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Re: Opteron or Athlon 64 FX?

On Thu, Sep 07, 2006 at 10:03:29AM -0400, dtutty@porchlight.ca wrote:

> What about the merits of ECC memory?  My previous computers have always
> had it and the hardware-HOWTO says to always use it.  Now, it seems,
> that if one wants ECC they have to go Opteron.  What has changed?  Is
> generic memory so reliable that ECC is no longer necessary?  How do the
> errors that ECC would normaly fix show themselves?  

It depends. If the memory is really bad, then you'll get all kinds of
crashes. Running memtest86 over a night usually detects these problems
and you can send back the memory module to the vendor.

On the other hand, if the memory is just a little unstable, then
memtest86 might not be able to detect it, and you might get silent data
corruption which you do not notice until much later. This is rare enough
that you usually do not have to worry about it for a home computer.


     MTA SZTAKI Computer and Automation Research Institute
                Hungarian Academy of Sciences

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