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Windows 7: Need expert for difficult computer problem - random crash/lockups

13 Jul 2012   #11
FliGi7

XP / Win7 x64 Pro
 
 

Quote   Quote: Originally Posted by emaraszek View Post

Incorrect. Using the CPU Linpack test you can test the RAM.

I recommend this software from experience as it was the only program to pick up on faulty RAM that I had in the past
You are right, I didn't see the Linpack tab on the screenshot and the site only refers to CPU testing. Although, I don't see how a Linpack memory test would find something that Memtest would not. But, it doesn't always make sense.

Quote   Quote: Originally Posted by emaraszek View Post

I recommend things that I have personally seen work, "defacto" or not. I'm not sure how you could ever recommend not testing the sticks individually especially with the large amount of RAM the OP has.

The reasons for it are plentiful. You can determine whether or not both sticks are defective or just one. You can also make sure you are testing the specific stick where as running tests with both sticks inserted doesn't necessarily utilize enough RAM to test both sticks.
I didn't recommend not testing both sticks of memory to determine which is defective. I recommended testing it all together at first as it as it's simply a waste of time up front testing them individually if there's no memory errors. Seems pretty straight forward to me. This is why I said "don't initially need". If there are errors, then of course you're going to test them individually. That wasn't what I was addressing.

Although, I'm not sure what information you're using to back up the statement that with both sticks inserted you don't necessarily utilize enough RAM to test both sticks. Where have you seen this or read about this? Any memory testing software wouldn't serve its purpose if it didn't test the entire memory space, which programs like Memtest do. It runs the entire address space which you can watch as it does it.


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13 Jul 2012   #12
mitchell65

Microsoft Windows 7 Home Premium 64-bit 7601 Multiprocessor Free Service Pack 1
 
 

Quote:
with the large amount of RAM the OP has.
It's 8gb on just two sticks, that's not that high and that's why I suggested running with just oneodule installed to test it!
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13 Jul 2012   #13
emaraszek

Windows 7 Ultimate x64
 
 

There are many unexplained anomalies with memory testing. One program will tell you everything is fine after 2 hours of testing while another will fail within 5 minutes.

From my experience, you're more likely to find problems if you test individually. So if you test together and don't come up with any errors from your perspective you should stop testing? Why would you first test in a way that is less likely to throw up errors and only test in a more reliable way if you get errors the first time. Seems backwards to me.

Not only that but the symptoms the OP is experiencing already suggest a memory issue so why even bother testing in an unreliable way?
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13 Jul 2012   #14
emaraszek

Windows 7 Ultimate x64
 
 

Quote   Quote: Originally Posted by mitchell65 View Post
Quote:
with the large amount of RAM the OP has.
It's 8gb on just two sticks, that's not that high and that's why I suggested running with just oneodule installed to test it!
If it's high enough that it can run on just half, it's high enough to fail a memory test if both sticks are inserted. Why are you disputing what I said when I agree with you?
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13 Jul 2012   #15
FliGi7

XP / Win7 x64 Pro
 
 

Quote   Quote: Originally Posted by emaraszek View Post
There are many unexplained anomalies with memory testing. One program will tell you everything is fine after 2 hours of testing while another will fail within 5 minutes.

From my experience, you're more likely to find problems if you test individually. So if you test together and don't come up with any errors from your perspective you should stop testing? Why would you first test in a way that is less likely to throw up errors and only test in a more reliable way if you get errors the first time. Seems backwards to me.

Not only that but the symptoms the OP is experiencing already suggest a memory issue so why even bother testing in an unreliable way?
I think the difference here is that you see that somehow memory testing programs are prone to false negatives, whereas I haven't had that experience. Memtest86+, which I and many others use as a standard for memory testing, tests the complete address space over and over until you stop it. So, I'm still curious to know where you heard/saw that certain memory programs don't test the whole address space, as I asked you in my previous post. Can you provide that reference?

