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2x2gb 333MHz RAM...upgrade to 800MHz?

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  • Memory
  • DDR2
  • RAM
  • Product
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June 20, 2011 11:13:52 PM

Is it worth upgrading from 2 x 2GB / 333MHz / DDR2 to 2 x 2GB / 800MHz / DDR2? My mobo cannot take DDR3 and my OS wont use 4GB+. I am currently experiencing high CPU Usage percentage and some lag with the mouse movements. Thinking of buying two of these

Also is it possible my RAM is only running in Single not Dual mode?

My spec is:
Operating System
MS Windows XP Professional 32-bit SP3

CPU
Intel Core 2 Duo E6400 @ 2.13GHz 63 °C
Conroe 65nm Technology

RAM
4.0GB Single-Channel DDR2 @ 340MHz (5-5-5-13)

Motherboard
http://www.abit.com.tw/ AW9D-MAX (Intel i975-ICH7) (Socket 775)

Graphics
BenQ G2400W (1920x1200@60Hz)
BenQ G2400W (1920x1200@60Hz)
256MB Radeon X1300/X1550 Series (Sapphire/PCPartner)
256MB Radeon X1300/X1550 Series Secondary (Sapphire/PCPartner)
CrossFire Disabled

Hard Drives
245GB Western Digital WDC WD2500YS-01SHB0 (SATA) 40 °C
977GB SAMSUNG SAMSUNG HD103SJ (SATA) 38 °C

Optical Drives
TOSHIBA DVD-ROM SD-M1712

More about : 2x2gb 333mhz ram upgrade 800mhz

a c 128 } Memory
June 20, 2011 11:33:06 PM

I would scan for viruses first and use ie privacy keeper 2.7, a free download that cleans up the hardrive. It may have too much clutter. I would also ditch your virus protection and try microsoft's security essentials, a free download. If you make the change, be sure to uninstall your old virus software first. You can also try increasing your cpu fsb by 20% to overclock the cpu and ram. Your abit board should be able to handle it. If you have matching sticks and follow abit's ram configuration for slots, you should be running in dual channel mode with two or four identical sticks. The motherboard chipset and slot position determines dual channel mode, not the ram. All ram can run in dual channel when you follow the installation procedures.
June 20, 2011 11:41:34 PM

o1die said:
I would scan for viruses first and use ie privacy keeper 2.7, a free download that cleans up the hardrive. It may have too much clutter. I would also ditch your virus protection and try microsoft's security essentials, a free download. If you make the change, be sure to uninstall your old virus software first. You can also try increasing your cpu fsb by 20% to overclock the cpu and ram. Your abit board should be able to handle it. If you have matching sticks and follow abit's ram configuration for slots, you should be running in dual channel mode with two or four identical sticks. The motherboard chipset and slot position determines dual channel mode, not the ram. All ram can run in dual channel when you follow the installation procedures.


I can't seem to find this as the abit site never loads for me (tried on multiple computers). Any idea what it is/how do I do it?

Also, I should have said; my system is clean - I have a newly formatted HDD with a fresh install of XP on it.
Related resources
a c 128 } Memory
June 21, 2011 1:04:59 AM

You can go into the bios using the "del" key while posting. If the cpu fsb is 533, try 667 and the ram speed will increase by the same percentage. Be sure to locate the cmos jumper in case your system won't post after a bios change. You can reset it with the power supply unplugged by moving the cmos jumper over one pin position, then returning it to original position with the power supply unplugged. Or remove the board battery for a few seconds.
June 21, 2011 3:59:52 PM

The CPU FSB was on 272. There is a 'multipler' which is min 6, max 8.

I tried 533 and it wouldn't boot.

What else should I try?
a c 128 } Memory
June 21, 2011 5:32:49 PM

Change the cpu fsb and ram to "auto" or spd and see if that fixes it.
June 21, 2011 5:42:19 PM

I tried 380 before you posted and now it won't boot past the abit max - press TAB to show POST screen, DEL to enter SETUP.

