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Old 02-12-2010, 11:43 AM
Dale
 
Default Ramifications of memtest86

chrome://messenger/locale/messengercompose/composeMsgs.properties:

On Fri, Feb 12, 2010 at 11:22:21AM +0000, Alan Mackenzie wrote:



On Fri, Feb 12, 2010 at 10:50:46AM +0200, Alan McKinnon wrote:


On Friday 12 February 2010 10:54:53 Alan Mackenzie wrote:


Hi, Gentoo,



My new Gentoo box has become unusably unstable.



The first sign was when the compiler threw a segfault whilst
emerging the xfce window manager. I "solved" this by emerging
Openbox instead.



Then I got another compiler segfault whilst emerging firefox (yes,
I know there's a binary for this).






everything you mention below is indicative of failing hardware,
especially RAM closely followed by PSU.



Yes, you're right. :-(



When I run memtest86 from the gentoo boot disk, it signals millions of
failures in b11 of 32 bit words.



I'll try unplugging and replugging these.


No help. :-(

No matter how I plug in the RAM (4 combinations of 2 sticks into 2 pairs
of slots) it is always b11 which fails and always at an address ending
in (hex) 0 or 8.

How is this DDR3 Ram organised? Is each stick 64 bits wide, or are they
32 bits wide, being accessed by the motherboard pairwisely? If the
latter, I would have exected the failure to move to address ....4 and
....C when I swap the two sticks. Am I being prematurely pessimistic in
thinking the motherboard might be the fault?



alan dot mckinnon at gmail dot com



--
Alan Mackenzie (Nuremberg, Germany).



Sounds to me like the mobo may have issues. If swapping the ram around
doesn't move the error, then the chips on the mobo that connect to the
ram may be bad.


I would still rule out power issues if you can. A bad power supply, or
a weak one, can cause some pretty weird problems.


Hmmm, I would also try putting in two sticks, then running the test and
seeing what that says. If it still errors, try the other two sticks.
If it still fails in the same place, see if you can put the sticks in
the other two slots. Some mobos don't care what slot you have them in.
May want to refer to the manual on that.


Let's hope for something simple and cheap. ;-)

Dale

:-) :-)
 
Old 02-12-2010, 12:00 PM
Alan McKinnon
 
Default Ramifications of memtest86

On Friday 12 February 2010 14:43:30 Alan Mackenzie wrote:
> > failures in b11 of 32 bit words.
> >
> > I'll try unplugging and replugging these.
>
> No help. :-(
>
> No matter how I plug in the RAM (4 combinations of 2 sticks into 2 pairs
> of slots) it is always b11 which fails and always at an address ending
> in (hex) 0 or 8.
>
> How is this DDR3 Ram organised? Is each stick 64 bits wide, or are they
> 32 bits wide, being accessed by the motherboard pairwisely? If the
> latter, I would have exected the failure to move to address ....4 and
> ....C when I swap the two sticks. Am I being prematurely pessimistic in
> thinking the motherboard might be the fault?

I strongly suspect a motherboard fault too. What you are describing sounds
like an address decoding fault.


--
alan dot mckinnon at gmail dot com
 
Old 02-12-2010, 12:23 PM
Alan Mackenzie
 
Default Ramifications of memtest86

Hi, Dale,

On Fri, Feb 12, 2010 at 06:43:46AM -0600, Dale wrote:
> chrome://messenger/locale/messengercompose/composeMsgs.properties:
> >On Fri, Feb 12, 2010 at 11:22:21AM +0000, Alan Mackenzie wrote:


> >>When I run memtest86 from the gentoo boot disk, it signals millions
> >>of failures in b11 of 32 bit words.


> >>I'll try unplugging and replugging these.

> >No help. :-(

> >No matter how I plug in the RAM (4 combinations of 2 sticks into 2
> >pairs of slots) it is always b11 which fails and always at an address
> >ending in (hex) 0 or 8.

