dell dim 3000

March 6, 2011 at 18:35:55
Specs: Windows Vista
start up jumps to os memory limited to 256 mb. replaced mem module's w/512 mb, no change
to start-up screen..ie....hit f1, or f2. memory is limited to 256 mb in operation of computer.
can not find a way to set the memory to full alocated in use.

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#1
March 6, 2011 at 19:09:42
Are you getting this message BEFORE Windows starts to load or AFTER it starts to load.

Quote the exact message.

If you are getting the message AFTER Windows loads, how much memory is shown as recognized in the bios Setup?

Apparently you can use 256mb, 512mb, or 1gb (1,024mb) DDR modules in each ram slot, but you must use modules the mboard will recognize properly.


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#2
March 6, 2011 at 20:26:27
tubesandwires....the ram sticks are original.had trouble with a heavy virus.
been chasing this thing ever since..its a friends computer, (she is female )
the OS is in install mode, and nothing I can find will let me change it. also..
never heard of this before..!!

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#3
March 6, 2011 at 20:33:31
tubesandwires...dont see the first reply....this all happens before windows loads.
two beeps,then Os is in install mode, memory is limited to 256mb.hit F1 to continue
or F2 for setup. replaced the original sticks of memory, with a single of 512mb,
just to see what happens.same diff..256mb total...hit start,props,general, 256mb.
cannot get the system to change out of install mode...news to me..!!

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Related Solutions

#4
March 6, 2011 at 21:58:57
Is your native language English ?

If NO, use this free translator:
http://translate.google.com/#

Apparently you can't install or run Vista or Windows 7 if it detects only 256mb.

Minimum system requirements for Vista:
1 gigabyte (GB) of system memory (512 megabytes (MB) for Home Basic)

Are you trying to install Vista or Windows 7 or is it already installed on the hard drive?

If you trying to install or run Vista or Windows 7, WHY did you make this Topic in the XP forum ?


"two beeps"

When ?

Only when the 512mb module is installed, or when the original ram was installed too ?

Manuals (all of them)
Dell™ Dimension™ 3000 Series
http://support.dell.com/support/edo...

Dell™ Dimension™ 3000 Systems Service Manual
http://support.dell.com/support/edo...

Advanced Troubleshooting
http://support.dell.com/support/edo...

Beep Codes
http://support.dell.com/support/edo...

There is no beep code that's only two beeps.

Try again and find out the actual beep code.
..........

The bios must detect 512mb or more ram in order for you to install or run Vista or Windows 7.

You can use 256mb, 512mb, or 1gb (1,024mb) DDR modules in each ram slot, but you must use modules the mboard will recognize properly.

A common thing that can happen with ram, even ram that worked fine previously, is the ram has, or has developed, a poor connection in it's slot(s).

Try cleaning the contacts on the ram modules, and making sure the modules are properly seated.

For a laptop, or netbook, you must remove both its main battery and AC adapter before you do that.

For a brand name computer, see the Owner's or User's manual if you need to - how to remove or replace the ram is usually in that - it may already be in your installed programs. If you can't get into Windows, it may be on a disk that came with the computer, or you can go online and look at it or download it - it's in the downloads for your specific model.
.......

Ram that works in another mboard , or any ram you buy or have lying around, may not work properly, or sometimes, not at all - even if it physically fits and is the right overall type (e.g. SDram, DDR, DDR2, etc.; PCxxxx, xxx mhz) for your mboard. In the worst cases of incompatibilty your mboard WILL NOT BOOT all the way with it installed, and the mboard may not even beep - the ram has to be compatible with the mboard's main chipset, or in the case of recent mboards, compatible with the memory controller built into the cpu.

E.g. If you install the WRONG type of module, a 512mb module may be detected as a 256mb module !

See response 5 in this for some info about ram compatibilty, and some places where you can find out what will work in your mboard for sure:
http://www.computing.net/hardware/w...
Correction to that:
Mushkin www.mushkin.com

Once you know which module ID strings (part numbers) work in your mboard, you can get them from anywhere you like that has ram with those ID strings.

If you have brand name ram, it is usually easy to look up whether it's ID string (part number) is in a list of compatible modules found by using your mboard or brand name system model number.
If the ram is generic, that may be difficult or impossible.

