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26758intermittent memory problems

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  • David Carlton
    Jun 1, 2005
      I'm having intermittent memory problems with my Inspiron 8200; any
      suggestions? The main symptom is that, sometimes at boot (while still
      in the bios stage), it complains about bad reads from memory. This
      doesn't always happen; if it doesn't happen, it frequently boots and
      runs just fine.

      At first, I thought one of the DIMMs might be bad; when I removed it,
      I didn't have as many problems. But memtest86 did turn up a memory
      read error after 35 minutes of running with only the better DIMM
      installed, so I'm not too convinced by that theory any more.

      Because of the intermittent nature of the problem, I'm a little leery
      of shipping it back for repairs: I can easily imagine that they'll
      take my money but that, when the computer comes back, it will still
      have problems. Does anybody have experience with having this sort of
      thing fixed?

      If I can't get it fixed, I'm tempted to get another Dell. I wish the
      computer weren't flaking out on me, since it still has adequate
      performance for my needs, but having to buy a new computer every 3
      years isn't the end of the world. And, judging from what I see on
      this group, people continue to be able to run Linux on newer Dell
      laptops, which is a good sign. I'm still not sure what configuration
      I'll get; some specific questions:

      * Where to get memory from? For this laptop, I bought it with the
      minimum memory configuration, and got more memory from Crucial; that
      was easy, so I'm planning to go that route again, unless memory
      prices have dropped enough that it doesn't matter.

      * Where to get a hard drive from, and what speed? I've never bought a
      third-party hard drive, but it shouldn't be too hard to install;
      anybody have any suggestions as to good vendors? I certainly
      wouldn't mind getting a larger and faster hard drive next time.

      * What video card to get? I want something that will run on a stock
      Linux distribution, but I don't care about my 3D Linux performance.
      I'll probably care a little bit about 3D performance under Windows,
      but it's harder to say there; I don't need to be able to play the
      most strenuous current Windows games.

      David Carlton