How To Use Windows Memory Diagnostic Tool to Find Out Defective RAM

A defective memory stick could cause all sorts of problems to your computer. If your PC frequently freezes, reboots, or brings up a Blue Screen of Death, bad memory could just be the single cause of all these problems. Running a memory diagnose would be a good thing to do as the first step of your troubleshooting process.

There are many tools out there that can do this job nicely but do you know that Microsoft actually comes with one as well that can do the same as many 3rd party tools? It’s called Windows Memory Diagnostic, and you can search for it in the Start menu to find it.

Searching for Windows Memory Diagnostic tool

The tool offers 2 options to start the diagnostic process, either Restart now and check for problems, or do so the next time when starting your computer.

Windows Memory Diagnostic

If you choose to restart and check the problems now, your computer will restart and boot into the memory diagnostic program. There is nothing you can do but watch and wait. When it’s done, which doesn’t take long, it will restart back into Windows.

Windows Memory Diagnostic tool running scanning

Now let’s check out the result.

Open Event Viewer, right-click System under Windows Logs category and choose Filter Current Log…

Event Viewer - Filter current log

Then select MemoryDiagnostics-Results as the Event sources in Filter Current Log dialog window, and click OK.

Event Viewer - Event Sources

Double-click the event log entry to see the details whether there are any errors detected.

Memory Diagnostic Result

Phew…it looks like the memory sticks in my computer are all in work-order.

Note that this Windows Memory Diagnostic tool is available in Windows 7, 8.1, and Windows 10. It could be your first tool to use in your troubleshooting toolbox.

Kent Chen

Microsoft MVP, IT Professional, Developer, Geek, and the co-founder of Next of Windows.

Last updated: 03/31/2016

Posted in: Tips & Tricks , Tools
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