You can use 256mb, 512mb, or 1gb (1,024mb) DDR modules in each ram slot, but you must use modules the mboard will recognize properly.



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#5
March 7, 2011 at 11:13:28
tubesandwires..got this thing as is: so..first..ran webroot anti-virus..( I installed it..)
found heavy virus (trojan-outside controller type ) 282 traces, and 1 malware (spam type ) fired it back up..same first screen..Alert! OS install mode limited to 265mb of
memory. shut it down..pulled the two 256mb memory boards,re-installed them.
fired it back up..same first screen. (two short beeps,followed by the screen )
three green,one yellow indicater lights . hit f1,system loads,faster,password screen, ( oh, now the ind-lights show all green ) (after hit F1 )
then after pass accepted,comes right up, then black screen, then 256 color mode
( low res mode ) waits about four minutes, then error #55, athan run time error,
hit ok, then box closes,screen flickers, and then back to normal hi-res screen.

all programs running very slow (loading ) after about three minutes, everything is
up and running. programs execute,but take time to fully work. Hit start,props,gen.
ram shows 256mb.system memory. F8 key on start-up for safe-mode, go's right to the start-up screen as above, (many times ) ctrl-F11 same thing. am unable to
get into safe mode to look around a bit. looks and acts like system is working on
the 256mb of memory at this point. ....cannot get past the memory limit at start-up
and never heard of the OS limit before..not able to change it in set-up screen.
so, I tried a different memory board to see if any changes occur. same start-up
screen.....nothing in the service manual, or user guide, have looked at other's for
some info...now you...??? firefox


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#6
March 7, 2011 at 12:39:01
"got this thing as is:"

Were you getting the message about 256mb intitially, BEFORE you did anything to the software on the hard drive ?

Did you unplug the AC adapter AND remove the main battery when you were unplugging and plugging in the ram ? You MUST do that EVERY time.

Is the bios Setup seeing 512mb of memory (it might subtract the amount shared with the onboard video)

- when the two 256mb modules are installed ?

- when the one 512mb module is installed ?

If the bios is seeing only 256mb (it might subtract the amount shared with the onboard video) when the two 256mb modules are installed, try one of them at a time in each ram slot to see what the result is in the bios

If the bios is seeing only 256mb (it might subtract the amount shared with the onboard video) when the one 512mb module is installed, try it in the other ram slot to see what the result is in the bios.
If the bios sees 256mb when it's in either slot,,it's not compatible with this mboard.
However, if both ram slots work, you could try temporarily installing the 512mb module and one of the 256mb modules to see if you then get 512mb seen in the bios.
...........

"three green,one yellow indicater lights . hit f1,system loads,faster,password screen, ( oh, now the ind-lights show all green "

See the troubleshooting info in the Service manual I pointed to - Diagnostic lights.

Vista and Windows 7 run extremely slow with 512mb, unless you're using the Basic version - they were not designed to run with only 256mb detected at all.

"cannot get past the memory limit at start-up
and never heard of the OS limit before..not able to change it in set-up screen."

If the bios is detecting only 256mb you can't do anything about that in the operating system.


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#7
March 7, 2011 at 16:34:37
tubesandwires:: first, as is, means just that..all probs came with the box. (not lap-top )
and all power is removed (including removing the cord from the computer. ) as each operation is undertaken.
second: there is a Os limit of 256mb. the BIOS must be set to default, ( factory set )
in order to see more than 256mb of ram (limited to 2 gig, in this machine.)
matters not how much ram is actually installed in the unit.if the bios is set to on (in
this case, then it is limited to the 256mb )
problem I'm having is to get to the BIOS in the set-up screen, to set it to the default
setting. as this has the Phonix rom bios plus, A02, the setup screen is limited
in the options that are available. ( the bios change is one not shown )
third: not sure why you keep relating to win 7, or vista, this is winXP sp2
as you indicated. this machine wont handle them very well. ( well, I do have a vista
laptop, running 2 gigs, this one I'm writing on )
forth: the beep code ? ( it just beeps twice, then shows the screen with the ram limit.) AMI BIOS has two beeps in its list, (another fault) and the three green,one yellow shows up in the phonix as another fault. kinda crazy finding the one to chase around. I am just trying to set the BIOS to the default setting.so this thing
will see the actual memory installed. in the setup mode, it shows the correct ram
and also the dual channel type. thats ok ! thats what is in this thing. but with the
bios set to on.(default is off ) then I'm stuck with the 256mb of ram...

