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Thread: Bad RAM?

  1. #1
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    Default Bad RAM?

    Whats the best utility for testing RAM? Photoshop keeps crashing. I have 18gb of ram (no, not all of it is from Macgurus... bad me) which, according to Tech Tools is ok. I suspect the ram because the System Profiler will show only 14gb after a crash... 18 shows up when i reboot... although sometimes it disappears after Disk Permissions are repaired. Am I on the right track or can this be something else? Probably could be a hundred different things... sigh....

  2. #2
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    Software to test RAM is.....well, there is no perfect tool to do this.

    Memtest is probably the best. Last time I checked, AppleJack can install Memtest too, as an option. I see that Memtest has not been updated in while, so with a newer OS, may not be the right solution.

    Me, I just pull RAM and do trial and error. You might consider checking and noting which sticks don't show when you check ASP. Then pull those, and see if the problems go away.

    Then swap those pulled sticks with some that do not cause problems. If the problems follow the sticks, there you go.

    If not, try some known good sticks in the slots that the bad sticks used to be in. If the problem comes back, it could be the slots, not the sticks.

    And so on....

    With some trial and error, you should be able to isolate the sticks that cause the issue, or the slots.
    "Imagine if every Thursday your shoes exploded if you tied them the usual way. This happens to us all the time with computers, and nobody thinks of complaining." -- Jef Raskin

  3. #3
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    Lightbulb

    Oh, and usually, apps crashing is not a memory thing. Kernel Panics are the #1 symptom of bad RAM....or RAM that makes a Mac unhappy.

    Considering your observation about ASP not showing all your RAM....it could be related, but ASP has been known to have quirks over the years, so it is possible that it is coincidental that your RAM is not reported consistently.

    Do other apps crash? Or the Finder? Or any panics?

    If not, I would also consider the notion that it is a PS issue, not a hardware issue.

    One way to test is to create a new test OS user, and see if PS acts the same, with the same crashing issues. If not (if PS is stable and happy logged in as a new test OS user), then it is software, likely preferences - not OS or hardware.
    "Imagine if every Thursday your shoes exploded if you tied them the usual way. This happens to us all the time with computers, and nobody thinks of complaining." -- Jef Raskin

  4. #4
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    I swapped the ram in to different slots and it the malfunction occurred again, 18gb down to 14... it followed two particular sticks... macguru ram... reboot restored it back to 18. I set up another user and it crashed again. So I removed those sticks altogether... still crashing under both users. If its a kernal, can i fix this? I tend to not think its a Ps problem because Ive been using CS5 since its release with no problem... and nothing in my configuration has changed. I have not run memtest yet...

  5. #5
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    The way to test is to remove half the RAM and set aside, do your tests. Then swap the pulled RAM with the tested RAM and test again. That way you at least test to see if the problems are RAM related.

    Rick
    molṑn labe'
    "I am a mortal enemy to arbitrary government and unlimited power. I am naturally very jealous for the rights and liberties of my country, and the least encroachment of those invaluable privileges is apt to make my blood boil."
--Ben Franklin

  6. #6
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    I'm assuming a mac pro. they have indicator lights on the ram slots that usually indicate which dimm is bad.

  7. #7
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    Quote Originally Posted by ricks View Post
    The way to test is to remove half the RAM and set aside, do your tests. Then swap the pulled RAM with the tested RAM and test again. That way you at least test to see if the problems are RAM related.

    Rick
    I read this thread and found many solutions but I agree with Rick is to test either problem is related to RAM or not.

  8. #8
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    Quote Originally Posted by Min View Post
    I swapped the ram in to different slots and it the malfunction occurred again, 18gb down to 14... it followed two particular sticks... macguru ram... reboot restored it back to 18. I set up another user and it crashed again. So I removed those sticks altogether... still crashing under both users. If its a kernal, can i fix this? I tend to not think its a Ps problem because Ive been using CS5 since its release with no problem... and nothing in my configuration has changed. I have not run memtest yet...
    Swapping might shed some light, but may not. Removing pairs is the way to go. As Rick said, pull RAM and test. Even if you have to get down to one pair, the issue should follow the RAM.

    I totally forgot about RAM indicators in MacPros (Thanks GT!). This can greatly simplify the process if the light shows you the bad stick.....there you go. Varies by the model.

    Panics are very distinct. They are usually hardware related, but not always.
    "Imagine if every Thursday your shoes exploded if you tied them the usual way. This happens to us all the time with computers, and nobody thinks of complaining." -- Jef Raskin

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