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I just upgraded my Windows 7 64 bit laptop to 8 GB of RAM (2x4GB). After installing the RAM it runs outrageously slow. It takes roughly 20 minutes to boot up and is completely unusable after it officially starts up.

I heard that I should mess with the RAM voltage in the BIOS. Unfortunately my BIOS doesn't have any visible settings for this. The BIOS is Insydeh20 and there is no 'advanced' option.

This is the RAM I bought...

And here is my laptop...

If I throw in the old RAM it runs just fine.

Any idea what is going on? Bad/incompatible RAM maybe?


So I tried using one stick of the new RAM by itself and it worked fine.

I then tried using the other stick of the new RAM by itself and it also worked fine.

I even tried putting each one in the other slot, and they still worked fine when there was only one RAM stick installed.

Once I put in 2 RAM sticks it slows to a crawl.

I also tried putting one stick of the new RAM with one stick of the old RAM and it was still slow.

I also did a test with Memtest86 when both the new RAM sticks were installed. It took FOREVER. I'm not sure how long this test is supposed to take but I had to leave it on over night. But when it finally did finish it said there were not any errors.

I have no idea what is going on...

Another update Turns out I needed to upgrade my bios. Went to the acer webpage, downloaded and installed the latest bios version and now everything seems to be working great. Thanks everyone for their help and suggestions.

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I don't see any particular reason it shouldn't work - I'm not familiar with the laptop but this is not exactly high-speed or high-voltage RAM. I'd guess one might be bad, or even just not properly seated. Try the sticks one at a time, at a minimum. – Shinrai Jan 18 '12 at 21:35
How much RAM did you have before? – Daniel R Hicks Jan 19 '12 at 1:57
"If I throw in the old RAM it runs just fine." you said. Does it run just fine with only the new RAM? If not, then that's another check in the defecting RAM list. If it still works just fine.... Once upon a long time ago, some motherboards/chipsets could only cache a certain amount of RAM. Installing more actually resulted in a slower computer rather than, as expected, faster. I don't want to believe that still happens, but perhaps it does or, as has been suggested, it's a Dual channel issue. – SuperMagic Jan 19 '12 at 4:26
@DanH I had 4 GB before the upgrade to 8GB. – hanesjw Jan 19 '12 at 16:10
I'm suspecting it's something like what SuperMagic suggests -- you can't really use more than 4G and have cache work. – Daniel R Hicks Jan 19 '12 at 23:41

Your RAM should be compatible with your laptop. Have you tried running Memtest86 to ensure that the RAM is not defective?

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Hi, thanks for the response. I have not tried running Memtest86. With the new ram installed the computer really is completely unusable. How would I test my bad ram if good ram is required for a computer to boot up? – hanesjw Jan 18 '12 at 21:52
@hanesjw Memtest86 is run off of a boot disk and uses a very tiny amount of ram, Windows never loads. This program was written to diagnose your exact situation, try burning it to a CD and run it and see if you get errors. If you do, RMA the ram. – Scott Chamberlain Jan 18 '12 at 22:22
@hanesjw Is it Windows that's taking a long time to boot up or the system itself? Does the system to get to the first Windows boot screen in a normal time? Memtest86 doesn't require Windows, and problems booting Windows shouldn't stop you from using Memtest86. – David Schwartz Jan 18 '12 at 23:43
I did a test using Memtest86 and it completed successfully with no errors. But it took about 6-7 hours to complete. – hanesjw Jan 19 '12 at 16:11
A full test does indeed take rather a long time. – ChrisInEdmonton Jan 19 '12 at 17:32

It seems like your RAM is compatible with your laptop. Both are DDR 1066Mhz PC3-8500. So, here's my suggestion.

So, voltage wouldn't cause it to run that slow. At least, not in my experience.

So, you could run a Memtest, but also, a basic troubleshooting task is to simply take one stick of RAM out and try to boot. Then, take that one out, put the other one in, and boot. If one of them gives you a problem, you know which stick of RAM it is.

So there's a few ways to troubleshoot the issue that should yield results. As for BIOS, changing voltages is typically under 'POWER'.

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Thanks for the response. I did what you suggested and didn't run into any problems when using only 1 RAM stick. – hanesjw Jan 19 '12 at 16:14

Check to be sure you haven't actually accomplished a ram downgrade. IE; how much ram does your OS think it has now?

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It used to be 4GB. I upgraded to 8GB. The BIOS shows 8 so I think we are OK there. I'm going to do some more trouble shooting shortly. I'll report back once I find out what is going on. – hanesjw Jan 19 '12 at 3:41
Although this was not useful in this specific situation, it certainly could have accounted for the problem. Hanesjw, may be worth checking inside of Windows (if you can stand the long bootup) just to be sure, but if the BIOS is showing it, Windows most likely will as well. – ChrisInEdmonton Jan 19 '12 at 15:20

I upgraded my laptop memory today from 2x2=4GB to 2x4=8GB and had the same problem.

I solved my problem by doing the following:

  1. I started my laptop in Safe Mode.
  2. I deleted all the drivers of the devices that use a part of the RAM memory. So I deleted the Video card drivers, and the (wireless)network card drivers.

  3. Then reboot. and install the latest drivers from the web.

I read somewhere on the Web about this, and it helped!

Also I tried to update my BIOS as well, but I don't think that this helped, since during the process of this update I got an error, so I assume it didnt update it after all.

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