When good RAM goes bad?

Discussion in 'Macintosh Computers' started by IJ Reilly, Apr 6, 2004.

  1. IJ Reilly macrumors P6

    IJ Reilly

    Joined:
    Jul 16, 2002
    Location:
    Palookaville
    #1
    After years of wonderful stability, my Cube took a dive yesterday. It began with a freeze (not a KP, but a freeze, the first I've ever seen in OSX), it failed to wake up from "deep" sleep a couple of times, and then today it KP'ed in Safari (also a first). I ran the Hardware Test CD and it detected bad RAM. I removed one of the 256k modules, and now (I think) all is well again. So here's the question: how can RAM that's been in the Cube for something like three years suddenly go bad? And no, it wasn't on account of a 10.3 upgrade -- I did that back in January.
     
  2. thehuncamunca macrumors 6502

    Joined:
    Jul 9, 2003
    Location:
    NJ
    #2
    electronics do fail you know even solid state ones like RAM
    maybe just got overheated or a random failure, should be glad it wasn't your motherboard or something harder to replace

     
  3. Powerbook G5 macrumors 68040

    Powerbook G5

    Joined:
    Jun 23, 2003
    Location:
    St Augustine, FL
    #3
    When I read the title it made me think of a bad Fox special. As far as RAM going bad, heat can be a killer with it in systems such as PowerBooks and the Cube since they are packed so tightly and heat can built up real fast and cause a failure.

    edit: Also, dust buildup and even static discharge can kill RAM, also. If you opened your Cube up and saw a large blanket of dust or if you moved it recently into an area that is prone to static buildup, that could have also done it.
     
  4. MattG macrumors 68040

    MattG

    Joined:
    May 27, 2003
    Location:
    Fletcher, NC
    #4
    It happens...the RAM in my Powerbook went bad last month. One of the 512mb chips would randomly only read as 256mb, so instead of seeing a total of 1gb, my computer would show that it was 768mb. I sent it back and they replaced it...perfect again :)
     
  5. IJ Reilly thread starter macrumors P6

    IJ Reilly

    Joined:
    Jul 16, 2002
    Location:
    Palookaville
    #5
    Looks like my problem is more complicated and serious then I originally thought. The Cube still freezes randomly even with the supposedly bad RAM removed. On one reboot it got to the desktop and splashed text (ala single user mode) over the desktop indicating a system failure (not the KP mode). RAM addressing was implicated (I didn't write it down). When that happened, I could not get the Cube to reboot again until I removed ALL of the RAM except the original 64 Mb, at which point it rebooted into OS9 (but not X). So... now I've removed the original 64 mb module and replaced it with one of the 256 mb modules I pulled. I'm booted into OSX now, but we'll see how long that lasts.

    Could the RAM slots themselves be bad?
     
  6. Bear macrumors G3

    Joined:
    Jul 23, 2002
    Location:
    Sol III - Terra
    #6
    Yes, it is possible that the electronics around a slot went bad.

    It is also possible for the slot itself to go bad. But usually that's with removal and insertion of the memory modules.
     
  7. IJ Reilly thread starter macrumors P6

    IJ Reilly

    Joined:
    Jul 16, 2002
    Location:
    Palookaville
    #7
    Doubtful in my case. Never messed with the RAM until today.

    I'm thinking bad or dirty contacts, but of course that's just a wild guess. I'm not going to trust the Cube again until I figure this out and fix it.
     

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