[conspire] Parts is Parts

Rick Moen rick at linuxmafia.com
Fri Apr 11 00:11:59 PDT 2008

Quoting David Fox (dfox94085 at gmail.com):

> People think they've got the killer game workstation that's fast as
> anything but don't try to run something like prime95 (aka mprime, or
> GIMPS - the Great Internet Mersenne Prime Search) whiich is good at
> detecting problems, although it isn't designed of course per se to do
> that - it's just the enormous amount of calculations it's got to do.

Sounds plausible.  The only reason I keep falling back on kernel
compiles with "make -j NN" for RAM-testing is that it just _always_
seems to do the trick.  If it doesn't error out with something like 
a kernel oops or such, after four or five compile runs (and NN is high 
enough to exercise all the RAM), you can safely conclude that your RAM
really is good.

> I thought the same thing, having been use to parity ram on my first xt
> and later class boxes. I used to sneer at some of the other people
> with RAM that didn't have any parity checking - especially given
> (then-big) memory spaces one would come to the conclusion that it was
> certainly needed.

My friend Richard Couture's opinion, at the time, was that it was going
to be a problem for DOS/Win9x/NT and NetWare users, but not really for
us Linux/BSD people:  He pointed out that *ix is, in general, really
good at showing clear and loud signs of distress, if you feed it bad
RAM.  Or, at least, if an ongoing series of spontaneous reboots, or
kernel oopses, or system halts on account of kernel panics don't alert
you to something being drastically wrong, you aren't paying attention.  ;->

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