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Memtest86+ Returns After 9-Year Hiatus With Support for the Latest Hardware

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Those who spent the 90s and early 2000s tinkering with computers will remember an encounter or two with Memtest86. They won’t be good memories necessarily, because you only needed Memtest86 when something was busted. This invaluable tool has been unmaintained for almost a decade, but it has risen from the dead, not unlike many of the nonfunctional PCs it helped diagnose. The new Memtest86+ version 6.0 is finally available, and it’s still completely free and open source.

Tracking down the cause of system errors in a PC can be grueling and confusing, particularly when the issue is a bad stick of RAM. These intermittent errors are often even harder to track down, and that’s why Memtest86 was created in the 90s. It provides a bootable environment that takes all the other variables out of the equation, allowing you to test your RAM in isolation to either rule it out or confirm it as the cause.

Memtest86 appeared to die in 2013 when PassMark acquired the original application, even though the Memtest86+ fork was still generally available. Version 6.0 is the first update in the past nine years, and the program now has support for all the latest PC hardware, including DDR4 and DDR5 RAM. It’s hard to believe but DDR3 was the most recent standard back in 2013 when development petered out. The new version also adds XMP 3.0 support.


CPU support has been upgraded, as well. Memtest86+ now works with the latest Intel and AMD chipsets. It understands all of AMD’s Ryzen parts from the 1000 series all the way up to the newest Ryzen 7000. There’s also better support for pre-Zen AMD chips. On the Intel side, support goes all the way up to the new 13th Gen Core processors. The program supports up to 256 cores per machine, far more than any mainstream CPU currently has. There’s even, weirdly, support for some ancient Nvidia nForce chipsets in the new version.

You can get the new Memtest86+ release from the official website in both Windows and Linux flavors. The operating system requirement is just for the creation of boot media. The Windows version will make the bootable USB for you, but Linux users will be able to dump the raw ISO image on any suitable drive with the tool of their choice. If you want to check out the source code, it’s freely available on GitHub.

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