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Core Solo Upgrade - 4gb Memory Problems - help!

 
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arctictundra
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PostPosted: Sat Jul 28, 2012 3:21 pm    Post subject: Core Solo Upgrade - 4gb Memory Problems - help! Reply with quote

Hi Folks,

I have a 2006 Mac Mini Core Solo (1.5ghz), running Snow Leopard 10.6.8 and I recently followed advice from this forum and ifixit to upgrade the mac mini in the following way:

Upgraded to a 2ghz Intel Core 2 Duo (T7200)
Installed 2gb Ram
Upgraded the Firmware from 1.1 to 2.1

(I also swapped the original drive for a superdrive a while back, and have changed the airport card to an airport extreme)


It's a 2006 Intel Core Solo model, and everything has been really successful - I cannot thank individuals enough for their help on this forum with regards to this. However today I have encountered a new problem.

After upgrading the firmware I was really keen to maximise the ram for the upgraded mac mini. After reading several posts it seemed like I could buy a matching pair of 2gb ddr2 667mhz modules and push the memory up to 3.15gb (even though 4gb would be in the computer). As I had already flashed the firmware previously, I thought this would be no problem.

This morning I installed the matching modules into the mac mini, but after turning the mac mini on, the power light just continually flashed and the mini would not boot. I double-checked my memory modules were inserted correctly and tried again - yet the same result happened.

I opened up the mini again, and tried with 3gb (non-matching) instead; one 2gb module and one 1gb module. This is working perfectly fine and using the system profiler it shows up as 3gb installed with no problems. There is a slight increase in speed in the Mac, but not that massive from my previous 2gb to be honest.

Therefore I have two questions which I'd really appreciate any help with:

a) Is there any way that I can put the matching 2x2gb pairs of memory modules into my upgraded mac mini core solo? If so, how can I get around the flashing light problem? I'm assuming because it works with the 3gb this is the maximum limit for this motherboard, but if anyone else has any information, this would be really appreciated.

and

b) The startup screen with the apple logo (before the desktop screen) seems a little slower with the new memory installed. Is there any way of speeding this up at all?

Any help would be really appreciated as otherwise I will sell the memory modules back on Ebay.

Many thanks!
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billb
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PostPosted: Sat Jul 28, 2012 11:49 pm    Post subject: Load Speed Reply with quote

Can't help you with your RAM problem though
it sounds like one RAM SIM is bad. RAM has
little effect on how fast your OS loads. A faster
hard drive will speed up your OS load time. If
your system is taking longer and longer to boot
that sounds like your Hard Drive may be getting
ready to fail. How old is it (your Hard Drive)?
_________________
2011 Mac mini 2.7 GHz i7 with
16GB RAM, Samsung 512GB SSD
MacBook AIR 11 Inch
Mac mini, Model 1.1, 2.33 GHz C2D Proc
20" iMac G4 PPC
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arctictundra
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PostPosted: Sun Jul 29, 2012 2:09 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Thanks for the reply billb - really appreciated.

The memory doesn't seem to be bad - I've now tried both memory modules in the 3gb combination (2gb in one slot and 1gb in the other, using both memory modules as the 2gb one) to check if they both work and they seem to operate fine.

The hard drive is a 7200 320gb Seagate Momentus - it was bought around this time last year but was bought on Ebay so not sure if it was brand new or not. Thanks for the heads-up - I've been looking to add a hybrid drive to the mini anyway, so this will just accelerate the process!

I haven't a clue whats going on with the memory problem though!
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billb
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PostPosted: Sun Jul 29, 2012 5:30 am    Post subject: RAM Reply with quote

Their could be something wrong with one of
your RAM Slots. Also, the Segate Hybrid Hard
Drive has gotten mixed reviews, make sure you
buy it from a retailer with a liberal return policy.
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2011 Mac mini 2.7 GHz i7 with
16GB RAM, Samsung 512GB SSD
MacBook AIR 11 Inch
Mac mini, Model 1.1, 2.33 GHz C2D Proc
20" iMac G4 PPC
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arctictundra
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PostPosted: Sun Jul 29, 2012 12:52 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Thanks again billb - I'll check out the ram slots and see if there are any faults, although it still seems a little strange to me as my previous upgrade to 2x1gb ram modules seemed to work perfectly.
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marv777
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PostPosted: Sun Jul 29, 2012 9:41 pm    Post subject: Ram Reply with quote

arctictundra wrote:
Thanks for the reply billb - really appreciated.

