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Computer doesn't POST with ECC RAM

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Hey there dear LTT Community,

 

I've had this idea about making a home storage server out of my old hardware and run it with CentOS + ZFS. I've gathered what I had (Gigabyte GA-M59SLI-S5 motherboard (link) with AMD Athlon 64 X2 6000+ CPU) and noticed that it is a good idea to run ZFS on an ECC RAM instead of regular one. Before purchase I've done research and it seems everything should work. Mobo manual metions a few times it supports ECC, my CPU should support it (as I've seen people commenting they have it working in such setup, with workstation-class motherboard though). Therefore after checking what kind of RAM I need to buy I've got myself a Samsung M393T5160QZA-CE6 (4x 4GB DDR2 PC-5300P) sticks. According to motherboard manual it should work as it supports up to 16GB of RAM. They fit in regular DDR2 slots and as far as I've seen should work, but after turning on... computer says no. BIOS keeps shouting at me with its speaker that there's something fishy with the memory. No matter how many sticks or which slots I use, there's memory error. Meanwhile with non-ECC memory it just POSTs fine. I have spent several hours looking what can be wrong with this setup and I'm running out of ideas. Yet I can't accept this just won't work.

 

Does anyone have any idea what am I doing wrong here?

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Ideas only.  It sounds to me like it should work too.  Apparently it isn’t though.  I might be missing something important.  I don’t work with ecc ram myself and there may be things I am not aware of.

 

ecc ram needs to be supported by everything, motherboard, cpu, and OS.  Do any of these also require some setting to do it?

 

is it possible that the ecc ram, while being otherwise usable has a problem and the complaint from the motherboard is not that it is ecc ram but that it is bad ram?

Life is like a bowl of chocolates: there are all these little crinkly paper cups everywhere.

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I would agree, it might be that a stick or two are faulty, but I've tested each stick separately in each slot. PC doesn't POST, just AWARD BIOS speaker error code. Too bad I have just this one DDR2 motherboard , so I can't test that RAM on a different one.

I might try to reach Gigabyte for help but this motherboard is stone age already so I think it is more than sure that in reply I'll receive standard EOL notice.

 

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