none
Windows home server won't accept more than 2Gb of ram?

    Question

  • Sorry, this is  bit of a story, but i hope i cover all bases.
    i've recently had Windows Home Server on trial, and while it would install on 3GB ram, it gets to a part though the windows setup where it will reboot, but won't boot untill one stick of ram is removed. then when switched back on, the install completes. Once everything is running, if i shut down, put the remaining one gig stick back in, it'll boot as far as seeming to load the kernal (just before the "windows home server" loading scree), but then resets. removing a memory module to take it back down to 2GB, and everything will be fine.

    thought it was down to the non-activated eval version of WHS i had. so i bought WHS. did a "server re-install" with the offical media, and activated. still the same problem.
    so migrated over one and a half terra's of data to another machine and did a complete "new installation" wiping all previous info and data drives. still the same problem.
    happy booting with 3GB and the initial setup, but then won't carry on till taken down to 2GB, and after completing the install, won't boot past loading the kernal with 3Gb of ram.
    this machine has been happy with XPpro for the last 4-5 years and 3GB ram. so quite confused.
    it doesn't matter what combination of dimms or slots the memory is installed with/in, it won't take more than 2GB.

    my WHS is currently based on my old gaming machine
    Gigabyte GA-7N400SL mainboard (F5 bios)
    AthlonXP 3200+ (at stock speed - 2.2Ghz / 400Mhz FSB)
    dan-elec DDR400 1GB modules (three slots - two modules installed 400Mhz)
    nvidia 6800GT
    600Watt Jeantech Arctic PSU
    2x Intel 1000GT pro PCI Gigabit cards
    Sil3112 SATA PCI raid card (latest bios)
    1TB Hitachi, 4x 300GB maxtors (slowly replacing the maxtors with 1.5TB seagates)

    now i also have four corsair 1GB DDR400 modules in another machine, and i've tested those modules in this machine aswell.
    same result. it doesn't matter what modules i use, and in what slots they go in. i can only boot with two memory modules installed. even tried some half gig modules to get to 2.5GB, but the same result.

    running WHS squeezebox, WHS mymovies (and its sql server), and WHS sageTV really hammers my machine. peak memory is around
    4.5GB, so the more physical ram in the machine, the better.

    anyone else having problems with WHS not liking more than 2GB ram?
    Monday, June 22, 2009 11:46 AM

Answers

  • hi Theo,
    thanks for the thought. its not something i'd considered. i have updated the Bios to the latest one off the gigabyte website F5, and it didn't seem to matter what slots the modules were in, it would always say "dual channel enabled" - so i kinda figured it was dual channel off of the dual banking of each of the memory modules.

    plus as it wasn't liking the 1.5TB seagate drives i'd bought. even after the bios update. argh.
    so bit the bullet, and bought the following

    AMD 705 PhenomII x3 cpu
    Asus M4A78pro mainboard (AMD 780g chipset)
    2x 2GB Kingston DDR2 800 modules
    with a PCI-e Nvidia Quadro 3450 i had laying around (equivilent of a 6800GT).
    obviously don't need the gig nics and raid card now, as all onboard.
    and drives in the following config
    Sata port0 - Maxtor 300GB system drive
    Sata port1 - Seagate 1.5TB data
    Sata port2 - Seagate 1.5TB data
    Sata port3 - Hitachi 1TB data

    did a fresh install on this, and it loves the memory. but it still wasn't liking the big 1.5TB drives, showing 500GB. found there is a tool on the seagate website called "seatools" and is a floppy disk image that boots "freeDOS" and you have to tell the drive from within the seatools program to present itself with the correct addressing to the machine. so now it shows up with the full capacity. *sigh*  this was the main reason i bought a new mainboard as i thought my NF2 based board was too old to recognise it. oh well.

    anyway, the disks are now recognised as full size, i have 3.8GB ram available to the operating system. plenty of CPU cores/resources to transcode video streams, BUT.
    where i was almost getting 35-50% network utilisation on a gigabit network between my athlonXP3200/Intel 1000GT PCI NIC, and an Intel Q6600/Intel G33 with onboard PCI-e gig NIC, (40-50MB/s plus! get in!), over an HP procurve 1800-24G switch.
    Now i'm lucky if i can hold 20% network speed with the onboard NIC on this new board.
    time to put in one of my intel 1000GT PCI NICs and see what that does.
    if it's not one thing, it is something else... found it was squeeze server that would eat over 2GB ram just to itself on startup.

