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W510: What is the maximum RAM supported?

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w0qj
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W510: What is the maximum RAM supported?

#1 Post by w0qj » Sun Mar 03, 2019 12:36 pm

Would appreciate your feedback, as we are (trying) to compile a summary of W510 maximum specs, and ran into confusion/controversy.
(I myself have never owned a workstation, so you folks are the experts!).

Question #1
==========
W510 with Dual Core CPU: What is the maximum RAM supported (the maximum that a user can self-upgrade to)?


Question #2
==========
W510 with Quad Core CPU: What is the maximum RAM supported (the maximum that a user can self-upgrade to)?

Our original discussions are over at another Sub-Forum here:
http://forum.thinkpads.com/viewtopic.ph ... 48#p830748


Thank you in advance for your expert advice!
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Re: W510: What is the maximum RAM supported?

#2 Post by RealBlackStuff » Sun Mar 03, 2019 1:14 pm

With only 2 slots, the W510 can support 2x8=16GB RAM
But with 4 slots, the W510 can support 4x8=32GB RAM (with i7-QM or i7-XM CPU)
Using e.g. Samsung 8GB (PC3L-12800) DDR3L 1.35V 1600 204-Pin SoDimm
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Re: W510: What is the maximum RAM supported?

#3 Post by TPFanatic » Sun Mar 03, 2019 10:37 pm

Actually W510 with a dual core is limited to a max 8GB of RAM. The dual core CPUs of that gen are Arrandale which is limited to a max addressable 8GB of RAM. More than that and the operating system will crash when trying to access more, even if the initial increased capacity is recognized.

Think of W510 with a dual core as basically T510 with a the FX880m chip.
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T500 P9700 Radeon 3650 WUXGA 8GB

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Re: W510: What is the maximum RAM supported?

#4 Post by w0qj » Tue Mar 05, 2019 12:48 pm

Wow, many thanks for everyone's very quick help!

Our revised posting as below,
http://forum.thinkpads.com/viewtopic.ph ... 8&p=830748

ie:
For W510, the maximum spec is:
W510 with factory-installed Dual-Core CPU cannot be upgraded to Quad CPU.
W510 with factory-installed Quad-Core CPU were once available, but rare.

W510 with factory-installed Dual-Core CPU supports max 8 GB RAM officially. [Updated]
W510 with factory-installed Quad-Core CPU supports max 32 GB RAM officially (rumour has it that W510 can support up to 32 GB RAM). [Updated][/u]

Source:
www.quora.com/Is-it-possible-to-upgrade ... -32-GB-RAM

[Edit: Corrected the maximum RAM for Quad Core CPU & Dual Core CPU, thanks to dr_st and MooNWalker!]
Last edited by w0qj on Mon Aug 12, 2019 1:48 pm, edited 3 times in total.
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Re: W510: What is the maximum RAM supported?

#5 Post by TarzanBoy » Fri Mar 15, 2019 9:06 am

Interestingly enough I went in search of the answers to this very question after I opened my W510 up two days ago to replace the cooling fan and noticed that I am only running 4 MB of RAM (2x2GB) in my W510. As other posters have already stated (and as I discovered firsthand), the quad core W510's have four slots for RAM. Slot 0 and slot 1 are accessible from the bottom of the unit and slot 2 and slot 3 are accessible by removing the keyboard.

When I can put some spare money together I plan to buy one or two 8GB DDR3 DIMMs to install. I don't think I'll see much in the way of a speed improvement (currently the W510 laptop is mostly used by my 4 yr old for Lego games), but I have a dock and external monitor for it so it will serve as a useful workstation when the desktop machine is in use. Portability is an added bonus.

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Re: W510: What is the maximum RAM supported?

#6 Post by Screamer » Mon Mar 18, 2019 8:43 am

w0qj wrote:
Tue Mar 05, 2019 12:48 pm
(rumour has it that W510 can support up to 16 GB RAM).
I suppose that this rumor is not true, since my experience and TPFanatic's statement appears to be the same.

