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Problems with my old nForce4 mobo

Discussion in 'Processors and motherboards AMD' started by proteo, Oct 7, 2009.

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  1. proteo

    proteo Active Member

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    PNY GeForce GTX560Ti OC
    that ram looks really nice, it's a shame he only wants to ship in the US.

    I managed to mix the memory sticks, Kingston and OCZ setting the bios to use the SPD values for timings, It took me half day to remember that I had set the timings manually as low as possible. But one memory stick was faulty when I used memtest, so I'm waiting to get new memory
     
  2. MisterWhippy

    MisterWhippy Master Guru

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    I enabled memory hole, and still windows xp 64 still only reconized a total of 3.25 gb of ram. This is because the board max of "memory" is 4 gig. Not 4 gig of ram. I suggested XP because I had a nearly identical setup up untill a few months ago, and after relentless and near daily OS changes, I felt that XP offered the best performance for hardware. Vista/7 utilize more memory than XP, and the boards limitations really clash with Vista's need for memory. Windows 7 is not much better than Vista either.

    Xp may be nearing EOL, but what other updates would it possibly need. Speaking from firsthand experience, XP and that style of setup go hand in hand.
     
  3. Pill Monster

    Pill Monster Banned

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    You misunderstand the way it works.

    It doesn't increase the amount of RAM the board can use - it puts the preallocated memory into virtual address space above the 4GB mark, so that the OS can use all of the physical RAM.

    Considering you have 3 graphics cards you were prob doing well to see 3.5 GB of memory. Yours is an OS issue, not a hardware problem.
     
    Last edited: Oct 23, 2009
  4. MisterWhippy

    MisterWhippy Master Guru

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    I am presenting facts. I proved all of these personally.

    My prior configuration is as follows:

    4 gig Gskill DDR 500 (4x1 gb)
    2.8 ghz Opteron 170
    dual 8800 GT sli
    Windows XP 64 (which allows for more than 4gb of ram)
    Memory Hole option was enabled


    Windows only reported 3.25 gb of ram. The Nforce 4 SLI chipset will only recognize 4 GB of MEMORY. Memory Includes Ram as well as Graphic card ram. At best with that chipset, and a 128mb video card you will only have windows reconize 3.75 gb of ram. I proved this as well with an nvidia 6600 video card with 128mb ram. I do not know how windows/board alocates memory, but this board NEEDS a graphic card, and I do not know how it figures out memory, but a 128 mb card will set itself at 3.75 mb usable. The windows /pae switch did not resolve this issue.

    See specs here

    As you can see it states the maximum "SYSTEM MEMORY". If you will note, the wording does not say 4gb RAM, it specifically states MEMORY. This is not a hardware failure. This is a simple and well documented fact. I attempted to disprove it multiple times. Another nifty item with having all 4 ram banks populated, is that the operating limit of the ram than drops to ddr333. This is a bandwidth limit of the board as well. One can "overclock" to compensate, but if you than go over 400 mhz, you will simply not be able to boot. Also, since I am on the subject, You cannot install an OS with all 4 banks populated.

    The DFI NF4 series are the best of their class for the AMD socket 939 chips, but they have shown their age over the past year or so. I clung to mine as long as humanly possible.
     
    Last edited: Oct 23, 2009

  5. Pill Monster

    Pill Monster Banned

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    You can debate this all you like, or present all the info you want, if you feel it validates your theory, but it will be pointless.

    From what you're saying, I can see you don't fully understand the way physical & virtual memory is used by your hardware and OS.





    tbh I don''t have the time atm to explain it, but I may send some reading material your way after work....maybe Renegade or another Guru Tech can fill you in before then..
     
    Last edited: Oct 23, 2009
  6. Leafblower

    Leafblower Ancient Guru

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    What's the point of the memory hole setting?
     
  7. MisterWhippy

    MisterWhippy Master Guru

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    haha, don't waste my time or yours. Its totally understood on my end. It has been discussed on this forum many many times. You don't need to waste Renegade or some other "guru techs" time. They may actually agree with me. You and I seem to be debating different things. Im telling you the physical limitations of the nforce 4 chipset. I don't know if you own one or not, but I had mine for years and overclocked an athlon 3200, an opteron 144, an opteron 160 and an opteron 170 on this board. I used memory configs of 2x 512 gb Ultra XL, 2x1 gig Gskill DDR, and the worst was 4 physical 1 gig ddr 500 as it only ran at ddr 333. I had graphic cards from a 7300 gs, 7900 gs, Dual 7950Gx2 (Quad sli), and finally dual 8800 GT before casting my rig out to ebay for returns on investments. I ran liquid cooling most of the time as well, but none of this awesomeness overcomes the physical limitations of the Nforce 4 chipset.

