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Do memtest errors always mean bad RAM?

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#1
Pretty self explainatory, but is there anything else that can cause errors in memtest besides a bad stick of RAM? I searched the forums and google and couldnt really come up with anything conclusive.. I already ran memtest after i got my RMAd sticks and they were good after a few hours of testing so Im just curious..
 

sandyman

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#2
Most of the time yes, but it can be a number of other things like your mother board. Its best to test a single stick of ram at a time, and try using different ram slots on your motherboard to see if you get the same results.
 

Sh00t1st

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#3
sometimes it means your ram cant run at the timings you put it in, i know i freaked out when i got a gig of geil memory and it was just spewing errors in memtest and crashing, turns out the ram doesnt like to run at 2, can run fine all day at ddr500 and 2.5 8 2 2 but when you lower it by .5 all hell breaks loose and windows screws up and you have to reinstall. hehe try loosening your timings and see if that helps any.
 
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#4
It could also be that your chipset can't run your ram that fast also. If your chipset can't keep up with your ram, it will make ram error in memtest. Try backing them down to 1100 and see what happens.
 
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#5
Thanks everybody, Im not having any problems now, in fact I just ran memtest since I was thinking about it and it did 3 passes with no errors. I was just wondering if there were any other things that could cause errors. I guess timings or voltage that the ram doesnt like would make sense..
 
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#6
how long should you run it for?
 
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#7
how long should you run it for?
different people say different things. Alot of people prefer a 24 hour burn to test it, I only do 4 most of the time.
 

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#8
Basically, bad ram or bad settings for the ram is all that can cause it. If you get a motherboard designed to run 667 ram and buy 1.1GHz ram, the mobo wont like you forcing it to 1100MHz, you'd have to lower it back to the mobos settings - thats somewhere that the chipset conks out before the ram (but its overclocking, so that should be obvious)

VERY rarely, it could be the memory chipset - thats almost unheard of on a motherboard, heavily overclocked AMD64 chips (with the memory controller in the CPU) sometimes go flaky and show up as memtest errors, but thats quite uncommon as well.


Edit: i run mine for 2-4 hours, but i tend to loop it on a certain test. for some reason i like looping test 5, as it tends to show errors faster for me that way.
 
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#9
Whats your ram voltage set at. I was just reading about this today because I want to undervolt my ram. I ran across quite a few people saying they were running into errors when running memtest using the rated voltage for the ram. Usually around 2.2 volts. Well anyways, I have lowered my ram from the rated 2.2 to 1.9 volts and all is fine. Also , the biggest thing is that the ram modules are not making as much heat causing them to run more stable than at 2.2. So, I would try running your ram at a lower voltage. Most sticks are made to boot at 1.8. So, anywhere in between 1.8 and the rated highest for your ram should be ok. Keep your timings, they should be ok. My supertalents run at 4-4-3-8 2t DDR2 800 @ 1.9 volts right now no problems.

Dun dun, way for me to miss the question. Yeah, ram is usually ok, it would be voltages, timings or speeds in bios that would cause it to run unstable.