MemTest86+ is one of the most reliable RAM testing apps out there. However, it isn’t foolproof and will need multiple tests to prove conclusively that your RAM module is faulty, or not. If you think you may have faulty memory, here’s how to test faulty RAM for errors with MemTest86+.
Microsoft has their own tool in Microsoft Windows Memory Diagnostic, but I prefer using MemTest86+. You will need to create a bootable ISO which is available from the MemTest86+ site here. Download the file, burn it to a CD or DVD and set your computer to boot from it for this to work. You can also download an autoinstaller for USB.
Test faulty RAM for errors with MemTest86+
Once you have created your media and have rebooted from it, MemTest86+ should load and run automatically. It is a self-contained program that needs little interaction.
- Allow it to run and perform at least 8 passes. You will see ‘Pass’ in the blue progress screen. Any less than 8 can be inaccurate while anymore does not offer increased accuracy.
- MemTest86+ will automatically flag any errors in bright red. If errors appear you can either stop the test right away or allow it to finish.
- If the test completes 8 passes without error, your RAM and RAM slots are fine.
- If errors do appear, make a note of which slot has errored. Then swap RAM sticks between slots and run MemTest86+ again for the full 8 passes. If the errors follow the RAM stick, it is the stick at fault. If the errors are still for the same slot, it is the motherboard RAM slot that is faulty.
Before replacing RAM or your motherboard, check the connectors are free of dust or debris. You could try a little rubbing alcohol on the contact points of both and retest before buying new hardware. You could also leave an erroring RAM slot free on your motherboard instead of replacing the motherboard depending on your needs.