Results 1 to 6 of 6

Thread: 12.04LTS / Win XP Dual Boot (32bit) Problems after RAM upgrade

  1. #1
    Join Date
    Feb 2011
    Beans
    106

    12.04LTS / Win XP Dual Boot (32bit) Problems after RAM upgrade

    Maybe this doesn't belong in the beginners section, but I have limited experience with either OS or the hardware. I've had this XP / Ubuntu 12.04LTS dual boot setup on a partitioned hard drive for some time, and it has worked fine. (I use XP for a CAD application, and Ubuntu for everything else.) I heard that even 32 bit Ubuntu can take advantage of more than 4GB RAM, so I dropped another IDENTICAL 4GB in the two empty slots on my motherboard.

    The BIOS detected the 8GB. I booted XP, and the box promptly crashed. I restarted into Ubuntu, and the Unity desktop appeared, but froze. For some reason I wondered if my 550W power supply is the issue. I restarted and entered the BIOS to see what I could find. I took a chance and selected "automatic droop adjust" for the RAM voltage. I saved the setting, and rebooted into Ubuntu. This time I got to the desktop and it runs fine, but the launcher only has a third of the icons I put there. I restarted my machine, and booted into MEMTEST86+. I'm 77% through the tests with no errors found yet.

    My machine has a 550 Watt power supply, a Gigabyte EP-45-UD3P motherboard, 8 GB 1066 Mhz DDR2 RAM, a 250 GB hard drive, and a GT9800 - 512MB video card. Is the problem the supply? if so, what size do I need? How do I fix the launcher? Is there something I must do to enable the 8 GB RAM support? For instance, should I just install a 64Bit version over my 32 bit installation? And I hate to ask this, but what about Windows? It should just ignore the RAM upgrade, right?

    Thanks for your time.

  2. #2
    Join Date
    Mar 2011
    Location
    19th Hole
    Beans
    1,274
    Distro
    Ubuntu 14.04 Trusty Tahr

    Re: 12.04LTS / Win XP Dual Boot (32bit) Problems after RAM upgrade

    Wow. Lots of issues from a RAM upgrade. Let's start at the beginning:

    Make sure that your RAM modules are absolutely identical, that they are in the proper slots (your mobo docs will tell you in what order they must go) and that they are seated properly. This last point is often the cause of so much grief. Reseat them to see if things improve.

    What version of XP are you running? Home versions were deliberately hobbled to see no more than 4GB, although it shouldn't crash simply because you have now installed more. As a side note, XP will reach end of life in 7 months, after which you are unprotected against any further exploits that bad guys are continually uncovering, so plan accordingly.

    We don't know if your PS is problematic, but before suspecting it, let's look at other possible issues first. For one thing, it is not underpowered for your setup, unless you have other components that you are not mentioning. Also, because you initially installed Ubuntu 32-bit with 4GB of physical RAM, it may not have installed the PAE kernel, which would be needed to address more than 4GB. This is easily checked by doing:
    Code:
    free -g
    If it shows all of your memory, then you already have the PAE kernel. If it only shows 4GB, then you have two choices: you can switch to the PAE kernel or you can install Ubuntu 64-bit. Without knowing more about your apps and setup, my initial recommendation would to go 64-bit. I don't even know why Ubuntu keeps recommending the 32-bit OS. This is now old technology and should be reserved only for 32-bit limited systems.

    With respect to the Launcher, it may be more trouble that it's worth to try "fixing" it, especially when it is so easy to just re-create the icons and be done with it.

    Lastly,
    ...I hate to ask this, but what about Windows?
    Thanks for giving me a chuckle. Since XP will shortly be EoL I would like to make a suggestion. You don't mention your CPU, but given your mobo, I would hazard a guess that it is at least multicore. If so, then a way to solve both problems neatly is to run XP within a virtual machine (VM) like VirtualBox. This is how I run my XP. With your new memory upgrade and going to Ubuntu 64-bit, you easily have enough resources to manage this. That way, when XP is no longer supported, you can also cut its network connection to the outside world, sandbox it, and run it only for your CAD work. By confining XP to 4GB (or less) you will have a multitasking environment with your CAD app running inside XP running on a window in Ubuntu. Cool.
    Last edited by DuckHook; October 1st, 2013 at 04:20 AM.
    Newb: How far must I jump to clear the ledge halfway down?
    Guru: It's bad to jump off cliffs. Let's look at better options.
    Newb: Stop harping about "best practices" and just tell me.


  3. #3
    Join Date
    Feb 2011
    Beans
    106

    Re: 12.04LTS / Win XP Dual Boot (32bit) Problems after RAM upgrade

    Thanks for your reply, DuckHook. My RAM is IDENTICAL, right down to every single suffix and letter. I made sure of that.

    I'm running XP Pro. I don't care about the EOL for XP. I am only running a CAD program in it. I have networking disabled when I boot XP. I boot into Ubuntu if I want to download or upload anything.

    So you believe 550 Watts is sufficient for this hardware? Good. I have no reason to suspect it is malfunctioning.

    After MEMTEST86+ completed checking my RAM (no errors), I restarted and discovered that GRUB was now telling me I had a PAE kernel to boot with. I booted up and my 8GB is recognized! I am guessing the PAE kernel was their when I upgraded to 12.04LTS a few months ago. (Even though at the time I only had 4GB of RAM.)

    Would it still be advantageous to install a 64 Bit version of 12.04? If so, can I simply install it over the existing installation in the same (XT4) partition? And will it preserve my email cache and settings? Or do I need to find a way to back them up?.

