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04 February 2006

Hardware Testing

So, we finally got around to pulling a machine out of the rack and starting the testing.... first we are going to isolate which memory has the problem, then we are going to try swapping motherboard+cpu combinations between the server and the workstation.... more on that later.

On the memory test, we are using MemTest86... It has been running for about 6 hours now... I just had the brilliant idea to go look at the manual to see if it could give me an idea of how long it will take....

Execution Time

The time required for a complete pass of Memtest86 will vary greatly depending on CPU speed, memory speed and memory size. Memtest86 executes indefinitely. The pass counter increments each time that all of the selected tests have been run. Generally a single pass is sufficient to catch all but the most obscure errors. However, for complete confidence when intermittent errors are suspected testing for a longer period is advised.

Well shit. Guess I should have read that first.


WTF!? So you mean we've been waiting for 6 hours for that damn thing to finish and it was never going to?!?  I feel like such a blonde right now.

Update: It is on pass 26!

Posted by Sylkwyrm on Sat Feb 04 12:07:00 PST 2006


Piece of crap instructions!!!

Ok, so we say it said Pass 26%. I thought the % sign was odd, but the instructions said "Pass:".... so.... we swapped memory and started the test again...

And now I notice it says "Pass" elsewhere on the screen as well.... and I don't know if that was still a 0 when I shut down the system last time or not. DAMN IT!

Posted by Malachi on Sat Feb 04 12:23:00 PST 2006
Whelp... Testing only 2GB at a time doesn't show any errors... which means the errors are most likely from either: A) doing more than 2GB; B) one of the black memory slots.... if it is B then we might have two bad motherboards. That's not good.

Posted by Malachi on Sat Feb 04 13:35:00 PST 2006

We put all 4 chips back in (not in the same slots as originally) and we can't even run the memory test....  It sometimes will start to POST, sometimes lock up, sometimes the CPU fan spins, sometimes it makes it to the Memtest86 program before locking up, etc etc.

I think it might be a problem with the memory controller... which really sucks. It would really suck to spend $1000 or so on memory and only be able to use 1/2 of it.  But.... if I pull out 2 of the memory chips on the workstation, wonder if it will just start working....

Or, maybe the server's motherboard and cpu are frying too? What's up with the CPU fan not spinning 1/2 the time IF 4 chips are plugged in. That's freaking scary. Maybe that is how the CPU got fried on the workstation in the first place.

Posted by Malachi on Sun Feb 05 03:09:00 PST 2006

Removing any 2 sticks of memory from the workstation makes it boot.

I think the Asus A8N-SLI Premium has faulty memory controllers. I bet that is what fried.

Posted by Malachi on Sun Feb 05 03:41:00 PST 2006
Server too...

Posted by Malachi on Sun Feb 05 15:33:00 PST 2006

I wonder if a class-action lawsuit against Asus for false advertisement is in order.

1) They advertise that this board supports RAID5 on SATAII - but it doesn't

2) Even though I told them ..1 is false advertisement, they still say it

3) They say it supports 4GB of memory using the model of memory I have installed -- but not only did that seem to be the problem, Kingston said that they couldn't get it to consistently work either


Posted by Malachi on Sun Feb 05 03:54:00 PST 2006
Once we get our server up and running we can get a website started to gather the people together. I love class actions!

Posted by Sylkwyrm on Sun Feb 05 04:36:00 PST 2006