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System randomly crashing after memory upgrade - coincidence?


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#1
caoimhin15

caoimhin15

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Hi,

 

I recently upgraded the memory in my system to 16gb (2x8gb modules from crucial). They installed fine and as you can see from my CPU-Z report, my system is recognising them correctly.

However, since then my system has become unstable with random crashes. Initially it crashed by the screen freezing with lines across the screen. I updated all the drivers from the Dell website. However, it continued to randomly crash and power itself off - sometimes on startup, others on waking from sleep mode and others when I am using the system. Other times, the computer will start and work fine. This has been continuing on and off for a while now. Then I got a BSOD (see attached) when streaming video online online (see attached BSOD rar file).

I then ran memtest86 to test the new memory modules. It ran fine with no errors for over 20+ hours (and was on Pass 6). Then suddenly the screen went black but with the laptop still running. I then pressed the Esc key and the system rebooted itself and launched normally. Prior to this, it still didnt show any errors. Does this suggest that the problem is more with the display/graphics card as opposed to the memory?

 

If anyone could help me with this problem, I would be very grateful.

 

Thanks in advance.

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#2
RKinner

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Get the free version of Speccy:

http://www.filehippo.com/download_speccy (Look in the upper right for the Download
Latest Version button  - Do NOT press the large Start Download button on the upper left!)  Download, Save and Install it.  

Make sure the PC has been on for at least 30 minutes.  Close all browsers and open programs before running Speccy.  Run Speccy.  When it finishes (the little icon in the bottom left will stop moving), File, Save as Text File,  (to your desktop) note the name it gives. OK.  Open the file in notepad and delete the line that gives the serial number of your Operating System.  (It will be near the top about 10 lines down.)  Save the file and close notepad  Attach the file to your next post as it is usually too large for the forum (Click on More Reply Options then Choose file, select the file, Open, Attach this File) Uninstall Speccy.
 


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#3
caoimhin15

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Thanks for your quick reply.

 

Please find attached the requested data.

 

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#4
RKinner

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Your issue sounds like it might be heat related since it failed while running the memtest which I assume was done from a boot CD or USB.  Speccy is currently showing 56 C but your earlier log showed 60.  I see you have speedfan so make sure it does not get over 60. (Actually I like to see them stay under 55.)  (Speedfan's tray value is by default usually the Hard drive temp which is not much use.  Make sure you click on Configure then on one of the Core Values and make it the one in the tray.)  Since it's a Dell and they are usually easy to get to the heatsink, I would open it up and clean the heat sink with a small brush and a vacuum cleaner hose.  Usually what we see is a build up of dust where the fan blows onto the heat sink.  Judging by the age of the hard drive your heatsink is going to be pretty dirty.  (If you have to remove the heatsink to clean it then you will need to clean the thermal pads off and put Arctic Silver 5 on.  I use the kit: Arctic Silver 5 Thermal Compound 3.5 Grams with ArctiClean 60 ML Combo Kit.  Amazon caries it for about $13.)   Sometime removing the fan is all you need to do to get to the heat sink.  Of course, make sure you are running on a hard surface so that the vents are not blocked.

 

It's possible that your RAM while good is a bit more heat sensitive than your other components.

 

I have also seen overheating problems caused by a program that continually overused the CPU.  If you right click on the clock and select Task manager the Processes, click on Show Processes from All Users then click once or twice on the CPU column header it should sort the processes by which are using the most CPU time.  Normally if nothing is running it should have System Idle using 90 + % if nothing else is running.

 

 

Your hard drive will need replacing soon but it's probably not part of the problem since it failed during the memtest.  If you look at the SMART section of Speccy you will see:

 

Attribute name    G-sense error rate
                                            Real value    84
                                            Current    100
                                            Worst    100
                                            Threshold    0
                                            Raw Value    0000000054
                                            Status    Good

 

Attribute name    UltraDMA CRC Error Count
                                            Real value    81,133,667
                                            Current    100
                                            Worst    100
                                            Threshold    0
                                            Raw Value    0004D60063
                                            Status    Good
                                        C8
                                            Attribute name    Write Error Rate / Multi-Zone Error Rate
                                            Real value    240,559,577
                                            Current    100
                                            Worst    100
                                            Threshold    0
                                            Raw Value    000E56A5D9
                                            Status    Good

 

 

It's been dropped.  It's getting lots of CRC and write errors.  Regardless of the SMART Status of Good this is a drive that can not be trusted so best to clone it while you still can.  You can get a USB SATA adapter for about $10 on Amazon.  Makes it really easy to clone.  Usually the new drive's website will have a cloning program.


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