Should I upgrade my BIOS when installing additional RAM?

Discussion in 'hardware' started by bongo52, Aug 4, 2011.

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  1. bongo52

    bongo52 Registered Member

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    I have a Dell Precision PWS 380 that ran well for some time with 1GB of RAM. My kids use the computer now and its performance has degraded significantly. I'm still running XP (32 bit), so it will only accept up to 4GB of upgraded RAM (it'd take 8GB if I had XP 64 bit installed).

    My RAM kit "recommended" upgrading my BIOS (currently A06, but Dell recommends A09) prior to installing the memory. Since it was "recommended" and since flashing my BIOS seemed potentially risky, I decided to install the memory without first upgrading the BIOS.

    Now, when I turn on the computer, I get a boot error that references floppy drives (I don't have one) and sends me to the Setup menu. I can step thru the menu and boot the computer, but clearly this needs to be addressed.

    Can anyone tell me if the issue is BIOS related and if it is necessary for me to update the BIOS prior to installing the memory? If I need to update the BIOS I would rather just flash the BIOS without reinserting the old memory but I'm not sure it that will address the issue. And, the Dell site seems to silent on the need to update the BIOS when upgrading RAM.

    Any insights would be appreciated.

    Best,
    B52
     
  2. Cudni

    Cudni Global Moderator

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    Theoretically speaking updating Bios is risky. In practice, however, rarely so. So update to A09 (with new memory in) as it most probably fixes a range of issues over A06. What is exact error message (sounds like a bios setting maybe driver order booting)
     
  3. ChrisGilly

    ChrisGilly Registered Member

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    Hi, I'm also trying to update my RAM. I also currently have 1GB (2 512 sticks) of RAM. I have a Dell XPS 400 but all the scanners say I have a Dimension 9150. I bought 4 sticks of 1GB RAM. It is G.Skill SDRAM. It's good stuff. The problem is, after I installed the RAM, my computer just went into a loop when I booted. I couldn't pull up the BIOS. It didn't recognize the RAM. How long should a computer boot before it does something? I gave it 20 minutes before I turned it off. Any help is greatly appreciated.
     
  4. Robin A.

    Robin A. Registered Member

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    I used a Dimension 9150, I still have it. It is the same XPS 400.

    Did you check that the new memory is compatible with this computer? If it is, it may not be seated firmly. Check the connections.
     
  5. Spooony

    Spooony Registered Member

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    No you don't have to. But if a bios update is available upgrade it. Bios has come along way since the nail baiting floppies days. You just run a exe file inside windows. PC reboots and it updates within seconds. Its not risky anymore. If something goes wrong. Just pull the cmos battery and its all fixed
     
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