Faulty RAM can cause enough sufferings to your computer. Windows behave unpredictably if it discovers a bad RAM. Perhaps there could be a lot more reason that can cause disturbance to your computer but if RAM is the culprit of your woes, here’s how you test it.
A bad memory module can cause you all sorts of trouble including the most dreaded Blue Screen of Death. In order to find out if your RAM is bad, you need to run a memory test.
Many laptop and desktop manufacturers offer pre-installed utilities, which also include memory test. You can use those utilities to check if some problem exists with your computer’s memory. In fact, if your PC is under warranty, manufacturers will ask you to run those utilities before agreeing to troubleshoot the issue or replace RAM.
Here we will use a very common-used memory testing application (memtest) to check if your RAM is faulty. You can download this application and create a bootable media. You can both download ISO image file and create a CD/DVD or you can download auto-installer to create bootable USB flash drive.
To create memtest Bootable Media:
For this, you have to unzip the downloaded ISO and use any ISO-burning program to create the disc. In case of Windows 7, right click on the ISO file and select ‘Burn disc image’ option and then follow the wizard to create the disc.
To Create Bootable memtest USB flash drive:
For this, you need to run the auto-installer and follow the directions. Make sure that you use a blank flash drive as the installer will delete all the files available in it.
To run memtest, turn your computer on with bootable media inserted. The test will begin automatically. If in case, it does not boot automatically, make sure that the boot order in BIOS is set to boot USB or optical drive before hard drive.
If you are using more than one memory module, it is recommended that you should test one module at a time, using same DIMM slot of your motherboard. This will be helpful in identifying the faulty module.
There are eight different tests in memtest and this may take several hours depending on the size of your RAM. If your RAM is not faulty the test will complete without any error. A failed test may report several errors and you’ll see a lot of red blocks on the test result.
So, if your RAM comes out clean there will not be any error. If your RAM fails the memtest, this is enough to get your Ram replaced by the company if it is covered under warranty. Else, you’ll have to look for tech support to get your memory module fixed.
Tagged: BIOS, Computer data storage, Ram, Random-access memory