View Full Version : Tecra 9100 - Installed extra 512mb RAM but it's slowed down my computer!

30.07.2007, 15:05
After much fumbling around trying to install my new 512mb RAM, I switched on my computer to find it boots much slower. A message popped up saying 'Memory Module Added' and my computer shows that 768mb is installed which is correct because I already have 256mb installed in Slot 1.

So why on Earth is my computer even slower!? I bought it to speed up the thing! My computer is slower to boot, is less responsive and much better off with just the 256mb of RAM installed.

I think I might have damaged the RAM or Slot 2 because at first I inserted it in wrong. They should have made a video demonstration on how to install it because the manual didn't help me that much!

The RAM is from Crucial and supports my laptop because I ran the tests to decide which RAM I need.

Can anyone please help me!

30.07.2007, 15:32

Well, it's possible that the new RAM malfunctions.

But did you check the RAM speed??? What MhZ amount does the module supports??

The Tecra 9100 supports the PC2100 512MB (PA3164U-1M51) module and it runs at 266 MHz.
If the new module supports a lower speed than the second old module will run also with the lower speed.

Furthermore I would not recommend using no-name modules. The performance is bad. Kingston modules are much better.

30.07.2007, 15:33

did you already tried working just with the 512MB module? Test it in both slots, then you will see if you really damaged the slot.
On the other side, where´s your problem with inserting a memory module?
Why do you need a video for inserting something (memory module) which is mechanically built to fit in something (slot)which is certified just for that module?
So I can draw a parallel line to LEGO when I think about installing memory modules in my machines. :)


30.07.2007, 16:08
This is what the Crucial Memory test guaranteed to work with my system:

Upgrade for a Toshiba Tecra 9100

And that's exactly what I got.

Is there any chance I can get a refund? The packaging... well it's all in the bin (small plastic sealed bag with cheap, cardboard box in it where the RAM was in its static sensitive bag). You just can't open anything nowadays without tearing it.

Also I'm worried about the whole static thing... I didn't have a static wrist strap thing and I really did fumble around with the darn thing trying to install it... still that's not entirely my fault.

I'm scared to take out my 256mb and replace with my 512mb at the moment. But when I calm down I might consider it! :p

30.07.2007, 17:13
I'm a bit puzzled as to why your laptop would slow down after a memory upgrade. Like Kingston, Crucial is a recognised brand and therefore you should have no compatibility issues. The memory will tend to run at the speed of the slowest module, as is the case here.

While a properly earthed anti-static wrist strap may be the ideal procedure, I usually rely on earthing myself on (say) an appliance which I know is fully grounded immediately before touching a memory module. Alternatively a radiator or other item which might be earthed. Of course this depends on your countries electrical regulations :-)

You must avoid touching the contacts or surface - always best to hold the module only by its edges.

As another poster has suggested, remove the 256MB module and replace with the (new) 512MB Crucial module and check the laptop boots OK with just the 512MB module. A symptom of bad memory is when it causes the PC to fail to boot or the PC freezes at any point (either within seconds or after a period of time).

If this fails, then download the memory diagnostic tool from Microsoft web site (you may want to do this from another PC). I cannot remember the full name or URL, but it is the one recommended by XP when a memory-related error is reported. The software extracts to a bootable floppy or CD and carries out a very comprehensive memory test.

Let us know how you get on.

30.07.2007, 18:21
Is grounding yourself really that important? I don't really no what that means (I'm only 16). When I was installing the RAM I was sat down on the sofa with my feet on the floor. If it matters I was wearing a nylon shirt (Man Utd :P).

Also my brothers and mates were running about. But I didn't think that would really matter when installing a small bit of hardware. I never actually touched the connectors myself but was touching the edges and a component (I had to to snap it into place).

So how do I ground myself exactly? Install the memory whilst holding on to a radiatior!?

31.07.2007, 08:40
Well, it's better to ground yourself if you can. Reason being even if the RAM modules aren't damaged immediately, there is a greater chance of electro-static damage if precautions aren't taken.

I never resort to using a wrist-strap, but when buying second hand RAM (because the seller may be trying to off load duff kit) I try to minimise the risk by touching the nearest radiator (in any modern UK house these should be earthed). Believe me, I don't hold the radiator why installing the RAM - just a quick touch before handling the memory ;-)

03.08.2007, 21:35
Well I finally replaced the default 256mb RAM for the 512mb RAM and my computer is no better off at all. Once again, boot is longer, much longer, I've even noticed CPU being used is much higher (hangs at 100% for a while when I'm loading a website) and my computer is less responsive and less fast.

It shows that my slots are fine but my new 512mb RAM from Crucial is rubbish. I'm not sure if the module was born malfunctioned or if they just aren't supposed to be made for Tecra 9100s at all.

Either way I'm gonna try and get a full refund and buy my RAM elsewhere.

I am very disappointed Crucial!

