Personal computing discussed

Moderators: renee, Flying Fox, Thresher

 
tomrhyne
Gerbil
Topic Author
Posts: 64
Joined: Tue Jun 10, 2008 1:11 pm

Need Help with Memtest Problem

Wed Jul 16, 2008 3:51 pm

For a few weeks I have been running 4 gb on my new build. I ran memtest86 on the 4 gb of memory with no failures. I just added another 4 gb of RAM and ran the memtest on the total 8 gb of memory. Each time I run the memtest it stops after 9 to 10 minutes. No failures are experienced; just memtest stops running. The walltime stops somewhere between 9 and 10 1/2 minutes, but not in the same place each time nor while running tests on the same section of memory. It has stopped each time while running test 4. Each time I cannot exit memtest using the escape key. I have to restart using the power button on the PC. I checked sysytem information and the full 8 gb are present. Any thoughts or suggestions?

Thanks.
Tom
<><
 
just brew it!
Administrator
Posts: 53977
Joined: Tue Aug 20, 2002 10:51 pm
Location: Somewhere, having a beer

Re: Need Help with Memtest Problem

Wed Jul 16, 2008 3:58 pm

Sounds like the new RAM has destabilized things to the point where Memtest86 is crashing. Unusual, but not unheard of.

Try reducing your memory clock and/or relaxing the timings, and see if it makes any difference.
Nostalgia isn't what it used to be.
 
tomrhyne
Gerbil
Topic Author
Posts: 64
Joined: Tue Jun 10, 2008 1:11 pm

Re: Need Help with Memtest Problem

Wed Jul 16, 2008 4:51 pm

Mr. Coffee (or is it beer), I reduced the timming to 5-5-5-18 from 4-4-4-12 and reduced the voltage to 1.8v and memtest runs without crashing. However, I desire to run the memory at its advertised 4-4-4-12 at 2.1 v but due o the fact that I had some defective memory previously, I would like to run the memtest. I could burn another bootable memtest disk but I don't believe that would change the result. Any suggestions?

Thanks.
Tom
<><
 
tomrhyne
Gerbil
Topic Author
Posts: 64
Joined: Tue Jun 10, 2008 1:11 pm

Re: Need Help with Memtest Problem

Wed Jul 16, 2008 5:55 pm

axe, thanks for the input. I'll try your suggestion. I am running an Intel system. The build is as shown below. Since the board is designed for 8 gb of RAM why do you think it is a motherboard problem? Would a problem with the memory controller cause memtest to crash?

CPU: Intel Core 2 Quad Q9300 Yorkfield 2.5GHz
Motherboard: GIGABYTE GA-EP35-DS4 LGA 775 Intel P35 ATX - Retail
Graphics Card: EVGA 512-P3-N861-AR GeForce 9600 GT 512MB
Memory: Two CORSAIR XMS2 DHX 4GB (2 x 2GB)
Power Supply: PC Power & Cooling S61EPS 610W
Hard Drives: Western Digital VelociRaptor WD3000GLFS 300GB for OS, apps, and PS cache
Western Digital Caviar SE16 WD6400AAKS 640GB for data
Seagate Baracuda ST3300831A 350 GB (Already own - for data copy before backing up)
Optical Drive: Two SAMSUNG 22X DVD Burner Black SATA Model SH-S223F
Computer Case: Antec Nine Hundred Black Steel ATX Mid Tower - Retail
Operating System: Microsoft Windows Vista Home Premium SP1 64-bit English - OEM

Thanks.
Tom
<><
 
Forge
Lord High Gerbil
Posts: 8253
Joined: Wed Dec 26, 2001 7:00 pm
Location: Gone

Re: Need Help with Memtest Problem

Wed Jul 16, 2008 7:01 pm

Hey look! It's my mobo, my CPU's little brother, the whole nine! Nice system build, good choices. :wink: :wink:

Memtest86 and Memtest86+ are being increasingly unreliable across my last couple of systems. I wouldn't sweat it too much on it's own. Also, if it's running clean at 5-5-5-18@1.8V, I personally would put it there and leave it there. You're looking at a performance loss of very much under 1%, and energy savings of far more than 1%. I know it's far less exciting, but it'll probably pay for itself in no time.

