For past many days my Windows 10 PC was acting up very strange. Almost all the programs were crashing randomly including the web browsers, media players and even Microsoft Office. Then it became worse and Windows itself started to crash showing BSOD with messages like “critical process died” and “memory management”.
At first I thought it is because of the latest Windows 10 update or because of some Windows related settings, but then similar things started to happen even in Mint Linux that I use on the same PC. This is when I knew that RAM modules have become faulty.
If you also experience similar problems in your PC, then you can use MemTest86 to test your RAM modules easily. Here is how:
- Download MemTest86 from https://www.memtest86.com/download.htm. The free version package includes everything for creating a bootable USB drive containing MemTest86. Typically, you have to run imageUSB.exe, select a target USB drive and click on the “Write” button.
- Once you have created a MemTest86 bootable media, you can boot from it. For this, you can power on your PC, press F12 until you see the boot menu and select your USB drive from the menu.
- On the MemTest86 screen, everything is already selected, all you have to do is click on Start Test button.
- If your RAM module is faulty you will see lots of red error lines and the error counter will also go up. There are eight different tests that may run for a long time, but typically faulty RAM modules are detected in seconds.
If you have installed more than one RAM modules on your PC, then you should take out all but one RAM module on the motherboard and then run MemTest86. You can repeat the same process for all the RAM modules. This will help you isolate the faulty modules easily.
We can use the same method to test whether he RAM sockets themselves are not faulty by trying known good modules on all the different RAM sockets.
If you find faulty RAM modules, do not use them anymore. Using such parts will also end up damaging the rest of the motherboard. You can note down the memory module specifications and order a replacement online from Amazon.