Building it!

By hypermikem ยท 6 replies
Feb 22, 2003
  1. Ok, I've finally decided to go ahead and upgrade. I have ordered a Shuttle AK32A MB W/AMD athlon 2000 CPU and a cpu cooling fan for Athlons up to 2800. I intend to use my current case, which is huge and has plenty of room. I also intend to use my existing floppy, cd-rom, and burner, as well as zip drive, but I am upgrading the hard drive to a 40G 7200. I am also purchasing a new power supply 300W Antec smartpower. Here's the deal. I have RAM from my old setup, and I believe it's pc100 SDRAM dimms(384Mb). My new motherboard will support both DDR and SDRAM. Actually here's the specs.:

    - 2 x 184-pin DIMM DDR
    - 2 x 168-pin DIMM SDRAM
    - Supports 4 banks up to 2 GB DRAMs (512Mb x8/x16 DRAM technology) for register DDR SDRAM module
    - Supports 4 banks up to 1 GB DRAMs (512Mb x8/x16 DRAM technology) for unbuffered SDR SDRAM module

    Now does this mean I can use my existing RAM in this setup? Before answering I should say that I plan to use XP PRO or WIndows 2000 Pro as my OS. ANother question is can I combine the two RAM types and utilize all four banks, or must they all be the same type of RAM.This is a little fuzzy to me with this make and model of MB. I am not sure about this, but if I were to be abloe to do this, would my over all RAM SPeed be only as fast as my slowest module? If I can't use them in combo, then DDR seems the way to go. I think I'd probably skip the pc 133 crap and just buy a stick at a time(as my budget allows) of DDR dimms instead. I can't help feeling that if I'm going to go through all the trouble of a major upgrade, I might as well not skimp on the RAM if it is going to make that big of a difference. FOr instance, how much faster would a 256 stick of DDR be than 512 Mb of PC133 Sdram? Can someone shed some light on this? Thanks.;)
  2. SNGX1275

    SNGX1275 TS Forces Special Posts: 10,742   +421

    Your existing RAM will work in that board.
    No you can't mix the 2 ram types.
  3. hdmk

    hdmk TS Rookie Posts: 104

    Go with DDR.... what speed DDR is supported?
  4. Svoboda

    Svoboda TS Rookie Posts: 70

    DDR will be much faster, but XP is a memory hog. For instance it seemed like my XP was running fine with 256 MB 2100 memory, but when i added another 256 mb, it ran much more smoothly. So I would recomend going with 256 MB of the fastest ram speed your mobo can support, and then as quick as you can get another 256 stick.
  5. eddy05

    eddy05 TS Rookie Posts: 152

    Windows built on NT technology are always such a memory hog... I had 256mb of PC2700 at first... and my Windows 2000 is already almost unbearable. It became much better after i installed another 512mb. The 256mb RAM ran much smoother on my previous Windows 98 compared to the current Win2k
  6. hypermikem

    hypermikem TS Rookie Topic Starter

    I did get some ddr ram!

    I went ahead and went with the 256 stick of DDR. I will purchase a 512 stick in the comming weeks. I work for best buy, so I get a really great benfit from working there........5% above cost on many things, including DDR! My AK32A supports PC2100 as the FSB tops out at 266mhz. Anything higher would still run at 266mhz right? Anyway, I ended up getting a 256 stick for about fifty nine bucks, and on top of that, a 30$ mail in rebate, so it will end up costing $29 in the end!! SO needless to say I will eventually max out the DDR to about 2 gigs. One thing I realized when I bought my HD(Maxtor 40G 7200rpm) is that it is Ultra ATA 133, and my motherboard only supports 33/66/100, so I am going to go with a Siig Ultra ATA 133 PCI card. It has two channels, and two IDE connects. Can I place my existing HD and my new Maxtor on the PCI card and then my CD-rom and CD-RW on the mother board IDEs and have them all be masters? Is that possible? I have Windows ME on my existing HD(5400) 10gig. I want to run XP PRO on the 40gig Maxtor setup. Can they both Co-exist, or must I boot from one or the other? Thanks guys! :grinthumb
  7. Phantasm66

    Phantasm66 TS Rookie Posts: 5,734   +8

    Yes you can use the existing IDE controllers for CD-ROM devices if you wish. Just remember you will have to set your computer to boot from the IDE controller card and not the onboard IDE. The IDE card will likely have some kind of option to do this, in the form of some kind of boot ROM.

    Yes, also you can dual boot Windows ME and XP. But I think you should then post a detailed explanation of what device you are connecting where (i.e. which controller, master or slave, IDE card or on-board, etc) and then the partitioning scheme that you are using, just so we can check it for you. But I don't think that there will be a problem with that.

    Interestingly enough, I am building a new machine using the ashes of an old one this weekend.
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