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Hardware Stress Testing

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#1 Rachel_01


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Posted 30 November 2010 - 09:58 PM


I've been working on a machine for a friend for a few weeks now.
It's up and running now with a fresh factory (DELL) restore of the OS (XP MCE05)

It was exhibiting the following, (initially-) post, then windows splash, then blank screen. all safe modes either gave a blank screen or non responsive to usb mouse and keyboard. (machine has no PS/2 ports and had USB on in BIOS.)

Was able to access the SATA HD through Ultimate boot cd, and also windows recovery tools through a win xp slipdisk
It did have a host of OS issues, a Trojan, and adware. We tried to work through getting into the OS with BartPe and using OTLPE. We had no success in ever getting the machine to boot normal nor a safe mode. I also ran the ultimate boot cd tests, the oem diagnostics, and seatools. Ran testing on the harddrive, video card and memory. The hard drive and memory always came out fine -- the video test on the ultimate boot cd would hang -- but video display has always looked fine and the test never gave a fail... it just hung.

Eventually I slaved the drive to another machine, ran kasperski, and MBAM cleaned the Trojan and adware up (removed critical data to another drive - and scanned and scanned :-) then reinstalled the drive in the "sick" machine. I wasn't counting on much -- and that's what I got.

Ended up doing a factory restore of the OEM OS.
OS service packs and all updates have been applied, all installed software has been updated. Antivirus installed (and scanned.) system sitting behind a router.

My concerns... we were never cleanly able to pin point the cause of the blank screen/ no os load & while hardware diagnostics came up fine... I'd like to take this puppy through some stress tests before I turn it back over to the owners. It has just a few days (yes days) left on the warranty, so if there is any type of intermittent hardware issue (memory, video card...) and like to try to identify that now.

Assistance in this endeavor is greatly appreciated.

Here is the link to the speccy snap shot so we have all the pertinent info at hand: http://speccy.piriform.com/results/4E5GKU0qh0iJmHi1v4oFPqH

and if you are interested in reading our attempts in the viri pursuit (many thank yous to Elise for all her time and help--) http://www.bleepingcomputer.com/forums/topic360158.html

and my very initial postings on this machine at bleeping computer.com (many thanks to AustrAlien -- for his ongoing assistance.) http://www.bleepingcomputer.com/forums/topic359556.html

on a side note -- usb keyboard & mouse work just fine in safe mode now :)

anyone have a good direction path I should start down to kick the tires on this puppy a few times?

thank you!!

edit to correct a link

edit #2 -- forgot to mention -- I've had one BSOD since install while running an MBAM scan. Of course I freaked an panicked, oi. it's important to know, in that it's one more reason I would like to stress test. the BSOD was: Kernel_Stack_inpage_error 0x00000077 (0x00000001, 0x1769A5CF, 0x00000000, 0xAACETCBC)

Edited by Rachel_01, 30 November 2010 - 10:19 PM.

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#2 AustrAlien



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Posted 30 November 2010 - 10:37 PM

Nice post, Rachel

Have a quick read through the guide at the following link, to gain an over-all understanding of what you will be doing, and the reasoning behind it:
Guidelines for Thorough Stability Testing

Please download the following to the Windows desktop (where they will be handy to find and use):

:step1: Software to actively monitor your CPU temperature. You may need to try (download, install and attempt to use) more than one of these.
We need to find a program which will work on your system: If we can't get the first one you choose to work properly, then try another.
Try one or more of these:

:step2: prime95 (p95v2414) from the following link (archived versions of Prime95):
:spacer: ftp://mersenne.org/gimps_archive/archived_executables/
:spacer: Choose either p95v2414.exe or p95v2414.zip
(Note: Using this older version of Prime95 will allow you to follow the instructions in the guide.
The later versions are a little different and cannot be configured as described in the guide.)

:step3: Toast http://majorgeeks.com/Toast_d867.html

:step4: 3DMark®2001 SE Free Version (Build 3.3.0) Size: 40.8 MB
:spacer: http://www.majorgeeks.com/download.php?det=99
(This is an old version and no longer supported by FutureMark: Hence the download from MG.
See: http://www.futuremark.com/download/3dmark2001/ )

:step5: memtest86+ http://www.memtest.org/ Scroll down the page to ... Download (Pre-built & ISOs)
or use this direct download link: Download - Pre-Compiled Bootable ISO (.zip) (currently ** Memtest86+ V4.10 (04/05/2010) **)

You will need to burn the downloaded .ISO image to a CD in the correct manner. If you don't have the appropriate burning software already installed, then please download and install ImgBurn and use the "Write image file to disc" button. The CD will then be bootable.
ImgBurn http://www.imgburn.com/index.php?act=download


Let me know how you get on with the temperature monitoring software, which software you are using, and what CPU temperature range you are seeing under normal usage conditions.

Edited by AustrAlien, 30 November 2010 - 11:11 PM.

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#3 Rachel_01

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Posted 01 December 2010 - 09:26 AM

Hey AustrAlien,

I'll be starting on these tonight (10-11 hours from this post.) and will keep you updated on choices and progress. I'm cool w/ burning ISOs... Made my first slip disk a few weeks ago ;-)

Talk to you soon!

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