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VoltFox
07-11-04, 04:21 AM
Hi guys,

I have an annoying problem with my system, please help if anybody knows what sort of problem i'm having. First of all, my system not overclocked, it's an Athlon 3200+, 2x512Mb Samsung Ram, Asus A7N8X-X, Winfast Geforce 5900, and XP Pro installed.

My system keep crashing to windows everytime I play games, usually in the first 15 minutes, I can't play games no more than half an hour :(, any kinds of game. I tried Far Cry, Spellforce, Painkiller. But the strange thing is it doesn't crash while I'm testing it with 3DMark 2003, I've done about more than 10 loops and it's running fine, not a single crash happens.

The problem is gone when I only plug one stick of RAM, but my RAM is not faulty, i'm very sure of that because I try to plug the first stick, played half day of gaming, and perfect, not a single crash. And then I suspect the second stick must be faulty, but no, I use half of my day to play games with only that 2nd stick installed, and not a single crash happens.

I'm very confused, the RAM is in single channel mode because my m/b doesn't support Dual-channel. I try to reinstall windows, disable APCI, plug the ram to 1st and 3rd slot instead of 1st and 2nd. I even try by blowing the ram with my room fan, just in case it gets too hot.

The problem only happens when I installed those 2 sticks of RAM, and when I'm actively playing the game, no crash happens when looping 3DMARK 2003.

Anybody have any idea what happened? I can't find my problem in the internet, I've searched but comes out none. Any help would gladly appriciated :)


Thanks in advance,

Chris

Helanic Frost
07-11-04, 04:52 AM
Hi guys,

I have an annoying problem with my system, please help if anybody knows what sort of problem i'm having. First of all, my system not overclocked, it's an Athlon 3200+, 2x512Mb Samsung Ram, Asus A7N8X-X, Winfast Geforce 5900, and XP Pro installed.

My system keep crashing to windows everytime I play games, usually in the first 15 minutes, I can't play games no more than half an hour :(, any kinds of game. I tried Far Cry, Spellforce, Painkiller. But the strange thing is it doesn't crash while I'm testing it with 3DMark 2003, I've done about more than 10 loops and it's running fine, not a single crash happens.

The problem is gone when I only plug one stick of RAM, but my RAM is not faulty, i'm very sure of that because I try to plug the first stick, played half day of gaming, and perfect, not a single crash. And then I suspect the second stick must be faulty, but no, I use half of my day to play games with only that 2nd stick installed, and not a single crash happens.

I'm very confused, the RAM is in single channel mode because my m/b doesn't support Dual-channel. I try to reinstall windows, disable APCI, plug the ram to 1st and 3rd slot instead of 1st and 2nd. I even try by blowing the ram with my room fan, just in case it gets too hot.

The problem only happens when I installed those 2 sticks of RAM, and when I'm actively playing the game, no crash happens when looping 3DMARK 2003.

Anybody have any idea what happened? I can't find my problem in the internet, I've searched but comes out none. Any help would gladly appriciated :)


Thanks in advance,

Chris

Are both sticks identical? Do they both have the same latency? Try maybe relaxing the latency timings in your bios? It sounds like a latency issue to me. Sometimes when you set your latency too low in your bios that can happen. This is a pretty tough issue to tackle without me actually seeing your settings. Is your FSB set correctly?

I had what you describe happen myself before because i had bought some cheap generic ram that sold as PC133 but was actually tested as PC125, after running it at a FSB setting of 133 for about 6 months it failed. There are several programs you can download on the net to test your memory for issues like that.

The crashing only during certain games/apps can vary from app to app and game to game because each will push your system to different extremes.

Several friends of mine over the years have also had this issue happen to them and it took a very long time to resolve because they failed to understand that just because it doesn't crash in one app and does in another doesn't mean their system us setup correctly. Simply put i'm hedging on your latency timings in your bios being setup incorrectly.

