Motherboard/RAM Problem

I'm having some motherboard/ram issues that is causing the motherboard to give me the high-pitched yelling noise. It is a bit of a story that consists of me doing dumb things as I am not the best with this stuff so bear with me.

I am playing around with a Compaq Presario s4000v. It is fairly old at this point but I wanted to tinker around with it and see what I could do with it. The first thing I tried to do was upgrade the RAM. For some reason it had a 256 and a 128 in the slots. I took an old 256 from another pc and tried to replace the 128 with it but it gave me hell. I checked online and found the 128 wasn't compatible, oh well. I went ahead and ordered a couple of cheap PQI 512 sticks.

While I am waiting for that I boot up the computer to see how well it is running and if I want to do a system restore. I start to boot up the pc and find that it isn't happening. Boot files are screwed up. So I start looking around for the recovery disc that came with the pc. I can't find it which I just chalk up to being a pc no one has used for awhile and look online for a replacement. Turns out you were supposed to burn the disc yourself from the computer. Too late now. I call India to see if they can send me a recovery disc and they say they don't make them anymore. Oh well, I sorta wanted to try Ubuntu at some point and I guess now is as good as ever.

So I burn Ubuntu onto a disc from another computer and put it in the Compaq and boot it up. Everything is going fine until I try to install it. Suddenly it says it has a memory error and won't go any further. I have two hard drives so I switch my secondary to my primary and same thing (also something about a tree error or something).

Well my RAM finally arrives and I stick it in thinking it will do the trick. Yes, I double-checked to make sure this stuff is compatible. For some reason it makes it worse. Motherboard gives me the "I hate you" noise again. I try it with the two (compatible) sticks of memory I have on the pc I am using right now. Same noise. So apparently the 256 combined with the 128 is the only configuration that won't give me the terrible, terrible noise yet won't let me install Ubuntu. Also: if I take out the 128 and just leave in the 256 it also yells at me.

I tried the PQI RAM in the pc I am using now and it works so it doesn't seem to be a RAM issue. Right now I think my motherboard is busted but it seems weird that it would sort of work with the 256+128.

So my question is: what the hell is going on? If anything I've said above makes no sense and sounds like I don't know what I am doing that is because I don't know what I am doing. If anyone wants to point out anything I've done wrong, please do. At least I can write this one down as a learning experience.

Thanks in advance for at least reading all this.
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  1. I was reading it, but I had to skip to the bottom because I was dosing off :pt1cable:
  2. I was reading it, but I had to skip to the bottom because I was dosing off :pt1cable:
  3. Alright, I've got an update, not solved yet though.

    So, for whatever reason, the 128mb stick has to be in there with whatever other stick I use. The 128 works with the 512 and the 256. Problem is if I remove the 128 any other config won't work.

    Why will it only work with the 128? I don't want to go chugging along with a 128 and a 512 in there.

    Also, I consulted a friend and he said he thinks the disk I am booting up from is bad, so these should be seperate issues.
  4. bump
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