FWIW I'm running 4*1GB on the same mobo, and Memtest86 gives me all sorts of excuses. Right now both memtest86 and mt86+ claim to be unable to run since 'the binary cannot fit in memory' (super-lolz). I take out either of my pairs of 1GB sticks and it'll run clean for however long I want to leave it. With all 4GB previously, it would run but refuse to test >2.7GB. Since I can do 48+ hours of Prime95 on either small FFTs (CPU stress) or large FFTs (memory stress), I'm pretty sure my ram is doing great, it's just memtest86 hitting the limits of it's original humble code design.

If memtest86 gives you a hard time, but the system boots and runs clean, fire up Prime95, let it eat tons of ram and then beat on it. I've not yet had a machine that could do that reliably for 24+ hours without being perfectly stable otherwise as well. It's a good beating.
Please don't edit my signature for me. Thanks.
 
tomrhyne
Gerbil
Topic Author
Posts: 64
Joined: Tue Jun 10, 2008 1:11 pm

Re: Need Help with Memtest Problem

Wed Jul 16, 2008 8:06 pm

Thanks, Forge for your kind words and suggestions. I wasn't familiar with Prime95, but did some research on it. I'll give it a shot.


Thanks.
Tom
<><
 
Flying Fox
Gerbil God
Posts: 25554
Joined: Mon May 24, 2004 2:19 am
Contact:

Re: Need Help with Memtest Problem

Wed Jul 16, 2008 9:00 pm

Remember you are now in the multicore world, so either you have to use multiple instances of Prime95, the beta Prime95 MT client, or Orthos.

So 5-5-5-18 at 1.8V is fine? How about doing the same timings at 2.1V to see if it is the voltage drawing too much power or something? It's like a game of Mastermind, you take more tries to get the data you need.
The Model M is not for the faint of heart. You either like them or hate them.

Gerbils unite! Fold for UnitedGerbilNation, team 2630.
 
just brew it!
Administrator
Posts: 53977
Joined: Tue Aug 20, 2002 10:51 pm
Location: Somewhere, having a beer

Re: Need Help with Memtest Problem

Wed Jul 16, 2008 9:09 pm

Just because the board can handle 8GB of RAM doesn't mean it will be stable with all possible combinations of modules. Multiple DIMMs (especially double sided ones in systems which use unbuffered modules) on the same channel will sometimes require looser timings and/or slower memory clock to run stable. There's a reason that high reliability servers generally use registered DIMMs... this reduces the loading effects of multiple DIMMs on the memory bus.

If using looser timings eliminates the lockup, then this is an indication that something in your memory subsystem is borderline. Personally, I wouldn't trust it unless it can pass multiple passes of Memtest86... preferably overnight.
Nostalgia isn't what it used to be.
 
tomrhyne
Gerbil
Topic Author
Posts: 64
Joined: Tue Jun 10, 2008 1:11 pm

Re: Need Help with Memtest Problem

Wed Jul 16, 2008 9:10 pm

Thanks Fox. Excellent suggestion. I'll do more digging. Again, you're a source of help as you were the first time I had a memory problem as seen HERE.

JBI, I am leaving memtest running tonight with timings at 5-5-5-18 and 1.8v. I'll post the ourtcome tomorrow along testing at 5-5-5-18 and 2.1v.

Tom
<><
 
titan
Grand Gerbil Poohbah
Posts: 3373
Joined: Mon Feb 18, 2002 7:00 pm
Location: Great Smoky Mountains
Contact:

Re: Need Help with Memtest Problem

Wed Jul 16, 2008 10:31 pm

It looks like there isn't a 64 bit version of Memtest86 or Memtest86+. That indicates to me that neither one can access more than 4GiB.
The best things in life are free.
http://www.gentoo.org
Guy 1: Surely, you will fold with me.
Guy 2: Alright, but don't call me Shirley.
 
just brew it!
Administrator
Posts: 53977
Joined: Tue Aug 20, 2002 10:51 pm
Location: Somewhere, having a beer

Re: Need Help with Memtest Problem

Wed Jul 16, 2008 11:46 pm

titan wrote:
It looks like there isn't a 64 bit version of Memtest86 or Memtest86+. That indicates to me that neither one can access more than 4GiB.

