Problems with your new memory?

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Are you having problems with your new memory upgrade? The following guide addresses most commonly reported errors with their most frequently effective solutions.

Incompatible Part:  Your module is incompatible with your system. There are a lot of considerations when choosing the correct memory for your system, including memory type, speeds, densities, and more.  To take the guesswork out of this, use the Crucial System Scanner or Crucial Memory Advisor to find a guaranteed compatible upgrade.

Improper Installation: You did not seat your module correctly, or you have a bad or dirty socket. The first thing to try? Re-installing it.


A video illustrating the process is here, but an important detail to note is that desktops require about 30 pounds of pressue for a module to fully seat. You should also see the locking clips rotate into place to lock the part(s) in if you are using enough force to ensure a full connection.


For laptops (and miniature desktops built with similar parts, such as the Intel NUC series), a similar 30 pounds of force will be needed, pressing the module(s) into slot, then laying them flat to lock them fully in to place. In some cases, the parts will loosen while being laid flat to be locked into place. Maintaining some inward pressure on the module while laying it flat can resolve seating difficulties in these systems. (A video showing this process is here).


If simply reseating is not effective, switch the memory to different sockets if available, as well as testing multiple part configurations one module at a time. This can help determine whether the problem lies with a particular memory module or the socket, or whether old and new modules simply aren’t compatible when mixed together.


Another option? Try cleaning the module and the socket using compressed air to blow dust off the socket.  (Watch our video on how to clean a dirty system prior to installing memory.)


BIOS/System Firmware conflict: Especially with parts manufactured using technologies developed after a computer's release, any BIOS (Basic Input Output System) or system firmware (EFI/UEFI) updates may be required to add support for memory upgrades or higher memory totals. Refer to your system or motherboard manufacturer's support for any available resources, including documentation, on applying these updates.


Sometimes it is necessary to clear BIOS settings to solve boot related issues. Your BIOS/UEFI may have a soft reset available for this process, or a jumper which can be used in place of the below steps but to otherwise manually clear the BIOS/CMOS install the memory and follow the instructions below:


1) Turn off the system and unplug it.
2) Remove case cover/panels.
3) Once the system is open touch an exposed/bare metal part of the computer to ground yourself.
4) Looking at the motherboard you should see a small silver circular battery (Like a watch battery). The battery will be held in place by a plastic holder.
5) Remove the battery from the motherboard. This is usually done by gently pressing the metal clip on the plastic holder. The battery should pop up/out on its own.
6) Once the battery has been removed please leave the computer sitting like that for around 15 minutes.
7) After 15 minutes replace the battery and the cover/panels
8) Reconnect all cables and power up the computer.

Defective Hardware: The memory module is defective. If you are able to load into your operating system, software is available which can test modules for a possible faulty component.


If you’ve tried everything and the memory still isn’t working, you may have a defective module.  If you purchased that module from, we make returns hassle-free. Learn more about our returns process and our 45-day money-back guarantee.


For more memory troubleshooting tips, go here.