I have a Dell XPS 700 and recently decided to upgrade my memory from the 2 GB (two 1 GB sticks) it came with to 8 GB. For this I bought two packages of PNY matched pair memory sticks with the following stats:
4GB Kit (2x2GB) PC2-6400 800 MHz DDR2 Desktop DIMMs Part No. MD4096KD2-800
After installing the new memory sticks, Windows will no longer load. The computer starts the BIOS and completes POST, but when it tries to load Windows the screen will either show only the blinking typing place-holder in the upper left corner or it will go blank and restart the system. Sometimes the computer actually makes it to the Windows load screen before restarting. I tried swapping the four sticks around, but that didn't help. Eventually, I found that if I remove two of the 2 GB sticks and replace them with the two original 1 GB sticks, Windows loads just fine. At first I thought this meant that the two 2 GB sticks I removed were bad, but I installed them into another computer and the worked perfectly.
Am I missing something here? Any help would be appreciated.
Your problem is the xps 700 can handle only a total of 4 gb ram, not 8. One GB per slot is the maximum. (If you have 32 bit windows, it would not be able to see more than 3.5 ram anyway.) Return the memory and buy 4 one GB chips for the best upgrade your model can handle. If you can match the 2gb you have now, that would be cheaper. Go to Crucial HERE. to see the limits and the prices. They guarantee it will work and have good service and prices.
the 700 will handle more than 4 gigs.. But there are a couple of factors. First the voltage requirements must be kept under 2.0 volts when populating all 4 slots. Like Mary G points out any 32 bit OS will only handle up to 4 gigs. Another factor is the ram timings. Usually it must be in the 5-5-5- range with more than 4 gigs. The memory controllers on these systems have been very picky about the amount of memory you install.
Thanks for this info.
I have a Dell XPS 700, BIOS 1.4.1 (latest) and a Q6700 processor thanks to the help from these boards.
I bought some Patriot RAM from Fry's here in SoCal, but I missed the part about the voltage and timings. I ended up buying 8GB of 2.2 volt RAM with 4-4-4-12 timings. It worked...until I started getting these random reboots no matter what the CPU load. Clearly a RAM issue based on what I am reading here (and my CPU was fine before I upgraded my RAM).
Also, this RAM passed memtest86+ with flying colors, but when I ran Microsoft's Windows Memory Diagnostic tool, I got tons of reboots...same issue I got randomly in Windows 7 64-bit, whether browsing Facebook or in an intensive 3D app.
So, I am gonna head back to Fry's and see if I can exchange this RAM for some 1.8 volt with 5-5-5-* timings and see if that improves things.
Right now I have my old known good memory in the machine and am seeing if I have the reboot issue. Chances are, I won't, and the new RAM needs to be changed for RAM which will play nicely with the XPS 700. 😉
Thanks for replying. I should have posted that I fixed the problem by getting RAM with proper timing for the motherboard. Slower timing, specifically, though I don't remember the numbers.
The girlfriend now has my Dell and I've upgraded to a dual Hexacore Xeon for 3D work.