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Manual DRAM settings in BIOS

Last response: in Memory
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June 6, 2012 10:38:03 PM

Hi,

I have system instability problems which might be RAM related. I would like to manually set the DRAM settings in the BIOS (which are currently fully set automatically) to see if it helps.

Which DRAM settings should I use?


Specs:
-CPU: AMD Phenom II X4 955 @ 3.20 GHz (normal speed)
-MoBo: Asus M4A79XTD EVO (Chipset: AMD 790X / SB750)
-RAM: 4 GB total, Kingston KVR1333D3N9K2/4G (kit of 2 modules)

The datasheet of the RAM is: http://www.valueram.com/datasheets/KVR1333D3N9K2_4G.pdf
Motherboard RAM QVL: http://www.jtict.com/tmp/qvl.pdf

Current BIOS settings:
Quote:

-DRAM Frequency = Auto
-DRAM Voltage = Auto
-DRAM Command Rate = Auto

Dram 1st Information: 9-9-9-24-5-33-10-4
-TCL = Auto
-TRCD = Auto
-TRP = Auto
-TRAS = Auto
-TRTP = Auto
-TRC = Auto
-TWR = Auto
-TRRD = Auto

DRAM 2nd Information: 8-2-5-4-2-0-110
-TRWTTO = Auto
-TWRRD = Auto
-TWTR = Auto
-TWRWR = Auto
-TRDRD = Auto
-TRFC0 = Auto
-TRFC1 = Auto
-TREF = Auto

Drv: 1.5X-1.5X-1.5X-1.5X-1.0X-1.0X-60ohms
-DCT0: CKE drive strength = Auto
-DCT0: CS/ODT drive strength = Auto
-DCT0: ADDR/CMD drive strength = Auto
-DCT0: MEMCLK drive strength = Auto
-DCT0: Data drive strength = Auto
-DCT0: DQS drive strength = Auto
-DCT0: Processor ODT drive strength = Auto

Drv: 1.5X-1.5X-1.5X-1.5X-1.0X-1.0X-60ohms
-DCT1: CKE drive strength = Auto
-DCT1: CS/ODT drive strength = Auto
-DCT1: ADDR/CMD drive strength = Auto
-DCT1: MEMCLK drive strength = Auto
-DCT1: Data drive strength = Auto
-DCT1: DQS drive strength = Auto
-DCT1: Processor ODT drive strength = Auto


a c 347 } Memory
June 7, 2012 12:31:59 AM

To rule-out memory it's best to create a bootble CD/DVD of Memtest86+ using the latest zip/ISO and run for 4-passes. Download - http://www.memtest.org/#downiso

BIOS Settings:
F5 Load Optimized Defaults
DRAM Frequency -> DDR3-1333
DRAM Voltage -> 1.50v~1.55v (+0.05v can help some stability issues)

DRAM Timing/Driving Configuration / Enter
DRAM Command Rate -> 1T ; (most DDR3-1333 kits are 1T, 2T is typically DDR3-1600+)
TCL -> 9
TRCD -> 9
TRP -> 9
TRAS -> 24

F10 - Save & Exit = Yes
a b } Memory
June 7, 2012 12:50:49 AM

He's already run memtest. I've tried to help him but can't seem to diagnose the issue.

I had him set the correct timings. I did not however have him up the dram voltage. That's a good idea.
Related resources
a c 347 } Memory
June 7, 2012 1:16:51 AM

Then the OP needs to explain EXACTLY what's going on...versus assuming it's the RAM. If the problem is BSOD's the look for Critical Errors in the Event Manager. If they're 41/63's then assuming Memtest passed then try updating the BIOS or at least a 'correct' Clear CMOS (unplug PSU ~5 minutes, and move the Jumper for 5+ seconds); see - http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=rdHH9KrceR0

BIOS - with the 955 use at minimum version 0901, version 2102 is the latest - http://www.asus.com/Motherboards/AMD_AM3/M4A79XTD_EVO/#...
Use ASUS EZ Flash 2 - http://www.tomshardware.com/forum/289507-30-what-flash

Typically, 'my' way of fixing Windows is to re-install the OS from scratch, but there's a few options:
1. Fix It repairs - http://support.microsoft.com/fixit/
2. Startup Repairs (F8 with DVD) and 'Startup Repair' - http://windows.microsoft.com/en-us/windows7/products/fe...
June 7, 2012 1:38:44 AM

I described the problem in detail here: http://www.tomshardware.co.uk/forum/349305-13-system-cr... . After Geekapproved's suggestion about the memory settings, I created this thread here because I see it as a subproblem/quest of the main thread (with only one specific goal: settings the correct dram timings and settings). (But maybe it was better to keep it all in a single thread.)