    Lacking any idea what happened to screw up the launcher, I just decided to re-populate it with icons. Worked fine.

    I have run Mac 68K emulations in DOS and Windows 2K. DOS emulations in Windows 7. My experience with emulations and virtual machines is that they are buggy, slow, and often do not interact well with printers, drives and other peripherals. Right now, my CAD program runs sweet under XP Pro. I don't want to screw that up, or buy a newer CAD program. (Expensive).

  4. #4
    Join Date
    Mar 2011
    Location
    19th Hole
    Beans
    1,274
    Distro
    Ubuntu 14.04 Trusty Tahr

    Re: 12.04LTS / Win XP Dual Boot (32bit) Problems after RAM upgrade

    Quote Originally Posted by Engineeringtech View Post
    I don't care about the EOL for XP. I am only running a CAD program in it. I have networking disabled when I boot XP. I boot into Ubuntu if I want to download or upload anything.
    Essentially, you've already sandboxed it through diligent practice. If you continue to be disciplined with this, then it may not be that bad. However, just because you don't bother installing the NIC driver does not mean that it won't one day install itself. Windows is designed to search for new HW and install the drivers without much human intervention.
    So you believe 550 Watts is sufficient for this hardware? Good. I have no reason to suspect it is malfunctioning.
    ...neither do I.
    ...I restarted and discovered that GRUB was now telling me I had a PAE kernel to boot with. I booted up and my 8GB is recognized!
    ...then you are good to go.
    Would it still be advantageous to install a 64 Bit version of 12.04?
    Tough call. Do you like tinkering for its own sake or do you just want a working system? This issue came to mind only because your initial post called into question whether all your RAM was being recognized. Now that it is, you can live with the 32-bit PAE kernel. But if you decide to upgrade to 13.04 or the next LTS release (14.04), that would be the time to completely switch over to 64-bit.
    ...can I simply install it over the existing installation in the same (XT4) partition? And will it preserve my email cache and settings? Or do I need to find a way to back them up?.
    You must back up no matter what you do! Always! (Read my signature) Never assume that procedures that monkey with your base OS are going to work out just fine. That's like boarding a ship without lifeboats and flotation vests. However, to answer your question, it is not possible to go from 32-bit to 64-bit as a simple upgrade. The procedure nukes your current OS and installs a completely brand new one. There are ways to make the process easier by generating and auto-installing a listing of your currently installed apps, but we don't need to get into that right now.
    My experience with emulations and virtual machines is that they are buggy, slow, and often do not interact well with printers, drives and other peripherals.
    I run almost two-dozen different OSes under VirtualBox. They all run quite well and the Windows variants are very well behaved. VMs have improved considerably since the old W2K days and continue to get better with each passing month.
    Right now, my CAD program runs sweet under XP Pro. I don't want to screw that up, or buy a newer CAD program. (Expensive).
    Putting you in a position where you would need to buy new CAD software would not constitute a real solution. I agree that the object of the enterprise is to set up the system in such a way that you don't have to make any further investment except in time and knowledge (unavoidable). I do encourage you to try out any of the free VM solutions though. They cost you nothing except a download and some time. But the time to do that is when and if you decide to install a 64-bit system.

    This thread started because your XP stopped working when you beefed up your RAM. Is it working now? If not, what do you have to lose by trying it in a VM (assuming you have the license and the original install media)?
    Newb: How far must I jump to clear the ledge halfway down?
    Guru: It's bad to jump off cliffs. Let's look at better options.
    Newb: Stop harping about "best practices" and just tell me.


  5. #5
    Join Date
    Feb 2011
    Beans
    106

    Re: 12.04LTS / Win XP Dual Boot (32bit) Problems after RAM upgrade

    Thanks for the reply. Good advice. XP is working fine now. When support ends, I will consider doing the 64 bit Ubuntu install, and running XP in a virtual machine.

    I suspect this will be my last post to this thread, and the end of my membership in this forum. I have protested a "warning" I received from an administrator for an old post. I'll likely get banned for sticking up for myself. (He claimed I made the entire posting in red, violating the terms of service.) In fact, I only highlighted parts of a very long thread to differentiate my comments from those of other users. I find it ironic that with all the foul language, personal attacks, and bullying going on daily in forums, that the administrators here are so flush with spare time that they can nit pick over the use of a font color.
    Last edited by Engineeringtech; October 3rd, 2013 at 09:57 PM.

  6. #6
    Join Date
    Mar 2011
    Location
    19th Hole
    Beans
    1,274
    Distro
    Ubuntu 14.04 Trusty Tahr

    Re: 12.04LTS / Win XP Dual Boot (32bit) Problems after RAM upgrade

    My own experience has been very much the reverse of yours. This forum has been filled with nothing but kind and eager people willing to help. The admins run a tight ship but are also the most knowledgeable and will often give the best advice. The character of this forum is a big part of why I like Linux so much. Sorry to hear that you did not have a good experience.

    Good luck. If your issue has been solved, kindly take the time to flag this thread as "solved" for the benefit others who may be searching for a solution to the same problem.
    Newb: How far must I jump to clear the ledge halfway down?
    Guru: It's bad to jump off cliffs. Let's look at better options.
    Newb: Stop harping about "best practices" and just tell me.


Bookmarks

Posting Permissions

  • You may not post new threads
  • You may not post replies
  • You may not post attachments
  • You may not edit your posts
  •