[Solved] Missing RAM?

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[Solved] Missing RAM?

Postby WhatUsernameIsFree? on Sat Dec 01, 2012 5:38 pm

Hi all,

I think I'm missing some RAM somewhere. A DuckDuckGo shows that I should need a 64bit OS to ensure I can use it all.

Code: Select all
             total       used       free     shared    buffers     cached
Mem:          3651        961       2689          0         65        340
-/+ buffers/cache:        555       3096
Swap:            0          0          0



Code: Select all
# dmidecode 2.11
SMBIOS 2.3 present.

Handle 0x1000, DMI type 16, 15 bytes
Physical Memory Array
   Location: System Board Or Motherboard
   Use: System Memory
   Error Correction Type: None
   Maximum Capacity: 1 GB
   Error Information Handle: Not Provided
   Number Of Devices: 4

Handle 0x1100, DMI type 17, 27 bytes
Memory Device
   Array Handle: 0x1000
   Error Information Handle: Not Provided
   Total Width: 64 bits
   Data Width: 64 bits
   Size: 2048 MB
   Form Factor: DIMM
   Set: None
   Locator: DIMM_1
   Bank Locator: Not Specified
   Type: DDR
   Type Detail: Synchronous
   Speed: 533 MHz
   Manufacturer: 7F98000000000000
   Serial Number: 3D36AA26
   Asset Tag: Not Specified
   Part Number:                   

Handle 0x1101, DMI type 17, 27 bytes
Memory Device
   Array Handle: 0x1000
   Error Information Handle: Not Provided
   Total Width: 64 bits
   Data Width: 64 bits
   Size: 2048 MB
   Form Factor: DIMM
   Set: None
   Locator: DIMM_3
   Bank Locator: Not Specified
   Type: DDR
   Type Detail: Synchronous
   Speed: 533 MHz
   Manufacturer: 7F7F7F7F7F9B0000
   Serial Number: 00000000
   Asset Tag: Not Specified
   Part Number: CT25664AA667.M16FJ

Handle 0x1102, DMI type 17, 27 bytes
Memory Device
   Array Handle: 0x1000
   Error Information Handle: Not Provided
   Total Width: 64 bits
   Data Width: 64 bits
   Size: 2048 MB
   Form Factor: DIMM
   Set: None
   Locator: DIMM_2
   Bank Locator: Not Specified
   Type: DDR
   Type Detail: Synchronous
   Speed: 533 MHz
   Manufacturer: 7F98000000000000
   Serial Number: 3F36A626
   Asset Tag: Not Specified
   Part Number:                   

Handle 0x1103, DMI type 17, 27 bytes
Memory Device
   Array Handle: 0x1000
   Error Information Handle: Not Provided
   Total Width: 64 bits
   Data Width: 64 bits
   Size: 2048 MB
   Form Factor: DIMM
   Set: None
   Locator: DIMM_4
   Bank Locator: Not Specified
   Type: DDR
   Type Detail: Synchronous
   Speed: 533 MHz
   Manufacturer: 7F7F7F7F7F9B0000
   Serial Number: 00000000
   Asset Tag: Not Specified
   Part Number: CT25664AA667.M16FJ


BIOS shows:
Image

Thanks for any ideas or help. :)
Last edited by WhatUsernameIsFree? on Sun Dec 02, 2012 6:13 am, edited 1 time in total.
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Re: Missing RAM?

Postby xenopeek on Sat Dec 01, 2012 6:24 pm

And surprise us, did you install the 32 bit or the 64 bit version of LMDE? You basically answered your own question :D With 8 GiB RAM I'd normally recommend you to install LMDE 64 bit. But, should you have the 32 bit version you can install the PAE kernel and this will allow you to address up to 64 GiB on your 32 bit install--though each individual process is still limited to a 4 GiB address space (should not be a problem for you, unless you do professional media creation like movie editing or rendering, in which case you should go with the 64 bit version anyway as that is faster for those kind of tasks).