I have set Geekapproved's DRAM settings, including yours with the Command Rate of 1T. When a crash occurs, I'll start increasing from 1.50v until stable. (with max of 1.7v?)
I'll report back when crashed or when no crash occurred within ~ 1 week.

(btw, it's not Windows related, because the BIOS itself is even unstable when the system is unstable. Also I reinstalled Windows cleanly multiple times. memtested multiple times with max 8 hours. Also did a cmos clear today, after a higher dram voltage caused the bios to be black. And BIOS is running the latest firmware.)


June 7, 2012 1:49:19 AM

The adjustment for accessing the BIOS is traveling to be abased aloft the architect of the motherboard and the BIOS vender they accept selected. The absolute action to get to the BIOS is identical, just the key that is bare to be apprenticed will vary. It is important to accept the user chiral for the motherboard accessible whenever changes will be fabricated to the BIOS. jogos do ben10
a c 84 } Memory
June 7, 2012 1:58:12 AM

to the op if im reading your post right do you have four dimms..two dimm kits??? because one dimm is running faster then the other dimm from your screen shot. if you have four dimms start our by putting two dimm in the two main dimm slots and see if windows bsod. if it fine swap the dimms to the other slots and retest. if there fine then pull those two dimms an retest with the other dimm kit. if both kits are fine take one dimm from each kit and put them in the pc if the bsod come back then you know it an issue with a mixed kit. if bsod show up with two dimms or dimms in a slot. try the dimms one at a time and walk a know good dimm in each of the ram slots. you have to see if one that one of the dimms is bad or two your mb might have a bad ram slot.
June 7, 2012 10:25:17 AM

smorizio said:
to the op if im reading your post right do you have four dimms..two dimm kits??? because one dimm is running faster then the other dimm from your screen shot. if you have four dimms start our by putting two dimm in the two main dimm slots and see if windows bsod. if it fine swap the dimms to the other slots and retest. if there fine then pull those two dimms an retest with the other dimm kit. if both kits are fine take one dimm from each kit and put them in the pc if the bsod come back then you know it an issue with a mixed kit. if bsod show up with two dimms or dimms in a slot. try the dimms one at a time and walk a know good dimm in each of the ram slots. you have to see if one that one of the dimms is bad or two your mb might have a bad ram slot.

I have only 1 dimm kit, so 2 identical dram modules in total (2x 2gb). My motherboard has 4 slots, of which 2 are used by the dimms. I use the slots thats are recommended in the motherboard manual. (I have also tried the other slot pair.)

Btw, just had my first crash during a cold boot: Windows crashed after login in and starting the main systray programs and services. A bsod with pointing to an ati driver. (bsod can be of random types in my case.) So I have increased the voltage to 1.52v now.
a c 347 } Memory
June 7, 2012 3:42:27 PM

Hmm...if I didn't have an office and home filled with ASUS then maybe I'd agree. ASUS's (Auto) often misread the 'SPD' JEDEC encoded info @ post and when that occurs you can have anything from good - some errors - OC Failure Press F1.

Manually setting the timings is most important with DDR3-1333, but I'd try manually setting as I've indicated & Memtest <or> RMA the RAM -- it should have a Lifetime Warranty.

IF the memory or new memory passes Memtest AND you continue to have BSOD then note what I already stated above.

Good Luck! :) 
June 8, 2012 3:26:46 PM

An 8 hour memtest succeeds when the system is stable.

I have tried increasing the voltage from 1.50v with steps of 0.02v to 1.58v, with the suggested timings etc, but that doesn't result in a stable system.

The PSU should be fine:
-putting another PSU in my system (a 430v Seasonic) result in the same problems
-Seasonic are well known for building high quality psu's.
So I don't expect the PSU to be the problem.

I'm going to buy new RAM, ones that are explicitly listed in the QVL. If that doesn't work, then I'll guy a cheap pci-e videocard, just to try it out. If that doesn't work, I'll buy a new cpu/mobo.
June 14, 2012 9:34:53 PM

Received new RAM today: G.Skill F3-10666CL9T-6GBNQ (a kit containing 3x 2GB, DDR3-1333 CL9-9-9-24 1.5v). This one is explicitly mentioned in the QVL, but I still have the exact same problems :( 
Also tested it with one module, and with default bios settings and with manual timings set to 9-9-9-24 1.5 1333.

I think it might be the GPU, otherwise the motherboard. Tomorrow, I'll buy a new GPU.....
!