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Memory not working when I use it

This is a discussion on Memory not working when I use it within the RAM and Power Supply Support forums, part of the Tech Support Forum category. I just bought eight 8 GB DIMMS or RAM. These specifically, all of the same exact kind. https://www.newegg.com/Product/Produ...tent-_-text-_- When I


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Old 06-03-2018, 07:24 PM   #1
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I just bought eight 8 GB DIMMS or RAM. These specifically, all of the same exact kind.

https://www.newegg.com/Product/Produ...tent-_-text-_-

When I insert them all, all 8 DIMMS (one in each slot) the computer turns on and off back and forth. I reduced the amount of RAM. Now I'm running with four 8GB DIMMS. I've used this recommended setup from my motherboard book. The top right in the picture (can you zoom in? Otherwise I'll have to enlarge it)



Now, for some reason, it says I only have 8GB of ram installed, the DIMMS are seated correctly. Until I get this solved, I'm thinking of putting the old two 8GB DIMMS back I had before.

But, to solve this, it could either be the memory slots that are bad, or the DIMMS themselves, but I doubt it's the DIMMS themselves.

With memtest, for example, if I had two 8GB DIMMS installed, and I got an error, is there any need to test them both individually to see which one (or both) are the bad DIMM(s)? Couldn't you just tell by the hexadecimal memory addresses? For example, if the only error you're getting is higher than 8 billion in hex, you'd know it was the second DIMM?

In the case of my motherboard, I think the first one would be the leftmost one, going to the right, correct? First is the first 8GB, second is from 8GB to 16GB, etc, correct?
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Old 06-03-2018, 10:14 PM   #2
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Brand new memory modules can and have turned out faulty out-of-the-box. It's not a miracle. You should test EACH stick individually, even though you would like to take a shortcut, and take the necessary precautions when handling them so you don't end up with more damaged modules. You don't have to run memtest on each stick individually, but you have to try each stick individually and see if the system POSTs successfully. If it doesn't POST with a particular DIMM, set that aside as bad. Once you've determined those that the system POSTs with, you can install them one by one, adding one stick at a time, in the correct slot, and testing if the system POSTs and correctly registers the installed memory, until you have all the good sticks installed. Adding them one by one and testing for POST should tell if a particular DIMM slot is not registering the module inserted in it. Take a look at BIOS for memory information, it usually shows which slots are populated and with how much memory. When you've got all the good sticks installed and the system POSTing successfully and correctly registering the memory configuration, you can go ahead with running memtest to make sure there are no errors. The last thing you want is to assume that the memory modules are flawless just because the system POSTs with them. You'll save yourself lots of BSODs and unexplained crashes and data corruption.
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Old 06-04-2018, 01:22 AM   #3
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Originally Posted by Stancestans View Post
Brand new memory modules can and have turned out faulty out-of-the-box. It's not a miracle. You should test EACH stick individually, even though you would like to take a shortcut, and take the necessary precautions when handling them so you don't end up with more damaged modules. You don't have to run memtest on each stick individually, but you have to try each stick individually and see if the system POSTs successfully. If it doesn't POST with a particular DIMM, set that aside as bad. Once you've determined those that the system POSTs with, you can install them one by one, adding one stick at a time, in the correct slot, and testing if the system POSTs and correctly registers the installed memory, until you have all the good sticks installed. Adding them one by one and testing for POST should tell if a particular DIMM slot is not registering the module inserted in it. Take a look at BIOS for memory information, it usually shows which slots are populated and with how much memory. When you've got all the good sticks installed and the system POSTing successfully and correctly registering the memory configuration, you can go ahead with running memtest to make sure there are no errors. The last thing you want is to assume that the memory modules are flawless just because the system POSTs with them. You'll save yourself lots of BSODs and unexplained crashes and data corruption.
Ok, it's just if you look at the recommended memory configurations, you'll see they don't show one with just one DIMM installed. Note that it says recommended. NOT required, but are there any particular ways I have install memory in order for it to work, or could I just fill any old slots I wanted? I'm guessing it doesn't work that way.