> >How is this DDR3 Ram organised? Is each stick 64 bits wide, or are
> >they 32 bits wide, being accessed by the motherboard pairwisely? If
> >the latter, I would have exected the failure to move to address ....4
> >and ....C when I swap the two sticks. Am I being prematurely
> >pessimistic in thinking the motherboard might be the fault?


> Sounds to me like the mobo may have issues. If swapping the ram around
> doesn't move the error, then the chips on the mobo that connect to the
> ram may be bad.

So the RAM sticks are each 32 bits wide, then?

> I would still rule out power issues if you can. A bad power supply, or
> a weak one, can cause some pretty weird problems.

The power supply is brand new, from a reputable manufacturer. Surely if
the power supply were dicky, I'd get RAM errors in some other bit
position inside a 32-bit word. Or maybe the RAM into which memtest86 is
loaded is also faulty. ;-(

> Hmmm, I would also try putting in two sticks, then running the test and
> seeing what that says. If it still errors, try the other two sticks.
> If it still fails in the same place, see if you can put the sticks in
> the other two slots. Some mobos don't care what slot you have them in.
> May want to refer to the manual on that.

Sorry, I wasn't clear about that. I have just two RAM sticks for a total
of 4Gb, but there are two pairs of slots on the motherboard. The manual
says "put the sticks for preference in the orange slots for 'better
overclocking capability'". But they (almost) work just as well (badly)
in the black slots.

> Let's hope for something simple and cheap. ;-)

Oh, yes!

> Dale

> :-) :-)
 
Old 02-12-2010, 01:27 PM
Dale
 
Default Ramifications of memtest86

chrome://messenger/locale/messengercompose/composeMsgs.properties:

Hi, Dale,

On Fri, Feb 12, 2010 at 06:43:46AM -0600, Dale wrote:


chrome://messenger/locale/messengercompose/composeMsgs.properties:


On Fri, Feb 12, 2010 at 11:22:21AM +0000, Alan Mackenzie wrote:





When I run memtest86 from the gentoo boot disk, it signals millions
of failures in b11 of 32 bit words.





I'll try unplugging and replugging these.



No help. :-(



No matter how I plug in the RAM (4 combinations of 2 sticks into 2
pairs of slots) it is always b11 which fails and always at an address
ending in (hex) 0 or 8.



How is this DDR3 Ram organised? Is each stick 64 bits wide, or are
they 32 bits wide, being accessed by the motherboard pairwisely? If
the latter, I would have exected the failure to move to address ....4
and ....C when I swap the two sticks. Am I being prematurely
pessimistic in thinking the motherboard might be the fault?





Sounds to me like the mobo may have issues. If swapping the ram around
doesn't move the error, then the chips on the mobo that connect to the
ram may be bad.


So the RAM sticks are each 32 bits wide, then?



I run 32 bit here. Mine doesn't care where they are but yours may be
different.




I would still rule out power issues if you can. A bad power supply, or
a weak one, can cause some pretty weird problems.


The power supply is brand new, from a reputable manufacturer. Surely if
the power supply were dicky, I'd get RAM errors in some other bit
position inside a 32-bit word. Or maybe the RAM into which memtest86 is
loaded is also faulty. ;-(



Dale





Where the error is could depend on a single transistor that is maybe not
as sensitive as the others. It's sort of like a chain. It's only as
strong as its weakest link. It could be that whatever is going wrong
could be right on the edge of others not working either. The one that
is failing is just the first if it is a power problem. That's where the
power problem thought comes from. Have you had a look here for well
tested power supplies?


http://www.overclockers.com/forums/showthread.php?t=458204

That said, it could be a lot of things. It could be a bad chip on the
mobo, a piece of dust in the wrong place or any number of other things.
It's finding it that is so much fun.


I would also check to see if it is a heat related issue. If it runs
fine cold, that could point to the "dust" theory since it is
consistently broke. If it only does it when hot, then that could be a
chip problem.


Again, lots of things it could be. So far, everybody has replied with
good ideas to check. There are lots of them.


Dale

:-) :-)
 

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