I tried installing an 8GB DDR3-1600 PC3-12800 RAM module into my L512, and while it did correctly report 8GB in the BIOS, it just could not boot into Windows XP. It was constantly interrupted by a sudden blank screen, which was then followed by a reboot. In short, it simply does not work.

Installing 10GB of RAM, made it worse (tried swapping the RAM modules around, but there is no difference). It could not even display the bootscreen with that configuration, and then it pulled the same reboot procedure afterwards.

I initially assumed that this was probably some strange mis-behavior coming from my early engineering sample processor, so I decided to swap it out for a retail Core i3-390M. Unfortunately, it was still a no-go, as my L512 reproduced the very same reaction that I had I described above. The same thing happened with a Core i5-580M installed, which makes it quite clear that Arrandale's memory controller is not capable of addressing any single RAM module that is denser than 4GB.

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Re: W510: What is the maximum RAM supported?

#7 Post by TarzanBoy » Mon Mar 18, 2019 10:06 am

Screamer wrote:
Mon Mar 18, 2019 8:43 am
w0qj wrote:
Tue Mar 05, 2019 12:48 pm
(rumour has it that W510 can support up to 16 GB RAM).
I suppose that this rumor is not true, since my experience and TPFanatic's statement appears to be the same.

I tried installing an 8GB DDR3-1600 PC3-12800 RAM module into my L512, and while it did correctly report 8GB in the BIOS, it just could not boot into Windows XP. It was constantly interrupted by a sudden blank screen, which was then followed by a reboot. In short, it simply does not work.
This might be a silly question, but was your install of Windows XP 32-bit or 64-bit? I think that only a 64-bit OS can handle correct addressing of that much RAM. Standard Windows XP has a 2 GB limit (up to 3 if you change some setting, according to my googling)

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Re: W510: What is the maximum RAM supported?

#8 Post by dr_st » Mon Mar 18, 2019 10:35 am

[offtopic]
TarzanBoy wrote:
Mon Mar 18, 2019 10:06 am
This might be a silly question, but was your install of Windows XP 32-bit or 64-bit? I think that only a 64-bit OS can handle correct addressing of that much RAM. Standard Windows XP has a 2 GB limit (up to 3 if you change some setting, according to my googling)
It should not be an issue, and you are confusing several unrelated aspects here. A 32-bit Windows XP (and any Windows home version after XP SP2) is locked to 4GB of addressable RAM no matter how much you have installed. It will not crash, but the kernel will simply make any RAM over 4GB invisible.

Of that 4GB some address space will be reserved to PCI devices, so usable RAM will be between 2.5GB and 3.5GB, depending on system.

The 2GB/3GB is how much of the virtual address space (unrelated to physical RAM) is given to applications versus kernel (default is 2GB unless /3GB switch is used).
For fun:
https://dwf.blogs.com/beyond_the_paper/ ... vista.html

[/offtopic]
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Re: W510: What is the maximum RAM supported?

#9 Post by MooNWalker » Fri Aug 09, 2019 11:55 am

Apologies for necroposting.
I'm running a W510 unit with 840QM (720QM originally) and 32GiB RAM. No issues so far, but I'm running Linux and not Windows, if that even matters.
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Re: W510: What is the maximum RAM supported?

#10 Post by w0qj » Sat Aug 10, 2019 9:58 am

Hi MooNWalker,

Many thanks for sharing your max RAM experience with us for your W510!

Is there any chance that you can try to run your W510 under Win10/Win8/Win7 64-bit to confirm that W510 supports 32 GB RAM?
If you do confirm, we'll amend above posting by "w0qj" to reflect this.

Many thanks in advance!
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Re: W510: What is the maximum RAM supported?

#11 Post by MooNWalker » Sun Aug 11, 2019 8:41 am

w0qj wrote:
Sat Aug 10, 2019 9:58 am
Hi MooNWalker,

Many thanks for sharing your max RAM experience with us for your W510!

Is there any chance that you can try to run your W510 under Win10/Win8/Win7 64-bit to confirm that W510 supports 32 GB RAM?
If you do confirm, we'll amend above posting by "w0qj" to reflect this.

