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BSOD & Memtest Errors... RAM, Mobo or both?

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January 22, 2011 11:09:13 PM

Hi, all,

Been having recurring issues with BSOD's on this system since it was built. About 6 months ago I moved the RAM to Bank 1 from 0 and the blue screens dropped significantly. They have been getting worse over the last couple of months and now they occur probably once a day. Sometimes the errors are different, but the last one I saw was "Driver IRQL not less or equal". I dl'ed and ran the latest Memtest and it gave me an error at 29% of the pass and on test 5 (block move). I re-ran it 3x, always with the same issue, which stops the test completely. I ran it with each of the DIMMs in different slots, one at a time, no error, so it is only when I have dual sticks in. I'd try putting them back in to bank 0, but my heatsink makes it impossible and I don't want to go through removing it at this time. Considering my own tests, is there any way to know whether the issue is with the RAM or the motherboard? Here is a pic of my error along with links to the mobo and RAM that I have. Any help or thoughts on this are very appreciated!

MSI Mobo

OCZ RAM

a b } Memory
January 22, 2011 11:19:20 PM

I you have Memtest errors it's definitely your ram not your mobo.
The proper way to diagnose the problem is to test one ram module at a time.
This will isolate which module is bad.
99.9% it's one module not both.
OZC is notorious for shipping bad ram kits probably a good reason why they're shutting down operations.
That particular kit has every respondent on Newegg reporting a bad stick lol!
Rma time my friend!
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January 23, 2011 2:48:06 AM

Wow. Didn't hear that about the company. Wonder how that will affect the return process.

So, why would I only get an error in memtest when using both sticks. As I stated, I tested both sticks individually in each slot, and no errors. Only when I tested with both in did I have any issues.

Thanks for the response! Hopefully all of this troubleshooting will lead to me picking up some 2x4 sticks! :D 
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January 23, 2011 2:53:20 AM

Oh, that OCZ link that I added to the post makes the RAM seem particularly bad since it contains the filter "memtest bsod" which I searched for before posting here... hehehe... There are actually some good reviews in there... somewhere...
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a b } Memory
January 23, 2011 3:05:32 AM

brandoncatz said:
Oh, that OCZ link that I added to the post makes the RAM seem particularly bad since it contains the filter "memtest bsod" which I searched for before posting here... hehehe... There are actually some good reviews in there... somewhere...

Lol! well that explains that.
But OZC is going out of the memory business for good reason their reputation has been terrible for memory in the last year.
You could run Memtest86+ 4.10 for piece of mind.
It's what i prefer personally.
http://www.memtest.org/
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January 23, 2011 5:01:32 AM

I'll give the later version a shot and see how it goes. Also, forgot to mention that the RAM is not on the boards compatibility list. Could a simple incompatibility be the cause and not necessarily bad modules or a bad board?
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January 23, 2011 4:05:51 PM

I just went through a whole thing like this. I was getting a bsod system service error with a 0x01e here and a 0x03b there and i couldn't figure out what was wrong, i was getting worried that it was a hardware error. it turned out that one of my ram sticks went bad, which also caused a few other things to fail. in the end, i found that all i had to do was use q flash to reload my bios as the bios had been corrupted by the memory stick going bad. bad memory can apparently cause numerous other things to go bad, but dont lose hope. anyway, I'm still under warranty...
p.s. i was also getting irql or and a few others, so i dont know if that will work for you. im still in suspended disbelief that the bios update worked.
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January 23, 2011 5:01:40 PM

Re-flash the BIOS? Hey, it's worth a shot! On MSI's site now to get the latest. Thanks for the response! So, it sounds like you not only re-flashed, but also replaced your RAM, is that right?
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January 24, 2011 3:26:34 AM

UPDATE: Flashed the BIOS to the latest version which went online in December, my kids sat down and played a game and it blue-screened within 5-10 minutes. Looking in to replacing my RAM. Been wanting to upgrade to 8GB anyway. I'll RMA the current sticks and either sell them or add them to the system and make it a RAM Drive.

Oh, also, I tried Memtest 4.1 and now everything is testing fine... even with both sticks in... *sigh*... huh?
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January 28, 2011 7:49:06 PM

Good to hear everything is fine. I had four gigs, so I'm running on two gigs until I get the other stick replaced, as only one of two were bad.
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January 28, 2011 7:56:45 PM

Well, I wouldn't say everything is fine. When my son plays his games it still blue screens, but it hasn't done that in the middle of the night like it use to. In either case, I bought an 8GB kit of Corsair Vengeance, and should be receiving it from "The Egg" by next week. I figure I'll give it a go and if my old memory is good, then I'll turn it in to a 4GB RAM Disk for temp storage.
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January 28, 2011 8:01:30 PM

you should try windows memory diagnostic also. Its the same idea as memtest. that was what told which of my sticks was bad. I just had to do them individually.
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!