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Gerbil In Training
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Joined: Fri Oct 28, 2011 10:26 pm

Bad slot on mobo? Memtest freeze.

Tue Dec 06, 2011 10:11 pm

Okay, the system first:
Gigabyte EP45-DS3R mobo
Intel Core2 Duo E8500
Corsair DDR2 (800mhz) 2x2048

Original symptoms - random freezing in games, such as Civ5, Starcraft2, Rift, Borderlands, etc. Might go weeks without a freeze, then get 3 in one night. CPU and GPU temps don't get absurdly high - maybe high 50's (Celsius). Freezing locks everything up - can only do a manual reboot at that point, so unable to see final temps. System has been running for 3 years - only started seeing this behavior in the past year.

Running memtest86+ (v4.2), it completely freezes at about 4:47 in the first pass. Happens every time.
Pulling the stick from slot 2, memtest runs fine - ran several passes
Swapping the sticks in slot 0, memtest runs fine - ran several passes
Putting the stick back in slow 2 (sticks are now swapped in place), memtest freezes at 4:47-ish

So, this seems to point to the slot or the controller? Is there a program that will run diags on this to confirm? I don't mind putting out for a new mobo and cpu, or new memory - just don't want to do so if it's something completely different.

Thoughts anyone?
Gerbil Elite
Posts: 600
Joined: Mon Jan 06, 2003 4:29 pm

Re: Bad slot on mobo? Memtest freeze.

Tue Dec 06, 2011 11:32 pm

Smells like a bad slot to me. What type of RAM is it exactly?

You also might want to try a different memory tester, to see if it will give you information without crashing.
Posts: 71
Joined: Fri Apr 18, 2008 4:52 am

Re: Bad slot on mobo? Memtest freeze.

Wed Dec 07, 2011 12:28 am

You need to test each slot individually with nothing else in any other slot to test for a slot problem. If it fails on a slot, you also need to swap sticks on that slot to verify that it isn't the specific stick of RAM being used.

Testing RAM with multiple slots occupied doesn't test an individual slot as much as the bus. It is quite common for RAM to fail as you fill more and more slots for each additional stick adds more impedance and delay to the signals on the bus till pulses can't be properly distinguished. Often, you can solve this problem by slowing down your ram.
Put those spare CPU/GPU cycles to good use - Folding@Home
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Re: Bad slot on mobo? Memtest freeze.

Wed Dec 07, 2011 1:18 am

If each stick and each slot pass individually it may be worth bumping up both your RAM voltage and your northbridge voltage a notch or two. My old Phenom II needed more juice than stock to run with four 4 GB sticks.
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