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What's wrong with my laptop memory?


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#1
computer-challenged

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Hi,

My laptop is a Dell Latitude D420. I bought it a year ago. I ordered it with 1GB RAM (qutoe from dell's quote is"1GB DDR2 SDRAM (1 x 512 MB + 512MB Integrated") anyway when wondering why things are chugging along so much I checked up on the memory situation:

My System Properties shows the following:

Posted Image

and this is form the appropriate page of task manager:

Posted Image

Is it just me or has Dell made a mistake and only given me half the memory I paid for??

Is it possible it's in there and just loose and needs pushed into place?

Can I do that myself easily?

Thanks all!

Edited by computer-challenged, 04 January 2009 - 06:13 PM.

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#2
makai

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Ram can sometimes go bad. HERE is the online manual for removing/replacing ram for your laptop. Please be sure to remove the battery and AC power before doing anything inside your computer. Also, before touching anything inside, ground yourself by touching some bare metal on the chassis.

If after reseating the ram, and it still doesn't work, you might try isolating if it's the ram or the motherboard. You will need to run the machine with only one stick of ram at a time, and place them into the different slots to determine if it's the ram or the laptop motherboard that's really giving you problems.
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#3
123Runner

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Per the documentation

This computer has one memory module connector labeled "DIMM A." To install a memory module in DIMM A:

.
I suspect that the integrated is the only 1 seen. And it is only showing 504mb because the video is stealing 8mb.

As makai suggested, you need to open it up and check it out. i hope that Dell did install the other 512mb.
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#4
computer-challenged

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Hi all,

Thanks for your help.

I opened up my dell (thanks for the link for the how to) and re-seated my memory (it was in the slot in there).....*still* no luck.

Also there's only one card....I was expecting 2x512??? Does integrated mean 'elsewhere'? perhaps directly fused to the motherboard? I'm asuming that must be what it means since I could see no other slot for a second. I suppose I should try booting without the memory module in to see if the other one, wherever it may be, is the working one?

Anyways post reseating everything's still exactly as it was before. I wonder if the memory module isn't working?

I've got a 3 year extended waranty that might cover this but I *can't* do without my laptop for that lengh of time (I'm a medic and have exams, essay deadlines and essential data on it)....so if it's possible to replace (perhaps upgrade??) my memory relatively cheaply I may just fork out for it and silently cures dell for the rest of my days ;-)

Any ideas? Also does anyone know a good place to get cheap memory to fit? (cheap being the word I am a student!) must be DDR2 I believe?
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#5
jaxisland

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I cant comment much more on your problem, but cheap memory, Im used to buying.
Crucial has a step process that will pinpoint exactly what memory to buy, but they are overpriced on their site.
I use:
NewEgg
TigerDirect
CDW

Those are the best prices for me routinely.

PS - I hope you have a good backup strategy for all your important data so you dont lose it in case of drive failures or other issues :)

Edited by jaxisland, 05 January 2009 - 12:22 PM.

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#6
makai

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According to the User manual, there is 512megs of ram soldered to the motherboard somewhere, so you are only allowed to add one (1) additional ram module.

However, there is good news on the page I linked... it says that Dell memory modules are covered under your computer warranty. Remove the additional ram module to see if the computer works with the onboard ram. If so, call Dell, let them know the problem, and try to get a remedy where they send a new ram module to you, rather than having to send the laptop in. INSIST ON IT! :)

If it turns out that the bad ram is actually the onboard ram, you will have no choice but to send the laptop in for service. I advise you pull the harddrive out before sending it and let Dell know you have done that. If they grumble and say they need the harddrive, elevate the issue to higher levels. Private information should be guarded at all costs and Dell (and other manufactures) know this and normally have no problems working laptops with the harddrive removed.

Edited by makai, 05 January 2009 - 12:36 PM.

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