Hello. I'll try to make this as quick as possible but there is a lot of good interesting information.
I generally despise dealing with Memory or upgrading memory as it's kind of like a quiet enemy waiting for it's opportunity to attack.
Mainboard is ASUS P4P800S-X (intel chipset, cheapo kind, not deluxe).
P4 3.0E Socket 478
ATI Radeon 9550 AGP
Raid Controller (COMPUSA ITE8212 - very nice)
Ethernet (Realtek 8169 Gigabit).
1. Originally I had K-Byte 2x256 DDR 2100 - running fine, but never tested this issue with it. I have manually set the BIOS to run the memory at 266 Mhz. Vista Rating (Ok I know it's not the best benchmark, but it's a good basic benchmark) was at 2.9 For Memory - so the lowest number.
2. I upgraded to 2 PC3200 Sticks totalling now 2 Gigs. Vista Rating is 4.2 but remember that I was clocking my memory at 266 Mhz.
3. Set the BIOS to run memory in Auto Mode and voila got the Vista score of 4.4. I was now happy.
4. Then all of a sudden since I am running Windows 2000, XP and Vista on the same PC, I was copying some data from RAID controller (three hard disks) to SATA drive using Windows 2000 and also XP (tested as well). Computer hardlocked. Then I lowered the memory clock at 266 Mhz, it works for longer time but it still hardlocks. Everything else appears to be fine! So if I am copying the data from either Raid Controller or USB device to my SATA drive computer hardlocks. Hard disk activity light blinks in very uneven rates.
This is the memory - GoldenMars Inc.
5. Ok so then I remembered that I bought PNY stick at best buy (1 Gig). I throw that in there and wham! same thing happens.
6. So then I remember that I have another memory stick from a different manufacturer.
I grab a Super Talent 512 Stick DDR 2100 and Super Talent 1 Gig DDR 2700 and clock the mem frequency to 266 Mhz. The big difference probably here is that this memory it appears to be the only memory I have that has CL set at 2.5. All the other ones appear to be 3.
Now IT FINALLY WORKED FINE! It looks like everything is working great as my computer didn't hardlock and I notice that hard disk activity light blinks more EVENLY.
7. The only thing now that is confusing me that with 1.5 Gigs of RAM my Vista Rating for memory dropped to 3.5.
Presuming that everything works great, is this a good memory to rely on (if anyone else has experience with it)? And lastly SHOULD I RELY ON VISTA RATING of MEMORY since it is very LOW?
(my other PC with 1 Gig of RAM has a rating of 3.9)
(this PC with 1.5 Gigs of RAM has a rating of 3.5)
Something still seems to be wrong.