TechSpot

Faulty ram?

By Joe12
Sep 15, 2009
  1. A while ago I was working on my computer when out of the blue it restarts. I picked the -Start Windows Normally option. Before it even gets to the desktop it would restart all over again. It did this until I removed the RAM sticks from DIMM slots B (slot 3 and 4) Now my computer is really slow. My computer is a HP a250n with 4x 256 ram.

    A few days ago I did a full wipe on the HD to see if that would clear up the problem. It works well with only 2 sticks. When I put in the 3rd or/and 4th sticks I get to the desktop fine but only for a few minutes then it restarts and the screen goes blank. I tried switching the sticks but nothing works. What could it be?
     
  2. strategic

    strategic TechSpot Paladin Posts: 1,274

    Do a memtest
    Have you tried swapping the memory sticks from 3-4 with the ones in 1-2?
    This will help verify whether it's the sticks or the slots.
    The memory test will help also.
     
  3. Joe12

    Joe12 TS Rookie Topic Starter

    Yea I swapped them a few times. I tried to DL a compatible chipset do you think that would help. Also running the memtest now.
     
  4. strategic

    strategic TechSpot Paladin Posts: 1,274

    Report back after the memtest, as it will take most of the day.
    One stick at a time, minimum 7 passes each.
    What do you mean by "I tried to DL a compatible chipset"
     
  5. mailpup

    mailpup TS Special Forces Posts: 8,457   +228

    Maybe there is a short.

    This may or may not apply to you but recently I had a similar problem with one of my PCs. It would restart over and over again before reaching the Windows desktop but sometimes it would get to the desktop only to restart again. No BSODs. When the problem first appeared, it usually happened sporadically while I was already in Windows but eventually it got worse. At first removing a RAM module seemed to help and I replaced the RAM with a new set. The problem really didn't go away. I also test replaced the power supply.

    After physically moving the PC to put it aside for awhile while I was building another PC, I moved it back to work on it again. It was then I discovered parts of a dead moth that might have fallen from the back of the motherboard or somewhere. I couldn't be sure where it came from but still the problem didn't go away. So I removed the motherboard with the heatsink/fan and RAM still attached and cleaned everything with soft brush. After reassembling everything the problem was gone. I even put back the old RAM.

    Evidently for whatever reason, whether it was the moth or something else, there was a short somewhere and removing, cleaning and reinstalling the mobo cleared it up.
     
  6. Joe12

    Joe12 TS Rookie Topic Starter

    Thank you for that. When I get home ill blow some air around to clear it up. I hope this is the problem, Im also thinking about getting 2 512MB sticks so I dont have to live with a slow machine :D

    Reply to strategic:

    I found the chipset for my HP a250n is dated back to 2003 and I discovered a new one from 2009. Although Im not sure its for HP machines. Ill let you know how the memtest went. Im away from my house at the moment.

    Thanks in advance.
     
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