Zombie ram?

Discussion in 'NZ Computing' started by Rob S, Jan 21, 2009.

  1. Rob S

    Rob S Guest

    I have a 1gig stick of Adata 400 DDR ram which I tried installing in a
    Asrock 4CoreDX90-VSTA (Intel) m/b but refused to boot. Memtest86
    confirmed it as dead. Yesterday I was doing my quarterly cleanup of my
    niece's pc (she insists on using Limewire and for some reason her
    anti-virus and anti-spyware defs are never up to date, no matter how I
    setup auto downloads or give her written instructions). Anyway, her pc
    is based on a MSI K7N2 (AMD) m/b.

    She only has 256Mb DDR266 ram, so I had a search among my bits & pieces
    and came across the Adata stick. Having forgotten that it was dead, I
    plugged it in and it booted and ran perfectly. Remembering then that I
    previously thought it was dead, I tried running it in the Asrock board,
    but again it wouldn't run. I tried both slots as well as every
    combination of ram, 1 stick, 2 sticks, alternate slots etc., but it
    still wouldn't boot and Memtest86 still confirmed it as dead. The ram
    I'm currently running in the Asrock is the same brand, size and speed as
    the dead stick.

    At this stage my niece arrived to pick up her pc, so I gave it back with
    just the original ram plus another 256Mb stick I had lying around. I
    hadn't tried running Memtest86 with the dead? stick in her pc.

    Has anyone else run across anything like this? A stick that tests out
    dead in one m/b but runs perfectly in another? The only other thing I
    haven't tried (only now thought of it) is downsizing the ram speed in
    the bios.

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    The most exciting phrase to hear in science, the one that heralds new
    discoveries, is not "Eureka!" but "That's funny..."' - Isaac Asimov
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    Rob S, Jan 21, 2009
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  2. Seems to be a common Dimdows complaint.
    Lawrence D'Oliveiro, Jan 22, 2009
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  3. Rob S

    Peter Guest

    Check your version of MemTest is up to date.
    Otherwise, it can incorrectly report memory errors.
    Peter, Jan 22, 2009
  4. Rob S

    PeeCee Guest

    .. Yesterday I was doing my quarterly cleanup of my

    May I respectfully suggest you make it quite plain to your Niece that if she
    continues to use Limewire (and any other P2P music download software) then
    she is going to have to pay someone 'else' to fix her PC.

    It is well known that a significant portion of P2P downloaded music contains
    malware and virus's, fully 30% in Limewires case.
    Current nasties are programed to specifically disable Anti Virus and Anti
    Spyware products and no amount of auto downloads and written instruction
    will beat them.
    i.e you are in a no win situation ( I'll bet you do it for nothing too)

    Sure we all give family help and asssistance and I have no problem with
    But if your Niece is not learning the consequences of her actions then the
    kindest thing you can do is to educate her with the realities of her
    I appreciate I am nor privy to your personal relationship to your Niece but
    I would draw you attention to the fact that your Niece is aiding in the
    disemination of these infected files by having Limewire loaded and music in
    her shared folder particularly if she is on broadband.

    Are you happy she is helping to perpetuate the problems caused by infected
    music downloads?

    PeeCee, Jan 22, 2009
  5. Rob S

    Rob S Guest

    Tried 2 versions, one that came with Ubuntu 8.10, which should be up to
    date, and an older version on a UBCD download. Both produce lovely
    scrolling lines in a bright red font. :)

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    Little Johnny was a scientist. Little Johnny is no more. For what he
    thought was H2O was H2SO4.
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    Rob S, Jan 22, 2009
  6. Rob S

    Rob S Guest

    I gave her the message when she picked up her pc that I would not look
    at it again if she re-installed limewire. Three times with the same
    problems and cause stretched even my patience too far. With the new
    copyright law taking effect soon I impressed on her the illegality of
    her actions again as well.
    I didn't know the ratio was that high, but even 5% is way too much,
    making chances of picking up nasties nearly inevitable.
    Thought something like that might be the cause.
    Yup. Normal family situation. I might get a home cooked meal or a lotto
    lucky dip occasionally.
    See above. Horses and water come to mind. Thanks for your views. They
    correspond with mine in all respects.

