[svlug] System Panic Makes My Life Easier

Rick Moen rick at linuxmafia.com
Thu Jul 28 17:44:38 PDT 2016

Quoting Ivan Sergio Borgonovo (mail at webthatworks.it):

> Hitting *hard* hardware in the proper way to test it is *hard*.
> You could get an idea about it looking at what memtest does, and I'm not 
> even sure memtest covers all memory technology.

Memtest will not always catch bad RAM.

The method whose links I posted upthread, which is running iterative
kernel compiles in a loop with 'make -j N' for sufficiently high values
of N to exercise _all_ RAM, does.  Details in the links.

> If I had to test hardware I would, as Rick suggested boot from a live 
> distro, possibly one specialized in testing hardware... and well that's 
> exactly what you find if you google it ;)
> http://www.inquisitor.ru/about/

Please note that VA-CTCS was what VA Linux Systems, Inc. used to
torture-test hardware.  It was used for multiple days of burn-in per
unit at the factory, and it was used for multiple days of burn-in on all
returned units received under RMA.

And then VA's successor in the hardware business, California Digital
Corporation, used it that way, too.  

I had the privilege of working at both those firms, and I can say that
if a machine doesn't seize up under multiple days of VA-CTCS
stress-testing, it's pretty solid.  (It does not test desktop-centric
hardware components such as GPUs, though.)

That's why it's my go-too for general hardware stress-testing to this
day, although I'd go straight to the 'make -j $BIGNUM' iterative kernel
compiling for RAM-testing and skip memtest.

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