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Windows 7: Removed faulty RAM, still BSODing after fresh install

07 Sep 2011   #11
maxseven

Windows 7 Home Premium 64bit 6.1 Build 7601 (SP1)
 
 

Quote   Quote: Originally Posted by DanBSOD View Post
If my problem is PSU related, could the extra power draw when playing games be when it becomes unstable? If there's a way I can log voltages while I go play some games and try cause a BSOD, I'd be happy to try.
Sure, game-playing will stress your system in many ways, not just PSU but also heat-wise. Can't hurt to try, though OTTOMH I'm not sue what freeware utility you could try, maybe SpeedFan? I use AIDA64--it will display on your desktop anything you want e.g. CPU Temp, Mobo Temp, GPU Temp, hard drive temps, fan speeds, then any/all voltages. You could try to see if any of these spike before a BSOD. Maybe AIDA64 has a trial version--sorry I'm blanking on freeware ATM.

Hopefully you'll hear from Crucial soon. Any feedback would be good, even if it's "sorry your RAM tested good and we're sending it back". Then you know to focus elsewhere, in which case I'd maybe swap-in a new PSU first. I've never had a motherboard or CPU go bad myself (knocking on wood when I type this!).


My System SpecsSystem Spec
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07 Sep 2011   #12
DanBSOD

Windows 7 Home Premium 64bit
 
 

Back with a SpeedFan log already. This time, I didn't get a BSOD, just a total freeze that required a reset.

The bad news is that the symptoms are starting to resemble the same as before my system totally died and I removed that 'faulty' RAM. Upon restarting, my PC failed to connect to the internet claiming that I needed to install a network driver. I didn't check this time, but before it would also complain that I had no graphics drivers installed. Just like before, another restart fixed this. If the trend is going to continue, I'm eventually going to get this scary error message while booting:
Code:
The BIOS in this system is not fully ACPI complient. Please contact your system vendor for an updated BIOS.

***STOP: 0x000000A5(0x00000011, 0x00000003, 0x00000000, 0x00000000)
The log doesn't seem to show anything unusual, unfortunately.

Attached: SpeedFan log
My System SpecsSystem Spec
07 Sep 2011   #13
maxseven

Windows 7 Home Premium 64bit 6.1 Build 7601 (SP1)
 
 

Sorry Dan all I can say is: if you can't run Memtest then you can't count on running anything properly, especially i.e. Windows just ain't gonna work. I'd probably try running Windows Memory Diagnostic as here:

Memory Diagnostics Tool

and maybe start-over with the remaining RAM that you have. What I'm thinking is: if you can find a RAM stick, even 1Gb (that maybe won't even run Windows 7? I'm not sure) and Memtest86+ the hell out of it e.g. overnight or longer, with no errors, then at least maybe you can have some confidence in your PSU/Mobo/CPU for when you get the other RAM back.
My System SpecsSystem Spec
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08 Sep 2011   #14
DanBSOD

Windows 7 Home Premium 64bit
 
 

I spent all last night and today running Memtest while I sat here on the ol' laptop. Keeping in mind that not a few days ago, I got errors with both of my sticks in the 3rd and 4th slots
Code:
Stick 1 - Slot 4 - 9 hours - 41 pass - 0 errors
Stick 2 - Slot 4 - 5 hours - 22 pass - 0 errors
Stick 1 - Slot 3 - 3 hours - 14 pass - 0 errors
Stick 2 - Slot 3 - 3 hours - 13 pass - 0 errors
Basically, it seems Memtest likes to find errors one day, and find none on others. Neither of my RAM sticks or the slots seem to be giving errors right now. I guess I have to hope that some of the RAM wasn't reinserted correctly after I was done with my first round of scans a few weeks ago. I don't know if the RAM would even work if not correctly inserted, or if that was even the case, but I have little else to have hope in right now. Maybe tomorrow I can make sure both sticks are definitely plugged in well and see if I BSOD some more, which I no doubt will.

Oh, and great news concerning Crucial. Apparently they won't bother testing my RAM, it's too much time/effort/money so they just replace it as standard.
My System SpecsSystem Spec
09 Sep 2011   #15
maxseven

Windows 7 Home Premium 64bit 6.1 Build 7601 (SP1)
 
 

Well, it might've been nice if they told you "yeah your RAM was bad" but no matter now.

One thing that puzzles me is your use of terms "Slot 3 and Slot 4"--you do know about your P35's rules of DIMM slot usage, yes? Referring to page 2-7/8 of your manual, with one DIMM you want to install to the first slot only, labeled DIMM_A1 nearest the CPU. Then adding a 2nd would be to DIMM_B1 because yours is a Dual Channel mobo. Getting this right may be important! And assuming Crucial may be sending you-back a matched pair, make sure you install those only to A1/B1 or A2/B2.

Since I DL'ed your manual (!) look also at p3-24 where is discussed EMI--a long shot but maybe something changed in your environment or power source to affect this?

Finally, I see that mobo has a myriad of BIOS settings to deal with, and for starters you want to make sure you go with all defaults. You said this crashing came out-of-the-blue but maybe since its an older PC your CMOS battery CR2032 is weak and your mobo has glitched owing to power issues? Another long shot but there ya go. Good luck!
My System SpecsSystem Spec
09 Sep 2011   #16
DanBSOD

Windows 7 Home Premium 64bit
 
 

Quote   Quote: Originally Posted by maxseven View Post
Well, it might've been nice if they told you "yeah your RAM was bad" but no matter now.