The keyboard is plugged in, but no lights come on, so I can't press DEL to enter the BIOS.

I tried to reset the cmos with the jumper, but doesn't seem to have worked?

Edit: Partially removed the board batter for a few seconds and this allowed me to press DEL, however it didn't enter the BIOS.

Edit 2: Fully removed it for a few seconds as you said. Loaded BIOS, booting Windows.
a c 128 } Memory
June 21, 2011 5:47:47 PM

Get a small plain screwdriver and press on the motherboard battery tab gently; the battery will raise up enough to remove it for a few seconds. That will reset the bios to default. You'll need to reset the boot order to cd>hardrive or floppy>cd>hardrive, save and exit. Then check your ram speed with cpu-z.
a c 347 } Memory
June 21, 2011 5:58:15 PM

Going from 333MHz to 800Mhz won't do too much to improve what you've described, and the difference might be 2~3% faster. You've described a different set of issues.

Load the Defaults in the BIOS. If you have 4GB on XP and you're lagging out of the blue then: 1. Virus/Malware, 2. Bad stick of RAM, 3. Corruption, and/or 4. Over-heating. I noticed the 62C and if that's an IDLE TEMP then that's really high, 35C-40C depending on ambient is normal.

Look under 'System Properties' to see how much RAM Windows 'sees' and then Run Memtest, download the ISO/zip file and create a bootable CD/DVD and run at least 2-passes. Download -> http://www.memtest.org/

I'd start by getting 3 cans of compressed air, and while holding the CPU HSF blow-off the dust. Also, after ~4 years it's time to replace the Thermal Paste.

Good Malware & Performance Apps:
ESET Online Virus scan -> http://www.eset.com/us/online-scanner
Malwarebytes' Anti-Malware -> http://www.malwarebytes.org/products/malwarebytes_free
Registry Cleaning CCleaner {use Registry tab}-> http://www.piriform.com/CCLEANER

Next use Windows SFC, select both options and reboot:
June 21, 2011 6:03:45 PM

Hi Jaquith, thanks for that detailed reply. My machine is clean and I have run Memtest twice overnight (4 and 9 passes) and neither time found any errors. Furthermore I can run prime95 (I ran for 2 hours and then stopped it) with no trouble at all. I've done disk checks and they are fine.

I would agree that the temperature is too high, right now the computer is under my desk without a great source of air, so I will try on my desk for a while. I have monitored that temperature closely however and find that it rarely, if ever goes above 64.
June 21, 2011 6:10:05 PM

o1die said:
Get a small plain screwdriver and press on the motherboard battery tab gently; the battery will raise up enough to remove it for a few seconds. That will reset the bios to default. You'll need to reset the boot order to cd>hardrive or floppy>cd>hardrive, save and exit. Then check your ram speed with cpu-z.


I did this, although I went floppy > HDD. Sorry. It booted up fine though and I downloaded and ran CPU-Z:



Sorry to break the page.

o1die said:
Change the cpu fsb and ram to "auto" or spd and see if that fixes it.


Should I try this now?
June 21, 2011 6:21:25 PM

Just ran speccy again and info is as follows:

Summary

Operating System
MS Windows XP Professional 32-bit SP3
CPU
Intel Core 2 Duo E6400 @ 2.13GHz 51 °C
Conroe 65nm Technology
RAM
4.00 GB Dual-Channel DDR2 @ 340MHz (5-5-5-13)
Motherboard
http://www.abit.com.tw/ AW9D-MAX (Intel i975-ICH7) (Socket 775)
Graphics
BenQ G2400W (1920x1200@60Hz)
256MB Radeon X1300/X1550 Series (Sapphire/PCPartner)
256MB Radeon X1300/X1550 Series Secondary (Sapphire/PCPartner)
CrossFire Disabled
Hard Drives
245GB Western Digital WDC WD2500YS-01SHB0 (SATA) 36 °C
977GB SAMSUNG SAMSUNG HD103SJ (SATA) 34 °C
Optical Drives
TOSHIBA DVD-ROM SD-M1712
Audio
Realtek High Definition Audio
a c 128 } Memory
June 21, 2011 6:35:04 PM

.
June 21, 2011 6:37:42 PM

It says:

RAM
4.00 GB Dual-Channel DDR2 @ 340MHz (5-5-5-13)

So I think that's OK now? My speeds seem fine and for some reason my CPU Usage seems lower too. I could definitely work with these speeds.

