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Dell Inspiron 1100 memory problem

By magbobo
Nov 27, 2007
  1. Hi everybody,

    I have an old Dell Inspiron 1100 (Celeron 2.4) with 256MB RAM (two 128MB sticks). A friend of mine gave me a 512MB stick and I happily thought that I finally would be able to upgrade the memory of my old friend. The new memory I got is:

    Kingston ValueRAM 512MB 266MHz DDR Non-ECC CL2.5 200 Pin SODIMM
    (KVR266X64SC25/512)

    However, when I install the new memory the laptop won't start! The LED blinks for 5-10 seconds and then the computer turns off. When I put back my old memory everything works fine again. I've tried it with the new memory alone in both of the empty slots and also together with one of the two 128MB sticks. I've tried all possible combinations but the laptop simply doesn't start whenever the 512MB module is installed. What's going on? I thought this memory was compatible with the Inspiron. Am I wrong?

    Cheers,
    Ma
     
  2. raybay

    raybay TS Evangelist Posts: 10,716   +6

    The Dell Inspiron 1100 is infamous for this problem, and sometimes motherboards have to be replaced. The Kingston memory, even though ValueRam, is usually pretty good in that model. It does not like to have mixed memory sizes or speeds.
    However, try removing all the old memory, then inserting the new module in slot one, then if that does not work, try slot two. If it doesn't work by itself, it is doomed in your machine. If it does work, then you can try adding
    The Inspiron 1100 really works best with memory that is not "value" or lower tier memory, and is PC3200 (400 MHz). See if you can borrow other memory to try. Two modules of PC3200 Sodimms that are exactly the same should give you 1 GB of working memory. There many vendors sell good DDR Sodimm
    memory for $15.80 (256 mb) to $25.00 (512 mb) so for $50 you could have one GB, assuming your Inspiron 1100 is working properly.
    But we are now seeing so many failed 1100 motherboards for unknown causes, that it might not be worth attempting the changes.
     
  3. magbobo

    magbobo TS Rookie Topic Starter

    Cheers Raybay, this is very helpful
     
  4. Tedster

    Tedster Techspot old timer..... Posts: 10,074   +13

    read the upgrading ram guide in the guides forum. Your questions are already answered there.
     
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