Memtest86+ (and I believe Memtest86 as well) is PAE-aware, and can test up to 64GB even though it is a 32-bit application.

http://forum.x86-secret.com/showthread.php?t=7768
http://forum.x86-secret.com/showthread.php?t=8142
Nostalgia isn't what it used to be.
 
tomrhyne
Gerbil
Topic Author
Posts: 64
Joined: Tue Jun 10, 2008 1:11 pm

Re: Need Help with Memtest Problem

Thu Jul 17, 2008 6:59 am

Here's an update. I ran memtest for 9.5 hours last night with no failures with timing at 5-5-5-18 and voltage at 1.8v. I'm going to play around with the voltage and timing today to see if I can gather more data. For the time being I'll be using 5-5-5-18 and standard voltage.

Tom
<><
 
tomrhyne
Gerbil
Topic Author
Posts: 64
Joined: Tue Jun 10, 2008 1:11 pm

Re: Need Help with Memtest Problem

Thu Jul 17, 2008 8:42 am

I'm still trying to understand what would cause memtest to crash as it does when I set the timing to 4-4-4-12 and 2.1v. Why wouldn't it just report a failure as opposed to locking up or crashing? I guess to undersatnd this one would have to know the design of memtest and what it is looking for and what error conditions could send it into a fatal fault. Not knowing anything about the app, I would assume it does a compare of what is written to what is read back to determine the pass/fail condition. Is anyone familiar enough with the code to speculate on what conditions could cause it to crash?

Thanks.
Tom
<><
 
Meadows
Grand Gerbil Poohbah
Posts: 3416
Joined: Mon Oct 08, 2007 1:10 pm
Location: Location: Location

Re: Need Help with Memtest Problem

Thu Jul 17, 2008 9:02 am

Silly, silly.
RELAX (increase) the timings, don't REDUCE them. By doing the second one, you're putting even more strain on your memory, just making things worse. Keep default timings, and increase voltage to 2 or 2.1 V, then try things out.
Reducing the timings is the same as telling your secretary to do the usual batch of paperwork in 4 hours instead of 6. S/he may be able to do it, but it's more likely that you're going to wreck your employee.
 
just brew it!
Administrator
Posts: 53977
Joined: Tue Aug 20, 2002 10:51 pm
Location: Somewhere, having a beer

Re: Need Help with Memtest Problem

Thu Jul 17, 2008 9:27 am

tomrhyne wrote:
I'm still trying to understand what would cause memtest to crash as it does when I set the timing to 4-4-4-12 and 2.1v. Why wouldn't it just report a failure as opposed to locking up or crashing? I guess to undersatnd this one would have to know the design of memtest and what it is looking for and what error conditions could send it into a fatal fault. Not knowing anything about the app, I would assume it does a compare of what is written to what is read back to determine the pass/fail condition. Is anyone familiar enough with the code to speculate on what conditions could cause it to crash?

Well... Memtest is generally pretty good about being able to run even on seriously flaky hardware. But there's something you need to keep in mind -- the program itself is executing on the hardware you're trying to test, and the Memtest program itself requires a small amount of RAM. If the memory subsystem is seriously misbehaving, the test could corrupt the Memtest program itself, or its internal data structures. This could certainly result in a system lock-up.

Meadows wrote:
Silly, silly.
RELAX (increase) the timings, don't REDUCE them. By doing the second one, you're putting even more strain on your memory, just making things worse. Keep default timings, and increase voltage to 2 or 2.1 V, then try things out.
Reducing the timings is the same as telling your secretary to do the usual batch of paperwork in 4 hours instead of 6. S/he may be able to do it, but it's more likely that you're going to wreck your employee.

Umm... how is it silly? He installed more RAM, and is trying to test it to see what settings he can run at.
Nostalgia isn't what it used to be.
 
Meadows
Grand Gerbil Poohbah
Posts: 3416
Joined: Mon Oct 08, 2007 1:10 pm
Location: Location: Location

Re: Need Help with Memtest Problem

Thu Jul 17, 2008 9:40 am

just brew it! wrote:
Umm... how is it silly? He installed more RAM, and is trying to test it to see what settings he can run at.

I usually find it respectable when a computer gets stable using 4 sticks, let alone tighten those timings. Then again, I might as well be plagued by bad past experience.
 
just brew it!
Administrator
Posts: 53977
Joined: Tue Aug 20, 2002 10:51 pm
Location: Somewhere, having a beer

Re: Need Help with Memtest Problem

Thu Jul 17, 2008 10:03 am

Meadows wrote:
I usually find it respectable when a computer gets stable using 4 sticks, let alone tighten those timings. Then again, I might as well be plagued by bad past experience.

I don't think he tightened the timings, I think he was trying to run 8GB at the same timings he was using originally, when he had 4GB.

