2GB of RAM in a UMPC? The answer is…


…it depends! Let me explain: at the same time I was wondering if 2 GB of RAM would work in a UMPC, several others in the Origami Project forums were considering it as well. I decided to order a 2 GB SODIMM and Daniel (aka: ThoughtFix) stopped at his local Fry’s to do the same. We have different Q1 models and he also has an eo v7110, so we figured to both give it a shot.

I had some e-mail conversation with Dan late last night and his preliminary results were negative in both the Samsung Q1B and the eo7110. Upon boot-up, the eo only reported 1 GB of RAM in Windows and in the BIOS, even though 2 GB were installed. For the Q1B, it wouldn’t even boot up to the BIOS. I know that Dan is looking into his BIOS version on the Q1B, just to make sure he has the most recent, which he said is version 03EA. I’m sure he’ll update us here or on his site with his progress.

Meanwhile, I can tell you that my 2 GB SODIMM just arrived 30 minutes ago, so I’ve performed the surgery on just a single cup of coffee this morning. Oh, the risks I take…..long story short: the BIOS and Windows Vista show 2 GB of RAM available on Samantha, my Samsung Q1P!

At this point, I’m only reporting the preliminary information that the transplant has worked. I haven’t had a chance to do any benchmarking and we need to make sure that Samantha’s body doesn’t reject the new module. ;) I’ll be working on some tests over the next day or two, so stay tuned.

I do want to share the process I took. Figuring the BIOS was the limiting factor here, I booted up into my BIOS on the Q1P to check my BIOS version. I actually didn’t have the most recent version, so I upgraded from v. 02MA TO 20MA, which you can find on Samsung’s support site. After upgrading the BIOS and rebooting, I went into the BIOS again to verify the version and it was correct. As I went to exit the BIOS, I was asked to save my configuration changes, even though I didn’t change anything. I chose yes, figuring that this had something to do with the new BIOS. It might not have been necessary to do this, but I did it and booted into Vista.

Next up, I shut down Vista completely, removed the battery and unplugged the unit. I then removed the six screws from the back casing: if you’re not sure where they are, my original Q1 RAM upgrade from last June will come in handy; we’re essentially following the same process only using the 2 GB module in lieu of the 1 GB. Once the new module is in place, just close the unit back up and insert the screws that you originally removed.

I plugged the unit in, replaced the battery and powered back up. I didn’t allow the unit to fully boot: I went right back into the BIOS as that’s the first indicator to see if the memory is recognized. Sure enough, the BIOS showed the full 2 GB.


Again when exiting the BIOS, I was asked to save my configuration changes and again, I chose to figuring the ‘change’ was the new memory amount. Vista then booted up noticably quicker than normal and that point, I knew I was home free.

Does this mean you should rush out and try to upgrade your UMPC to 2 GB? Unless you’re a Samsung Q1P owner that can’t wait for my benchmarks, I’d say no but of course, it’s up to you. As always, any upgrades you do are your responsibility, so no whining to me if you hose something up. ;) Still, this looks very promising and initial impressions are that the machine is responding faster. I’ve just rebuilt this machine and have some more apps to install as well as some optimization tweaks, but so far, so good.

I have to give another shout-out to Upgrade Computer Memory as Chad was very responsive to my e-mailed questions on this upgrade. He also assured me that UCM would take the memory back within 30 days and refund my money if it didn’t work. We have no affiliation with UCM, but I can tell you that they were very helpful. If you want to hit your local Fry’s or search for a cheaper price online, that’s completely your prerogative. Thanks also to Dan for volunteering to be a guinea pig along side me. I’m hoping that after he upgrades his Q1B BIOS to the most current version, this will work for him as well!

OK, time to get a second cup of coffee and plan some tests…

Quick update: putting the unit in Sleep mode now takes about 2 to 3 seconds; previously it was around 5. Waking up from Sleep is < one second; darn near instant! Makes sense since Sleep mode puts the current computer state & data into RAM.


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