In the past few days I have noticed many questions from people with memory (RAM) issues. Being that I have ran into similar problems in the past, I am posting this sticky so that FAQs can be answered quickly. STEP 1: INDENTIFY WHAT TYPES OF MEMORY YOUR MOTHERBOARD ACCEPTS First: Know the types of RAM that your motherboard can take. If not sure Read The F***ing Manual (RTFM), or contact the manufacturer (go to the website or call.). 80% of installation RAM problems are caused by incompatibility. Some motherboards are very picky about what types or brands of RAM they'll take. Asus is one of the motherboards, Dell is another – in addition, Dell uses proprietary architecture in many of their systems so generic RAM or third party RAM will not work in many cases. It PAYS to build your own computer. CPU-Z is a good program to use to check out your RAM type. It is free, however, it will not NOT tell you what brands your motherboard will take, only the type. Be aware that identifying programs and/or websites are NOT 100% reliable indicators of what type of RAM you can use. When all else fails RTFM. NEVER MIX SPEED, TYPES, SIZE, OR BRANDS OF RAM. At best it might work, at worst it won't and you might permanently do some damage. Faster memory mixed with slower will always result in the slowest speed available if it does work (and you're wasting the faster memory speed for nothing.) I repeat again, do NOT mix types of RAM, use the proper type for the proper system. Failing to follow this most basic of instructions will cause 98% of problems later on. DO NOT OVERCLOCK memory. This means do not adjust voltage settings, latencies, or other settings in your BIOS before installation. Increasing voltage is a sure way to burn out your memory early. Leave this stuff for experimenters and those that can afford toasted and burned out components. If you're a newbie or an average joe/jane – LEAVE IT ALONE. Step 2: GROUND YOURSELF and the COMPUTER. When installing, GROUND YOURSELF and the Computer. Use an anti-static mat and/or wrist strap – available at Radio shack and most electronics stores. Some recommend keeping your computer plugged in the wall for grounding reasons, I do not. Accidentally turning on your computer is a sure way to damage something as well as to shock yourself- so leave it unplugged. You may want to run a thin wire from the case of the computer to a common ground like a cold water pipe. Do not work on a computer in a carpeted room if possible. Turn OFF the computer. I have seen stupid people plug components in when the system was still on. If you're that dumb, don't bother upgrading the system yourself. Read a book about basic computing before attempting operation. Touch the computer frame and if you can, keep a part of your body in contact with the frame at all times to ensure no static buildup. Step 3: LOCATE SLOTS & # of STICKS REQUIRED FOR UPGRADE (RTFM) Locate your memory slots. Motherboards vary in the number of slots available. Some motherboards, particularly Pentium, require memory upgrades in pairs. Always try to match memory sticks when upgrading for enhanced performance, particularly with DDR RAM. Step 4: INSTALLATION: There are 3 basic types of installation depending on your type of RAM: SIMM: When installing SIMMs, most manufacturers require the module to be inserted at a 45 degree angle, then snapped forward to the correct position. Most Pentium systems require matched pairs. DIMM: Unlike SIMM, DIMMs may be snapped directly into the socket. Note: Some DIMM sockets have different physical characteristics. If your module doesn't seem to fit, do not force it. You probably have an incompatible type. DDR, DDR2, DDR3 are not interchangable. Use the proper type of RAM. Refer to Step 1. SODIMM: (Commonly found in laptops) Insert the module and snap down into position. Some laptops require a single SODIMM module while others require matched pairs. Step 5: REBOOT & TROUBLESHOOTING Put your case back together, and replug everything. Turn on your computer and boot up as normal. Your BIOS should automatically recognize the added memory. If you did it right, you shouldn't have any issues, however....... if you did it wrong: 1.If you receive an error message or hear a series of beeps when booting, your system may not be recognizing the new memory. Remove and reinstall the modules to make sure they are seated securely in their sockets. 2.Make sure that your new memory is the same type as your old memory. (i.e. FPM,EDO,SDRAM,parity/non-parity/ECC). Using EDO or SDRAM in a system that does not support it will not work, often resulting in a blank screen or no POST (Power On Self Test), or a BIOS/CMOS setup error. DDR and DDR2, DDR3 etc.... are NOT interchangable. 3.Fill your slots with the largest density (put the largest module in blank 0), the second largest in bank 1, and so on. Remember, it is always advisable to have all modules the same size. 4.If your module will not fit, it may be incompatible. There are different notches for for 3.3V, 5V, buffered, and unbuffered memory modules. Make sure your module is oriented in the right direction also. 5.If your system still won't boot up, check your other computer connections internally with the power off. You may have bumped or jostled another component accidentally. 6.If you can boot up and get other errors, run MEMTEST86+ from a DOS bootable floppy disk. It is not advisable to run a computer without a floppy drive. Floppy drives are still required for hardware diagnosis and BIOS updates, this is a leftover architecture requirement from the early days of computing. All Intel based computers (to include AMD) have 8088 architecture at their core for basic operation. IF you are using DOS 6.22 and earlier and are getting memory errors, consider running memmaker to re-configure your memory settings. 7.If you get a memory mixmatch error, follow the prompts to enter setup, then select save and exit. (This is not an error – some systems must do this to update their CMOS settings.) 8.If your system is only recognizing half of a new module's memory, contact the module manufacturer tech support. 9.Recognize that adding TOO much memory (rare) may not be recognized by your operating system. Every operating system has an upper limit. Windows XP has an upper limit of 4 Megabytes. Older versions of Windows are less. 10.When all else fails, RTFM.