2650 and memtest failures

Simon Waters simonw at zynet.net
Tue Feb 24 08:39:54 CST 2009

Looking at an issue with a DELL Poweredge 2650 which had weird RAID problems, 
whilst it was down for looking at that I stuck in a couple of GB of RAM, and 
ran memtest.

It fails memtest86 checks, the failure is always the same distance from top of 
memory, and occurs with known good memory. Just like the problem described 
here by someone else....


Failing on address 000bffedc80 3071.8MB 
Swapped memory around a but
Failing on address 0007ffedc80 (2047.8MB)

Swapping memory in any valid config gives the same error, same distance from 
top of memory.

The resolution above suggests a problem with the RAID controller firmware, so 
I'm in the process of updating both RAID firmware and BIOS revision.

Does this sound like a plausible resolution, and a sensible test case? (Short 
of replacing the box)

The DELL website recommends but doesn't mandate the Perc 3/Di firmware update, 
which seems wrong to me, unless I'm missing something, either it should be 
mandatory, or this isn't a good/complete explanation of the problem I'm 

Can I easily run DELL diagnostics (currently Debian is installed on the server 
with no diagnostics partition, I didn't see a readily supported method of 
running the DELL diagnostics), but I'm sure I use to boot them from CD many 
moons ago when I last did this.

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