I agree that expecting it to run stable at tight timings with the memory bus fully loaded (especially with double-sided DIMMs) may be a stretch. Multiple DIMMs on the bus messes with the signal integrity, and something's gotta give.
Nostalgia isn't what it used to be.
 
Flying Fox
Gerbil God
Posts: 25554
Joined: Mon May 24, 2004 2:19 am
Contact:

Re: Need Help with Memtest Problem

Thu Jul 17, 2008 10:03 am

tomrhyne wrote:
I reduced the timming to 5-5-5-18 from 4-4-4-12 and reduced the voltage to 1.8v

Meadows wrote:
Silly, silly.
RELAX (increase) the timings, don't REDUCE them.

Calm down. It was just a wording difference, he did say he went from 4-4-4-12 down to (speed wise) 5-5-5-18. So it is reducing the speed.
The Model M is not for the faint of heart. You either like them or hate them.

Gerbils unite! Fold for UnitedGerbilNation, team 2630.
 
tomrhyne
Gerbil
Topic Author
Posts: 64
Joined: Tue Jun 10, 2008 1:11 pm

Re: Need Help with Memtest Problem

Thu Jul 17, 2008 5:59 pm

Let me set a few things straight as it appears some find what I have been doing as silly, which is beyond me to understand why. The memory I am using automatically loads in the BIOS at 5-5-5-18 at a standard voltage of 1.8v. The manufacturer certifies the memory at 4-4-4-12 at a voltage of 2.1v. I was using memtest to check to make sure the memory was operating at spec at the faster speed and higher voltage when I ran into the problem that I've posted here.

With the suggestions I've received, below is the result of the tests I have performed. I welcome your analysis of these tests results.

1. With a timing of 4-4-4-12 and 2.1v memtest 86+v2.01 crashes and locks up after about 9 to 10 minutes with no failures detected.
2. With a timing of 5-5-5-18 and 1.8v memtest8.6+v2.01 ran with out crashing and no failures for 9.5 hours.
3. With a timing of 4-4-4-12 and 2.1v memtest86v3.4 crashed and locked up after 19 minutes with no failures detected.
4. With a timing of 5-5-5-18 and 2.1v memtest86v3.4 crashed and locked up after 20 minutes with no failures.
5. With a timing of 5-5-5-18 and 1.8v memtest86v3.4 ran for over 5 hours without crashing and with no faults detected.

I conclude from the results of these tests that the crashing of memtest is a function of increasing the voltage from 1.8v to 2.1v as memtest crashed at 2.1v with the timings at 4-4-4-12 and 5-5-5-18. I welcome your input as to the possible cause and what course of action you would recommend. I plan to keep the timing set to 5-5-5-18 and the voltage set to 1.8v unless I can find the cause. Some of you with more awareness of the mobo design can provide possible causes and courses of action. One basic question is whether there is enough data to point to the motherboard as the problem as it is still under warranty?

Thanks for your input.

Tom
<><
 
Flying Fox
Gerbil God
Posts: 25554
Joined: Mon May 24, 2004 2:19 am
Contact:

Re: Need Help with Memtest Problem

Thu Jul 17, 2008 6:31 pm

It may be the 4 sticks and the higher voltage being too much for the whole thing to handle. Have you tried 2 gigs with the spec'ed 4-4-4-12@2.1V setting?

At this stage I would treat whatever info as just curious knowledge. I would not try to RMA or what not since you have a good setup going. If it ain't broke don't fix it. ;)
The Model M is not for the faint of heart. You either like them or hate them.

Gerbils unite! Fold for UnitedGerbilNation, team 2630.
 
tomrhyne
Gerbil
Topic Author
Posts: 64
Joined: Tue Jun 10, 2008 1:11 pm

Re: Need Help with Memtest Problem

Thu Jul 17, 2008 6:42 pm

Fox, thanks. I have tried one stick in each slot with no problems at increased voltage and faster speeds. Before I loaded the extra 4gb, I was running 4gb at 4-4-4-12 and 2.1v which passed a long memtest with no failures. It appears, as you said, that a full load of memory at the increased voltage is stressing the system. I'm content to use 8 gb at 5-5-5-18 at 1.8v and have a stable sysytem and suffer a little in performance.

Tom
<><
 
Flying Fox
Gerbil God
Posts: 25554
Joined: Mon May 24, 2004 2:19 am
Contact:

Re: Need Help with Memtest Problem

Thu Jul 17, 2008 8:51 pm

tomrhyne wrote:
I'm content to use 8 gb at 5-5-5-18 at 1.8v and have a stable sysytem and suffer a little in performance.