Do you think I might as well overclock slightly from the 272MHz to get more from my RAM/CPU?
June 21, 2011 6:50:01 PM

jaquith said:
I'd start by getting 3 cans of compressed air, and while holding the CPU HSF blow-off the dust. Also, after ~4 years it's time to replace the Thermal Paste.


I have no idea how to go about doing this or even check if it is needed. Could you point me in the right direction for a guide or give me any tips etc? Thanks!
a c 347 } Memory
June 21, 2011 7:53:42 PM

It depends on your CPU HSF, if it's stock twist the fastener caps counter-clockwise, pull fasteners out one at a time, remove the HSF, using a lint free towel wipe-off the old paste from both the HSF and gently on CPU**, next use Isopropyl alcohol to clean the remaining residue off the HSF and CPU** {**use a q-tip swab on the CPU}.

Using a dime size amount of thermal paste on the CPU re-install the HSF, turn clockwise to secure and snap-in the HSF in an X pattern.

Video, scrub through 3:00min -> http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=8emxPAZZ53w

Thermal Paste, use either the Arctic Silver 5 or the newer MX-4 -> http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168... no curing time and it's non-conductive.
June 22, 2011 11:03:57 AM

Thanks! I will do that asap.



First CPU-Z shot was taken during a jittery period (mouse or windows jump when moving them) and second was taken shortly after when things were marginally better. CPU Usage goes from 20% at rest up to 55+ with firefox open, then 70%+ with anything else open.

Any thoughts/advice/opinions please?





Specs:
Summary
[indent]Operating System
MS Windows XP Professional 32-bit SP3
CPU
Intel Core 2 Duo E6400 @ 2.13GHz 56 °C
Conroe 65nm Technology
RAM
4.00 GB Dual-Channel DDR2 @ 340MHz (5-5-5-13)
Motherboard
http://www.abit.com.tw/ AW9D-MAX (Intel i975-ICH7) (Socket 775)
Graphics
BenQ G2400W (1920x1200@60Hz)
BenQ G2400W (1920x1200@60Hz)
256MB Radeon X1300/X1550 Series (Sapphire/PCPartner)
256MB Radeon X1300/X1550 Series Secondary (Sapphire/PCPartner)
CrossFire Disabled
Hard Drives
245GB Western Digital WDC WD2500YS-01SHB0 (SATA) 37 °C
977GB SAMSUNG SAMSUNG HD103SJ (SATA) 35 °C
Optical Drives
TOSHIBA DVD-ROM SD-M1712
Audio
Realtek High Definition Audio[/indent]
a c 347 } Memory
June 22, 2011 6:23:55 PM

I'd test using MSCONFIG:
Startup {tab}: uncheck all entries
Services {tab}: select 'Hide all Microsoft services' AND uncheck everything else
Restart
See if the problem(s) are gone, and if they are: 1. Conflict, or 2. Virus/Malware. Start by adding 'stuff' you know maybe 2-3 at a time to track down the culprit.

Verify locations:
vlc.exe is located in a subfolder of C:\Program Files
wmiprvse.exe file is located in the folder C:\WINDOWS\System32\Wbem

Good Luck!
June 22, 2011 11:55:40 PM

I didn't do that, but I did get it fixed.

When the computer would idle it drops down to the 6x multiplier and hence runs at 1.6ghz. It was having trouble when back at 2.2ghz. I turned off this option and now seems to be fine.

Thanks all for the help :) 
!