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Help me identify the problem

Last response: in Systems
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January 31, 2011 8:05:40 AM

Hello,
It's been a while that I've been trying to find out what the problem is with my computer. Here is my full story and the description of the problem.

Initial build:
CPU: Core i7 950
MOBO: Gigabyte GA-X58A-UD3R rev 3
RAM: G.Skill Kit Extreme3 3 x 2 GB PC12800 CAS 7 PI Series
GC: EVGA GTX580 superclocked
CASE: Corsair Graphite 600T
PSU: Corsair AX - 850W
HEATSINK: Noctua NH-D14
SSD: OCZ Vertex 2 120 GB
HDD: Samsung Spinpoint F3 S-ATA - 1000 GB - 32 MB
OS: Windows 7 64bit pro

I didn't realise that the RAM kit had that huge heat spread and made them impossible to install them with the noctua NH-D14. I decided to install the computer with the stock heatsink and then send the ram back for exchange. I picked the OCZ DDR3 3 x 2 GB PC12800 Platinum Edition.

So I installed windows and had the computer running for 2 days with no problems. Once I received the new RAM kit, I installed them as well as the heatsink, with "Optimized default settings". Every thing worked fine that day, but the next day windows was booting much slower and I stared getting random BSOD, I didn't even had the time to read the reason before the computer restarted. I immediately thought it was the new RAM, I changed the default settings but those recommended by OCZ:
RAM voltage: 1.644
QPI voltage: 1.344
Timmings: 7-7-7-24
Frequancy: 1600
I ran memtest with no errors for 2 passes. But the BSOD continued (MEMORY_MANGAMENT, and PAGE_FAULT_NONPAGED_AREA). If I ran memtest right after the BSOD I got lots of errors, so I changed to settings for the gigabyte defaults, then memtest passed just fine and windows booted with no BSOD.
Then I turned the computer off and when I turned back on the next day I got the BSOD after some minutes of running windows. I had to change the settings (going from default to recommended settings back and forth) and the BSOD would stop. The same thing happens the next day.

Then I decided to try and switch the PSU off and on when I got the BSOD, and I stop having the BSOD for the day, without changing the BIOS settings.

I can't say what is the problem:
PSU? RAM? MOBO?
Please help!

Thanks in advance

Sorry for my English



More about : identify problem

January 31, 2011 10:22:12 AM

In my opinion, it is your RAM. I think the new sticks you were given are faulty; they should not do that. If your computer ran fine before you put them in and at the first boot, it would make sense that it worked fine. After the first 'reboot' the computer will 'optimise' its settings. That is where you get your problem.

See your computer parts salesperson for a new RAM kit.

-Klosteral
January 31, 2011 11:51:40 AM

The weird thing about that is that once I change the BIOS settings or I switch my PSU on and off, things work fine, memtest included. Is this a normal behaviour of faulty ram?
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January 31, 2011 12:04:37 PM

Oh... that puts a different spin on things.

This seems to imply that some conflicting settings were changed when one of the sets of RAM was installed. Changing the BIOS settings or resetting your PSU is resetting your BIOS memory settings, forcing them to default and allowing the memory to configure itself.

I would say continue to use your computer normally, though keep note of any minor errors or glitches. It may be that the BIOS reset was all that was needed but it could still be RAM. We shall wait and see.

-Klosteral
January 31, 2011 12:13:36 PM

I've been running my computer like this for 3 weeks now. The error keeps been reproduced as described. I even clear cmos and reconfigured my BIOS with "Optimized default settings" and by manually modifying settings to constructor recommendations. I'm out of ideas...
January 31, 2011 12:17:41 PM

At the moment a normal day of use of my computer is like this:
- I turn on my computer, log into windows. Some process start crushing (chrome pages for instance) or I get BSOD.
- I reset my computer and change BIOS settings or I switch my PSU off and on.
- Log back to windows, everything works fine.
!