So little that you won't see it in practice. I would still test those 8GiB with some long Prime95 x64 (run multiple instances of it) runs just to be sure.

Have fun with the new build. :)
The Model M is not for the faint of heart. You either like them or hate them.

Gerbils unite! Fold for UnitedGerbilNation, team 2630.
 
tomrhyne
Gerbil
Topic Author
Posts: 64
Joined: Tue Jun 10, 2008 1:11 pm

Re: Need Help with Memtest Problem

Fri Jul 18, 2008 6:34 am

Fox, could you give me an URL for downloading Prime95x64? Thanks.

Tom
<><
 
Flying Fox
Gerbil God
Posts: 25554
Joined: Mon May 24, 2004 2:19 am
Contact:

Re: Need Help with Memtest Problem

Fri Jul 18, 2008 7:09 am

tomrhyne wrote:
Fox, could you give me an URL for downloading Prime95x64? Thanks.

ftp://mersenne.org/gimps/

The latest I have seen is the p64v256.zip file. Some said this one scales to multiple cores, you can bring up Task Manager to find out.
The Model M is not for the faint of heart. You either like them or hate them.

Gerbils unite! Fold for UnitedGerbilNation, team 2630.
 
tomrhyne
Gerbil
Topic Author
Posts: 64
Joined: Tue Jun 10, 2008 1:11 pm

Re: Need Help with Memtest Problem

Fri Jul 18, 2008 7:23 am

Thanks. When you start this version it asks you for the number of threads you want it to run and I verified by the Task Manager that indeed it was running four. Thanks for your help.

Tom
<><
 
MrJP
Gerbil Elite
Posts: 836
Joined: Wed Nov 20, 2002 5:04 pm
Location: Surrey, UK

Re: Need Help with Memtest Problem

Fri Jul 18, 2008 7:50 am

If you are bothered about trying to run at the lower latency settings (though the performance differences are tiny), perhaps try the lower latencies at a voltage lower than 2.1V. From your testing so far it does seem that it's the combination of 4 sticks and 2.1V that is the problem. The RAM may well be capable of running the lower latencies at a lower than specified voltage, and the motherboard might be able to cope with 4 sticks at a slightly lower voltage. You might just need to find the sweet spot. It's probably just tweaking for academic interest at the end of the day, though.
i7-6700K ~ Asus Z170I Pro Gaming ~ 16GB Corsair DDR4-2400 ~ Radeon R9 Nano
Noctua NHU9S ~ Corsair Obsidian 250D ~ Corsair RM650X ~ Crucial MX100 512GB
SMSL M3 ~ Sennheiser HD555 ~ Logitech G500S/G910/G29 ~ LG 34UC79G
 
tomrhyne
Gerbil
Topic Author
Posts: 64
Joined: Tue Jun 10, 2008 1:11 pm

Re: Need Help with Memtest Problem

Fri Jul 18, 2008 8:02 am

Thanks, MJP, I'll play around with it when I have the time.

I have run Prime95 for a short period of time with no errors present. Trying to develop some knowledge of Prime95 and still learning. It says read stess.txt and I feel real dumb as I can't find it. I'll continue to look.

Tom
<><
 
Flying Fox
Gerbil God
Posts: 25554
Joined: Mon May 24, 2004 2:19 am
Contact:

Re: Need Help with Memtest Problem

Fri Jul 18, 2008 8:12 am

tomrhyne wrote:
I have run Prime95 for a short period of time with no errors present. Trying to develop some knowledge of Prime95 and still learning. It says read stess.txt and I feel real dumb as I can't find it. I'll continue to look.

Run the torture tests for at least a few hours and see. The stress.txt file may be in the 32-bit version so you can grab that version and read it.
The Model M is not for the faint of heart. You either like them or hate them.

Gerbils unite! Fold for UnitedGerbilNation, team 2630.
 
tomrhyne
Gerbil
Topic Author
Posts: 64
Joined: Tue Jun 10, 2008 1:11 pm

Re: Need Help with Memtest Problem

Sat Jul 19, 2008 10:19 am

The system is rock solid with Prime95 running with 4 threads. Thanks for your help.

Tom
<><

Who is online

Users browsing this forum: No registered users and 1 guest
GZIP: On