Need RAM Help, Inspiron 530. Installed new graphics card (2GB).

    I recently bought a HD4870X2 2GB card and with a Antec 650W PSU, all the power requirements are sound.

    But when I booted up the machine the first couple of times (Windows Vista and Windows XP, dual boot) it would get to the OS selection screen and then just hang or in the case of Windows XP just reboot.

    I originally had 3GB of Ram installed in my machine. 2 1GB sticks in dual channel and 2 512MB sticks in dual channel mode.
    I just assumed I could keep them all in and windows would just ignore the extra 1GB of RAM.

    But as soon as I took out the pair of 512MB sticks, it all started working again.

    Any advice?


    I believe 32bit windows can only address 3.5gb of ram including the Graphics ram,Its usually advisable to run a 2gb card with 64bit windows, So there is no point in running the 2 x 512 mbs anyway,

    Have you tested different combinations of RAM to find out whether one of the 512MB Sticks has become faulty?

    I can quite happily boot a 32 bit operating with 8GB Ram & the extra 5 GB is, as you said, ignored by windows.

    Original Poster

    They were working just before with a single HD4870 512MB and I also booted into Vista using the onboard VGA and 3GB and it worked fine.

    There are I believe Windows patches to address BSOD/Hang issues when you plug in more than so much memory (4GB I believe). Although you haven't added more 'memory' it does include the memory on the g-card as Tonyg said, this is probably what is causing the problem.

    Before you had 3GB because you was using onboard graphics, so if it wasn't exactly 3GB it would of been slightly more. Now you have 3GB + 2GB which is 5GB = 1GB above the unpatched threshold. So once you remove the 2x512MB sticks leaving you with 4GB overall, everything works fine again. Make sense?

    Ensure you have the latest service packs on your OS installs (XP and Vista) and that the motherboard bios is up to date.


    Here is the Vista patch:…777

    I cannot seem to find the XP one at the moment, although SP3 should fix any issues if it is related to the OS and not a problem with the motherboard bios.

    It slipped my mind that the motherboard might be limited to 4GB

    Such a pain in the backside the whole memory lark. How many times I have sat there wondering what was going on and then realising the problem was memory related (due to either the BIOS or the OS Patches).... Man I have lost count lol.

    I am not about to forget in a hurry this time :oops:

    It is the same with SLI, how many times I have seen/heard/had issues with it and totally forgot to try switching the SLI to disabled.. It is as they say, always the last place you look/last thing that you try lol
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