The memory doesn't seem to be bad - I've now tried both memory modules in the 3gb combination (2gb in one slot and 1gb in the other, using both memory modules as the 2gb one) to check if they both work and they seem to operate fine.

The hard drive is a 7200 320gb Seagate Momentus - it was bought around this time last year but was bought on Ebay so not sure if it was brand new or not. Thanks for the heads-up - I've been looking to add a hybrid drive to the mini anyway, so this will just accelerate the process!

I haven't a clue whats going on with the memory problem though!
You seem to be an expert with macs as I see from your posts. Why must you always have say at least more than 4 gigs of ram if you are just an average user? I only have 2 gigs now in my 2011 mac mini. They say this is not enough at all. Thanks
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Bandit Bill
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PostPosted: Sun Jul 29, 2012 10:02 pm    Post subject: Re: Ram Reply with quote

marv777 wrote:
arctictundra wrote:
Thanks for the reply billb - really appreciated.

The memory doesn't seem to be bad - I've now tried both memory modules in the 3gb combination (2gb in one slot and 1gb in the other, using both memory modules as the 2gb one) to check if they both work and they seem to operate fine.

The hard drive is a 7200 320gb Seagate Momentus - it was bought around this time last year but was bought on Ebay so not sure if it was brand new or not. Thanks for the heads-up - I've been looking to add a hybrid drive to the mini anyway, so this will just accelerate the process!

I haven't a clue whats going on with the memory problem though!
You seem to be an expert with macs as I see from your posts. Why must you always have say at least more than 4 gigs of ram if you are just an average user? I only have 2 gigs now in my 2011 mac mini. They say this is not enough at all. Thanks


Many people will tell you to upgrade your RAM yet you may have enough to meet YOUR needs.

Use your computer as you normally would for a few days without rebooting (or at least a full day).

Click on the magnifying glass (Spotlight) in the top right of your screen.
Type Activity
Hit enter if Activity Monitor is highlighted
Click System memory.

Note the number next to the Page Ins field
Note the number next to the Page Outs field

Ideally Pages out will be zero. If it is more than zero, you would have benefitted from more memory.
If the number next to Pages out is more than 10% of the Page Ins number. Get more RAM. If not, save your money.

A page out means information wanted to stay in memory, but you did not have enough RAM. The information was in RAM was then written to the hard drive to reallocate space for the new data that requires memory. This process slows your machine down and works your hard drive more than needed.

2GB of memory may be enough if you are only running one or two applications at a time, but it really is just squeaking by. With the large amount of overhead that Lion and Mountain Lion have, 2GB is very little. 2GB was fine for most people with Snow Leopard.

Activity Monitor and similar apps are really the only way to tell, don't let others tell you, let Activity Monitor tell you and use your own judgement.
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macmanmacman
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PostPosted: Mon Jul 30, 2012 2:18 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

did you bother to think that maybe after the firmware update it might have changed your memory options as well???
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arctictundra
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PostPosted: Mon Jul 30, 2012 2:18 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Thanks for the replies folks - this is all really helpful as always on this forum.

marv777 - I understand this totally and couldn't agree with you more. I've had the mini since 2006 when it first came out, and just do upgrades every now and then if I find items at reduced prices on Ebay or at crucial.com etc. For example, the only reason I upgraded the core solo to a core 2 duo was because the t7200 was just 15 - it was too cheap to miss! Again, 4gb of memory I have just purchased was just 16 (in total). I really enjoy using my mac mini and don't really want to spend a fortune on a new machine - Snow Leopard is just great too.

Bandit Bill - this is a really useful piece of information, and I can't thank you enough for it as I did not know this. You are correct - my present Pages out is zero and it shows (with my 3gb installed) I have plenty of memory for my needs. As mentioned above, the only reason I upgrade the mac is because of seriously cheap upgrades!

Thanks again - I have now narrowed the memory problem down to the fact it must be some sort of bad memory module as billb suggested and am aiming for a refund or replacement memory.
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TimD
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PostPosted: Mon Jul 30, 2012 10:22 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

@arctictundra Where did you get your RAM from, I'm looking to increase my RAM as I've hacked my mini to 2.1? The cheapest I could find was 20 per 2GB stick.
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controsol
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PostPosted: Fri Dec 07, 2012 3:49 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

arctictundra:

i have the same machine a 1.5 core solo updating to 2.00 T7200

Can you install mountain lion???


thanks guy
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