A Monster for Every Season: Summer 2
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  1. - Top - End - #1
    Ettin in the Playground
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    sigh Memory Issues (Computer, not Mental)

    So, bluntly, my Laptop is having memory issues. Its OS is Windows 8. But it shouldn't BE having memory issues, yet it is. It's only half a year old and I've already gone and done something to screw it up, which annoys me to no end. But regardless, I'll try to fix it, but I need help, because I don't know what to do besides getting more memory (and am not sure what memory it takes) and I'm leery about sending it in for repairs.

    According to "My Computer", my laptop is only using 122 GB of memory, but has 808 GB available. (I've been told that's not really where my issue is stemming from, and that the disk space =/= memory. I have 10 GB of RAM btw.) So, I don't think its a "I need more memory" issue, although that might just as well fix it too. I don't know.

    I ran a "Memory Diagnostic" and a "Windows Memory Diagnostic" through two built in programs, which said there were no issues. I call bs to that, evidence to the contrary down below.

    This is a list of the individual bluescreens my laptop has gone through recently.
    Spoiler
    Show
    >ATTEMPTED_WRITE_TO_READONLY_MEMORY
    >KMODE_EXCEPTION_NOT_HANDLED
    >MEMORY_MANAGEMENT
    >DRIVER_OVERRAN_STACK_BUFFER
    >IRQL_NOT_LESS_OR_EQUAL


    I'm not expecting these issues to magically disappear or for the issues to fix themselves overnight. I'd just like it if someone could give me some suggestions or at least point me in the right direction.
    Last edited by TechnOkami; 2014-05-29 at 05:23 AM.
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  2. - Top - End - #2
    Orc in the Playground
     
    ElfRangerGuy

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    Default Re: Memory Issues (Computer, not Mental)

    Quote Originally Posted by TechnOkami View Post
    According to "My Computer", my laptop is only using 122 GB of memory, but has 808 GB available.
    Um. If your computer has 800GB of memory, it's some enormous supercomputer with a price followed by many zeroes. You're probably looking at disk space, which isn't the same, or likely to be relevant to the problem.

    Quote Originally Posted by TechnOkami View Post
    I ran a "Memory Diagnostic" and a "Windows Memory Diagnostic" through two built in programs, which said there were no issues. I call bs to that, evidence to the contrary down below.

    This is a list of the individual bluescreens my laptop has gone through recently.
    Spoiler
    Show
    >ATTEMPTED_WRITE_TO_READONLY_MEMORY
    >KMODE_EXCEPTION_NOT_HANDLED
    >MEMORY_MANAGEMENT
    >DRIVER_OVERRAN_STACK_BUFFER
    >IRQL_NOT_LESS_OR_EQUAL


    I'm not expecting these issues to magically disappear or for the issues to fix themselves overnight. I'd just like it if someone could give me some suggestions or at least point me in the right direction.
    While it would be possible for a hardware problem to cause that, it looks like a very typical buggy driver. Since you've pretty much ruled out memory corruption, it almost certainly is.

    Have you recently added (or even plugged in) some new bit of hardware that needed a driver installing? Installed some virtual filesystem or other kernel-mode software? Upgraded an existing driver? The bluescreen messages might list which is to blame.
    Last edited by FLHerne; 2014-05-29 at 04:49 AM.

  3. - Top - End - #3
    Ettin in the Playground
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    Default Re: Memory Issues (Computer, not Mental)

    Quote Originally Posted by FLHerne View Post
    Um. If your computer has 800GB of memory, it's some enormous supercomputer with a price followed by many zeroes. You're probably looking at disk space, which isn't the same, or likely to be relevant to the problem.
    ...huh... Well, then I guess I don't really understand the difference between disk space and memory is, 'cause I thought they were the same. *grumble*

    Well, if it makes any difference, I think I have 10 GB of RAM, and will be looking into getting another 10 as soon as I know what kind of RAM my laptop needs.

    Quote Originally Posted by FLHerne View Post
    Have you recently added (or even plugged in) some new bit of hardware that needed a driver installing? Installed some virtual filesystem or other kernel-mode software? Upgraded an existing driver? The bluescreen messages might list which is to blame.
    On the hardware front... not recently I believe, no. I don't know what kernel-mode software is, so I couldn't tell you. I attempted to update some drivers, but I couldn't find the proper software for the specific drivers I wanted to update. I couldn't begin to tell you which driver this was or even if I downloaded something into my system. I can't remember. I think I was trying to update my graphics driver... but I don't remember. I remember getting annoyed at downloading different driver searching softwares (which I have deleted) and getting lost at trying to find the appropriate software and not wanting to fork over the cash to make the software update my drivers as well as telling me what needed updating. After thinking about it, I don't actually think I downloaded anything besides the driver searching software.
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    78% of DM's started their first campaign in a tavern. If you're one of the 22% that didn't, copy and paste this into your signature.

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  4. - Top - End - #4
    Troll in the Playground
     
    PaladinGuy

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    Default Re: Memory Issues (Computer, not Mental)

    The Windows Memory Test is actually notoriously not very good. There's a piece of freeware called "memtest86" (I think) that is generally regarded as the one to use.
    Also it is an important point to not just run it once - but let it run for a few hours, sometimes memory will pass on just a few runs and fail on continual checking.

