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PC Hardware Issues Memtest86 Crashes, how to determine what hardware is failing?

Posted on 2016-10-21
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Last Modified: 2016-10-30
Hello,
I have a Windows 7 PC that has been crashing randomly. It seems o run better for a few days after rebooting. If I leave it up and running for severals days it wil BSOD about every three or four days. If I reboot every day it doesn't crash.

So far I ran windows update, ran all virus and spyware scans, updated all of my drivers, ran SFC /scannow, ran a full check disk with fixing errors, defraged. I have not reinstalled the OS and trying to avoid that.

I created a memtest86 CD and started running the test, twice now and both times it stops with a error Unexpected Interrupt - Halting CPU (Attached Screen Shot).

So now I am thinking it may be a motherboard or CPU or maybe even my GPU. Are there any other tests or ways I can test to make sure what the hardware issue is? Something similar to Memtest86 but for CPU, GPU or mobo?

It would be great to have a good idea of what to replace before buying parts.
Memtest_Error.JPG
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Question by:REIUSA
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6 Comments
 
LVL 31

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by:Scott C
Scott C earned 83 total points
ID: 41853992
Do you have access to another machine you can try swapping the parts with to narrow it down?

As for specifics to test the hardware, I'd look at the manufacturer's sites for each specific product and see if they have any utilities.

There are just too many motherboards, GPUs for there to be generic testing utilities like memtest.

But it does look from the screenshot that it might be a CPU issue.
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by:rindi
rindi earned 83 total points
ID: 41854019
You should run memtest86+ and not just memtest86. The 86+ product is much more reliable and the best memory testing tool available.

But anyway, when either of those tools crash, my experience is that usually it is caused from overheating. The memory tests cause both the CPU and memory to run close to capacity and so heats them up a lot. If your cooling isn't good that will cause a crash or other error. So I'd first make sure the insides of the PC is dust free and all the fans run smoothly. Also remove the Heat-Sink from the CPU, clean both the surfaces very thoroughly, then apply a very small drop of fresh thermal transfer paste to the top of the CPU, and then properly and firmly reattach the Heat-Sink to the CPU so that it gets cooled optimally. Also disable any overclocking in the BIOS.
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LVL 70

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by:garycase
garycase earned 83 total points
ID: 41854339
While it shouldn't matter, I have indeed seen some systems that would run either MemTest86 or MemTest86+ but would fail with the other -- there are sometimes interactions with the chipset or some add-in components.

So while it's arguable which is "best", I agree with rindi's suggestion that you should try MemTest86+ just to confirm that you indeed have a non-memory-related error.
http://www.memtest.org/
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LVL 92

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by:nobus
nobus earned 251 total points
ID: 41854887
what system is this?  some (older) ones had the capacitor plague
so check if the mobo has some leaking or bulging capacitors (mostly around the cpu)
here an example :
c
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Author Comment

by:REIUSA
ID: 41857486
I ran memtest86+ for two days and no crashes or errors this time so I guess its safe to say it is not memory related. I tried finding a diagnostics tool for my mobo, a....

Board: PEGATRON CORPORATION VIOLET 3.02
Serial Number: 101776950004113
Bus Clock: 200 megahertz
BIOS: American Megatrends Inc. 5.22 04/15/2010

Look for diagnostics tools I can run on the mobo and CPU.
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LVL 92

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by:
nobus earned 251 total points
ID: 41858082
what HP model is it?
you can Always test by installing another OS on a spare drive, like ubuntu
or another windows OS
alternatively you can run Burnintest : http://www.passmark.com/download/index.htm
ifound their site inaccessible -  then try http://download.cnet.com/BurnInTest-Standard/3000-2086_4-10032903.html
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