    I don't disagree that vista or 7 won't run on this setup. I won't even say they run terrible. What I do say is that in my two and a half years use of my DFI LP UT Nf4 SLI-DR, XP was the most bang for the buck. I am also saying that there is no way to overcome this 4gb MEMORY LIMIT on this board. No amount of tweaking, consulting the manual or interweb forum trolling will get over it. You can discuss it all you want. It wont change the fact. Windows reports less than 4gb, and simply cannot address it because of the chipset's limitations. I am not talking about virtual memory in the least bit. I am talking about PHYSICAL MEMORY. Its not being moved to a virtual address above the 4 gb mark. It can't be - I.e. RAM + ALL onboard Memory, be it on the motherboard or Graphic card must be less than or equal to 4gb. This chipset can ONLY address 4gb of MEMORY. 4 GB of ram would be what I consider the least amount to run vista/win7. Seeing how it is PHYSICALLY IMPOSSIBLE to utilize 4 gig of ram with this board, one may have to reduce functions that make Vista/7 the experience it should be. Aero desktop etc. After tweaking vista to make "good use" of the available memory, it looks like Windows 2000 and uses twice the ram or more that XP uses.

    So to summarize:

    Nforce 4 boards can only utilize 4gb of memory. This includes all physical RAM as well as graphic chip memory. This is a fact. There is no changing this. This is no theory. This is fact. It is also very well documented all over the web.. Also these board HATE mixed ram. Mixed timings cause all sorts non-booting and blue screening.

    This is an awesome board for windows XP 32 or 64 based on the users ram requirements. It makes for a less than enjoyable experience on vista/7. 3.75 gb of ddr 333 + vista = waiting game.

    This board SHINES with 2 gb of solid low latency ram, and an overclocked chip. 2gb of ram is great for XP.
    It would allow a 32 bit os to address greater than 3gb of ram which is a usual limit.

    Here is a few basic question/answers
    Microsoft Support info
     
    Last edited: Oct 23, 2009
  8. Pill Monster

    Pill Monster Banned

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    Mate. You are very confused. That is not what it does at all.



    And the amount of dramm a chipset can take has NOTHING to do with what the OS can address. WTF do you think a pagefile is for????


    I can't be ****ed w/ this if you don't want to learn....


    Btw - I've owned almost every nForce chipset from the Socket A onwards, including an ASUS A8N nF4.

    FTR I'll be happy to post a screen shot of the above board with XP32 and 8GB of memory showing in both Task Manager & Everest.
     
    Last edited: Oct 23, 2009
  9. MisterWhippy

    MisterWhippy Master Guru

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    FTR, Id be happy to post another link showing the specs of this board that state 4 gb memory max.
     
  10. cozee

    cozee Master Guru

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    my asus commando says in its manual the boards max is 4GB but I can see all 4GB in a 64bit enviroment but with only memoryhole enabled.
    Windows XP 32bit can never use more than 3.25GB of ram after that it goes over onto the swapfile.No hardware/bios/software/editing can get round this whatsoever!
    ur dreaming if you think it is goin to and following a endless path trying.
     

  11. MisterWhippy

    MisterWhippy Master Guru

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    Even with memory hole enabled, my DFI LP Nf4 only reconized 3.25 gb of ram With XP 64. This was with 2 graphic cards and "SLI aperture" enabled. Disabling SLI Aperture allowed windows to display 3.5gb, so I can honestly say that I don't know what it did. Id like to point out that all of my experiences with this board were with XP64. 4gb ram or 2, ALWAYS had a 64 bit os. That may be part of the confusions Pillmonster and I are having. Im not even addressing 32bit Windows. Id rather have run 2 gig @ ddr 500+, than have 4 gb at ddr333ish.
     
  12. Psychlone

    Psychlone Ancient Guru

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    Wow guys - you are both my brothers, and it's hard for me to jump in the middle here...so I want you both to know that I have a really hard time with this subject, especially considering the knowledge spread between you both and the personal friendships between all of us.

    I've been in the position of helping others for so many years, and in that, I've become more than acquaintances with both of you, so for me to jump in and prove someone wrong is going to hurt...which I really don't want to do.

    I want you both to know that I respect you and your opinions, and I value you as friends...we've all been through quite a lot in the years.

    I just wish this could go away. I've been in the position of putting other people's fires for years as the owner of a very successful restaurant for years and having 21 years experience in the Food and Beverage Industry, but I've come to really despise coming in between good people (****ty 'always have to be right' customers is another story!)

    I'd like to say each is right, and as much as I'd like to say that each is right, in reality, you're *both* right, as you're both not comparing apples to apples, even in the same chipset series...there are small nuances in each iteration of the same chipsets that are so different.

    Anyway, I respectfully decline to jump in the middle of this - you're both right in every aspect on different hardwares...enabling Memory Hole on some hardware has no issues addressing the extra memory to PF while on other systems, it does absolutely nothing.

    I most certainly hope that this pm doesn't come between us, as I very much value our friendship that we've developed and the knowledge that I know that you both have.

    I'm also 3 sheets to the wind, so on the occasion that anything comes across as condescending or not to your liking, please excuse me...whiskey is my friend ;)

    Take care brothers.

    Psychlone
     
  13. MisterWhippy

    MisterWhippy Master Guru

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    Thanks Psychlone.

    I must say, that I always love a good heated debate. I never ever hold grudges, and never take it personal. I do however stick to my guns.

    Pillmonster is the man for goin toe to toe with a conviction and a smile.
     

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