Gigabyte ep35-ds3r + 4gb Crucial = flaky windows?

we had to do an emergency server build from scratch for a new client. Long story short we build them a system with the GA-EP35 board. 2gb crucial ram. worked fine with Win2k3SBS for the last year or more. they started having performance issues with some apps hitting the swap file after running out of physical memory. Popped in 2 more 1gb crucial sticks (total 4x1gb DDR2-5400) and within an hour, the OS starts FREAKING OUT. dhcp and dns services going in and out, IPSEC entering block mode. all this effectively makes them go down hard. 2 hours of troubleshooting, restarting services, I pull the sticks, everything is back to the way it was. there were no memory errors or bluescreens at all. we thought, okay, bad ram.

benching and testing the ram on a different PC for combined time of 3 days using a dell memory diag, memtest86+, and some ramtest gold suite off hiren's boot dist utilities show the ram is perfect, so that leaves, the motherboard.

Are there any known issues on these Gigabyte boards running more than 2 sticks of ram? My next thought is to yank the original sticks and pop in a 4gig (2x2GB) kit to see if that resolves it, but I'd like to know before i drop $50 on another pair of DIMMs
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  1. Best answer
    Some boards have stability issues when all ram slots are filled. Wish I could tell you why. My board cant seem to run 8GB of 1066 ram (slots filled) but can run 4GB of 1066.

    total 4x1gb DDR2-5400

    I'm assuming you meant PC2-5400?
  2. Need to know which EP35 board to ensure accuracy, but GB's need a tweak to run 4 sticks, and, strangely enough, it's often harder to get 4x1 working than 4x2...

    In the BIOS, on the "MB Intelligent Tweaker(M.I.T.)" page:
    "Performance Enhance" to "Standard", and,
    "MCH Core" to 1.200V" (may even need 1.3 for 4x1)...

    I should point out that getting two reboots in a row here is perfectly normal behavior; it seems that, when you change certain settings (and we don't exactly know which ones - the only sure one I know is Trd - if you change it, I think you get the 'twin' reboot) it boots once to 'see where it's at', recalculates its remaining 'auto' settings, saves them, and then boots again. Three reboots in a row, however, usually indicates that the board was 'given indigestion' by your settings, and is going back to defaults.
  3. @OP: Make sure RAM voltages are correct. Also note that there have been quite a bit of compatibility issues with Crucial (esp. Ballistix) RAM and Gigabyte P35 boards.
  4. funny you should mention that... My x38-DQ6 had a lot of tweak issues on Mushkin DDR2-1066. but once i got the EPP set in everything was fine. i went from 2x1 with them to 2x4GB Ballistix DDR2-800 and everything was totally fine. maybe a few extra reboots.

    on the EP35, the board's settings are auto/standard everything default, as it's doing server duty. the 2x1GB setup currently has no problem, and those are crucial PC2-5400 (thanks faint45). we added 2 more and the computer seemed fine and everything was great...until about an hour later and the OS itself started up with all sorts of strange and ultimately costly behavior, however no bluescreens, extra reboots or's all within the OS on a 2k3 SBS install that's been working fine until the sticks were plugged in. I tested the sticks outside of the board and they're 100% OK. what really gets me is it seems like crucial used to be on everyone's A-list, now its like we're getting TONS of issues with their modules...all within the last 1-2months.
  5. well, i bought a 2x2GB OCZ kit with PC2-6400 sticks in it. wasn't looking for high performance or overclocking ability but these were on sale @ Microcenter with a $20 rebate, making them the least expensive. I'll cross my fingers and toes and see if they do the job weds. morning when i go out to swap them.
  6. Serj has been busy and has not had time to post. After installation of the OCZ kit the server blew up again and went back into block mode. To the best of my knowledge he did not tweak the BIOS at that time nor upgrade it.
    He ended up leaving a 1 GB stick of Crucial in and 1 of the 2 GB sticks of OCZ in there and the server has been stable (if slow from lack of memory).
    Later on he flashed the BIOS (was 2 versions behind) but we haven't dared try it with any more memory.
  7. I can likely help, but need the processor type, and, hopefully, the p/n for the RAM. You might take a look here:
    especailly the eighth last post from nscnt1 from South Africa...
  8. Pentium Dual Core E2160 @ 1.80 GHZ.

    I believe the memory is OCZ OCZ2G8004GK.
    It might have been OCZ Titanium OCZ2T800C44GK but I am pretty sure it was the top part.

    The board has 6 slots - 2 I believe are for DDR3.
    There was originally 2x1Gb Crucial sticks in there running dual-channel with no problems.
    Adding two more sticks of 1 GB Crucial worked fine for an hour and the above.
    Using the OCZ kit resulted in same issues (I believe it blew up faster this time).
    As I mentioned above system is stable on 1GB Crucial and 2GB OCZ for 3Gb.
  9. is it possible that this is actually a GA-EP35C-DS3R?
  10. ^If that is the case, the P35C chipset is known to be really buggy.
  11. Thanks bilbat for the idea. According to CPU-Z - it IS a GA-EP35C-DS3R.

    Thoughts? Can this be stabilized to run 4 GB ram?

    Did I mention we are having a fairly big problem with system slowdowns due to (what we believe is) a crappy Gigabyte on-board RAID controller.
  12. Uhh - yuh - that's what stuck in my head to make me guess the number - they always had a reputation for being dogs... Should make a lot of reference material, though - maybe somebody somewhere figured out how to make one work?!
  13. Joy. Any chance is there a revised board we can replace with that won't cause kernel panic/driver freakout/BSOD?
  14. I hate to tell you this, but nearly anything else! I've had people here with luck at a variety of P35, P43, and P45s; I myself like the X48s - they don't have the clocking finesse of the others, but they're a great 'brute force' solution. Overall, I think GB boards are excellently made - their only drawback is kind of clumsy support - but every manufacturer has that problem, to some degree or other, and we try to help out with it here; there is also a tremendous GB support forum over at TweakTown:
    between here and there, you can rely on a pretty thorough 'knowledge-base'! The place to 'paw through' the GB board list is here:
    and you can pull up a comparison between different board's features here:
    At this point, I'd still stay away from the socket 1156/1366 stuff, with, perhaps, the exception of the EX58-UD3R Rev1.6, as the 1156s are yet mostly unproven, and the 1366 boards have some endemic problems that are just starting to be understood and licked (and that 1.6 already has the hardware mod that appears to be the solution to most of the problems), with new BIOS being released nearly weekly!
  15. Thanks for all the help...I appreciate it!
  16. If you'd still are willing, and you'd like to try, I can root around a bit and see who's had any relative success with that MOBO/chipset, and try to figure out a workable parameter set...
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