    If it is memory, it may not be the memory! If you start getting failures on the memory test try swapping the chips over or removing some of them and re-running. If you are lucky this will help you identify which chip is faulty, if you are unlucky it will show that it is the socket and not the chip, which tends to mean a new motherboard...

  5. - Top - End - #5
    Barbarian in the Playground
     
    Kobold

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    Default Re: Memory Issues (Computer, not Mental)

    Several problems apparent here:

    I would find it unlikely that you have 10GB of RAM, especially in a laptop, RAM stick sizes increase in multiples of 2 (2GB 4GB 8GB or 16GB) and laptops usually have 2 slots for RAM sticks, if you have an 8GB stick and a 2GB stick this is generally bad form and you should try removing the 2GB stick to see if it improves things (like I said, this is unlikely though).

    If you somehow do have 10GB of RAM that should be more than enough 4GB is fine and 8GB is more than enough for most people, you definitely won't fix this problem by buying more RAM. the errors you are getting is either because the RAM is physically malfunctioning or more likely because some software or drivers on your computer isn't handling the available memory correctly.

    Automatic driver updating programs are bad news, either they try to charge you for the privilege of something you can do for free or they come with a whole load of malware and other nasty bits of software included. What you should do is go to the website of whoever made your laptop, search for the model number and look for a drivers and downloads section, this will contain all the relevant drivers you need.

    What I would recommend actually doing is this:

    Make sure you have removed all of the driver update software you have downloaded and run an antivirus scan for good measure, I also recommend downloading and running a piece of software called Malwarebytes (you can google this, it's free) which will remove any other nasty bits of software that don't necessarily flag up as viruses but can cause issues.

    If the blue screen issues only started after you tried to update the drivers then Windows restore is your friend, just search for Recovery on the windows start screen in settings and then Open recovery choose a restore point from before things went wrong and it should roll windows back to when it was working, just be aware that it will roll back any other installations or settings changes as well but your files and documents will be unaffected.
    Last edited by supermonkeyjoe; 2014-05-29 at 08:50 AM.

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    Bugbear in the Playground
     
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    Default Re: Memory Issues (Computer, not Mental)

    Basically what supermonkeyjoe said. You don't have memory issues, you've got driver issues. Most likely graphics card drivers. If I had to guess, you're running Windows 8.0 and you've got an AMD GPU in there and somehow got the catalyst beta drivers. Those mess around with windows 8.0 driver models.

    To make absolutely sure it's not a memory problem: Go download any livelinux, burn it to a CD/DVD, boot from it and in the boot menu select Memtest86. Run the default tests and see what turns up.

    But again, from the errors you got from the blue screens, a driver is misbehaving. If it somehow isn't the GPU, it might well be the chipset drivers, because on modern hardware almost nothing messes with IRQs anymore, since most hardware is USB based and not PCI based, bus-wise.

  7. - Top - End - #7
    Ettin in the Playground
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    Default Re: Memory Issues (Computer, not Mental)

    Is there a way to make all the drivers start from some kind of baseline without necessarily having to reinstall the OS? I mean, if I have to I have to, but I've done it before due to other reasons (Skyrim+Fallout: New Vegas mods gone wild), and I'd like to not do it again.
    I've started streaming again.


    78% of DM's started their first campaign in a tavern. If you're one of the 22% that didn't, copy and paste this into your signature.

    I started my first campaign outside of an abandoned mine, just as soon as a meteor storm from the moon hits.

  8. - Top - End - #8
    Bugbear in the Playground
     
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    Default Re: Memory Issues (Computer, not Mental)

    You can manually uninstall a lot of drivers and then let windows update redownload them. It'll lead (not: "it's likely to lead", but "it WILL lead") to major problems, and you'd be better off reinstalling, since that's done in about 1 hour.

    Just go to your GPU manufacturers site, download the driver, install that manually and see what happens. Afterwards, go to your Notebook manufacturers site, download the chipset drivers and reinstall those if the GPU driver doesn't fix your problem. Way less of a hassle.

  9. - Top - End - #9
    Barbarian in the Playground
     
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    Default Re: Memory Issues (Computer, not Mental)

    Just to note, read only memory on a laptop (indeed on most computers) is usually kept for stuff like the bios.

    To second what was said earlier, grab a usb stick and this: http://www.sysresccd.org/SystemRescueCd_Homepage

    The liveusb program it links to in the installation guide should work fine with windows 8, if not I think it links to the right version of unetbootin as well, both are pretty straightforward ways to get an incredibly handy tool: a bootable live usb recovery session.

    Pop it in, reboot, hold esc or f1 or f9 or whatever your hardware wants for the boot selection screen, load the usb stick and pick the live session. Have it run memtest+, have it check your drives with gparted, if it doesn't see anything wrong then you know for sure it isn't a hardware issue related to your hdd or ram.

    If it finds anything repairable, make sure you pay attention to whatever warnings it pops up, generally avoid changing off of the default settings, and let it do what it does. Either way reboot after and see if you can get the drivers removed/repaired, malwarebytes is a good suggestion, I also liked openhardwaremonitor as while it isn't specifically designed for diagnosing problems, it should help you get a better feel for what your system is actually doing, and it can make certain types of hardware issues easier to identify (like it will show if it detects two sticks of ram but is unable to read the usage/settings of one stick, and so on) and seek help accordingly.
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