I just inherited some 2950's with Xeon Quad Core X5355 CPU's (but no RAM) for my lab. I know that the 2950 family normally requires Fully Buffered ECC RAM, but I read that the X5355 CPU does not support ECC RAM. (http://ark.intel.com/Product.aspx?id=28035). Does this mean that if I put ECC ram in this server it will fail to boot? or it will simply not utilize the ECC functionality but will still run okay? Unfortunately I have no compatible (ECC or otherwise) RAM that I can plug in and test so I need to buy it and i want to make sure I'm buying the right kind.
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If the X5355's work in the system (I.e. shipped in the 2950 from Dell or are an approved Dell upgrade for the version of 2950 that you have), then the ECC limitation will not (because it cannot) apply. The 2950 requires: