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More Memory Slowing Down My Computer???


SliScar

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Hi there, I built my system back in last October with an 'ASUS P5N32-Sli SE Deluxe Motherboard', an 'Intel Core 2 Extreme X6800 Socket 775 2.93GHz', and 'Corsair Memory TWIN2X2048-6400C4 2x1GB 240-Pin DIMM XMS2-6400 CL4', Since setting up the memory timers, voltage...etc in the bios I have had no hardware problems at all.

 

Yesterday I decided to buy some more RAM as since I got Vista (64-bit) and started to use some quite heavy software for my University work I decided it would be best to upgrade to 4gb, I bought 2 more chips (exactly the same ones as before) and put them into the 2 spare slots on my motherboard.

 

The problem I am getting is that since I put the memory in everything is loading a lot lot slower, and sometimes not at all, and the CPU is now fluctuating constantly idle at 25-100% (both cores) where as before it was 1-3% idle. When I took the memory back out everything ran fine again, and when I put the extra 2gb back in to test it started to be very slugish and take on average about 5 times longer to do anything (opening WMP and palying a song while doing nothing else stutters)

 

Does anyone have any idea why when I put the extra 2gb of memory in that it makes my computer run so slowly, and making my CPU work so hard? And any idea of how to fix this, thanks

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I tried with the settings I had with the origional 2 chips which was, memory voltage = 2.1, NB = 1.5, SB = 1.6, and the timer was set to 4 - 4 - 4 - 12 - Auto - Auto, the target memory speed was 800MHz (FSB Clock MHz - 1066MHz, and Memory Clock - 800MHz) I also tried to put everything on automatic but still had the same problem, and tried to set it to different speeds e.g. 600MHz but it made no difference.

 

Also with the built in performance information and tools that vista has it gives you a score for each part of your hardware to give you a rough indication of how good your computer is and what it can run. With my origional 2GB of memory I got a score in the RAM catagory of 5.4, but when I tried this test again with the 4GB installed, not only did it take about 10 times longer for the test to complete but I got a score of 1.3 (higher the better), all of the other parts had the same score still (CPU, Graphics, HDD...etc)

 

The memory itself seems to be ok, the computer has never crashed (has hung a few times) the main problem is when I put the extra memory in, the CPU is working flat out all of the time even when it is not doing anything and I have no idea why...

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  • Corsair Employees

There will certainly be more stress on the MCH when all memory slots are filled. Some motherboards may handles the stress better than the others. We have seen boards actually require memory to run at a slower speed to compensate the stress.

 

I would suggest you to get the latest BIOS revision from your motherboard manufacturer and set the followings:

 

Memory clock: DDR2 800

Memory voltage: 2.1 volts

tCL: 4

tRCD: 4

tRP: 4

tRAS: 12

Command per CLock (if it has it): 2T

tRC: 24

 

If it does not work, then you might want to try 5-5-5-15.

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Hi, I tried what you said above and tried it on 5 - 5 - 5- 15 and the computer is still performing as bad (a slight bit more responsive) than before, why does the MB say it can support up to 8GB of RAM if it is struggeling so much to use 4GB?

 

Is there any way to get my computer to run normaly with 4GB like it was with 2GB? and if not why is it advertised as being able to support up to 8GB as now I have wasted £160.00 buying more RAM for no reason that I can not return.

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Hi, I tried what you said above and tried it on 5 - 5 - 5- 15 and the computer is still performing as bad (a slight bit more responsive) than before, why does the MB say it can support up to 8GB of RAM if it is struggeling so much to use 4GB?

 

Is there any way to get my computer to run normaly with 4GB like it was with 2GB? and if not why is it advertised as being able to support up to 8GB as now I have wasted £160.00 buying more RAM for no reason that I can not return.

 

Asus's claim of support for 8GB means just that - the maximum amount of memory which can be recognized at all by the motherboard, even if such memory had to run at a much slower speed due to the limitations of modern MCHs. With most current 4GB configurations, you will need eight ranks of memory (via four 1GB sticks, which are all double-ranked), which is way too many ranks for any current memory controller to handle at maximum speed and optimum timings. If you want 4GB of memory to run as fast as your previous 2GB of memory, you will need two 2GB sticks of unbuffered non-ECC memory, which Corsair does not currently make (though a few manufacturers offer 2GB sticks).

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Is there any settings I could try that would at least let my computer run as well as it did with 2GB (the memory speed/performance does not matter much, but need the extra 2GB for the software) I do not know much about timings and speed so I don't know how high/low they can be set or what it will do to the performance, thanks for all the help
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I have tested each of the 4 1GB sticks in each of the 4 slots, all of them ran fine at 800mhz, 4 - 4 - 4 - 12, auto, auto and scored 5.4 on the vista performance test for RAM, I then ran them all in pairs in the combinations available at 800mhz, 4 - 4 - 4 - 12, auto, auto with no problems again and scored 5.4 on the vista performance test for RAM.

 

I then put 3 of the sticks in the first 3 slots, it caused a blue screen with the normal settings, but when I put it to 600mhz, 4 - 4 - 4 - 12, 12, t2 I was able to get the system to boot stable in vista and run applications, however it only scored 5.0 on the vista performance test for RAM.

 

Then when I put all 4 sticks in again it ran realy slow, with the settings 600mhz, 5 - 5 - 5 - 15, 30, t2, and it scored 1.3 on the vista performance test for RAM the one time it was able to complete, every othertime it hanged and would not finish, and as before was using 100% cpu power to open a browser page, WMP, and near impossible to come to this forum and type a message.

 

I do not think any of the sticks are faulty, and I do not think my motherboard is fault as it works with 1, 2, 3 and 4 sticks without crashing or failing to boot, but it runs slower the more sticks are in, and nearly impossible to use with all 4. I tried to set it to lower clock speeds and so on but the computer would either not boot or it would make no difference.

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I ran a full memtest cycle today with all 4GB of memory installed (800mhz, 4 - 4 - 4 - 12, 24, t2) there were no errors reported at all which leads me to believe thar none of the memory sticks are faulty.

 

This means that the performance drop when having 3 or 4 memory sticks on my motherboard is caused from something else and I still can't see how it can be that th emotherboard does not support it when it says (and asus told me) it would be able to support it fine.

 

So is it not possible to get my CPU to work normaly as it was before when I have the 4GB of memory installed, or is it always going to be overworking to the point the system is unusable?

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Since the RAM checks out, the next step is to find out what application or Window's component is sucking up an enormous percentage of CPU usage/time. To do this you'll need to pull up Task Manager and hit the Processes tab. In the CPU column, the only process in that list that should have a high percentage is the System Idle Process (the process, that among other things, continuously checks to see if you've moved the mouse or typed something). A process is actually an environment in which executable programs run within, therefore don't be tempted to highlight a particular process and clicking the End Process button. Ending the wrong process this way in Task Manager can instantly freeze and/or crash Windows. Write down the exact name(s) of the processes (including the letter's case) that are using a high percentage of the cpu. Close Task Manager and google the process name to find out the name of the application or Windows component that's running hog wild on your system and crippling it's performance. From here, you'll need to figure out how to reconfigure the application or Window's component to not be so selfish.
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These are the results of running the computer and looking at the task manager / resource monitor with 2GB and 4GB of memory installed, for each the CPU usage shows the rough range of it from idle to opening a program for the top 5 CPU using programs.

 

2GB:

System Idle Process - CPU = 93-97

Taskmgr (Task Manager) - CPU = 3-5

DWM (Desktop Window Manager) - CPU = 0-7

MFPMP (Media Foundation Protected Pipeline EXE) - CPU = 0-3

wmplayer (Windows Media Player) - CPU = 0-3

 

4GB:

System Idle Process - CPU = 60-70

Taskmgr (Task Manager) - CPU = 35-40

DWM (Desktop Window Manager) = 0-20

MFPMP (Media Foundation Protected Pipeline EXE) - CPU = 5-10

wmplayer (Windows Media Player) - CPU = 10-20

 

As you can see when there is 4GB of memory in the computer the CPU is getting a lot more stress to do anything, slowing the computer down, I have never seen anything like this before and do not understand why installing more memory is causing this problem.

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This is odd. DWM looks normal. The System Idle Process should be up in the nineties most of the time when your not doing anything. Task Manager's cpu usage usually spikes to above ninety when you first fire it up but then it should drop off to near zero. If you haven't fired Media Player up it should be near zero as well. MFPMP is part of the new Digital Rights Management that Microsoft kindly loaded down Vista with; but it doesn't look that greedy to me, at least not bad enough to create the symptoms your seeing. Something's gotta be running in the background to cause Task Manager and Media player to stay that high. Are there any applications listed on the Applications tab of Task Manager? It looks like somethings making use of Media Player and thereby forcing Task Manager to work harder up dating the performance data under the Performance tab. Another possibility is the new Superfetch function in Vista. Superfetch uses your RAM as cache, trying to fill every byte of space with what Windows thinks you might need. Without actually seeing the system running, I'm just listing what I'd be checking for next.

 

ps: the only time I've seen Task Manager stay at such high percentages when the system is just sitting there is if it had a bad virus or a ton of malware infections (trying to access the internet in the background) or a poorly written startup application hog.

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My services are custom configured, superfetch isnt on, windows media player was only on because I opened it palying songs to show how it uses more CPU usage with 4gb RAM as opposed to 2GB.

 

I highly dobut there is a virus on my computer and I dont think there is anything running in the background as those 2 sets of results were taken from purely jsut adding/removing 2 sticks of 1GB ram (from 2GB to 4GB and vice versa) when I go from 2GB to 4GB I get this CPU usage increase, and when I take the extra 2GB back out everything goes back to normal, no problems.

 

Like I said I have never seen anything like this before, all that is changing is the hardware (RAM) which in turn for some reason is making my CPU overwork to the point the system is useless, if I go to 3GB it does the same however as you would expect from these results it is inbetween 2GB and 4GB. The only applications/processes/services running are the same all the time and so if it was a virus you would expect the same symptoms regardless of hardware changes.

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Didn't realize you'd manually started Media Player and didn't mean to imply you had a virus, just listed where I'd seen those symptoms pop up before. The next thing to check is Event Viewer, to see if a system or application error is occuring when there is 4 gigs in versus 2 gigs. This might point to a bit of corruption in a driver that only rears it's head when going to 4 gigs. Another possibility is immature chipset drivers.
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Man I have the same issues that you have. Same mobo but different ram. I have 2 gskill pc 5400 512mb sticks of ram that work fine alone. I bought 2 gskill pc2 5400 1024mb to upgrade and now my system chugs every so often. It's really annoying.
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I have tried every bios setting under the sun and been lookin gat my computer with task manager, even viewer and performance monitor for over a week, I cant find anything out of place, and the ram sticks themselves check out.

 

The bios settings that I was using wit 2gb was 800mhz, 4 - 4 - 4 - 12 - 24 - 2t, mem v2.1, NB v1.5, SB v1.6.

 

The bios settings that I used were the above and then 600mhz, 5 - 5 - 5 - 15, 30, t2, mem v2.1, NB v1.5, SB v1.6

 

I don't know if there is anything I am missing in the bios, if there is please ask me for it specificaly, I am realy at the end of the line now, I have done everything i could think of but nothing works.

 

P.S - to RAM GUY - looking at your records and not ASUS's is this motherboard able to hold ''TWIN2X2048-6400C4 4x1GB 240-Pin DIMM XMS2-6400 CL4' or am I asking the impossible?

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  • Corsair Employees
With 4 modules on this MB you would do best to set the memory Frequency at 667 MHz and then over clock the CPU to get the memory running at 800 MHz depending on the specific CPU you are using.
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I had a play around with overclocking the CPU and I managed to get the system to run stable with 4GB (4x1) idle, however when I do something it still uses all the CPU power and so I am getting nowhere fast.

 

The overclocking is doing something as with 2GB the RAM is performing better than before and even with 3GB it is running ok (however I only have 3 x 1GB sticks so the RAM is not even for A and B so it causes the system to be unstable and crash every now and then)

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