Wednesday, February 14, 2007

Upgrading Your RAM GUIDE

A week ago I wrote an article about buying RAM for cheap and making your 1501 run faster. This is the second article covering how to install RAM in the Dell 1501. Enjoy!

First You Need Some Stuff:
1. Mini Screw Driver #0 Size
2. Static Bracelet
3. RAM

The right size mini screw driver is important, you do not want to strip these screws. A couple different sizes will end up working fine, use common sense, get the right tool for the job. A static bracelet is really important if you plan on opening up your computer and doing any work. This makes sure the static electrically stored in body doesn't fry any of your computer components. They're cheap, they work and they're less than five bucks. BUY ONE! Please use common sense,don't force anything in, buy the bracelet, unplug your laptop, take out the battery and take your time.

Step 1.

Put on your static bracelet, unplug your computer. Turn it over.
It should look like this:

Step 2.
Now take out your battery out and unscrew the RAM cover.
You should now see this:
*Note I was stupid and forgot to unplug my battery when I took this picture. You don't need electricity running through your 1501 while you do this. Turn of your 1501, take out the battery and unplug it.

Step 3.

Now take your RAM and look for the notch by the pins (the shiny metal part) and insert it at a 30 degree angle into the Empty DIM slot, lining up the notches. Push firmly and then push the RAM stick down locking it into place.

Step 4.
Replace the cover, put in your battery. Flip over your computer and enjoy.
edited by pHreaksYcle


- said...

ideas for future articles:

adding media codecs

getting standby, hibernate, screen brightness working (they don't seem to work w/ ubuntu 6.10 on the 1501)

redDEAD said...

ok ill hit those next!

Hawk said...

Interestingly enough, replacing both sticks at once caused some wild video errors. Bars of blue appeared above the boot up screen and once logged in, stripes of red were thrown around. Swapping out one of the old ones and rebooting fixed it. Didn't come back when both new ones were reinstalled, either.

Standby, hibernate and screen brightness all worked fine for me out of the box.

Dan said...

I have a laptop problem regarding RAM replacement.

I removed the memory without removing the battery while my laptop was in standby mode.

Now, the computer won't start at all. What should I do?

Dan said...
This comment has been removed by a blog administrator.
redDEAD said...

You have screwed yourself. Call Dell and tell them the computer won't turn on and send it in for repairs. I probably would have to advise you from telling them the truth.

Peil said...

FYI - Standby mode copies your system state out to RAM, keeping the system powered enough to hold onto that information. It then powers down the CPU/video/HDD.

By touching the RAM itself while it was in standby you have probably screwed the RAM. Most definitely do not tell Dell what you were up to or your looking at a chargeable repair...

Med said...

Where can i buy the cheap RAM, the link does not work?

redDEAD said...


I can suggest, or for finding RAM

Med said...

I don't really understand RAMs for laptops, do i have to buy a specific Memory or any RAM for laptops.

redDEAD said...

You're looking for Notebook DDR2 SDRAM 533MHZ, also known as PC2 4200. Happy hunting!

Med said...

is this gonna work?

or should it be 533MHZ no more no less?


redDEAD said...

no cause its 2GB, you can only put 1GB sticks in your 1501

Med said...

Ohh I see! How many RAMs can put? 2 or 3? and by defaut, does my dell 1501 have 1 RAM 1 gig, or 2x512 MB?

And is this gonna work ?

Thanks you

redDEAD said...

you can put up to 2GB in it, 1GB in each slot. those deals suck use this link:

Med said...

I know the deal sucks, but do you know any company that ships to Canada?

littlebadger said...

I've just put a 2gig ram card (PC5300) in my Dell 1501 laptop. It already had two 512Mb installed.
I took out one of them and put the 2gb card in it's place.
I booted it up and went to system.
It now shows as 2.37gb. So the slots will take a 2gb ram card.
Hope this helps.

susan said...

Will the Dell 1501 handle more than 2 rams of memory? I have have 2 1gb sticks in it now

redDEAD said...

you gotta call DEll, mine won't but yours might not have the same board as me

Pedro1987 said...

Great Article. Now just wondering if anyone has the same problem as me.

I got a free upgrade on purchasing my Inspiron 1501 a year ago from 512MB to 1GB (2*512MB). Problem is now my System Information says I have 894MB.

I'm trying to run Dreamweaver which requires minimum 1GB and now it won't install.