Nothing the OP has stated points directly to a memory issue, rather it's one of several possibilities for the stated issue of random freezing. It could be a motherboard issue, a hard drive issue, a driver issue, a memory issue... all can present in the same way the OP is stating, which is why we're trying to dig down deeper to figure it out. It could very well be a memory issue, but to rule everything else out at this point is premature. There simply isn't enough information to do that. We want to provide the OP with as many options as possible to figure this out as the root causes of such seemingly random errors like this can often be surprising.
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13 Jul 2012   #16
emaraszek

Windows 7 Ultimate x64
 
 

I never said I've seen any specific reference to how memory test applications work, I was simply stating what I think based on previous experience. An article on the web about memory applications isn't going to help the OP, which is what I'm here to do, not debate you.

As far as the reliability of memtest86+, I'm certainly not the first to find that it has shown defective RAM as perfectly fine, Google it if you don't believe me. In several cases I have used memtest86+ for hours and it hasn't found any problems with the given RAM. However, after putting the same RAM through a much more intensive task with OCCT it failed within 5 minutes.

The steps I outlined have always worked for me when testing for defective RAM so why wouldn't I recommend them?

Quote:
Nothing the OP has stated points directly to a memory issue, rather it's one of several possibilities for the stated issue of random freezing. It could be a motherboard issue, a hard drive issue, a driver issue, a memory issue... all can present in the same way the OP is stating, which is why we're trying to dig down deeper to figure it out.
So your idea of getting to the bottom of this is dismissing my ideas? I think it sounds like a RAM issue because I've been down this road before; the same symptoms may indicate the same problem. However, I never once ruled anything completely out or said that I knew exactly what was wrong. I simply provided guidance on what I have found to be the most effective way to test RAM.

Nothing points to a memory issue? Perhaps you need to read up on the symptoms of bad RAM:

http://www.ehow.com/facts_5019960_sy...-computer.html

Distorted graphics, as the OP mentioned experiencing, is a common sign as well as random lockups (also mentioned), BSODs, and boot failures.
My System SpecsSystem Spec
13 Jul 2012   #17
FliGi7

XP / Win7 x64 Pro
 
 

Quote   Quote: Originally Posted by emaraszek View Post
I never said I've seen any specific reference to how memory test applications work, I was simply stating what I think based on previous experience. An article on the web about memory applications isn't going to help the OP, which is what I'm here to do, not debate you.
Quote   Quote: Originally Posted by emaraszek View Post
The reasons for it are plentiful. You can determine whether or not both sticks are defective or just one. You can also make sure you are testing the specific stick where as running tests with both sticks inserted doesn't necessarily utilize enough RAM to test both sticks.
That is making a statement strongly insinuating that some tools don't utilize enough RAM to test both sticks. That is not just stating what you think, that's stating what you think to come across as a fact in order to boost your argument. So, we now have it that's your opinion and not actually shown or proven anywhere. That's all I wanted to know since you were trying to pass it off as a factual argument. It's not about debating, it's about disproving misleading statements that you're trying to make appear as fact that aren't so. That's what I'm here to do. We have enough people on here that try to do that.

Quote   Quote: Originally Posted by emaraszek
As far as the reliability of memtest86+, I'm certainly not the first to find that it has shown defective RAM as perfectly fine, Google it if you don't believe me. In several cases I have used memtest86+ for hours and it hasn't found any problems with the given RAM. However, after putting the same RAM through a much more intensive task with OCCT it failed within 5 minutes.

The steps I outlined have always worked for me when testing for defective RAM so why wouldn't I recommend them?
No one said it was perfect, as any tool can provide false positives or negatives. The point is that it's as good, or better, than enough other testing software that many people use it as a standard testing tool. That was, and is, my only point regarding this. I have nothing against your suggested tool at all, which I don't think you're understanding. Initially I didn't see that it tested memory, which I immediately corrected once you showed me it does. No one is arguing that you shouldn't recommend what has worked for you. Your getting defensive is clouding you from seeing that.

