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Thread: GA-VM900M (v1.0): BIOS only recognizes 3GB of RAM when there's 4GB RAM installed




  1. #1
    alb3530 is offline Junior Member
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    Default GA-VM900M (v1.0): BIOS only recognizes 3GB of RAM when there's 4GB RAM installed

    I've just got a new 2GB RAM module (Kingston, 667MHZ) to sum up with the other 2GB RAM module (exactly the same model than the new one i've got) and achieve 4GB RAM but the BIOS only recognizes 3GB at startup and so does the OS.
    In boards' manual, it's stated up to 4GB of RAM is supported.

    What's wrong with it?

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    Default Re: GA-VM900M (v1.0): BIOS only recognizes 3GB of RAM when there's 4GB RAM installed

    Test each module separately.

    Also test each slot with only one module on the motherboard.

    Examine the second slot carefully to see if something like a particle of paper or something is in it.

  3. #3
    Lsdmeasap's Avatar
    Lsdmeasap is offline GIGABYTE Guru
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    Default Re: GA-VM900M (v1.0): BIOS only recognizes 3GB of RAM when there's 4GB RAM installed

    I Agree with nbnorg, please test each stick individually in slot one and then test each in the other slot separately.

    You may have received a faulty stick of ram, or you could have a bad slot on your board

    But, being as you are using 2x2GB and the BIOS see's 3GB this may just be the limit of your chipset's ram recognition as some of the 4GB would be taken up by other system resources (Like you see in a 32bit OS)

    (Note 2) Due to standard PC architecture, a certain amount of memory is reserved for system usage and therefore the actual memory size is less than the stated amount.
    GIGABYTE - Product - Motherboard - Specification - GA-VM900M (rev. 1.0)

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    alb3530 is offline Junior Member
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    Default Re: GA-VM900M (v1.0): BIOS only recognizes 3GB of RAM when there's 4GB RAM installed

    Of course Iv'e tested the modules separatelly and in different slots even before posting here, and both are OK.

    As for 3GB recognition being an OS limitation, it's showed during POST that RAM is 3088XXX , when it should be something like 4096XXX


    Best regards

  5. #5
    Lsdmeasap's Avatar
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    Default Re: GA-VM900M (v1.0): BIOS only recognizes 3GB of RAM when there's 4GB RAM installed

    I said some boards chipsets limit ram amount useable/visible "LIKE" OS's do, I was not saying that is was a OS Limit here, just chipset (Like OS)

    Some chipsets like yours and I think 945's do that as well as many others I cannot think of off the top of my head. That's why it is noted in your spec's

    VIA Chipset used on the board is likely limited to 4GB of address space in total and does not support memory remapping even a 64bit OS will not change that. Also some chipsets do not support double sided ram modules or single sided High density ones, are you sure your sticks are the same exact model since you bought them at different times? Have you tested the new one by itself to be sure it shows as 2GB, just checking on that I do not think this is the issue here only the chipset total addressable ram amount.

    Give me a sec, and I will try to find your chipset documentation and see if this is indeed the case, which being a older board I do believe it would apply

    Here you can see this info noted for P4M900 chipset board, no matter the OS. Ill be back in a sec once I grab your Via Chipset doc's if I can find them >>
    Due to the chipset limitation, the actual memory size may be less than 4GB for the reservation for system usage under Windows XP, Windows XP 64-bit, Windows Vista and Windows Vista 64-bit
    http://www.geeks.com/details.asp?inv...-M7-FE&cat=MBB

    Same also noted here at Newegg for another board, same chipset >>

    Posted by ZS Look for the one dated 7/20/2008 12:02:07 PM incase it does not bring you to the correct page

    Supports only 3Gb of memory, NOT 4Gb (Tried everything (I have PC2 5400 x 2, 2GB Dual CH = 4Gb)) Trust me !!!
    http://www.newegg.com/Product/Produc...ords=(keywords)

    Hey, do you have your onboard GFX Enabled, this would also take away from the total amount? Disable this or lower it and see if you see more in the BIOS then after a reboot. Clearing your CMOS could also help
    Last edited by Lsdmeasap; 04-17-2009 at 02:16 PM.

  6. #6
    Lsdmeasap's Avatar
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    Default Re: GA-VM900M (v1.0): BIOS only recognizes 3GB of RAM when there's 4GB RAM installed

    Sorry, They do not list any Documentation for Chipsets that old.... Here is the only page/pages they have for it >>
    VIA P4M900: Delivering DirectX 9 Capabilities and PCI Express Connectivity for IntelĀ® Processor Platform - VIA Technologies, Inc.

    I do believe this is the issue, chipset limitation

  7. #7
    Lsdmeasap's Avatar
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    Default Re: GA-VM900M (v1.0): BIOS only recognizes 3GB of RAM when there's 4GB RAM installed

    Doooh! Found a updated Manual for your board with a Updated "Note 2" >>

    Page 11

    (Note 2) Due to standard PC architecture, a certain amount of memory is reserved for system usage and therefore the actual memory size is less than the stated amount. For example, 4 GB of memory size will instead be shown as 3.xxGB memory during system startup
    Uploading now, link in one sec

    Sorry about the wait, it's hard to find things for something older such as that. It IS the chipset that is the limitation

  8. #8
    Lsdmeasap's Avatar
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    Default Re: GA-VM900M (v1.0): BIOS only recognizes 3GB of RAM when there's 4GB RAM installed

    I guess I should have looked in your manual linked on your boards page instead of the older PDF I already have, it is stated in version 1004 of your manual

    Seems none of these links work now, at least for me, maybe they will for you later?

    GIGABYTE - Support&Download - Motherboard - Manual Download

    So I uploaded the one I found for you >>
    motherboard_manual_ga-vm900m_e.pdf

  9. #9
    alb3530 is offline Junior Member
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    Default Re: GA-VM900M (v1.0): BIOS only recognizes 3GB of RAM when there's 4GB RAM installed

    Thanks for your help.Yes, I've tested the two modules separatelly, and they're both 2GB in size

    Quote Originally Posted by Lsdmeasap View Post
    ...
    Hey, do you have your onboard GFX Enabled, this would also take away from the total amount? Disable this or lower it and see if you see more in the BIOS then after a reboot. Clearing your CMOS could also help
    No, it's disabled.I have a GeForce 9500 GT, so i disabled onboard graphics in BIOS settings

    As for the board's manual, I'd already read that note, but I thought they were speaking about a small difference in size i.e. 3.96 GB instead 4GB...
    But 3.08GB....

  10. #10

    Default Re: GA-VM900M (v1.0): BIOS only recognizes 3GB of RAM when there's 4GB RAM installed

    I have the same problem :(

    Windows 7 Build 7100 x64

    The problem is when the PC starts up, only 2.69

    here is my system: (4.00 GB but only 2.69 GB Usable?) How to solve this ?

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