A friend gave me a stick of 256mb ram that doesn't work with my notebook. At the moment I have two sticks of 128mb ram that are PC100. The 256mb stick is PC133S-333-542. I looked up the Dell site and it mentioned only the type of ram that I have installed. This is only my 2nd notebook so I don't know much about this stuff. My friend says the ram should be working and I think at some point I was able to see it in the bios but only if it was a 2nd stick. If it is in the machine on it's own it makes the machine power on with nothing on the screen and power off soon after that. It repeats this process over and over and the only way to stop it is turn off at the power point. The power on/power off button doesn't work at that time. Also when that is all happening I can't get into the bios at all.
I have Debian 4 installed btw and everything is functioning well.