The first thing I wanted to try was installing the DIMM in leftmost slot in every slot, if it works in any of them, I'll know that DIMM isn't bad, will I have to do this with every DIMM? It seems enough that if it works in any slot I'll know that DIMM (but not slot) is good.
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Old 06-04-2018, 03:56 AM   #4
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Originally Posted by PC person View Post
Ok, it's just if you look at the recommended memory configurations, you'll see they don't show one with just one DIMM installed. Note that it says recommended.
If we are looking at the SAME manual, that you posted a poor quality photo of, of which I have a soft copy that I'm referencing from, then there sure IS a RECOMMENDED configuration with just ONE DIMM installed. In fact, it's the very first memory configuration shown, with the DIMM installed in slot DIMM_D1.

Quote:
NOT required, but are there any particular ways I have install memory in order for it to work, or could I just fill any old slots I wanted? I'm guessing it doesn't work that way
Yes, there are particular ways that you have to install the memory modules for them to work. Those ways are AS SHOWN on that page of the user manual that you posted a photo of. Please refer to it and abide by it.

Quote:
The first thing I wanted to try was installing the DIMM in leftmost slot in every slot, if it works in any of them, I'll know that DIMM isn't bad, will I have to do this with every DIMM? It seems enough that if it works in any slot I'll know that DIMM (but not slot) is good.
Again, kindly abide by the memory configurations as illustrated in the manual. Test each module individually in slot DIMM_D1 and if the PC POSTs successfully, put that module aside as good and repeat that for the other modules. Then from this good batch, add each module one at a time in the recommended slots as per the manual. If there's a particular slot that isn't working as it should then you'll be able to tell immediately after you've installed a module in it.
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Old 06-04-2018, 05:54 AM   #5
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To ensure compatibility, you should always buy RAM with the same specs as RAM listed in the motherboard's QVL. Note, unlike CPUs, there are too many different RAM makers and models to test them all so you don't have to buy listed RAM, but you do need to buy RAM with same specs as listed RAM.

The RAM specs for your RAM are:
DDR3 1600
8GB
11-11-11-28
1.5V
I do not see any listed RAM with those specs. I am not saying that is your problem, but it could be.

I also agree with Stancestans and you need to test your sticks one at a time. Make sure you are using the right memory tester. It should be this version: MemTest86. Other testers (many with very similar names and common roots) have not been maintained and are woefully out of date. Only MemTest86 has a current development team working on it to keep it current.

Note, however, while software-based RAM diagnostic tools are good, none are conclusive. If they report any errors, even one, the RAM is bad. But it is not uncommon for them to report no problems, yet the RAM still fails in use, and/or when paired with other RAM. So, try installing and running with just a single RAM stick at a time to see if it fails. Repeat process with remaining stick, hopefully identifying the bad stick through a process of elimination. Just be sure to unplug the computer from the wall and touch bare metal of the case interior BEFORE reaching towards the motherboard or RAM to discharge any destructive static in your body.

To conclusively test your RAM, you need to use sophisticated and very expensive test equipment, like this $4,450 RAMCheck LX Memory Tester or swap in known good RAM and see what happens. BTW, I am certain that tester has been discontinued (and no DDR4 successor is offered) simply because it is much cheaper to keep spare RAM around to swap in. So no one is buying those testers.

I would also swap in a different PSU just to eliminate your current one from the list of possible equations.

Is your BIOS current?
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Old 06-07-2018, 05:21 PM   #6
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Here's a better picture, scanned with a scanner rather than taking a photo of it




Quote:
Yes, there are particular ways that you have to install the memory modules for them to work.
No, it says recommended, not required, it doesn't say those are the only ways that will work.

Anyway, I went ahead and tested it with just one DIMM I know works (that I just bought) in every slot, the POST only came up on my screen when I put the DIMM in slots A1 and B1

Quote:
I also agree with Stancestans and you need to test your sticks one at a time. Make sure you are using the right memory tester. It should be this version: MemTest86. Other testers (many with very similar names and common roots) have not been maintained and are woefully out of date. Only MemTest86 has a current development team working on it to keep it current.
Why do you need to test them one a time if the Hex address will tell you which DIMM is bad? Say if I tested 2 at a time and the hex address was for a bit in the 9th Gigabyte, it would be the second one that was bad, correct?

