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Thread: Following RAM planned to be used in Ubuntu system

  1. #1
    Join Date
    Nov 2008
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    Following RAM planned to be used in Ubuntu system

    There is following hardware setup which operates under Windows XP since 2004 pretty well.
    The plan is to migrate the system to 32Bits Ubuntu till April 2014.
    As soon as a Ubuntu machine it will be used for quite normal desktop jobs: web surfing, mail communication, simple office, normal multimedia, voip.
    User has low computer knowledge - so the used applications and system usage will be accordantly.

    System setup is:
    * Pentium 4 Northwood S478 2.8GHz, FSB533, without multi-threating
    * Mainboard Asus P4S800D-E Deluxe, Dual-Channel RAM slots, SIS655TX the NB, SIS964 the SB
    * Graphic card in AGP slot: Asus 128MB RAM
    * 2x1GB DDR PC333 Kingston ValueRAM

    The questions are
    1. If to have in focus just only the system performance (it means let's ignore the financial aspects) will it be beneficial to upgrade the setup to 4GB RAM - it means two dual-channel 2GB RAM population? As the background I mean the overhead drawn by PAE.
    2. Starting from 2GB how much must be the upgrade to overcome the
    PAE overhead and to get a perceptible boost in performance?
    3. From the perspective of stability and performance trade-off will it be better to run the RAM in 166MHz, or in the 133MHz mode?
    Last edited by kaweka; February 27th, 2013 at 10:09 PM.

  2. #2
    Join Date
    Jun 2007
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    11,666

    Re: Following RAM planned to be used in Ubuntu system

    web surfing, mail communication, simple office, normal multimedia, voip
    I'm not sure if you're going to see any benefit from adding more RAM if you're just doing those tasks. 2GB should be plenty.

    will it be better to run the RAM in 166MHz, or in the 133MHz mode?
    Either one should be fine for stability. If you run it at 166MHz (DDR333), then you will have to use a divider (since the base clock is 133MHz) and that has its own performance penalty.

  3. #3
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    Re: Following RAM planned to be used in Ubuntu system

    Quote Originally Posted by Temüjin View Post
    I'm not sure if you're going to see any benefit from adding more RAM if you're just doing those tasks. 2GB should be plenty.
    Sure? Best possible performance is the main concern and goal.
    Of course along with very good stability.
    Keep in mind the lost of performance due to swapping RAM content into page file. If upgrading from 2G to 4G helps to decrease these operations why not? But have no experience to answer this question.
    Keep in mind, the used browser Firefox consumes plenty of RAM, I guess it is a master in this competition.
    Keep in mind, multiple programs are open simultaneously.

    The goal is amongst others to avoid shifting RAM content to page file and back as much as possible. Of course as far as from financial point of view also acceptable (RAM bars investements).

    Quote Originally Posted by Temüjin View Post
    If you run it at 166MHz (DDR333), then you will have to use a divider...
    Used board makes it possible to set 166, or 133 for RAM.
    Under Windows it works very well.
    Last edited by kaweka; February 26th, 2013 at 10:09 PM.

  4. #4
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    Nov 2008
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    Re: Following RAM planned to be used in Ubuntu system

    I found a note in MB manual, it can support up to 4G. So the PAE question had been asked get's obsolete.
    Some address region within those 4G will be masked by on-board periphery connected to south bridge - it seems to be general rule.
    Thus, the decision regarding ram upgrade will depend mainly on financial aspects.

    The general question of minimal ram upgrade in order to overcome overhead generated by pae and
    get perceptible performance boost seems to be individual point.

  5. #5
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    Re: Following RAM planned to be used in Ubuntu system

    I recommend to use 2GB, you need a 64-bit OS to profit 4GB.

    About RAM I prefeer synchronized to 133MHz.

  6. #6
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    Nov 2008
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    Re: Following RAM planned to be used in Ubuntu system

    Quote Originally Posted by Ximaceo View Post
    I recommend to use 2GB, you need a 64-bit OS to profit 4GB.
    Sorry, I don't understand your point.
    32Bits should not have any problems to address whole 4G space.
    If any MB on-board peripheries are shadowing some regions in this space it is rather another point.

    I am not going to apply on 32bits hw setup as this one the 64Bits ubuntu version,
    cause as my look around in this forum showed it be controversial mixture.

  7. #7
    Join Date
    Feb 2013
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    Re: Following RAM planned to be used in Ubuntu system

    For your system and jobs 2GB I see well.

    32-bit run max 4GB
    you don't profit all 4GB DDR PC333 because there are more RAM, HDD, graphic card, sound card,... this is the point.

  8. #8
    Join Date
    Nov 2008
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    Re: Following RAM planned to be used in Ubuntu system

    Just theoretically only, the more RAM the more the point of time when system are starting swapping data to page file is shifted into future.
    It is only hardly for me to judge how much 2GB more will shift that point in the given case.
    It seems to be very individual question and to variate with time.

    Due to memory masking by on-board peripherals, or by extension cards, effects in regions above 2GB (or 3GB)
    I can consider upgrading to 3GB only. However, it is questionable if resulting benefits will be proportional to made investment.

    Yes, at every beginning it was an other idea, to give the system a performance boost.
    Just by extending it a sdd dedicated to swap file. Investment will be surely higher, upgrading in ram domain
    should not be such expensive if to consider it is ddr1 generation.
    Slowly I tend again towards the first option - more speed by ssd.

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