Wednesday, October 28, 2009

General: Upgrade RAM on Acer Aspire One D250

I love my new netbook. When netbooks were first released I thought they were a gimmick. I thought they were not a tool for serious users. Most people had laptops that had much more computing power. What I wasn't taking into account was “much more computing power” is usually too much for most tasks. So I've been traveling with my Aspire One D250 for the past 5 days, and its been great. Its a lot less strain on my shoulders lugging around this thing than lugging around my 17 inch Dell Vostro.

One of the things that has really kind of chafed me though was that it only came with 1Gb of ram. This is actually more than enough for simple web browsing and email reading. But in my case, there is a little nagging feeling in the back of my mind if I'm not getting the most out of my machine. Seriously, right now I have a Firefox instance open with Facebook, a Yahoo chat window open, Thunderbird open for email, and open while I type this article on a stock Windows 7 Starter (no default services shut down) and I'm still only using 833 Mb of memory. Still, I wanted to get the most ram for this thing that I could. With RAM being a fairly cheap commodity these days, it was a no brainer.

So I went down to the Office Depot and bought some ram for this netbook (OD being the only store close to where I was). They had a single stick of 2 Gb Kingston Valueram (KVR667D2SO/2GR) for 34 dollars at the time of this writing. Not a bad deal considering that it is 46 bucks on Amazon.

Installing the ram is fairly simple. Since I was traveling I had to run down to Radio Shack and get a cheap set of Jewlers Screwdrivers. And tiny philips head jewlers or flat head should work. Shut down the netbook, unplugged the power supply, remove the battery, and wait 5-10 minutes. You don't want any current running through this while you are working on it so you need to give any capacitors time to discharge. While the current in everything except the screen is fairly small and wont hurt you, its enough that it could short and destroy the netbook itself. I didn't remove any bios batteries, but that didn't seem to be a problem. I also typically ground myself with an anti-static wrist strap, however I didn't have one handy, so I touched some grounded metal to discharge any static that I had on me.

Flip the netbook over. There are three panels.

The one in the middle is the one you want to remove. It has a little picture of a memory stick on it so you will know it was the right one. Unscrew the single screw holding it in place. Popping the cover itself off took a little bit of gentle force because there are two tabs holding it in place. Just be careful not for force it too much, you dont want to break the plastic cover or try to force a knife or screwdriver under the slot and have it slip and nick any of the circuits inside.

With the cover off, there are two silver tabs on each side of the memory slot. Pull those out with the jewlers as a pry and the memory will pop up at an angle. Grab it by both sides (I try not to touch the memory stick itself just in case I have a little bit of static) and pull it out. Slide in the replacement stick at a slight angle. Make sure that the connections are under pins completely, and that the memory wont slide in any more. It has a notch and the slot has a key to make putting it in incorrectly very difficult. Once in place, push down until the two metal tabs lock into place. Replace the cover.

Turn on the machine. Hit F2 immediately to go into the BIOS and confirm that the bios recognizes that there is the correct amount of memory. Exit and save. Then boot normally and confirm that the OS sees the correct amount of memory.


Anonymous said...

No luck finding deals any less that $47 a scant week later. Perhaps there was a price mixup at your Office Depot, because that was the price of the 1gb module :(

Anonymous said...

Thank you for posting this guide. You really helped me safely upgrade my d250.

Anonymous said...

think you can run WoW pretty well with the ram upgrade?

clovervidia said...

Thanks for this article. I was scared I forgot some hidden screw and couldn't the darn door open. What is the door on the other side do, the small one without the little cylinder hard drive icon?