Hardware diagnostics

Hardware diagnostics

Post by Rod McCal » Wed, 21 Jul 2004 06:34:46

I am having a number of problems with my computer crashing and suspect it's
a hardware fault, as it happens randomly. Also when compiling a new kernel
GCC crashes with a segmentation fault but this happens and different stages
during the process, so can't be put down to any kernel file.

Can any recommend some diagnostics software?


(FYI: I use Mandrake Linux 9.2)

Dr Rod McCall
Runtime Revolution Ltd
www.runrev.com (Try the free trial today for Lin/Win/Mac)
Runtime Revolution - User-Centric Developer Tools

Hardware diagnostics

Post by nick » Wed, 21 Jul 2004 06:52:06

Could be a bad memory stick, make a boot cdrom with memtest86
( http://www.yqcomputer.com/ ) and run a through check for memory errors.
Also may be heat related - clean the dust from the inside of the PC with a
can of compressed air and make sure the case fans and cpu heatsink fan are
running properly.

Also had these occur when the Power supply was on the fritz and mb/cpu
wasn't getting proper voltage under load


Hardware diagnostics

Post by Bit Twiste » Wed, 21 Jul 2004 07:00:59


Hardware diagnostics

Post by Klaat » Wed, 21 Jul 2004 10:11:53

Memtest86 might be worth a try, random crashes could be a memory problem.
You may want to try carefully cleaning the memory contacts and reseating.
Power off of course.

Hardware diagnostics

Post by Robert Gri » Wed, 21 Jul 2004 12:11:52

I once had a 486 DX4-100 that crashed when I was compiling a kernel. It
ran fine after that until I compiled the kernel again, then it crashed
again in a different place. When I finally got around to reading the
"Signal 11" FAQ it mentioned hardware failures, so I popped the cover
off -- and discovered the CPU fan was turning at about six RPM. A fan
borrowed from a Pentium heat sink and kludged into position worked well
until I was able to acquire a new heat sink with a working fan and fix
my borken computer.

Mine either wouldn't start or would crash after a very short time
between the time I added the second hard drive, CD burner (along with
the CD-ROM), and IDE interface card and the time I replaced the 250 Watt
power supply with a 350 Watt supply.

Rod, HTH.
To design the perfect anti-Unix, write an operating system that thinks
it knows what you're doing better than you do. And then adds injury to
insult by getting it wrong.
- esr

Hardware diagnostics

Post by ERAC » Wed, 21 Jul 2004 22:36:37

The best diagnostics I've seen are those that boot their own OS from
a floppy. However, they are not "free" either as beer or speech. One
I have used in the past is PC-Technician. Do a Google search for
"hardware diagnostics" and browse some of the 20,000+ hits a bit
then come asking for recommendations.

For PC-Technician see: http://www.yqcomputer.com/

If there is a "free speech|beer" release of a diagnostics program
that comes close to PC-Technician I've never found it.

Gene (e-mail: gene \a\t eracc \d\o\t com)
Linux era4.eracc.UUCP 2.4.22-28mdkenterprise i686
08:27:05 up 143 days, 2:25, 12 users, load average: 0.36, 0.11, 0.03
ERA Computer Consulting - http://www.yqcomputer.com/
eCS, OS/2, Mandrake GNU/Linux, OpenServer & UnixWare resellers

Hardware diagnostics

Post by Rod McCal » Thu, 22 Jul 2004 03:38:42

Thanks to everyone for their help. The memtest program found there was no
fault with the memory, so that's a start. However given todays small
technical issue it could be a video card issue, basically random ASCII
characters appeared during boot up, just after a load of boot messages and
in place of the NVIDIA screen. However the comments above may also be
relevant as I did upgrade the CD ROM recently.

Many thanks to everyone.



Dr Rod McCall
Runtime Revolution Ltd
www.runrev.com (Try the free trial for Lin/Win/Mac)
Runtime Revolution - User-Centric Developer Tools

Hardware diagnostics

Post by Martin 53N » Sun, 25 Jul 2004 08:02:09


GIMPS Torture Test (part of GIMPS)
Manufacturer's HDD test utility

All already backed up?

Good luck,

---------- OS? What's that?!
- Martin - To most people, "Operating System" is unknown & strange.
- 53N 1W - Mandrake 10.0.1 GNU Linux
---------- http://www.yqcomputer.com/

Hardware diagnostics

Post by Anil Mamed » Sun, 25 Jul 2004 19:49:13

I had that problem. It was due to a conflict between the PCI graphic and
ethernet cards. I've changed the place for the PCI cards.

Anil Mamede

Hardware diagnostics

Post by Greg » Sat, 29 Apr 2006 20:46:03

Also posted on I.redhat

Hi, i'm running FC4 2.16 i386 on a 1.8 Celeron with 512mg ram.

Recently I noticed that my Gigabyte DVD reader/writer was having trouble
reading dvds, after ruling out the possibility that the disc might be
faulty, is it possible that there might be a componant of the drive that
is malfunctioning?

I want to know if there are any diagnostic tools installed or can
download to check if the drive is faulty or not?

Many Thanks,

Hardware diagnostics

Post by Gran » Sat, 29 Apr 2006 20:53:11

Optics + dust --> failure over time. Compare reading stamped vs
burnt DVDs?

Memory fault -- brain fried

Hardware diagnostics

Post by Robert Glu » Sun, 30 Apr 2006 02:54:23

I'm also on the lookout for a good CD/DVD-RW drive
diagnostics program.

You may find something here:


Also, if you have a Dell computer, among their support CD's
you may find a comprehensive diagnostics program that among
other hardware will put your DVD-ROM drive through its
paces. Other manufacturers may include similar support on
their OS CD's.