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M17x R3 RAM Upgrade Help

Saiyan

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Sep 2, 2012
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Hi I purchased a M17x R3 over a year ago and had it shipped to me with 8gb ram stock.

What do I need to do to upgrade it to 16gb?

I have Windows 7 Home Premium and I heard 16gb was the limit for this OS

I originally intended to upgrade to 32gb Ram but I feel with windows 8 coming out it would be foolish to upgrade my system OS at this time.

Can you tell me which ram you recommend to me for this 16gb upgrade, where to buy, and if possible how I would go about installing it.

I have never done hardware modifications to a computer before but the process seems straightforward from my limited knowledge on how this would work.
 

yikes81

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Feb 13, 2012
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I am not too sure that you will see any diference if you go from 8GB RAM to 16GB / 32GB RAM.
Unless you are doing graphic/video editing.

If you are a regular home user that plays games and watches HD movies, I doubt you will notice any difference, except in benchmark numbers.

Do you know if your RAM is 1333MHz or 1600MHz?
 

Saiyan

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Sep 2, 2012
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My M17x R3 came with 1333mhz ram but I was told by alienware tech support this model could support up too 1600mhz

So I ordered 2x8 1600mhz ram, I would like to know with a 2720i7 processor is it more efficient to have a 4x4 setup or 2x8 I purchased.

Someone had told me have more RAM memory slots filled is like having more lanes on a highway, so when theres traffic its easy to pass and switch lanes.

Is this correct or is 2x8 better?

Edit: You yourself apparently have 16gb ram so why would you try to dissuade me? I am not a home user.
 
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AeonSoul

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I suppose that yes, being able to use more channels will help your pc dispatch requests more swiftly without risking any bottleneck. But, and I'm speculating here, what yikes is trying to say is that unless you plan massive video editing or 3D rendering, having 4x4 or 2x8 wouldn't make any noticeable difference in the real world scenarios, even gaming.
If you, on the other hand, do massive video editing or 3D rendering, then 4x4 should be better than 2x8, since you'll be able to use multiple memory channels.

But I can tell you this, as of now your laptop uses 2x4. If it's the same as mine, then you have 4x 2gb modules. that means that if you're trying to swap them out you'll have to dismantle almost your entire laptop. The first 2 ram modules are directly under the lower case, near the second HDD bay, while the other 2 are directly under the keyboard.

Not-so-much-ninja-edit: Also, you might want to have a look at this, if you haven't already: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Dual-channel_architecture
Maybe it can help you clarify your ideas about RAM access.
 
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Saiyan

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I occasionally multibox a mmorpg in windowed mode (consumes more memory in windowed mode but much easier and faster switching) and tabbed browsing on standby consumes alot of RAM according to the task manager and I experience slowdown and freezing when doing ram intensive tasks which verify's this

Having a download client running in the background does not help.

I am curious I see you have 8gb ram 1600mhz was that stock or did you upgrade?

I am hoping it would improve my bootup time as well though I'm not sure if ram contributes to that.

The article was also informative

In hindsight having a more multichannel set up with 4x4 seems to be superior but from my estimations and other's I've read in normal use it should only provide for a 5% increase and really be only useful when the ram is almost entirely all in use which I doubt mine will be since I should have ram to spare after this.

Even if the RAM upgrade is unnecessary I feel the speed increase makes up for that since I will be much more satisfied with my machine if I know I'm optimizing it with the highest ram speed it can support.

Removing the keyboard is not a problem for me since I have seen it done and believe I am capable. My keyboard is fuctional but missing two keys I have a new OEM replacement coming so I wanted to do the ram upgrade as well now to kill two birds with one stone.

The only annoying part really is having to
remove the keyboard again when I decide to upgrade to 32gb but that won't be for awhile as I do not plan on upgrading my os for that anytime soon.

I really don't need anymore help, but if you would like to discuss some of the conceptions I have in this post that would be appreciated.
 
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AeonSoul

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Well yeah I know that multiboxing can be a memory intensive process, I've done that myself in my Lineage II days. If you're using Firefox as a browser there are alot of plugins that reduce the memory usage and work really good, look for them.
My RAM is stock, but I might consider upgrading in the future, althrough as of now I don't really have the necessity to do that.

As far as it goes for the RAM, that hardly affects the boot time. If you're concerned about that I'll suggest you look into SSDs.
And yes you are correct, multichannel shows it's efficiency only when the system is under heavy load, so you won't experience any bottlenecks. But to be honest, if you're upgrading from 1333 MHz to 1600 MHz you'll hardly see any drastic difference in your system, but well, if you have to replace your keyboard for other reasons, and you really want to upgrade your RAM, then by all means do that :)
 

yikes81

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I have 16Gb RAM because Dell was throwing that in as a free upgrade.

I was not trying to dissuade you, more making an observation. How you want to spend your money is entirely upto you. That's why we all have Alienwares. It not like we all need these wonderful machines, but just because we can.

Besides, my M17xR3 was my Xmas present from my wife.

I think the M17x R3 is only dual channel, so personally I would go with the 2x8Gb.
 

CJohnny

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Sep 3, 2012
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17XR3 is Dual Channel @1333. You can run 1600 without a doubt.

However! When your plan is to have more then 16GB of Ram.
If I recall, You will need Win7 Pro as well. Win7 Home don't cut it.

I was told when I order my system a little over a year ago.
 

yikes81

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Not just Win7 Pro. You need the x64 OS. x32 will not recognise more than 4GB of RAM.
 

yikes81

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Is there even a Win7 x32? I'm sure there is but I've never seen or heard of it.
Yeh there are 32bit and 64bit in the entire windows 7 range, form home version to ultimate version.
The main difference is that while the 32bit only recognises 4GB of RAM, the 64bit will recognise the following:

  • Starter: 8GB
  • Home Basic: 8GB
  • Home Premium: 16GB
  • Professional: 192GB
  • Enterprise: 192GB
  • Ultimate: 192GB
 

AeonSoul

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Is there even a Win7 x32? I'm sure there is but I've never seen or heard of it.

Yeah but if you ask me it seems that 32 bit OSs are slowly falling down, considering that now the most cheap pc comes with 4gb ram, so it would be pointless to cap it with a 32 bit OS.
 

yikes81

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Yeh eventually it will fade out. But at this time, there are still a lot of apps that only run in 32bit.
 
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