One thing that puzzles me is your use of terms "Slot 3 and Slot 4"--you do know about your P35's rules of DIMM slot usage, yes? Referring to page 2-7/8 of your manual, with one DIMM you want to install to the first slot only, labeled DIMM_A1 nearest the CPU. Then adding a 2nd would be to DIMM_B1 because yours is a Dual Channel mobo. Getting this right may be important! And assuming Crucial may be sending you-back a matched pair, make sure you install those only to A1/B1 or A2/B2.

Since I DL'ed your manual (!) look also at p3-24 where is discussed EMI--a long shot but maybe something changed in your environment or power source to affect this?

Finally, I see that mobo has a myriad of BIOS settings to deal with, and for starters you want to make sure you go with all defaults. You said this crashing came out-of-the-blue but maybe since its an older PC your CMOS battery CR2032 is weak and your mobo has glitched owing to power issues? Another long shot but there ya go. Good luck!
I'm not very hardware orientated at all, so my usage of the terms 3rd and 4th slots was literally just the 3rd and 4th to the right. Also, I bought this computer from an acquaintance of a relative, so I'll have to find and download the manual, as he didn't give me anything but the case and its contents.

Are you saying I should put the RAM pair I currently have in slots 1 & 3? That is, instead of 1 & 2 or 3 & 4. I've been using 3 & 4 purely for ease, as I'd have to detach a fan to get at the first two slots. If so, I'll make the change as soon as I can. Should my replacement pair go in 2 & 4 when I receive them?

Sorry if I misunderstood any of what you said. Again, thanks for helping.
My System SpecsSystem Spec
09 Sep 2011   #17
maxseven

Windows 7 Home Premium 64bit 6.1 Build 7601 (SP1)
 
 

Yes Dan, you've been doing this wrong, and could IMO have definitely skewed your Memtest results. If testing 1 DIMM, it should have been placed only into slot 1 nearest the CPU. If two DIMMs, slots 1 and 3, or slots 2 and 4. When you have fully 4 DIMMs, and any "matched pairs", these should be in 1 and 3 or 2 and 4. I found your manual here--I think you will need perhaps the Europe link:

MSI USA €“ Download Center

Oh, if I haven't confused you enough, it IS possible to put only 2 DIMMs into slots 1 and 2 (though not solely into slots 3 and 4) but this will result in a less-desirable "single channel" operation of your more-desirable "dual channel" motherboard.
My System SpecsSystem Spec
09 Sep 2011   #18
DanBSOD

Windows 7 Home Premium 64bit
 
 

Quote   Quote: Originally Posted by maxseven View Post
Yes Dan, you've been doing this wrong, and could IMO have definitely skewed your Memtest results. If testing 1 DIMM, it should have been placed only into slot 1 nearest the CPU. If two DIMMs, slots 1 and 3, or slots 2 and 4. When you have fully 4 DIMMs, and any "matched pairs", these should be in 1 and 3 or 2 and 4. I found your manual here--I think you will need perhaps the Europe link:

MSI USA – Download Center

Oh, if I haven't confused you enough, it IS possible to put only 2 DIMMs into slots 1 and 2 (though not solely into slots 3 and 4) but this will result in a less-desirable "single channel" operation of your more-desirable "dual channel" motherboard.
Hey, no worries as long as it'll be alright in the end. I'll put the RAM in slots 1 & 3, check it out, and perhaps swap out my graphics card for a GeForce 6600 I have laying around if things don't improve.

I know I've said this before, but I do appreciate the help quite a lot. It'd take me a lot longer to come up with this stuff by myself.

One thing I was wondering about though. As I did a full reinstall after removing the faulty RAM to start with, could my RAM issues lead to corruption in the programs I had to reinstall & update?
My System SpecsSystem Spec
09 Sep 2011   #19
maxseven

Windows 7 Home Premium 64bit 6.1 Build 7601 (SP1)
 
 

Quote   Quote: Originally Posted by DanBSOD View Post
I do appreciate the help quite a lot. It'd take me a lot longer to come up with this stuff by myself.
You're welcome, though we haven't fixed it, yet!

Quote:
As I did a full reinstall after removing the faulty RAM to start with, could my RAM issues lead to corruption in the programs I had to reinstall & update?
You got me there, Dan! But I doubt it. In any case, assuming you put the new RAM back in and it tests OK (at least 7 full passes with Memtest86+, for "sevenforums" I think) and you still have ugly problems e.g. BSODS and many, random program problems, that would dictate another reinstall attempt I suppose.

Though it occurs to me now that if you did a (fairly painless) sfc /scannow on your Windows installation after successful memtesting, and it comes-out clean, seems to me you're good.
My System SpecsSystem Spec
13 Sep 2011   #20
DanBSOD

Windows 7 Home Premium 64bit
 
 

Just a small update. About four days ago I switched my graphics card for an old GeForce 6600 and my PC ran without crashing all day while even playing games. The day after, I put the RAM in slots 1 & 3 as I'd forgot to do so previously. Since I did all this, my PC has run flawlessly and seems to be in perfect health, other than my mouse cutting out at times, but I'll reinstall the driver at some point to check on that.

I'll run it like this for a few more days, and if all is well, I guess I'll put my GeForce 8800 back in and see if the BSOD/freezing returns. If so, then I suppose it's fairly safe to assume my card is dead.

As for the new RAM, I do have it but I haven't installed it yet, as I'd rather not introduce another new variable to the problem.
My System SpecsSystem Spec
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 Removed faulty RAM, still BSODing after fresh install




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