Used Computer Won't Boot - I think I need to test RDRAM

By litw
Oct 20, 2009
  1. I just picked up a used computer for free, and I'm thinking I got what I paid for .... it is a Dell Dimension 8200.

    The previous owner said the computer worked fine when he last used it (no idea how long ago that was).

    Anyway, when I first tried to boot it, it made it to the Dell intro screen (BIOS boot), and then halted with the status bar stuck 1/3 of the way. The second time I tried to boot it, a different error appeared on the screen - a text-based error which I can't exactly remember. The third time, I got beeping from the motherboard and no video.

    The diagnostic lights on the rear of the machine are YYGG - "Memory failed to be sized or enabled." After some research, I determined that the beep code I was getting (5-2-2-1) is not documented for the 8200 motherboard - lucky me! I read somewhere that the 8100, 8150, and 8200 used the same beep codes - so I cross-referenced and found that the beep code likely meant a failure in one of the memory modules. I think the beep code was 5-2-2-1.

    I just wanted to get a sanity check on my troubleshooting so far. I realize that I probably need to track down a good RDRAM set of memory modules OR a set of RDRAM continuity modules. My other question is: are the continuity modules just jumpers, or is there actual circuitry on them? I honestly don't want to spend any money on this computer, especially since it could be a goner. Wish I could figure out a way to test the memory without doling out some money.
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