To install the PAE kernel, run:
Code: Select all
sudo apt-get update
sudo apt-get install linux-image-686 linux-headers-686-pae

After reboot you will have 8 GiB RAM available in Linux.

Edit: if it wasn't clear, the default kernel on LMDE 32 bit can address up to 4 GiB RAM and no more. It also only uses one CPU core. On a modern system (generally multi-core CPU) really you should go for a 64 bit install by default IMHO; the 32 bit is for older computers (think 1990) and the default kernel ensures LMDE will run on that kind of hardware. That said, installing the PAE kernel will solve both of these shortcomings for you.
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Re: Missing RAM?

Postby WhatUsernameIsFree? on Sat Dec 01, 2012 6:33 pm

Oops,

Major thing to miss out on information wise. I think it's 64bit (bigger number than 32bit, means it's better, right?) Should I still install those headers?

Code: Select all
uname -a
Linux desktop 3.2.0-3-amd64 #1 SMP Thu Jun 28 09:07:26 UTC 2012 x86_64 GNU/Linux
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Re: Missing RAM?

Postby xenopeek on Sat Dec 01, 2012 6:59 pm

No, then don't install those packages unless you have 32 bit (and you have indeed 64 bit). Something else is wrong. Basically, the first part of the dmidecode is saying that your motherboard supports RAM chips of maximum 1 GiB capacity, and you install 2 GiB RAM chips. So only half of the memory of each RAM chip is addressable, as your motherboard can't handle more.
Handle 0x1000, DMI type 16, 15 bytes
Physical Memory Array
Location: System Board Or Motherboard
Use: System Memory
Error Correction Type: None
Maximum Capacity: 1 GB
Error Information Handle: Not Provided
Number Of Devices: 4

Before we jump to that horrible conclusion though (you having bought RAM chips too big), which motherboard do you have or what is the make & model of your computer? Let's confirm it with the specs of the manufacturer.
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Re: Missing RAM?

Postby WhatUsernameIsFree? on Sat Dec 01, 2012 7:09 pm

Hi,

It's a Dell Dimension 5100. Not sure how I tell which motherboard it has? This company says I can have 8GB max.
Thanks
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Re: Missing RAM?

Postby xenopeek on Sun Dec 02, 2012 5:19 am

Dell 5100 service manual, from Dell: http://support.dell.com/support/edocs/s ... specs1.htm. I'll quote the relevant bit:
Memory
Type = 400-MHz and 533-MHz DDR2 unbuffered SDRAM
Memory connectors = four
Memory capacities = 256 MB, 512 MB, or 1 GB non-ECC
Maximum memory = 4 GB

So I'm sorry to say, but it appears the largest SDRAM chips the Dell 5100 supports are the 1 GiB kind. For a total of 4 GiB RAM installable.

I hope you can get a full refund on your current SDRAM chips, as even if you remove two of these I suspect you would then only be able to address 2 x 1 GiB RAM instead of the 2 x 2 GiB RAM installed. Of course, you can leave these chips in if you can't get a refund and you can use 4 GiB of the installed RAM as you are currently doing (the free command shows a little less, probably because part of the 4 GiB is used by your graphics card).
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Re: Missing RAM?

Postby WhatUsernameIsFree? on Sun Dec 02, 2012 6:13 am

I'll try get a refund, but unfortunately I think it's a case of "it's been opened and used, no refunds".

At least that answers the question.

Thank you very much for your help :)
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Re: [Solved] Missing RAM?

Postby WhatUsernameIsFree? on Sun Dec 02, 2012 6:20 am

For what it's worth, I've removed two of the 'blocks' of RAM and free shows me:
Code: Select all
free -m
             total       used       free     shared    buffers     cached
Mem:          3651        755       2895          0         65        318
-/+ buffers/cache:        371       3279
Swap:            0          0          0
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