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    Fine, fine, everything is fine. But using your GUI's breaking my mind!
    Change this, don't change that, can't you redesign!!! (to the tune of
    'read the signs')
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    Rob S, Jan 22, 2009
  7. Rob S

    Rob S Guest

    Updated my bios about 3 weeks ago. I'll have a play around with the ram
    and bios when I can be bothered with crawling around in tight spaces
    again, which I doubt will be in the immediate future. I took the
    opportunity to remove dust build-up in the box and tidied wiring
    involving 3 boxes and attendant keyboards, mice etc. at the time. Not
    something I want to do again in a hurry with a fused spine. My pain
    clinic doctor is already worried about the amount of a particular
    painkiller I take just to get through an ordinary day when I try not to
    stress my back.
    Rob S, Jan 22, 2009
  8. Rob S

    Rob S Guest

    You're probably right Shaun. I think what I'll end up doing is giving my
    niece the stick and get a new one for myself. That of course depends on
    finances, being a state funded invalid. I just hope that when I do get
    another stick I don't have the same problem which would point to voltage
    stability issues. I really don't want to have to get a new m/b. I'm
    currently running just 1 gig with Ubuntu 8.10. Runs that fine, but a
    couple of virtual machines (XP & Solaris) and Boinc with 4 projects
    slows it to a crawl at times.

    Rob S, Jan 23, 2009
  9. Rob S

    ~misfit~ Guest

    This seems pretty obvious to me, maybe I'm missing something?

    It seems that the module won't run at it's rated speed in your mobo (you
    said it was 400) but will run at a reduced speed (266) in her mobo. Other
    factors could of course come into play such as your mobo might have a bit of
    voltage droop from running more / bigger modules but it sems to me most
    likely to be the speed issue.

    ~misfit~, Jan 23, 2009
  10. Rob S

    Rob S Guest

    Would you believe she rang last night with problems? Pc rebooting itself
    at irregular intervals. First thoughts were power supply or cpu fan, but
    after a google I found out that some AMD systems suffer reboots after
    installing XP SP3. I had loaded her pc with a slipstreamed SP3 disk.
    Looks like I'll have to re-install with SP2, boot in safe mode, rename a
    problem file, reboot and apply a patch then install SP3, which I'm very
    tempted not to do, as aside from virii etc, SP2 hummed along nicely for
    the last couple of years.

    Here's the procedure, if anyone else has this problem.
    or http://tinyurl.com/5b9xkh

    I hope this fixes her problem, otherwise it's probably hardware, and
    I'll have to pull a power supply out of my web server to try in her pc.
    Ah well. At least she doesn't use limewire any more. With my luck
    she'll find out about torrents and get bugs that way instead. :-x
    When I bought this board it was only ever intended as a short term deal
    (finances). Sure I could get a replacement on warranty, but I was hoping
    the next time I had to fiddle around with teeny wires (power blocks,
    front usb etc.) it would be with a better board. I have problems with
    fiddly things after a tumor strangling my spinal cord. But if the mobo
    does clap out I'll face that hurdle blah blah.

    I'm waiting on a
    Rob S, Jan 23, 2009
  11. Rob S

    PeeCee Guest



    PC Authority had an article on P2P programs in the October 2008 issue.

    We anticipated these systems might be less safe than BitTorrent, but were
    shocked at how right we were. We used LimeWire to download 123 randomly
    selected files. A remarkable 37 of them contained malware, including the
    Puper.G and DNSChanger trojans and the Sality virus. Around a third of our
    infected downloads were deceptively named, with executables made to look
    like music files.

    A 30% infection rate is worrying enough, but it isn't the only risk
    associated with LimeWire and its companions. These clients share entire
    folders, rather than individual files as with BitTorrent, making it possible
    to accidentally share more data than intended. This could result in your
    personal data being lost or even legal consequences if you end up sharing
    copyrighted material.

    Scary eh!

    PeeCee, Jan 24, 2009
  12. Rob S

    ~misfit~ Guest

    Why would you need a new mobo? You do have an Asus right? <g> Both Asus'
    mobos and graphics cards have a three year warranty. I'm waiting on a
    graphics card that's been sent to Aussie apparently. 18 months and it's
    locking the machine up solid, regardless of drivers. For sure a hardware
    thing. I marked the card in case they try to send the same one back.....
    I bet it does. I'm running a ThinkPad for now and I have it maxed out at 2GB
    RAM and no pagefile. (Win XP Pro.)

    Be well,
    ~misfit~, Jan 24, 2009
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