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Thread: More than 2GB on a MoBo with a 2 GB max?

  1. #1
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    Default More than 2GB on a MoBo with a 2 GB max?

    So, I finally have a drive for my friends laptop that I'm fixing up, and have discovered that at least 1 of the 1GB RAM modules that I was going to use to upgrade him from 1GB (512MB x 2) to 2GB (1GB x 2) is faulty. The two 1GB modules came from a laptop with a fried MoBo (spilled drink) so I'm not too surprised at least one of them is damaged. If both of them are bad that leaves me with a 1 GB module (from a different old laptop) and 2 x 2GB modules from a third old laptop. The trouble is that his HP dv2120us system has a 2GB maximum for supported RAM. So, my question then would be: What would be the best (or possible) way to use those modules to give him the most usable RAM? I've heard that you can use RAM of higher capacity than supported and it will just only recognize part of it as accessible, but can't remember how that works.

  2. #2
    Gu3
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    Default Re: More than 2GB on a MoBo with a 2 GB max?

    Sloth,

    Generally, the 2GB limit is a bios/firmware limitation imposed by the manufacturer (or sometimes Intel). It is possible that a pair of 2GB or 4GB modules will work. As I recall the motherboard will either recognize them (and thus be able to address the memory) or it won't. I don't think you'll see a partial usage of a SODIMM. I could be wrong however, it's been awhile since I tried overprovisioning my RAM!

    Send me the SODIMM Spec, and I'll see if I have any laying around that might fit...I seem to recall a number of SODIMMS laying around the condo...lol

    S.

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    Default Re: More than 2GB on a MoBo with a 2 GB max?

    You could simply install both of the 2GB modules and see if both are recognized and used. If not.....take one out.

  4. The following user thanks Ciarlatano For this above post:

    Smiki007 (02-09-2015)

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    Default Re: More than 2GB on a MoBo with a 2 GB max?

    Quote Originally Posted by Ciarlatano View Post
    You could simply install both of the 2GB modules and see if both are recognized and used. If not.....take one out.
    Simple and logical solution.

    Always look beyond the limits...

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    Default Re: More than 2GB on a MoBo with a 2 GB max?

    Quote Originally Posted by Smiki007 View Post
    Simple and logical solution.
    Worst case scenario is that each slot will only allow the use 1 GB sticks and the computer will just give you an error beep at boot up. It probably won't blow up...

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    Default Re: More than 2GB on a MoBo with a 2 GB max?

    Quote Originally Posted by Smiki007 View Post
    Simple and logical solution.
    Name:  its-only-logical-thumb.jpg
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    Default Re: More than 2GB on a MoBo with a 2 GB max?

    The way to faster RAM is going to be using higher speed RAM with lower latencies.

    Many Laptops had budget RAM installed. (enough to work and get it sold)
    Find out what speed RAM that the board will support, and put the fastest into it.

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    Default Re: More than 2GB on a MoBo with a 2 GB max?

    Yeah, just using 1 2GB module would be the obvious way to max the RAM if it won't allow more, but I was wondering about things like "Would 1GB + 1/2GB in dual channel be better than a single 2GB?" etc. I'll likely just experiment with several configurations to see what's what, but was just wondering if anyone had experience with this to reassure me of what I might find.

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    Default Re: More than 2GB on a MoBo with a 2 GB max?

    Does the Laptop support dual channel memory operation?
    A lot of old ones do not.

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    Default Re: More than 2GB on a MoBo with a 2 GB max?

    If Im not mistaken this notebook can only support 1GB per slot as a max. A 2GB stick should not work even if it is solo. 2x1GB is the only option. Remember this dinosaur originally was released with only 2x512mb of DDR2 667mhz memory.
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    Gu3
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    Default Re: More than 2GB on a MoBo with a 2 GB max?

    Quote Originally Posted by Cyberburnout View Post
    If Im not mistaken this notebook can only support 1GB per slot as a max. A 2GB stick should not work even if it is solo. 2x1GB is the only option. Remember this dinosaur originally was released with only 2x512mb of DDR2 667mhz memory.
    I'm pretty sure it will work actually. I do believe that the laptop I had with the 2GB limitation was an HP of this era (although an intel not an AMD), and I put 4GB in it with no issues.

