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Computer Killed by changing RAM?

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January 7, 2013 5:59:34 PM

Hello to all,

My computer is a 6 or 7-year-old Compaq, running WinXP with service pack 3. It had 2G of RAM, taking up 2 of the Mobo's 4 RAM slots. I bought four 1G sticks of slightly faster RAM, that the Mobo specs say the Mobo supports.

Before replacing the old RAM, my computer booted up just fine, no problems.

Using anti-static precautions, I removed the old RAM and put in the new, filling all 4 Mobo RAM slots. After turning the power on, the computer emitted a long beep, followed by (I think) a shorter beep, then a long silence (about 5 or 6 seconds?), then another a long beep followed by (I think) a shorter beep, etc.

I removed all of the new RAM, put back the old RAM and now there's no more beeping, but now I don't even get a splash screen to allow me to access computer "set-up". The TV-monitor I use reports it is receiving "No Signal" from the computer. (Again, the computer had been booting up and running just fine with the old RAM installed.)

Due to a physical disability and financial restrictions, it would not be easy for me to swap parts with another computer. The only other computer I have is 10 years old, but at least gives me Internet access.

Any advice or suggestions would be Very much appreciated.

Mike

PS/ Why would a computer that was booting and running just fine, "go bad" -- no beeping, no splash screen, no signal to my TV monitor -- just because I replaced old RAM with new (which caused beeping), then put back the old RAM?

Could the new RAM have been defective or mislabeled and, somehow, damaged the Mobo?

Given my physical and financial limitations, how best might I be able to get a splash screen (access to computer set-up) or determine the problem?

Best solution

a b } Memory
January 7, 2013 6:12:59 PM

Hi, Try clearing the CMOS (unplug the power cord and remove the CMOS battery for few minutes). Them leave only one RAM stcik installed (old RAM) and start the board. See if it does boot.
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a b } Memory
January 7, 2013 6:33:15 PM

Yes, clear the CMOS, it may have tried to set itself to compatible timings for the new RAM and failed.
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January 7, 2013 9:56:10 PM

Thanks, guys, sounds like a plan. As I'll need some help to access the computer, I won't be able to try this for a couple weeks, but I'll report back.

If the plan works and the computer boots, is there any way I can get the computer to accept and run with the new RAM? I've re-checked and the mobo specs say the new RAM is supported. ...Or is the beeping problem I encountered a result of the new RAM being defective or mislabeled?
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a b } Memory
January 8, 2013 1:57:09 PM

Can you post the specs of your MOBO and your RAM? You can try each stick individually or a set of them and see if that works, if some combination of 1 or 2 sticks works you probably have a bad module in the bunch. Did you order it online or from a store? I know Newegg is pretty cool about incompatible RAM and will basically let you swap it out until you find some that works. Kind of a hassle shipping back and forth but it is still a pretty nice policy.
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a b } Memory
January 8, 2013 5:09:47 PM

In some cases clearing the CMOS the usual way doesn't clear it enough, and it's necessary
to additionally unplug the AC cord and remove the CMOS battery for 30 mins
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January 11, 2013 5:17:55 AM

chugot9218 said:
Can you post the specs of your MOBO and your RAM? You can try each stick individually or a set of them and see if that works, if some combination of 1 or 2 sticks works you probably have a bad module in the bunch. Did you order it online or from a store? I know Newegg is pretty cool about incompatible RAM and will basically let you swap it out until you find some that works. Kind of a hassle shipping back and forth but it is still a pretty nice policy.


Here are the Mobo specs:

Motherboard:
Manufacturer's motherboard name: ASUS P5LP-LE
HP/Compaq name: Leonite-GL8E
CPU Socket LGA775, DDR2 1066
Chipset:
Northbridge: Intel 945G
Southbridge: ICH7DH
Front-side bus speed 533 MHz, 800 MHz, 1066 MHz (processor dependent)
Processor upgrade information
Socket type: 775
Motherboard supports the following processor upgrades:
Core 2 Duo E6x00
Core 2 Duo E4x00
Pentium D 9x0 Dual Core
Pentium D 8xx Dual Core
Pentium 4 6x1 series
Celeron D 3xx series
Memory upgrade information:
Dual channel memory architecture
Four 240-pin DDR2 DIMM sockets
Supports PC2 3200 (400 MHz), PC 4200 (533 MHz) and PC2 5300 (667 MHz) DDR2 DIMMs
non-ECC memory only, unbuffered

The OLD RAM consists of 2 sticks of 1G PC2-4200 (533 MHz) DDR2 DIMMs non-ECC unbuffered (do not know the brand).

The NEW RAM consists of 4 sticks of Crucial 1G PC2 5300 (667 MHz) DDR2 DIMMs non-ECC memory unbuffered, which I bought through Amazon.

I checked the New RAM first by installing all 4 sticks, then 1 stick at a time. In every case, Beeping occurred upon trying to boot.

(The CPU is an Intel E6700 Core 2 Duo 2.6 GHz, 4M L2 Cache.)

How can I tell if the Old and New RAM is "dual channel" (since the Mobo supports dual channel RAM)?

(OS is Window XP Full Professional 32-bit with Service Pack 3.)
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January 25, 2013 1:57:54 PM

Well, clearing the CMOS and putting the OLD RAM back in did the trick. (I found the mobo has a jumper setting to clear the CMOS so I didn't have to remove the battery.) Thanks, guys!

Ummm...since more than one person essentially suggested the same fix with different additional suggestions, I'm not sure how to select the "best answer." ...Guess I'll go with the "first responder" <smile> but I appreciate Everyone's help!
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January 25, 2013 1:59:01 PM

Best answer selected by stereoeggs.
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!