Memory stick problems

  yahwob 10:10 25 Jan 05


Been having troubles with my PC over the last few days. I fitted an extra stick of 512mb ram on Saturday and to start with every thing seemed fine. However things started going wrong not long afterwards, instant system shutdowns etc.

I hadn’t reinstalled XP for a while and as I didn’t have anything of real value on the PC I decided to reinstall in an effort to solve the shut down and crash problems. Huge problems though with reinstall, file missing messages and incomplete installation messages. Two out of three installs failed completely although I did finally get to a new desktop twice. Hooked up to the internet ok and went to windows update and downloaded the usual critical updates etc and then came to download service pack 2. Managed to download that but both times it then failed to install properly and when I rebooted windows froze at the opening screen and gave me a message saying it couldn’t find an entry path.

I was on the verge of giving up and taking it to a specialist but then someone here at work said it was probably the new memory stick causing the problem. Like an idiot I’d never even thought of that! I havn’t had any error messages relating to the memory stick although hardware was mentioned in some of the error messages. The memory stick matched my spec, ie pc3200 ddr and fitted in ok but the PC is a Mesh and the stick came from Novatech. The guy here said that even though the stick is the right type the fact that it came from a different manufacturer can still cause problems.

Is he right? The obvious thing to do is take the memory stick out tonight and try the whole thing again but after spending the last three days reinstalling etc I don’t want to do it again if it’s a wild goose chase. Is there anyway I can test that the memory stick is causing problems although that could be tricky because at the moment I can’t get into windows anyway although I can probably get into BIOS.

Any help?


  Jackcoms 10:43 25 Jan 05

Not really an expert, but I agree with your work colleague.

If I was you, I would buy a Mesh stick and go with that.

  Sethhaniel 10:46 25 Jan 05

did it show up in the system -- ???
No BIOS setting to tweak for it too be recognised

  wx622 10:49 25 Jan 05

Have you a PC anywhere that works? At work, a friend etc. If not, have you a USB flash drive, with which you can boot Windows from? If either of these are possible, this utility from Microsoft may help...
click here
Download the .exe, and run it. You will need to enter a blank floppy disk/copy to your flash drive, then boot your system from it.
This utility basically just cycles trough the memory, checking for problems.

If you have no access to another working PC, i will have to think some more and get back to you.

  Stowit 10:54 25 Jan 05

I've had a right palava with memory & there seems no rhyme or reason to it. Will it boot with just the new stick, can any one test that stick? Some sticks dont seem to work together, but aren't faulty. (& will work with different sticks same spec) Do all the testing you can, but it will probably end in sending it back ) -:

  yahwob 10:57 25 Jan 05


Thanks for responses so far, the memory did show up on the my computer panel, showed as 1 gig memory.

No real access to another pc, writing this on the one at work but they arn't too happy about downloading anything off the web.

Problems didn't really start till a couple of hours after new stick fitted and because there were no problems immediately I didn't associate the later problems with the stick. Wasn't until someone here mentioned that it could be the stick that I realised the system had been working fine until I fitted it.

If the worst comes to the worst I can take the stick out and reinstall again, just getting a bit tired of reinstalling and downloading updates etc, mind you I'm getting pretty good at it :)

I guess I'm looking for someone to agree with the guy here and say yes it's almost bound to be your memory stick and if I take that out and reinstall again everything will be fine and dandy :)

He says memory sticks often cause hardware problems and just needed your guys opionions to back him up or not as the case may be.


  plsndrs3 11:19 25 Jan 05

I had a similar problem - right memory type, showing in startup & BIOS - but the system was so unstable I was lucky if it remained OK for more than 5 minutes before falling over & closing down.

I had the same advice as you from a friend and I was advised on thi forum to remove the original memory & switch the new memory into the socket - i.e. only booting on the new memory. System just wouldn't boot which I believe proved the point.

Then contacted the supplier and explained what was happening and they were exceptionally helpful. I returned the stick & got a replacement the next day - which MUST have been before they received mine. Plugged this in, booted & now everything is running as it should.

Again, there was nothing wrong with the memory supplied, it was just incompatible with the PC!



  1514 11:36 25 Jan 05

I had problems after installing new memory and MS suggested this test. Online crash analysis
click here

  1514 11:43 25 Jan 05

I should have added that this test showed that, all of my memory, which was supplied with a new motherboard, needed to be changed as it was incompatible. "Scan Computers" exchanged all of it for me and it is now OK

  yahwob 11:48 25 Jan 05

Thanks for the replys guys.

Trouble with the diagnostic tools is that I can't at present get into windows at all, screen freezes at start up and tells me can't find an entry path.

Guess I'm just going to have to take the new stick out and reinstall xp etc and hope that it all works. I still need another stick though so I guess I'll have to get that from Mesh to make sure it's compatible.

  plsndrs3 14:02 25 Jan 05

Before you format & reinstall, why not remove the 'new' stick & Boot [should be OK as nothing changed], then replace with the new stick & try again? Will be less time consuming & could show the fault as it did in mine.


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