAM, and the performance is much
    > better.

    Should be dramatic. My guess is anything up to 256MB is noticeable.

    Good for you. Windows XP manages memory/things much better, you can
    gain a lot of stability if you were running big programs and/or many
    programs.

    > But I get a new message on boot-up:
    > <Suggested SDRAM CAS Latency Time "3">
    > The Usenet is filled with suggestions to go to the BIOS and
    > change the "CAS Latency" to the suggested value. I haven't quite
    > found that on my BIOS.

    The mainboard owner's manual might tell what all of your
    BIOS settings are for.

    > Here's what it shows on the setup of my Soyo SY-6VCA:
    > ........................
    > [from Advanced Chipset Features submenu]
    > Bank 0/1 DRAM Timing: sdram 10ns (selected) ; sdram 8ns ; normal
    > ; medium ; fast ; turbo
    > Bank 2/3 DRAM Timing: sdram 10ns (selected) ; sdram 8ns ; normal
    > ; medium ; fast ; turbo
    > Bank 4/5 DRAM Timing: sdram 10ns (selected) ; sdram 8ns ; normal
    > ; medium ; fast ; turbo
    > SDRAM Cycle Length: 2 (selected) ; 3

    Try setting that to 3. I think the technical term is "CAS latency"
    (as you stated above). If you reboot and the suggestion is gone,
    highly likely that's it.

    > DRAM clock: Host CLK [100 Mhz] (selected) ; 67 Mhz ; 133 Mhz
    > [from Advanced BIOS Features submenu]
    > OS select for DRAM >64 MB: Non-OS2 (selected) ; OS2

    That has nothing to do with the solution. Your OS is non-OS 2, so
    leave it default. The fact you upgraded from 64MB is coincidence.

    Good luck and have fun.
  2. Archived from groups: alt.comp.periphs.mainboard.soyo,alt.comp.hardware.pc-homebuilt,comp.sys.ibm.pc.hardware.chips (More info?)

    In the BIOS go to the Advanced Chipset Features page and set your SDRAM
    Cycle Length to 3. This is the CAS latency. I would recommend leaving
    the bank timing settings at normal.

    Also WinXP requirments list only 128mb of memory as the minumum and
    256mb as recommended but it will really come alive with 512mb. I would
    recommend buying two sticks of 256mb for your board.
  3. Archived from groups: alt.comp.periphs.mainboard.soyo,alt.comp.hardware.pc-homebuilt,comp.sys.ibm.pc.hardware.chips (More info?)

    j.burghd...@sbcglobal.net wrote:
    > In the BIOS go to the Advanced Chipset Features page and set your
    SDRAM
    > Cycle Length to 3. This is the CAS latency. I would recommend leaving
    > the bank timing settings at normal.
    >
    > Also WinXP requirments list only 128mb of memory as the minumum and
    > 256mb as recommended but it will really come alive with 512mb. I
    would
    > recommend buying two sticks of 256mb for your board.

    Thanks. I changed it and it no longer makes CAS latency suggestions.
    Could you explain why I should change bank timing to normal (it's
    currently at SDRAM 10ns)?
  4. Archived from groups: alt.comp.periphs.mainboard.soyo,alt.comp.hardware.pc-homebuilt,comp.sys.ibm.pc.hardware.chips (More info?)

    On Soyo motherboards the use of Turbo mode usually disables the USB
    ports for one thing. You can try the medium and fast settings. If no
    problems accure then its safe to use.
  5. Archived from groups: comp.sys.ibm.pc.hardware.chips (More info?)

    I upgraded my ram, and I think I got the wrong kind. Here's my mother
    board, and here's the ram I got:

    MOBO:
    Biostar P4SXQ

    RAM:
    PC3200 DDR CAS 3 2.5 volts

    After putting the ram in (which was months ago) I noticed a severe
    drop in performance. I just noticed today that the MOBO settings for
    the CAS are auto, 2, and 2.5

    Do I need to get different ram? If so, what would work better: CAS 2
    or 2.5?

    Thanks!
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