Quote   Quote: Originally Posted by emaraszek
So your idea of getting to the bottom of this is dismissing my ideas? I think it sounds like a RAM issue because I've been down this road before; the same symptoms may indicate the same problem. However, I never once ruled anything completely out or said that I knew exactly what was wrong. I simply provided guidance on what I have found to be the most effective way to test RAM.
Nothing points to a memory issue? Perhaps you need to read up on the symptoms of bad RAM:

Symptoms of Bad RAM in a Computer | eHow.com

Distorted graphics, as the OP mentioned experiencing, is a common sign as well as random lockups (also mentioned), BSODs, and boot failures.
I'm not dismissing your ideas, I'm only steering people away from getting tunnel vision of a memory issue when there's no definitive information to say it is. You're saying you think it is a RAM issue and I'm saying it's possible but there's no information proving it is, so you can't rule anything else out. Test for memory but also test everything else.

Your apparent argument for this is that because memory failure can present in this fashion, then that points, specifically, to this being a memory problem over anything else, but that's a failure of logic. As I stated before, and I'll state again, there are several other components of failure that can present in the same way. So, again, having these symptoms does not preclude everything else that can present in the same way. If 4 things can cause program hangs, system freezes, and crashes, then obviously no one of them is the immediate culprit without further failures specific to one of the component. A doctor doesn't treat everyone coming in with a sore throat specifically for Mono simply because a sore throat is a common symptom of Mono. That wouldn't be sound practice.
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13 Jul 2012   #18
emaraszek

Windows 7 Ultimate x64
 
 

Seriously? It's pathetic that you have to write an essay on my recommendations.

The fact is memtest86 has repeatedly given me false negatives. My advice was to use something else.

If anyone wants to take my advice feel free. Sorry for helping, I won't participate in this thread anymore.

Maybe you can now use your time I actually help the OP instead of criticizing me
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13 Jul 2012   #19
vettejock99

Win 7
 
 

I missed the notification of replies there for a couple of hours. I have run MemTest86+ for a couple hours with no errors reported. I'll give the OCCT version a whirl, but I'm starting to really look at the motherboard as the culprit because of the clock issue. If I run OCCT through for a couple of hours with no errors will I still need to pull and swap sticks to see if 1 is going bad?
My System SpecsSystem Spec
13 Jul 2012   #20
FliGi7

XP / Win7 x64 Pro
 
 

Quote   Quote: Originally Posted by emaraszek View Post
Seriously? It's pathetic that you have to write an essay on my recommendations.

The fact is memtest86 has repeatedly given me false negatives. My advice was to use something else.

If anyone wants to take my advice feel free. Sorry for helping, I won't participate in this thread anymore.

Maybe you can now use your time I actually help the OP instead of criticizing me
Unfortunately, essay-like responses are necessary to dispel all of the disinformation or misdirected retaliation in your posts. Addressing all of those things are actually in help of the OP and anyone else coming across this thread to not go down the tunnel you have when troubleshooting these types of issues. Don't shoot the messenger. You continue to either misread or just not read the points I'm making so the choice to not participate given that lack of ability is probably the better choice at this point. For the record, I have/had nothing against your suggestions or recommendations, just some of the information you've put out which has been inaccurate. I'm sorry you have gotten so defensive about it. It's nothing personal.

Quote   Quote: Originally Posted by vettejock99 View Post
I missed the notification of replies there for a couple of hours. I have run MemTest86+ for a couple hours with no errors reported. I'll give the OCCT version a whirl, but I'm starting to really look at the motherboard as the culprit because of the clock issue. If I run OCCT through for a couple of hours with no errors will I still need to pull and swap sticks to see if 1 is going bad?
Testing with both tools would be a good idea. If you get no memory errors with those two testing tools, the odds are very unlikely that it's memory-related, or at least unlikely enough to the point that your time is better served moving on to testing other things. There would be no need to pull or swap sticks at that point, given no errors, but you could if you'd like to.
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 Need expert for difficult computer problem - random crash/lockups




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