Edit: Just realised 512mb RAM was 1.20Ghz and 256mb RAM is 1.99Ghz

Message was edited by: lewislite

10.08.2007, 16:46
As for the Crucial RAM I purchased it was 333MhZ. The original 256mb RAM installed was just 266MhZ. However when I opened up the system menu under my computer the 512mb RAM shown as 1.20Ghz compared to my 1.99Ghz 256mb RAM.

Also the Crucial RAM was PC2700. The 256mb RAM originally installed was PC2100. Was the problem because of this?

And finally, before I really do send the RAM back... should I open the BIOS or sumthing to see if I can get it to work?

10.08.2007, 17:43
In my experience I've not had speed problems with adding PC2700 512MB to a system already populated with a PC2100 256MB.

I'm puzzled by the lower frequency rating for the PC2700 module - are you sure you are looking at the specification for the RAM module and not the CPU clock frequency? Just a thought.

My only suggestion is to try googling for advice on slow RAM problems, compatibility between mixing standards etc. and see if this turns up any recommendations.

Failing that, you may want to ask Crucial if they would be prepared to swap the PC2700 for PC2100 standard.

22.08.2007, 23:18
Sent the Ram back, gotta full refund. Just ordered another one from Crucial so fingers crossed this one wont be faulty.

I searched Google for slow Ram problems when this problem first happened. Nothing really helped.

Swap the PC2700 for PC2100? Isn't PC2100 actually slower than PC2700? Besides, on their site they had no 2100 standards available for my laptop anyway, just the 2700 which is 'guaranteed to work with Tecra 9100s'.

24.08.2007, 16:07
Unbelievable. I just got the RAM in the post from Crucial and I put it in my laptop to find it's just as bad as the one I took back, if not worse!!!

Experience taught me how to install RAM last time so this time it was a 10sec breeze. I grounded myself and held the RAM by its edges and clicked it in safely into Slot 1 after taking out my 256mb RAM.

Fingers crossed this time, I thought, as I put the battery back in and powered on. I noticed its terrible performance straight away. The loading bar on Windows was taking ages and ages to move and when I finally got into Windows, boot time was absolutely drastic! It took around 5mins to load up my usual start-up apps. Heck, it even crashed Windows Live.

I'm very, very disappointed as this is the second time now. The RAM has obviously been recognized because a message came saying 'Memory module added' and under my computer it shown as 512mb of RAM. If it were faulty surely I wouldn't have gotten this far. Maybe they sent me my faulty RAM back by accident?

Whatever the problem, I feel very gutted that I'm gonna have to send it back to them again. :(

Anyone open for suggestions? I'm desperate!

Edit: Just to let you know it is showing as 1.99Ghz.

Message was edited by: lewislite

24.08.2007, 16:36
Hello Lewis

I am sorry to hear that you still have problems with RAM upgrade. If possible can you try to obtain Toshiba tested and compatible RAM module with part number PA3164U-1M51 (R2D2 already wrote about this) and check it again. Put the new 512 MB RAM module in slot A.

24.08.2007, 22:12
I'm actually having doubts that Tecra 9100s work with PC2700 at all. PC2100 looks like my best bet. After all that's what my Toshiba 256mb RAM is - PC2100 SDRAM. That calls for another question. The PC2700 RAM uses the density DDR, yet the PC2100 uses SDRAM. Maybe my laptop only works with SDRAM? But then on the other hand I wouldn't have been able to log in to Windows uses the wrong density RAM would I?

PC2700 is faster and cheaper than PC2100 from what I've gathered from all these retail sites. Yet I'm gonna have to buy PC2100 because my laptop is like an old snail using PC2700 from my experience.

I'm confuzzed.

25.08.2007, 00:56
Sorry to hear of your continued problems. I had a issue with my Desktop PC a few months ago and was convinced it was due to a second RAM module I'd just bought. So I sent it back only to find the replacement performed just the same. The replacement was definitely a new module because it was sealed (Kingston Value RAM). Eventually I concluded that the problem lay elsewhere in my system and resolved it by tweaking some of the BIOS memory parameters.

In the case of your laptop, BIOS memory tweaking is not an option, so I'd suggest you download the Memory Diagnostic utility from Microsoft (or an equivalent) as this should at least prove if the memory itself is incompatible with your system.

If the memory flies through the memory tests, then perhaps there could be an issue with your o/s? (although its hard to imagine why because your 'old' module works fine)

25.08.2007, 12:34
I tried to use that Memory Diagnostic tool before but the instructions told me I needed to burn it onto CD or floppy disk to use. That's fine but then it said I need cdburn.exe to create the ISO image. So I clicked the link to get cdburn.exe and it led me to Microsoft Server 2003 Tool Kit which was where it was. After installing the Tool Kit I clicked cdburn.exe and it did nothing. Just a window pops up for 0.1 of a second.

Edit: Forget all that. Ran the Memory test on my 512mb RAM and all tests were successful. To conclude then, my RAM is not faulty and it's likely the RAM I sent back wasn't faulty. The RAM simply doesn't work well with the Tecra 9100 Series full stop. It appears to be compatible but performance says otherwise. But I don't understand why.

Nothing to do with the fact I installed Windows XP because I have no recovery disk is it? :/