Many thanks in advance!
Trying Windows would be difficult - that's whole bunch of time on installing the OS and installing the drivers that I'm gonna discard afterwards anyway. But I should be able to simply fill up a tmpfs mount with some junk files, that should use up the available memory if I override the default 50% RAM capacity size limit on tmpfs. Will post the results of that test some time today or tomorrow.
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Re: W510: What is the maximum RAM supported?

#12 Post by dr_st » Sun Aug 11, 2019 10:23 am

w0qj wrote:
Sat Aug 10, 2019 9:58 am
Is there any chance that you can try to run your W510 under Win10/Win8/Win7 64-bit to confirm that W510 supports 32 GB RAM?
If you do confirm, we'll amend above posting by "w0qj" to reflect this.
It's been established many times by many users that Quad Core W510 supports 4x8GB=32GB of RAM, regardless of operating system. If you have doubts, Google is your friend. Nothing will be gained by yet another user testing it.
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Re: W510: What is the maximum RAM supported?

#13 Post by w0qj » Sun Aug 11, 2019 11:41 am

[This post had been deleted; double posting]
Last edited by w0qj on Mon Aug 12, 2019 10:38 am, edited 1 time in total.
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Re: W510: What is the maximum RAM supported?

#14 Post by MooNWalker » Sun Aug 11, 2019 11:46 am

w0qj wrote:
Sat Aug 10, 2019 9:58 am
Hi MooNWalker,

Many thanks for sharing your max RAM experience with us for your W510!

Is there any chance that you can try to run your W510 under Win10/Win8/Win7 64-bit to confirm that W510 supports 32 GB RAM?
If you do confirm, we'll amend above posting by "w0qj" to reflect this.

Many thanks in advance!
So I've created a tmpfs mount with 100% RAM allocated to it and dumped a bunch of files into it. Here are the results:
~$ free -h
              total        used        free      shared  buff/cache   available
Mem:            31G        1.3G        1.0G         29G         29G        1.1G
Swap:            0B          0B          0B
~$ df -h
Filesystem      Size  Used Avail Use% Mounted on
...
tmpfs            32G   29G  2.8G  92% /mnt

See specifically the "available" value in `free -h` output and Size/Used values in `df -h` output.

To explain for the less technical people - yes, all 32GiB (minus some reserved memory) are available for the use by the operating system, provided the OS supports addressing that much RAM (i.e., it is either almost any 64-bit OS except for few low-end 64-bit Windows editions, a 32-bit server SKU Windows edition with PAE support, or some other 32-bit OS with PAE support like modern Linux kernel or whatnot).

P.S.: I admit I'm a bit puzzled how exactly W510 manages to make use of all 32GiB of RAM installed, considering the specs on ark.intel.com state that quad-core CPUs of that generation support only 8GiB RAM, and my fiancee's Sony Vaio with the same CPU seems to behave in accordance with that limit, accepting maximum either one 8GiB RAM stick or two 4GiB RAM sticks, but rejecting anything above 8GiB total RAM. Can't complain though - one more reason to love my ThinkPads (and sneer at the lesser laptops :-P ).
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Re: W510: What is the maximum RAM supported?

#15 Post by w0qj » Mon Aug 12, 2019 10:38 am

Wow, many thanks for your very detailed info!

Edited above posting by w0qj for the sake of completeness, for maximum W510 RAM for both dual and quad core CPU !
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Re: W510: What is the maximum RAM supported?

#16 Post by dr_st » Mon Aug 12, 2019 12:18 pm

w0qj wrote:
Mon Aug 12, 2019 10:38 am
Edited above posting by w0qj for the sake of completeness, for maximum W510 RAM for both dual and quad core CPU !
I think the dual-core can only use 8GB RAM, not 32GB.
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Re: W510: What is the maximum RAM supported?

#17 Post by w0qj » Mon Aug 12, 2019 1:49 pm

Edited above posting by w0qj for the sake of completeness, for maximum W510 RAM for both dual and quad core CPU !

Many thanks to dr_st and MooNWalker!
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