Quote:
To ensure compatibility, you should always buy RAM with the same specs as RAM listed in the motherboard's QVL
I see there are a few different versions. The motherboard doesn't change (but maybe the firmware might- like BIOS like you were saying. Maybe when they update it, they update that as well) What's the difference between

R4E_DRAM_QVL_1016, X79_ROG_Series_DRAM_QVL_201406, if they are the same motherboard? At this point I'm thinking of just returning the RAM.
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Old 06-07-2018, 10:01 PM   #7
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Quote:
Originally Posted by PC person View Post
Here's a better picture, scanned with a scanner rather than taking a photo of it






No, it says recommended, not required, it doesn't say those are the only ways that will work.


We know what "recommended" means, and there's a good reason as to why the motherboard's engineers recommend that particular way of doing it, but if you feel they're none the wiser and you'd rather fluke around with it until it somehow works, be my guest. We're not reinventing anything here.


Quote:
Anyway, I went ahead and tested it with just one DIMM I know works (that I just bought) in every slot, the POST only came up on my screen when I put the DIMM in slots A1 and B1
Let's deviate a little and test one of the old working ram modules in slot D1 as recommended in the manual. For best results, clear cmos by removing the battery, insert the ram and insert the battery back then power it up. Does it POST?



Quote:
Why do you need to test them one a time if the Hex address will tell you which DIMM is bad? Say if I tested 2 at a time and the hex address was for a bit in the 9th Gigabyte, it would be the second one that was bad, correct?
Where did you get that information from? As much as you'd like to take a shortcut, sometimes you just have to go the long way. Getting RAM to work can be a painstaking ordeal, as you're about to find out. We are talking about Random Access Memory. Your assumption is that the memory is sequentially addressed following the modules' physical order of placement in the slots. In this theory of yours, which is the first slot then? The left-most one, the lowest alphanumerical? I have seen countless motherboards whose channel A slots were NOT labelled 1 and 2.
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Old 06-09-2018, 01:55 PM   #8
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[quote]
Quote:
Originally Posted by Stancestans View Post
We know what "recommended" means, and there's a good reason as to why the motherboard's engineers recommend that particular way of doing it, but if you feel they're none the wiser and you'd rather fluke around with it until it somehow works, be my guest. We're not reinventing anything here.
What I'm saying/asking is does recommended mean required? Meaning that is the only way it will work? If so, why doesn't it say that instead of recommended, recommended doesn't exactly mean required does it, according to the dictionary.

Quote:
Where did you get that information from?
I didn't get it from anywhere, that's just what I was asking. I'm not assuming anything, it was a question, not an assertion/claim by me.
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Old 06-09-2018, 04:09 PM   #9
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[quote=PC person;7684168]
Quote:

What I'm saying/asking is does recommended mean required? Meaning that is the only way it will work? If so, why doesn't it say that instead of recommended, recommended doesn't exactly mean required does it, according to the dictionary.

I didn't get it from anywhere, that's just what I was asking. I'm not assuming anything, it was a question, not an assertion/claim by me.

Again, as I said, we know what recommended means. In this context, it doesn't mean those are the only ways of installing memory modules. Of course you can test other placements and may get some to work and some not to, but for best results and better interoperability, install the modules in the recommended fashion. Do it any other way and you will have only yourself to answer why it doesn't work. At least if you install the recommended memory in the recommended manner, you'd have a very valid question as to why it doesn't work. Manufactures can intentionally avoid using explicit statements in their product's documentation as a way of limiting liability. They can't even guarantee suitability of their product for any particular purpose because doing so can have legal implications against them.
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Old 06-11-2018, 04:52 PM   #10
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I have until the 26th to return the 64GBs of ram. I'd be satisfied just if I could get it to post and it would tell me I have all 64GB installed and working, at this point.