    anyway, memory issues cleared up. many thanks for all your help/research :)
    Friday, July 03, 2009 1:26 PM

All replies

  • Memory limits for various Microsoft server operating systems are detailed in this MSDN article. You'll see that Windows Home Server supports 4 GB. If you're having problems with the additional 1 GB stick of RAM, I would assume that the RAM is defective...
    I'm not on the WHS team, I just post a lot. :)
    Monday, June 22, 2009 4:32 PM
    Moderator
  • well, this is the confusing thing. if i plug in the extra 1GB, and take out one of the others, everything is fine.
    i also have some other memory modules i was testing aswell, for a total of 7 modules.
    4 by corsair, 3 by Dan-Elec.
    the confusing thing is, any combination of modules in any two of the tree slots works. hence my thought for the 2GB limit.

    thanks for pointing out the article, thats just re-affirmed what i thought _should_ have been happening :)

    point is going to be moot soon anyway, as i've just found the mainboard won't accept a 1.5TB drive. only recognising 468GB - even after the latest bios update :(

    now my choice is do i go core i7, with a 920 chip and three 1GB DDR3 memory modules,
    or do i go for something cheaper like an intel P45 with an old'ish Q6700 and 4GB DDR2.
    and how much is the other half going to skin me for this ;)

    Many Thanks for your help :)
    Tuesday, June 23, 2009 7:46 AM

  • i've recently had Windows Home Server on trial, and while it would install on 3GB ram?
    It is certainly not a limitation of WHS  (one of my servers is running on 3GB)
    According to your boards specs it will only accept 3 DDR400 modules at DIM slot's 1,2 and 3 when running in Dual Channel mode.

    The only thing I can think of is that the system is somehowe switching to "Non Dual Channel" as this mode is only accepting two DS RAM modules.
    Did you check th BIOS for any settings? Is it running the latest BIOS?

    - Theo.

    No home server like Home Server
    Tuesday, June 23, 2009 7:36 PM
    Moderator
  • hi Theo,
    thanks for the thought. its not something i'd considered. i have updated the Bios to the latest one off the gigabyte website F5, and it didn't seem to matter what slots the modules were in, it would always say "dual channel enabled" - so i kinda figured it was dual channel off of the dual banking of each of the memory modules.

    plus as it wasn't liking the 1.5TB seagate drives i'd bought. even after the bios update. argh.
    so bit the bullet, and bought the following

    AMD 705 PhenomII x3 cpu
    Asus M4A78pro mainboard (AMD 780g chipset)
    2x 2GB Kingston DDR2 800 modules
    with a PCI-e Nvidia Quadro 3450 i had laying around (equivilent of a 6800GT).
    obviously don't need the gig nics and raid card now, as all onboard.
    and drives in the following config
    Sata port0 - Maxtor 300GB system drive
    Sata port1 - Seagate 1.5TB data
    Sata port2 - Seagate 1.5TB data
    Sata port3 - Hitachi 1TB data

    did a fresh install on this, and it loves the memory. but it still wasn't liking the big 1.5TB drives, showing 500GB. found there is a tool on the seagate website called "seatools" and is a floppy disk image that boots "freeDOS" and you have to tell the drive from within the seatools program to present itself with the correct addressing to the machine. so now it shows up with the full capacity. *sigh*  this was the main reason i bought a new mainboard as i thought my NF2 based board was too old to recognise it. oh well.

    anyway, the disks are now recognised as full size, i have 3.8GB ram available to the operating system. plenty of CPU cores/resources to transcode video streams, BUT.
    where i was almost getting 35-50% network utilisation on a gigabit network between my athlonXP3200/Intel 1000GT PCI NIC, and an Intel Q6600/Intel G33 with onboard PCI-e gig NIC, (40-50MB/s plus! get in!), over an HP procurve 1800-24G switch.
    Now i'm lucky if i can hold 20% network speed with the onboard NIC on this new board.
    time to put in one of my intel 1000GT PCI NICs and see what that does.
    if it's not one thing, it is something else... found it was squeeze server that would eat over 2GB ram just to itself on startup.

    anyway, memory issues cleared up. many thanks for all your help/research :)
    Friday, July 03, 2009 1:26 PM