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Prblm adding RAM on K8T800 MB--single-sided? Double-sided?

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September 20, 2006 9:40:59 AM

Hello.

I have an Albatron K8X800 ProII motherboard. It has the latest BIOS (1.13)
and has the VIA K8T800 and VT8237 with an Athlon 64 processor.

I was running two 512 MB DIMMs, which I tried to replace with three 1 GB
DIMMs.

The new DIMMs are A-DATA V-Series 1GB 184-Pin DDR SDRAM DDR 400 (PC 3200)
System Memory

Brand A-DATA
Series V-Series
Model VDBGC1A16
Type 184-Pin DDR SDRAM

Capacity 1GB
Speed DDR 400 (PC 3200)
Cas Latency 3
Voltage 2.7V


"X" rating x16

First I put in all three DIMMs and tried to boot. POST detected 1.8 GB of
RAM and froze.

I took the DIMMs out of slots 2 and 3 , and just left one in slot 1. System
detected 1 GB RAM on POST and booted fine.

I tried adding one of the other DIMMs to slot 2, and the system detected
only 1.8 GB and locks on POST again. Thinking I may have a bad module, I swapped the second DIMM for the third and retried to boot, same thing.

According to the manual, this MB should support 3 GB RAM.

Albatron issued an addendum to the manual which is supposed to update the info on installing RAM. Here's the link:
ftp://211.78.163.2/product/it/mb/pdfzip/insertpage/K8X8...

So anyway, I notice in the addendum it refers to "single side" and "double
side" modules. How would I be able to tell whether my DIMMs are single or double-sided? If they're double-sided, then according to the chart they
aren't supported.

How can I find out whether these DIMMs are supported by this board? How can I tell whether a DIMM is single-sided or double-sided before I buy it (or after, for that matter?)
a b V Motherboard
September 20, 2006 10:01:01 AM

Errr little black squares (chips) on one side & no little black squares on the other side = single side, little black squares on both sides = double side.
September 20, 2006 10:10:14 AM

I think you are confusing "chips on both sides of the PCB" with "double-sided DIMMs" which the latter is an electronic spec whilst the former is a physical layout. I could be wrong, but this makes more sense:

"The number of ranks on any DIMM is the number of independent sets of DRAMs that can be accessed simultaneously for the full data bit-width of the DIMM to be driven on the bus. The physical layout of the DRAM chips on the DIMM itself does not necessarily relate to the number of ranks. Sometimes the layout of all DRAM on one side of the DIMM PCB versus both sides is referred to as "single-sided" versus "double-sided". These terms may cause confusion as they do not necessarily relate to how the DIMMs are logically organized or accessed."
a b V Motherboard
September 20, 2006 10:43:39 AM

Fair nuff guv, I stand corrected in which case I have no idea.
September 20, 2006 11:16:02 AM

Well, I just want you know that I appreciate the effort. Thank you.
a b V Motherboard
September 20, 2006 11:35:05 AM

You're welcome & good luck in your quest :) 
September 24, 2006 1:40:38 PM

SOLVED!


I found that if I had all three DIMMS in there and my AGP aperture size was set to 1 GB, it would, on POST, detect 1.8 GB of RAM and lock up. If I had all three DIMMS in there and my AGP aperture size was set to 512 MB, it would, on POST, detect 2.8 GB of RAM and lock up. This was consistent! It was only when I set the AGP aperture size to 256 MB that it detected all the RAM and booted successfully. Obviously, the AGP aperture size setting has a direct effect on how the system sees this type of RAM, though I have no idea why it should.

Here's the solution:


1. Insert one DIMM in slot 1, leave slots 2 and 3 empty for now.

2. Go into Advanced Chipset Features \in the BIOS. Set the RAM frequency to AUTO, make sure the timings are set to auto, and SET THE AGP APERTURE SIZE to 256 OR LESS. (Read why at the end of the steps here.)

3. Save settings, boot to Windows or whatever your OS is, then shut down, install the other two sticks of RAM and reboot. You should not have any problem from this point on.

NOTE that the frequency settings DO matter also. If I set the RAM to 166 (333DDR) or higher, it boots into Windows, then locks. I didn't try 133 (266 DDR), but when I set it to 100 (200 DDR) (or auto in which case it sets to 100 automatically), it's rock-solid.
So one should be aware of this as well. I hope this helps someone else who has this problem!
!