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System Memory Loss?

By brwn5eyd7grl ·
Ok, this question has multiple parts..

First things first, how it happened:
Late one evening I was surfing the net on my computer (Its a Dell 2400, Operating System-Windows XP)Out of nowhere, my computer screen turned completely blue and white lettering covered the page.. reading through, it said something about the memory being low, and to try to reboot my computer, so I did.
When I restarted, my computer wouldnt boot, there was a file missing, corrupt etc etc. Running diagnostics i discovered that I had experienced System Memory Loss.. It also showed me that there were no problems with my Hard Drive.
I dont wish to lose my files that I have on my computer, so I had a friend try to save my Hard Drive on his computer, but when we attempted to open the files, it wouldnt open. Again with the corrupt thing. As a last resort I attempted to reformat.. however, when I did this, setup couldnt run because .systemdd was corrupt or missing..
I called Dell Tech Support, but they offered no help, and said that they could send out a technician with "a part" *what part are they talking about??* So I just said forget it, Ill call back if I feel the need to go that far.

Im not the best when it comes to computers, but I have tried everything I can think of, short of throwing it out the window.. I have no idea what happend, or how, or even why at such a random time.. Any help or advice is greatly appreciated.. Thank you in advance..

Patiently yours

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by master3bs In reply to System Memory Loss?

It sounds to me like you might have bad memory (RAM.)

First things first, if you are not comfortable working on computers and your computer is under warranty, you might be better off letting the Dell technician

Assuming you don't want to do that, here are some basic steps.

Be advised that openign your pc cover and removing RAM is likely to void your warranty.

If that is ok with you, open your pc case. Be sure to touch something metal not attached to the motherboard before touching any pc parts.

Now locate the RAM. If you have more than one stick, remove all but one and try running the system. Try this with each RAM stick and you may be able to determine that one of them is faulty.

Here is a website with information on how to do the above steps:

If you happen to have a notebook instead; refer to this site:

This site has some good information on how to troubleshoot memory issues, particularly good on listening to the BIOS beeps.

If you can download it from another pc and get the file to work on yours, here is a link to a memory tester:

I haven't used it myself, so I don't know how good it works.

Hope this helps!


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by HAL 9000 Moderator In reply to System Memory Loss?

The most likely reason that the files could not be opened on another computer is that you need to take ownership of any files stored in the "My Documents" folder so unless you followed MS directions you can not gain access to these files to save them. For your information the following URL will give you directions to save your DATA without loosing it.;en-us;308421

You can also run a Diagnostic tool from CD that is available from

Now if you have formatted the HDD you can recover the files by using XWays Davory which has a trial version available from

This is only a trial version and is only capable of recovering the first 200 K of any file so if it works you can buy it on line for about 42 Euros the alternative is Ontrack product which is quite a lot more expensive but is easier to use but the base version starts around the 1.2 K $ for a single used License so the X-Ways Product is far cheaper.

What you experiences is commonly known as The Blue Screen of Death and has been with Windows since its inception. From your description it sounds very much like a RAM fault and if that is the case just replacing the Faulty RAM Stick should have the computer up and running in the time taken to replace the RAM stick as by the sounds of things you have been unable to erase the HDD.

If the unit is still Under Guarantee leave it to Dell to fix but do not let them format the HDD as you'll loose all your Data in the process which is something that companies like Dell like to do they first attempt to reinstall the OS to see if the computer works and then if it doesn't they start to fault find. If they are sending someone out it is always advisable to have a spare HDD available for them to attempt the reinstall upon rather than loosing all of your Data.

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by HAL 9000 Moderator In reply to

Once you get it working again start Saving your Data regularly at least once a week so that if something goes wrong with your computer you always have a current copy of your data under 1 week old available to recover from. This is far cheaper than spending the several K$ involved in sending a HDD away to a specialized Data Recovery Company.


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by brwn5eyd7grl In reply to System Memory Loss?

Thanks for all your help.. turns out I had a bad memory stick and it hadta be replaced.. *sigh* Lost everything.. hadta reformat the whole computer, owell.. guess its time to start building new!

Thanks again

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