VoltFox
07-11-04, 08:42 PM
Hi frost,

Thanks for your advice, yes the ram is identical DDR400, Samsung brand, I bought it at the same time to replace my old DDR333 ram.

I tried 10-4-4-4, 9-4-4-4, 9-3-3-3. Right now I'm using 8-3-3-3, not one of the settings fix my problem. I'm going to try 11-4-4-4 later to see if it works.

You mention a program to test the memory, can you tell me the name of the program? I tried to test the ram with Sandra's burn-in test the whole night before and the system is not crashing, :p weird.

ChrisRay
07-11-04, 09:11 PM
Memory tester is called "Memtest" with numbers just do a google for it.

VoltFox
07-11-04, 09:16 PM
Thanks Chris,

I'm going to try and run it when I got back and see how it goes.

Viral
07-11-04, 10:54 PM
Also up the V-Dimm voltage a little. It should be around 2.5-2.7 by default, try bumping it up 0.1v and testing. As long as you don't go over 2.9v (your motherboard shouldn't let you anyway) your RAM will be fine.

VoltFox
07-12-04, 03:30 AM
Also up the V-Dimm voltage a little. It should be around 2.5-2.7 by default, try bumping it up 0.1v and testing. As long as you don't go over 2.9v (your motherboard shouldn't let you anyway) your RAM will be fine.

thanks viral, but i've tried that too and it didn't fix the problem... right now i'm using memtest to test the memory, still going good, no error, it has been running for an hour or so...

Bill The Cat
07-12-04, 02:23 PM
I bought a pair of sticks for my desktop and got problems similar to what you're experiencing. Memtest/prime95 gave no errors, everything seemed fine, but I experienced random crashes. I relaxed memory timings, I tweaked settings, I tried everything I could think of with no luck. So I RMA'd the memory, and the replacement I recieved worked beautifully.

I'm guessing your memory is defective in a similar fashion to mine. The real kicker was that I didn't get any errors running memory bechmarks, so I never quite understood exactly what the problem was. A real pain :-/

EDIT: Memtest is great, but also try prime95. Both of them work well.

Helanic Frost
07-12-04, 03:54 PM
I bought a pair of sticks for my desktop and got problems similar to what you're experiencing. Memtest/prime95 gave no errors, everything seemed fine, but I experienced random crashes. I relaxed memory timings, I tweaked settings, I tried everything I could think of with no luck. So I RMA'd the memory, and the replacement I recieved worked beautifully.

I'm guessing your memory is defective in a similar fashion to mine. The real kicker was that I didn't get any errors running memory bechmarks, so I never quite understood exactly what the problem was. A real pain :-/

EDIT: Memtest is great, but also try prime95. Both of them work well.

100% agree. There are also a few memory identifier programs around that tell you what your memory's actual rating is vs. what it's labeled as. Been a long time since i've used one but i had some memory a couple of years ago that was actually PC 125 and labeled as PC 133. I had nothing but trouble with it till i lowered the FSB then it worked fine but not at it's labled FSB. Try lowering your FSB by 1-2 mhz and see what happens just for curiosity's sake.

Software memory testers are nice and all but they aren't 100% accurate. If you really don't want to have to RMA it and want to be 100% sure you can always take your dimms to a local shop and have them test your memory in a hardware dimm tester and get 100% result accuracy. Some shops charge a fee to do so but many don't.

My guess though is if you've relaxed timings to the degree you say that the memory is faulty.

VoltFox
07-13-04, 07:07 AM
Thanks for the reply guys...

Right now i'm experiencing the same thing bill, I've changed the timing to 11-4-4-4 and run memtest last night, no errors was found. Lower than that timing will gives error. But this morning, I run 3DMark 2003 and it just crashed in game 1. Weird :(

I begin to suspect it's a defective memory just like bill's experience, I think I'm just going to RMA it and see what happens, it's a really annoying problem and already took most of my time in the last few days. :(

Thanks for the advices guys...