# How can I check my RAM and hard drive for errors?

What tools can I use to check that my memory and hard drive are still working correctly?

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Sorry, I dont know how to add comment, so I will post this as question. (OK, I know now, I need 50 rep. points) Will sudo /touch/forcefsck check all my HDD's/parrtion's or just the one where Ubuntu is installed? –  Miroslav Ranković Nov 23 '10 at 22:47
You misunderstood. touch is an application. Use sudo touch /forcefsck –  B. Roland Jul 21 '11 at 11:02

Boot with Ubuntu Live CD/USB stick (or press & hold Shift before the splash screen, to enter GRUB menu), and select TEST MEMORY with memtest86+! See this illustration, don't wait for graphical UI!

Illustration:

To test HDD, you can use S.M.A.R.T. data reader, palimpsest disk utility, press Super/Dash button, start typing Disk Utility (for Gnome: System > Administration > Disk utility), and check your S.M.A.R.T. data (YOU MUST UNMOUNT THAT DISK FIRST, YOU WANT TO CHECK ITS FILESYSTEM - that's why, use a Live CD/USB stick - for S.M.A.R.T. reading, the disk could be mounted/used)!

Illustration:

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Disk Utility doesnt work for me. I get error because I use entire disk. –  vrcmr Nov 23 '10 at 19:53
Hi! You say, that your root partition doesn't checkable with "Check filesystem" button? –  B. Roland Nov 23 '10 at 22:27
yes I can't check it. –  vrcmr Nov 24 '10 at 21:49
Yeah, you might be in a live system. Use a Live CD, and if it requires, use "Unmount Volume" button! –  B. Roland Nov 25 '10 at 17:45

For HDD, you can use badblocks program which is installed with the e2fsprogs program. It's a command-line program and a read-only scan can be performed with:

sudo badblocks -v /dev/sda


-v causes verbose information to be displayed, /dev/sda is the device name of the disk.

For RAM, you can find memtest86+ on any live CD or USB. It'll prompt you if there's something wrong with your RAM.

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I can't find badblocks in the archive –  Jorge Castro Nov 22 '10 at 2:27
It's in e2fsprogs which should be installed by default. –  poolie Nov 23 '10 at 23:42
just type \$ which badblocks to see if you have it installed, but by sure you will. –  Robert Vila Nov 9 '12 at 4:27

Hard disk:

• open up a command line, (Applications → Accessories → Terminal) and type

sudo touch /forcefsck


then reboot your computer. The operating system will perform a hard disk check (fsck) for you during the boot.

Ram:

• When the system is booting, just after the POST (power-on self test) screen, hit the ESC key a few times until you see the GRUB boot menu.

You should see a list of different Linux kernels. Right at the bottom, there's an option captioned somethimg like Memtest86, this will thoroughly test your memory for corruption (also, it will take ages).

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Your suggestion for hard disk work for me. Suggestion for Ram doesn't work. –  vrcmr Nov 23 '10 at 19:48
what do you mean by it doesn't work? –  Stefano Palazzo Nov 23 '10 at 22:36
Clarification: the "hard disk check" with fsck is actually a filesystem integrity check, not a hard disk surface check or something. –  Lekensteyn Jul 21 '11 at 10:35

My solution for 10.04 (That works for me):

To test RAM I'm using Live CD 10.04:

1. I reboot my computer with it in cd drive;
2. then I choose my language;
3. then I choose Test Ram.

For testing HDD works:

sudo touch /forcefsck