Tutorial: How to use Memtest

By N3051M ยท 46 replies
Nov 7, 2006
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  1. rprewitt

    rprewitt TS Rookie

    I have a quick question, I have a PC that is shutting down during the memtest.
    But prior to the reboot, there are no errors showing.

    The original problem was that Windows would state that it is shutting down (at random times and no event log that are worth mentioning)

    Is it pretty much a motherboard error then?

    I tested two different sticks of 512 RAM (one at a time) in different DIMM slots with the same results. The computer shuts down in the middle of the memtest with no errors previously showing and at random times during the test.
  2. Cinders

    Cinders TechSpot Chancellor Posts: 872   +12

    I haven't had a computer shut down while testing memory. I had many memory errors while testing but have never had a motherboard shut down. If you're lucky you have a overheating problem, but you may be looking at broken parts. Take off your hard drive and anything else that isn't necessary for the test. Leave only your video card, motherboard, memory and whatever disk drive you're loading memtest from on your system and that's all. Try again, and let us know what happened.
  3. rprewitt

    rprewitt TS Rookie

    Yup I unplugged everything except the keyboard and monitor and booted up to CMOS.
    It was even shutting down in CMOS with no activity and nothing plugged in, no graphics card, no CD-ROM, no floppy, no hard drive, nothing but the keyboard and monitor in the default VGA slot attached to the motherboard (used the aftermarket graphics card for the earlier tests)

    Im pretty sure at this point it is not the memory or the DIMM slots on the motherboard lol.
    I tried two different RAM chips (one at a time and alternated the RAM to different DIMM slots between tests.)

    Some other things that I did:
    The temp was going back and forth from 44 C to 45 C before it shut down while in CMOS.

    Then I plugged in the CD-ROM drive again and booted up to the memtest, ran the test again, and same result. It would shut down during various stages in the memtest.

    Very frustrating, I even replaced the power supply with a brand new one and re-seed'd the processor and ran the memtest again, same results.

    EDIT: Since Ive isolated that it is not the memory, I will post any future posts in regards to this issue in a different thread.
    My original post was just inquiring if anyone had experienced, a PC with memory issues, shutting down during the MEM test.
  4. charlie79

    charlie79 TS Rookie

    Ok I downloaded memtest....but, I don't have a CD burning program on my computer....I usually use Windows Media Player for burning audio CDs, and drag and drop for burning photo CDs. I've never created a bootable CD so what should I do?
  5. kimsland

    kimsland Ex-TechSpotter Posts: 14,523

    Please read post #21 just up there :rolleyes:

    Any further help please create a New Thread :)
  6. pampam

    pampam TS Rookie

    Not use the WinRAR?

    Quick question....

    I understand that u are not supposed to use WinRAR to unzip the file,
    but that's the only unzipping tool I have.
    Do I still have to unzip it but with another app or I just burn it onto a cd in the zipped form as it is??

    Cheers Pam :)
  7. B00kWyrm

    B00kWyrm TechSpot Paladin Posts: 1,436   +37

    Hi Pam... Post 21 tells you what you need to know.
    Copying the iso to a cd ( as you may do with WIndows Explorer / File Manager)
    is different from burning it to the cd. as described in note 21.
    What you are doing is creating a bootable disk.
  8. Trillionsin

    Trillionsin TS Evangelist Posts: 1,596   +257

    I just opened up Nero Burning ROM Then I choose a DVD-ROM (UDF/ISO) Search for the file and burn. This burning method seems to create bootable cds for me.

    Edit: Didnt actually look at the last page before I posted. My bad! haha opps! :-D
  9. MrsRissB

    MrsRissB TS Rookie

    Hello, I need help.
    I am trying to do the imgburn for memtest like in post #21. But my memtest file is a zip and you all said not to open with zip. When I try in ImgBurn to browse and open memtest file it says error "invalid or unsupported image file format!" what am I doing wrong?
  10. Route44

    Route44 TechSpot Ambassador Posts: 11,984   +72

    Look again at post #21 kimsland provides a link to a utility to open your Zipped Memtest file. You have to unzip the file; otherwise you won't be able to burn it. Unzip and you will get an image like shown on the first screen of the ImgBurn screen in post 21. It looks like a sheet of paper with the upper right hand corner folded and an image of a CD in front.

    Double click this image and your burning software should automatically come up to burn.
  11. MrsRissB

    MrsRissB TS Rookie

    Duh, Thanks!
  12. joanna

    joanna TS Rookie

    thanks, it's informative.
  13. XavierSoCal

    XavierSoCal TS Rookie

    I have sony vaio laptop Windows Vista Home Premium Service Pack 1.
    My cd drive does not work. It doesn't read cd's. And my laptop does not have a floppy drive.

    what can I do to run memtest86+ ?
  14. dividebyzero

    dividebyzero trainee n00b Posts: 4,891   +1,264

    If you have the option to boot from USB then you can load the Memtest86+ bootable application onto a drive and run from USB.
  15. racunalniski

    racunalniski TS Rookie

    thanks for tutorial and your effort.
  16. jamesyboy1990

    jamesyboy1990 TS Rookie

    I'm running memtest86 because I suspect that my ram is faulty and ocz wants me to run memtest86. When memtest86 finishes, is there a log file somewhere which has all the results, or can I only look at the screen and write them on a piece of paper? I tried looking through the earlier posts and google, but couldn't find an answer.
  17. Route44

    Route44 TechSpot Ambassador Posts: 11,984   +72

    The only thing you need to concern yourself with is the # Passes which should be no less than 7 (and the more the better) and whether or not you get errors. If you want you could write down what Test # the errors occurred under.
  18. Darkadin

    Darkadin TS Member

    I am unable to burn the file to a CD as I do not have the hardware to do so> I do wish to use this program to test my ram sticks, so any help would be much appreciated!!
  19. dividebyzero

    dividebyzero trainee n00b Posts: 4,891   +1,264

    If you scroll down the Memtest86+ page you'll see the option to download "Auto installer for USB key" under the download links for v4.20.
    Burn to a clean USB drive, reset your boot order in BIOS to the USB drive, save the change and reboot. Once you've run the test, change the boot order back to your OS drive, save and reboot.
  20. Darkadin

    Darkadin TS Member

    Thanks alot for your help! I will do this when I am not busy. I also have another issue but I will be posting about that under another section of the forums when I have done the memtest!

    Thanks again for your help
  21. Mordio91

    Mordio91 TS Rookie

    How long is a pass supposed to take? I've been running memtest on my desktop computer for two hours now, and it's only completed two passes so far.
  22. dividebyzero

    dividebyzero trainee n00b Posts: 4,891   +1,264

    Depends on how much RAM you're testing, and if you are running all eight tests per pass then 30-35 min per 4GB per pass is pretty much standard. If you have 8GB of RAM bank on an hour per pass.

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