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Question Is my RAM stick the issue?

scratchmouse

Honorable
Jul 16, 2014
7
1
10,510
0
Hi all

About a month ago I had some problems with my custom built PC when it started taking progressively longer and longer to boot into Windows 7. To cut a long story short, I eventually threw money at the problem and replaced the motherboard, CPU and RAM. The current specs are:

Intel Core i5-8400 2.8 GHz
MSI MPG Z390 GAMING EDGE
Patriot Viper Elite 2 x 16GB
Western Digital BLACK SERIES 1 TB 3.5" 7200RPM
Crucial M550 256 GB 2.5" SSD
Asus GeForce GTX 970

I installed with an official Microsoft USB a copy of Windows 10 Home and for a month was all good. Then, a little fan cable extension kit arrived in the post and I used it to get the front case fan installed (it gets hot in Australia). I turn my PC on after this and get an error: "0xc000000f - A required device isn't connected or can't be accessed". Made sure everything was plugged in correctly and no difference. Eventually I do a fresh re-install of Windows 10 on the SSD and it works fine, except on every boot it tells me I have 2 versions of Windows 10 installed - one on volume 2 (which works fine) and one on volume 6 (which gives the error). So for a few days I ignore that and my PC still works okay. I can only find 4 volumes when I list them on DISKPART at this stage.

Last night my PC stops booting again. I eventually get it to system restore back to an earlier state and it boots but I figure maybe the SSD is dead. Also the PC at this point is taking a while to boot even to the BIOS let alone Windows. I try re-installing Windows again and suddenly I can't get past copying files across. I try each HD individually with the other disconnected and still nothing.

This morning I had booked a repair guy to come and look but I figured I'd have one last shot at it myself. Took out one of the new sticks of RAM and suddenly everything works fine - Windows reinstalled without a hitch and no more asking which operating system to load up.

I have since put my RAM stick back in and am now running MemTest86 - I'm 1:21 in on the 2nd pass and so far no errors at all. Is it possible that in installing the case fan I dislodged the RAM stick a little and caused all this? Or is it a dodgy stick that hasn't been detected by MemTest86 yet? Or am I missing something entirely?

Thanks for any help in advance, I have been scratching my head here for some time.
 

Proximon

Illustrious
Moderator
Honestly before I got to the end I started worrying about rootkits. I think you should take steps to deal with that possibility.

That said, we who have built many computers have all experienced the phenomenon of doing some simple upgrade in a case and accidentally knocking a part loose.

You always have to be patient with memtest.
 

scratchmouse

Honorable
Jul 16, 2014
7
1
10,510
0
Thanks for the reply Proximon. So I've had a little read about rootkits - I'm making sure my new Windows installation is up to date and also about to run Malwarebytes Anti-Rootkit. Is there any other step I should take?

I did another 2 runs of MemTest86 and still no error, I intend to leave it on overnight to be sure.

I sincerely hope it was just merely knocking a part loose that caused all this!

Edit: ran the anti-rootkit and it didn't find anything
 
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