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All About RAM: Troubleshooting Faulty RAM

Wednesday, April 20th, 2016 by | Filed Under: Computer Terms, Hardware & Peripherals

In the last entry of this RAM-based series, we looked at what RAM does, as well as how RAM can fix a slow computer. In this tip we’ll be taking a look at some of the error messages a computer can generate if RAM begins to go bad.


RAM problems can cause computer freezes, blue screens of death, sudden resets, slowness, and even the inability to boot (with the motherboard making what’s called a ‘beep code’ that identifies the RAM as an issue). If you suspect RAM might be causing your PC issues, try the following:

Removing RAM

This way of checking for RAM issues should be saved for situations where the PC can’t boot into an operating system. Simply put, if one of the sticks goes bad, then logic suggests removing sticks one-by-one (while always ensuring some sticks are still in the PC!) will eventually lead to the bad RAM stick being removed, fixing the PC. Don’t try this unless you’re an experienced computer user. Don’t poke around your motherboard if you’re unsure about what you’re doing!


Microsoft Memory Diagnostics

Did you know that your Microsoft operating system comes with its own RAM checker? It’s called Memory Diagnostics, and anyone running a Windows-based system at version 7 or above can use it for free. To access it, type ‘Windows Memory’ into your search box on the desktop. For Metro, type¬†‘Memory Diagnose’¬†instead.

For desktop users:


For Metro users:


Both paths will lead to this pop-up:


Click Restart and allow the computer to reboot itself. Windows will then scan your RAM and tell you if it has detected any faults within it.

In part 2 of this article, we’ll check out a more advanced way to check RAM.

~ Simon


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