and, as of this reply, I have run Kaspersky virus removal tool app. and found two
more heavy virus paks. this thing was loaded with crap..and I might add, its been real slow getting anything done with the ram limit. phew !! thanks for your help.
anything else comes to mind..let'er rip...look forward to anything to get this thing back on the road. ( its a challenge, could have just installed a new drive, or just replaced the board, but thats not my way...like the mental anguish ) firefox


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#8
March 7, 2011 at 16:53:23
"got this thing as is"
most people use this term in reference to something they bought used. is that true of this computer, was it purchase used? (not new)

larry


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#9
March 7, 2011 at 17:05:27
tubesandwires: me again....pulled the battery in the cmos holder, let the bios default
find it's factory settings on its own....yea..!! works....ram now is showing what is
actually in the slots....512mb..phew!! the bios is a Phonix rom bios plus A02
if you run into this....that is the fix....pull the quarter size battery in the cmos memory
holder, ( I left it out for two minutes. ) then went into setup, ( the screen was showing
normal stuff now ) and checked all the settings for normal running in this configuration.
and set the date...things running ok now...yea...thanks a whole bunch for taking time out, and helping..got the old grey matter to working...thanx again...firefox

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#10
March 7, 2011 at 17:12:58
larry : if you can follow the notes back and forth...got the thingie up and running now.
it had some real bad virus issues, and the bios was set ( on ) limits it to 256mb.
this unit had no way to get to the settings in order to set it back to ( off, the default )
so, I stumbled onto removing the battery to kill the current bios settings. ( like the old
Atari, and commadore, stuff..reset the things that were available and off we go...
thanks for your intrest...firefox.. ( oh yea...the memory limits were the topic of all the back and forth )

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#11
March 7, 2011 at 19:13:14
We're glad to hear you found a solution.

However.....
Bios settings that worked fine previously don't get out of whack spontaneously.


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#12
March 10, 2011 at 18:34:31
tubesandwires..as I said at the start...it had a set of heavy virus problems.
once they were gone, I had to reset the memory so the unit could
operate under normal conditions. (the OS was set to 256mb by one, or
more of the virus installs. ) looks like the windows virus eraser look alike that
came down on the clients yahoo msgr program. soon as she clicked on the
window....it had her...anyhow..when all else fails. pull the batt for the comos
and allow the system to reset to the factory default setting..then work from
there...works fine now...installed a virus killer program ( webroot ) and returned it
to the owner. thanks for all the help...firefox..

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#13
March 10, 2011 at 20:00:08
"(the OS was set to 256mb by one, or
more of the virus installs. ) "

There's NO WAY that's possible.

If malware attacked the bios, which is extremely rare these days if you use any anti-malware software at all, it's extremely likely you wouldn't be able to fix the problem by clearing the Cmos.

You never did tell me whether the bios was seeing 512mb BEFORE you cleared the Cmos. If it wasn't, you may have had a poor ram connection, or you had made improper bios settings, all along !


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#14
March 11, 2011 at 12:03:04
tubesandwires : ok first thing I mentioned was the OS was set to 256mb limited
by the bios setting..
the original memory sticks are 256mb each ( this is a dual stick machine ) for a
total of 512mb.
on this version dim3000,with the A02 bios, there is no way to get into the default
setting for memory change ( on/off ) on limits the memory to 256mb, off allows the
unit to use up to 2gig of memory.(the default-factory setting )
in this case both sticks came with the unit,256mb each. after the bios was forced
back to the factory setting of (off) the unit saw the 512mb installed.(pull the batt, and the cmos memory is set to the factory setting) fact..happened..

now the unit has one 256mb stick, and one 512mb stick, and the total memory displayed is 768mb of usable memory...and yes, a virus of the type that came
in on yahoo msgr, did in fact set the bios to256mb.by forcing the setting to on.

I, have two others that had the same problem,the virus looks like the trend anti-virus program provided by microsoft, one click
or a movement of the mouse installs it to the root of the drive.
these units did not have anti-virus protection install, or the subscriptions had lapsed, ( customers units ) it nuts, I know...but crap happens, eh? firefox


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