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I have an IBM 346 server that can support up to 16GB of memory. It previously had 8GB installed (8x 1GB slots) and was working fine. I have upgraded it to 16GB using 8x 2GB slots. However now when the server starts now there is a beeping error code and the server won't boot up.

The error code is 2 beeps, 4 beeps, 4 beeps. This code is not listed in any documentation I can find relating to this server.

How should I do to resolve this, and where else could I find information about this specific error code?

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Sanity check.. you've re-seated and double-checked seating all the DIMMS already, yes? You've verified that it's compatible RAM: Properly ECC(or not), speeds, etc? – jerm Oct 2 '13 at 4:26
Yes I have double-checked te seating. They are compatile, the RAM modules are paired ECC PC2-3200R. When I install only 4x of the 2GB slots they work fine. I tested every RAM pair with MEMTEST and they all pass. – sa555 Oct 2 '13 at 4:47
if you switch them back to the 8 X 1s does it still boot? Can you mix (4 x 2) + (4 x 1) ? – user16081-JoeT Oct 2 '13 at 5:09
Yes it's fine with 8x 1's. It doesn't seem to accept more than 8GB. Have tried 4x 2GB + 2x 1GB and that would not work. – sa555 Oct 2 '13 at 5:43
up vote 3 down vote accepted

Since you have already checked the clock and ECC, verify that the chipset can deal with the the Memory Rank of the particular modules you're trying to use.

In laymans terms, this means that you have to look out on how much memory a chip on the RAM module holds, and how many of these chips are on a module.

The description of the memory rank is often omitted with cheap memory, or flat out wrong. Reputable manufacturers at least let you determine the Rank on their homepage, should your local dealer have omitted it for whatever reasons.

Furthermore, do note that "ECC" and "buffered" are not the same (but more often than not confused for each other), nor imply each other, and any combination thereof must also be supported by the chipset.

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Nice answer, Roman. Concise and to the point. – Simon Catlin Oct 7 '13 at 17:41

I completely agree with Roman about the memory ranks!! Try installing Single Rank (1R) 2GB modules and see if the system accepts them. Also make sure that you've the latest BIOS installed in your server. Go with 1R PC2-3200R DIMM.

Post your results with the Single RANK memory.

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It has been ages, but didn't E7500 chipsets have a limit of 12 DIMM ranks? OK, net search says x346 has E7520 and 8 rank limit. It figures then.

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