Can a memory module only fail when working in dual channel mode?

By rodion15
Oct 2, 2015
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  1. Are some of the pins in a memory module used only when workign in dual/triple/quad channel mode?`

    Can a memory module only fail when working in dual channel mode?

    I have an iMac (27-inch, Late 2012) that crashes shortly after logging in.

    I've reset the NVRAM and SMC, started off an external hard drive with Yosemite. Started in safe mode, etc. and the problem continues.

    It has four 8GB sticks of third-party (non-Apple).

    When I remove one of the four RAM modules (the fourth one if you count the slot one to four), the computer works fine. So either the module is faulty or the motherboard's memory slot is faulty (I.e.: the motherborad itself is faulty).

    So, to determine wether the memory or the slot is faulty, I insert move one of the three remaining healty modules to the free slot (the fourth slot). The computer works fine, no crashes.

    So it seems clear that the module I removed is faulty.

    Not so:
    I replace the module in slot 4 with the suspect module (the one that I removed first and stopped the system from crashing): No crashes, the computer works fine. Moving this module to slot 3, still produces no crashes, the system works fine.

    I go further and replace the fours modules in their original slots and the computer crashes again as expected (I cleaned

    the memory modules contacts with iso alcohol and blew compressed air into the ram slots, just in case).

    Then I remove the stick in slot 1. The system still crashes.

    Please: answer only to what I asked, please don't refer me to irrelevant or basic articles. Thank you.
    Last edited: Oct 11, 2015
  2. jobeard

    jobeard TS Ambassador Posts: 9,145   +597

    Hey, ever hear "You catch more fly's with sugar than with vinegar?"

    No one here gets paid to take our time to assist others and even profession Help Desk staff don't get it right 100% of the time. Be tolerant and forgiving and you can always just chuckle to yourself if you disapprove of what you draw-in as responses.

    After this, I'm going to go take a shower . . .
    Last edited: Oct 6, 2015
    Blkfx1 likes this.
  3. rodion15

    rodion15 TS Booster Topic Starter Posts: 127

    You're a wise man, you're right, didn't mean to hurt susceptibilities, I just find it annoying when I get absolutely pointless answers like they don't read in minimum detail.
  4. Xyvis

    Xyvis TS Rookie Posts: 20

    Memory modules can fail regardless of being in dual channel or not.

    That said, when you placed the "faulty" module into the 4th slot, I am assuming you left one of the 3 other slots empty (you didn't specify).

    Seems more or less an issue with the motherboard working in dual channel. Try moving which module is in which slot, but keeping all four in the machine, does that produce an issue? I'd wager it does, so that can go from anywhere from a firmware/software issue to an issue with the motherboard itself working in dual channel.

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