How to Use Memtest86+ to Test Your PC's Memory Subsystem by Matt from Gaslamp Computers

Why would you run Memtest86+ ?

If your computer is crashing, it hangs and you have to re-boot it, or you get a blue screen, or it re-boots for no reason, one of the possible causes is that your computer has bad memory. You would run Memtest86+ to see if your PC has a bad memory subsystem.

Memtest86+ can be found at Download the latest version of the pre-compiled ISO zip file. This will allow you to run Memtest86+ from a bootable CD. Memtest86+ is released under the terms of the Gnu Public License (GPL). There are no restrictions for use, private or commercial.

Save the downloaded zip file to your PC desktop, then right-click on the file's name and select Extract in the popup menu that appears. You need to burn the extracted ISO file as an image to a CD. Then put the CD in your drive and re-start your computer.

When Memtest86+ runs it will detect your CPU and the the amount of cache on your CPU. It will detect your chipset and the amount of memory in your system.

Memtest86+ will indicate the percentage of the pass that it has done. It can take a long time to get to 100 percent. It's recommended that you run Memtest86+ overnight to detect any errors in your PC's memory subsystem.

Memtest86+ is not a diagnostic tool. It is not going to tell you what is wrong your PC's memory. It is not going to tell you how to fix it. It is just going to tell you that there is something wrong with your PC's memory.

Memtest86+ will indicate the pass that it's on and the errors. Even one error is not acceptable. If you get even one error there is something wrong with your PC's memory subsystem.

If you have an error or errors, You can replace the memory sticks yourself. If you have multiple memory sticks in you system, you can pull out one of them, reboot your computer, and run Memtest86+ again on one stick, and then run it on the other stick. If Memtest86+ finds errors on one and not the other, then that one stick has gone bad.

Memtest86+ can take a very long time to run a pass, and because Memtest86+ runs random tests on random sections of memory, you might find errors on subsequent passes. If you leave Memtest86+ running overnight you should be able to get multiple passes in.

If you run Memtest86+ for ten passes, and it finds not errors, you can probably, but not definitively, count out your PC's memory subsystem as being part of what's causing your computer to crash.