I've been in contact with a few computer shops around here, one said he wouldn't test it with memtest because he feels bad about having to charge customers so much. I hope he doesn't mean $75 an hour just for letting memtest run! The others I talked to but they're not responding now. One said I should find someone who works on gaming rigs, one said I should return the ram and put it towards getting a new computer, and one said he needs the whole story to quote time.

I put the two old DIMMS of ram back in one 8GB in B1 and 8GB in D1, it only shows 8GB's or RAM installed, now. I don't remember how I had them set up before. I know A1 and B1 have worked, like I was saying, maybe I should put the other DIMM from D1 to A1
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Old 06-19-2018, 10:32 PM   #11
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It's solved, turns out the problem found was that the sticks had to be placed in one by one, rebooting each time, the motherboard and all 8 DIMMS work, now- back to 64GBs
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Old 06-19-2018, 10:45 PM   #12
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It's solved, turns out the problem found was that the sticks had to be placed in one by one, rebooting each time, the motherboard and all 8 DIMMS work, now- back to 64GBs
Good to know.
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Old 06-20-2018, 06:19 AM   #13
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Quote:
It's solved, turns out the problem found was that the sticks had to be placed in one by one, rebooting each time, the motherboard and all 8 DIMMS work, now- back to 64GBs
Huh? Never heard of that before. Did you read this somewhere (if so, got a link?) or stumble on it by chance?
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Old 06-20-2018, 08:52 AM   #14
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New one on me too.
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Old 06-20-2018, 08:59 AM   #15
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New one on me too.
Same here.
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Old 06-22-2018, 09:23 PM   #16
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here is the upload of a screenshot of the email explaining it
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Old 06-22-2018, 10:18 PM   #17
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here is the upload of a screenshot of the email explaining it
Looks like proper seating of the ram was the real issue here. Installing a pair at a time is just to ensure that they were good modules, so that if it doesn't post after a particular pair is added, it's easier to identify the bad ones, compared to installing all DIMMs at once.
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Old 06-23-2018, 06:42 AM   #18
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Yeah, I think the first key word there was "pair". Inserting the first pair and rebooting caused the system to configure itself for dual-channel. I suspect after the first pair was installed and all was verified to be working properly, the next 3 pairs could have been installed at once.

The second key word was "finicky". Back in my old radio maintenance days, we used to call such weird happenings as "FM" - not for frequency modulation but for a certain type of magic!

***

I wonder if these problems would have occurred if you bought a single 64GB (8 x 8GB) "kit" instead of four 2 x 8GB kits?

"In theory", it should not matter. That is, "in theory", you "should" be able to take 8 sticks from 8 different makers and install them in the computer and they "should" work together just fine as long as they had the exact same specs. That is, they all were DDR3 1600, 1.5V, 11-11-11-28, for example.

While we ("Man") are getting better and better, we as humans still have not mastered perfection 100% of the time. As memory ICs continue to have increased densities (millions more " gates" in the same amount of space), individual gates keep getting smaller and smaller. This means as densities increase any microscopic flaw during production or impurity in the raw materials can have a significantly greater impact on the viability of the whole memory module.

Most memory sticks today use 8 ICs per stick that all must communicate with precise timings with the memory controller. Pair in another stick and now there are 16 ICs. Pair in 6 more sticks and there are 64 ICs. Making them all work in "perfect" harmony is a very complex operation! It reminds me of Dr. Crusher trying to teach Data to dance!

It becomes even more complex when those sticks are manufactured (by imperfect humans) in different parts of the world, in different factories, with different sources of raw materials.

This is why "in theory" and "real world" don't always jive. This is also why it is "recommended" motherboards be populated from the start with a single RAM "kit" (an 8 x 8GB package, in this case) which begins with the assumption all the sticks came from the same production run, off the same assembly line using the same batch of raw materials, and therefore, would "in theory" have specifications that would more precisely match each other.

This is also why it is not uncommon to toss all old RAM and install all new RAM when upgrading (adding more) RAM to a system.
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