Any suggestions.

redDEAD said...


The RAM may be broken. You should call Dell and complain that they gave you a broken RAM.

Dell could have ripped you off, took your money promised on thing and gave you another. You should call and complain loudly.

Or it could be that your ATI x1150 graphic card is an integrated video card not a dedicated. Dedicated cards have their our RAM/memory. Integrated use system RAM/memory to run.

Spend the 20 bucks and upgrade your RAM. Then install Dreamweaver. Enjoy using Windows!

Linas M. said...

Interesting - I ordered 2 new RAM PC2-4200 533Mhz 1Gb Kingston modules and then realized that they are something KTA-iMac533/1Gb stuff. Sad it was too late already - they were at my door step. Then (and only then, yeah) I opened my Dell Inspiron 1501 and realized they are completely different - my read something "512 Mb 2Rx16 Pc2-5300S - 555 - 12" Are they the same as yours? Any suggestions which ones should I order?

hmmitslewis said...

Hey im thinking of upgrading my RAM in my dell inspiron but im not sure what memory modules to order as i have opened up the memory cover and it only appears to have 1stick of 512 mb of RAM. To make the 1GB do i need to order another 512mb of RAM to make this 1GB?
Or order a 1 1GB stick of memory?

hmmitslewis said...

Hey im thinking of upgrading my RAM in my dell inspiron but im not sure what memory modules to order as i have opened up the memory cover and it only appears to have 1stick of 512 mb of RAM. To make the 1GB do i need to order another 512mb of RAM to make this 1GB?
Or order a 1 1GB stick of memory?

koala4christ said...

FYI, I just found out that there is a Canadian version of the site redDEAD

Johann said...

sorry i have a newbie question..
i'm going to try installing 4 gb (2 x 2gb) and now am waiting for them to get shipped. (i may only get 3.5 or 3 gb working but that's fine)

my question is:
where is the second slot? are both slots in the same compartment??? it's not under the keyboard is it? thanx

redDEAD said...


Look at the pictures on Step 2. The DIMM slots are right next to each other.

B-DIMM is in red and the second stick of RAM is above it in the A-DIMM clot.


Eaton said...

So, could I buy 2 4gig sticks of RAM and expect it to work? I want to know before I spend the money.

redDEAD said...


Thats a Dell question. Probably not though, 2-4GB are the max for the Dell Inspiron 1501 models.

IBHenry said...

is it okay to just add a 1GB and leave the 512MB still intact? would there be any ill effects?

IBHenry said...

just added a 1GB memory to my Dell 1501, but I left the 512MB in place. Is that okay? any problems with that? TIA

redDEAD said...


By leaving that 512 stick in your 1501 you have just created a mini nuke. DO NOT turn on your 1501 it WILL explode. Quickly fill your bathtub with ice and water a submerge your notebook for at least 48 hours. This is the only way to be safe....

The only damage you'll do is to my brain for asking such a stupid question. 1.5GB of RAM is perfectly fine and Google is your friend.

Alan said...

I know I might sound newbie, but I seriously don't want to screw my laptop, I just bought a new battery and don't want to feel like I wasted my money.
My situation is this: I'm shopping around for more RAM, and I got a pretty good deal for a 2 GB-RAM PC2-6400 (Dell original product, $29.99, local dealer). It is a 200-pin DDR2, but the "thing" is that it runs at 800MHz instead of 533Mhz, which is the actual speed of my 2x512MB. Would there be any problem if I combine the RAMs (that is, to take one of the 512 mb sticks and replace it with the 2 gb one)? Or you suggest to just leave the 2 gb alone (for which I also found a 2x1gb deal for a little less, but at least both MHz are the same).
Thank you!!!

redDEAD said...


I no longer own a Dell 1501, when I did I was only able to install 1GB stick in each RAM slot/DIMM.

I had both a 1.5GB install and a 2GB install (I had two 1501s). Both were better than just 512MB or 1GB of RAM.

You should always use matching RAM.

The two matching 1GB sticks running at the same speed is the best configuration. The 1GB and 512 sticks running at the same speed are less desirable but better than running the 1GB stick alone.

I would never bought a 2GB stick because according to Dell, the 1501 was only capable of having 2GB of RAM overall.

This might have changed or Dell may have used different motherboards for different runs. I do not know for sure. They only place you can get definitive answers is Dell. Use the Service Tag number on Dell website or call them directly.