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RAM Troubleshooting suggestions


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#1 Tekkerson

Tekkerson

    Droppin' them beats like hot potatoes.

  • Joined: 05-March 08
  • Location: Dallas, TX

Posted 17 September 2011 - 08:22

I just switched from 32-bit and installed Windows 7 64-bit, yes I know long over due but never had an issue with 32-bit until I was getting lag after years of usage and it wasn't using 1.2GB of RAM out of my 4GB.

(Yes yes, I know 4GB and 32-bit?! Just never bothered, for the reasons stated above.)

When I installed Windows 64-bit PC's been crashing lately (never crashed with 32-bit for more than three years), with different BSOD messages.

First instinct is to test RAM, and what do you know, only a few sections are faulty.

I have 2 x 1GB Corsair DDR2 CM2X1024-6400C4

and a

1 x 2GB Patriot PEP22G6400EL

I'm aware that it's usually not a good idea to mix RAM but I got extra RAM from a friend and it has worked for years with no problem with 32-bit.

As soon as I switched to 64-bit Windows 7 started crashing a lot. About 6 times in a span of 5 days.

Now here comes the part that completely threw me off.

Even though it showed a faulty section in the RAM (didn't say which stick).

I ran two passes of memtest on each stick individually and they all passed memtest

I was like, well, that was unexpected haha.

Before I do some more testing I'm thinking the following:

Faulty motherboard memory slot which would be a huge coincidence now that I installed 64-bit.

Is dust a possible cause? I moved the RAM around before the install, it's moderately dusty, can that affect the contact? (Random memory of blowing NES catridges came to me as I typed this :D )

Plausible: RAM timings? (Though doubtful since I haven't had a blue screen since the Windows ME days)

That's all I can think of ATM.

I'm looking for other possible causes and suggestions on what steps I should do to troubleshoot this.

For example: Should I test each RAM stick on each memory port of the motherboard?

Here's a screenshot of said crashes: Posted Image


#2 Hum

Hum

    totally wAcKed

  • Tech Issues Solved: 5
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  • Location: Odder Space
  • OS: Windows XP, 7

Posted 17 September 2011 - 08:29

I would read your motherboard manual on what it says about RAM placement & pairing.

I would put the BIOS RAM settings on Auto, if they are not.

I would check the seating of the RAM, they can become off, when you tinker around inside.

Windows 7 also has a proggy to test the RAM.

I would test each stick individually.

Excess dust does not promote conductivity.

Even though it showed a faulty section in the RAM (didn't say which stick).


No part of your RAM should have errors.

Replace the faulty stick.

#3 OP Tekkerson

Tekkerson

    Droppin' them beats like hot potatoes.

  • Joined: 05-March 08
  • Location: Dallas, TX

Posted 17 September 2011 - 08:38

No part of your RAM should have errors.

Replace the faulty stick.


Did you read the second bolded sentence? I tested each stick individually twice, and they all passed the test each time. It only happens when they're used together.


Also, what is the difference between the Windows 7 memory diagnostics and memtest?

#4 Hum

Hum

    totally wAcKed

  • Tech Issues Solved: 5
  • Joined: 05-October 03
  • Location: Odder Space
  • OS: Windows XP, 7

Posted 17 September 2011 - 08:43

Here is another thing you can try before replacing Memory:

Control Panel/System Propeties/Advanced tab.

Performance/Settings.

Advanced tab.

Change the virtual memory to No paging file.

OK, OK, and Reboot.

This will clear out the Page Memory.

After rebooting, go in and change it to System managed size.

Reboot again.


I forgot this tip that I read on the Microsoft site.

#5 OP Tekkerson

Tekkerson

    Droppin' them beats like hot potatoes.

  • Joined: 05-March 08
  • Location: Dallas, TX

Posted 17 September 2011 - 10:18

Thanks for the interesting tidbit Hum and helpful suggestions! If I recall correctly I had already the BIOS at default but I did it again just in case. I brushed up my NES cartridge blowing skills (ran out of canned air) and made sure to reseat them very solidly.

Ran memtest again and it passed with flying colors! I also ran two passes of Windows memory diagnostics and also passed.

Previous evidence strongly suggests that the RAM was fine. The current tests I did after writing this post points me to believe that some RAM was either loose or not properly mounted or dust or a combination of the two since the first time I ran Memtest within the first two minutes I'd immediately get errors.

Remounting the RAM seems to have fixed the issue.

To be 100% sure I'll see how the PC runs now that every test I ran seems ok. If something does happen I'll come back.

If I do come back, my only question would be... actually I think I'll make a poll.

Here: http://www.neowin.ne...#entry594317914



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