    I found this link where a guy actually put 2 2GB sticks and then later used 2 4GB sticks in this model: cee241:software:settings [CIFE Wiki]

    2GB limitations are generally a marketing gimmick to make you think you need a more expensive laptop. Sometimes there's a soft bios limitation, but not usually as that requires the manufacturer to specifically limit the chipset, and requires some coding, which costs $$$. It's much easier to just tell people that it's got a limit and then don't do validation testing on the dimms, even though your motherboard design and chipset support higher capacities! Great marketing trick if you ask me, as you can then put more RAM in it, change the model number, and sell it for much more money!

    The link above is a good read, as the guy spent tons of time figuring out ways to make this cheap laptop much faster and more capable. Great stuff.

    S.

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    Default Re: More than 2GB on a MoBo with a 2 GB max?

    Quote Originally Posted by Gu3 View Post
    I'm pretty sure it will work actually. I do believe that the laptop I had with the 2GB limitation was an HP of this era (although an intel not an AMD), and I put 4GB in it with no issues.

    I found this link where a guy actually put 2 2GB sticks and then later used 2 4GB sticks in this model: cee241:software:settings [CIFE Wiki]

    2GB limitations are generally a marketing gimmick to make you think you need a more expensive laptop. Sometimes there's a soft bios limitation, but not usually as that requires the manufacturer to specifically limit the chipset, and requires some coding, which costs $$$. It's much easier to just tell people that it's got a limit and then don't do validation testing on the dimms, even though your motherboard design and chipset support higher capacities! Great marketing trick if you ask me, as you can then put more RAM in it, change the model number, and sell it for much more money!

    The link above is a good read, as the guy spent tons of time figuring out ways to make this cheap laptop much faster and more capable. Great stuff.

    S.

    HP Authorized ASP. I understand the memory gimmicks and crap. However a lot of times they are actually real locked by the bios and or chipset. Dell does this a lot to force buyers into buying more expensive notebooks at the offset. If it works this time around, great for him. I hope it does because 2GB is useless. My phone has more memory than that. However he should be prepared for the chance of it not working. Either power no video or beep codes. Fingers crossed for it to post with the single 2GB chip. then go for another.
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    Default Re: More than 2GB on a MoBo with a 2 GB max?

    Quote Originally Posted by Cyberburnout View Post
    I hope it does because 2GB is useless. My phone has more memory than that. However he should be prepared for the chance of it not working. Either power no video or beep codes. Fingers crossed for it to post with the single 2GB chip. then go for another.
    AMEN!

    lol

    S.

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    Default Re: More than 2GB on a MoBo with a 2 GB max?

    Quote Originally Posted by realneil View Post
    Does the Laptop support dual channel memory operation?
    A lot of old ones do not.
    It does: Memory Upgrade HP Pavilion dv2120us Laptop Pavilion Upgrade HP Memory RAM but check out that DDR2 PC2 5300 Spec! Blazing Speed! WOOT!

  16. #15
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    Default Re: More than 2GB on a MoBo with a 2 GB max?

    It's still going to be a slug, even if you can double the RAM.

    Chromebooks are getting cheaper all of the time. (just saying)

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    Default Re: More than 2GB on a MoBo with a 2 GB max?

    Well, I am now posting this message from said laptop with 4GB of active RAM. When I first installed the 4GB it wouldn't POST. So, I then tried one of them and did a memtest (just for fun) and it worked fine, detected as 2GB usable memory. Then I did the same thing with the other stick, and it was good too. Put them both in and viola! 4GB of RAM running and detected.

    On a side note, Linux MINT was incredibly unstable on it afterward and I thought the laptop was gonna burst into flames and I might have to declare it dead. Oddly enough, after installing Lubuntu it runs much cooler and hasn't crashed once. I still have no idea if the heat was causing the crashes, or the OS was unstable and stressing the system until it crashed. Fingers crossed tis laptop may still have some life in it.

    Now, to get the wireless card working. (I removed it to replace it with a possibly better one reclaimed from another dead laptop since the original wasn't working at all in MINT and found out that the replacement "isn't supported" and just removed it leaving them both out until I could get the rest of the system stable... and if that sorry excuse for a sentence didn't confuse you then I don't know what would.)

    Edit: P.S. I completely forgot I was talking about the temps. Remind me, what does it indicate when the cores are running in the 50s C and the CPU temp is running in the 90s. It much cooler than it was, but I could still use the exhaust vent as a hand dryer.

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