SDRAM Bank Interleaving – What is It?

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Q1. Can you tell me if my memory supports interleave?

A1. No – that is the great thing about the Internet, it allows you to find out things for yourself easily :)

Q2. Does my memory support interleave (2-way or 4-way)?

Short Answer. If it was manufactured in the last couple of years, and is a 32MB stick or bigger, there is a good chance that it does (and is probably 4-way) – see below.

Long Answer. The only way to be sure is to examine the chips on your memory module. These will tell you the manufacturer of the chip. Go to the manufacturers web site and try to find a datasheet on the particular chip. This data sheet will tell you how the memory is organized. An example:

Apacer brand 64MB PC133 unbuffered, chip markings 7X.63350.XX4/7X.63353.XX4 is 4 bank (see page 1 of the pdf)

PDF file here:

Funnily enough, in these files you’ll also find out interesting things like the CAS latency, etc.

Q3. Does my Fast Page Mode (FPM), or Extended Data Out (EDO) 72-pin SIMM support Memory Bank Interleave?

A3. No, sorry.

Q4. Can I enable bank interleave with 2 different types of modules?

A4. You can try. If one of your memory modules does not support bank interleave, the answer would be no. If you have one module that supports 2 bank and one that supports 4 bank interleave, you can enable 2-bank interleave, and it may work, and you may see a boost. Warning: Enabling bank interleave or the wrong type of interleave can cause your system to not boot. Be careful, and if in doubt, don’t. If you do do (pun – geddit) something stupid, you can always take all modules out of your system but one, clear the CMOS and try to get a working system.

Q5. Does the number of banks of memory that your motherboard supports have anything to do with bank interleave.

A5. No

Q6. Does the number of DIMM’s that you have plugged into your system have anything to do with bank interleave?

A6. No.

Q7. Does the number of sides that are populated with chips on your memory module have anything to do with bank interleave?

A7. No.

Q8. Can I plug two 2-bank interleave modules into my motherboard and get 4-bank interleave?

A8. No.

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