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RAM memory check?

Discussion in 'Windows XP' started by Antares 531, May 8, 2010.

  1. Antares 531

    Antares 531 Flightless Bird

    Is there an easy, straight forward way to check the RAM memory sticks
    in my computer? This is an older computer, running Windows XP Pro with
    SP3 installed.

    The computer has a Gigabyte S-Series motherboard...GA-P35-DS3L with an
    Intel P35 Express chipset.

    I set it up with an Intel Core 2 Duo CPU, E6750l @ 2.66 GHz and two
    2.67 GHz, 2.0 GB RAM sticks.

    From time to time, when I try to start this computer it will beep a
    series of beeps of about one second on and one second off. At this
    time the CPU cooling fan will start and stop in sync with the beeps.

    I can press the OFF switch and do a restart and this usually clears
    the problem for the time being, but it will show up again the next
    time I do a cold start. This may indicate a thermally related problem,
    but I don't know how to check this out.

    Sometimes, during shut-down, I see a very brief error message that
    doesn't last long enough for me to read, but it seems to be indicating
    a problem with writing or reading some RAM address.

    How is the best way to check the RAM out and verify that the problem
    is in the RAM sticks, before I go buy replacements?

    Thanks, Gordon
     
  2. PaulM

    PaulM Flightless Bird

    Try here:
    http://www.memtest86.com/

    --
    Paul's XP and Vista Help
    -----------------------------------------
    www.paulsxp.com
    ---------------------------------------
    Paul's Forum
    --------------------------------------
    www.paulsxp.com/forum
    --------------------------------------


    "Antares 531" <gordonlrDELETE@swbell.net> wrote in message
    news:ipdbu5lvqt13bi606dmaddu8vvqo4brlqb@4ax.com...
    > Is there an easy, straight forward way to check the RAM memory sticks
    > in my computer? This is an older computer, running Windows XP Pro with
    > SP3 installed.
    >
    > The computer has a Gigabyte S-Series motherboard...GA-P35-DS3L with an
    > Intel P35 Express chipset.
    >
    > I set it up with an Intel Core 2 Duo CPU, E6750l @ 2.66 GHz and two
    > 2.67 GHz, 2.0 GB RAM sticks.
    >
    > From time to time, when I try to start this computer it will beep a
    > series of beeps of about one second on and one second off. At this
    > time the CPU cooling fan will start and stop in sync with the beeps.
    >
    > I can press the OFF switch and do a restart and this usually clears
    > the problem for the time being, but it will show up again the next
    > time I do a cold start. This may indicate a thermally related problem,
    > but I don't know how to check this out.
    >
    > Sometimes, during shut-down, I see a very brief error message that
    > doesn't last long enough for me to read, but it seems to be indicating
    > a problem with writing or reading some RAM address.
    >
    > How is the best way to check the RAM out and verify that the problem
    > is in the RAM sticks, before I go buy replacements?
    >
    > Thanks, Gordon
     
  3. Michael

    Michael Flightless Bird

    http://www.memtest86.com/download.html

    --


    "Don't pick a fight with an old man.
    If he is too old to fight, he'll just kill you."


    "Antares 531" <gordonlrDELETE@swbell.net> wrote in message
    news:ipdbu5lvqt13bi606dmaddu8vvqo4brlqb@4ax.com...
    > Is there an easy, straight forward way to check the RAM memory sticks
    > in my computer? This is an older computer, running Windows XP Pro with
    > SP3 installed.
    >
    > The computer has a Gigabyte S-Series motherboard...GA-P35-DS3L with an
    > Intel P35 Express chipset.
    >
    > I set it up with an Intel Core 2 Duo CPU, E6750l @ 2.66 GHz and two
    > 2.67 GHz, 2.0 GB RAM sticks.
    >
    > From time to time, when I try to start this computer it will beep a
    > series of beeps of about one second on and one second off. At this
    > time the CPU cooling fan will start and stop in sync with the beeps.
    >
    > I can press the OFF switch and do a restart and this usually clears
    > the problem for the time being, but it will show up again the next
    > time I do a cold start. This may indicate a thermally related problem,
    > but I don't know how to check this out.
    >
    > Sometimes, during shut-down, I see a very brief error message that
    > doesn't last long enough for me to read, but it seems to be indicating
    > a problem with writing or reading some RAM address.
    >
    > How is the best way to check the RAM out and verify that the problem
    > is in the RAM sticks, before I go buy replacements?
    >
    > Thanks, Gordon
     
  4. Bruce Chambers

    Bruce Chambers Flightless Bird

    Antares 531 wrote:
    > Is there an easy, straight forward way to check the RAM memory sticks
    > in my computer? This is an older computer, running Windows XP Pro with
    > SP3 installed.
    >
    > The computer has a Gigabyte S-Series motherboard...GA-P35-DS3L with an
    > Intel P35 Express chipset.
    >
    > I set it up with an Intel Core 2 Duo CPU, E6750l @ 2.66 GHz and two
    > 2.67 GHz, 2.0 GB RAM sticks.
    >
    > From time to time, when I try to start this computer it will beep a
    > series of beeps of about one second on and one second off. At this
    > time the CPU cooling fan will start and stop in sync with the beeps.
    >
    > I can press the OFF switch and do a restart and this usually clears
    > the problem for the time being, but it will show up again the next
    > time I do a cold start. This may indicate a thermally related problem,
    > but I don't know how to check this out.
    >
    > Sometimes, during shut-down, I see a very brief error message that
    > doesn't last long enough for me to read, but it seems to be indicating
    > a problem with writing or reading some RAM address.
    >
    > How is the best way to check the RAM out and verify that the problem
    > is in the RAM sticks, before I go buy replacements?
    >
    > Thanks, Gordon



    You can use MemTest86 (http://www.memtest86.com/) It's free. Then you
    can check with the motherboard manufacturer for any additional
    diagnostic utilities.

    Additionally, the motherboard's manufacturer's web site should be able
    to tell exactly what that specific pattern (number and interval) of the
    "Beep Codes" means.

    Since you suspect a "thermally related problem," you should also check
    to ensure that all of the computer's airways are free of obstruction and
    that all of the cooling fans are working. Further, you should blow out
    any dust or debris that has built up inside the computer's case. Sadly,
    though, it it does turn out that you do have a "thermally related
    problem," you may well have to replace the damaged component(s); thermal
    damage is irreversible.


    --

    Bruce Chambers

    Help us help you:
    http://www.catb.org/~esr/faqs/smart-questions.html

    http://support.microsoft.com/default.aspx/kb/555375

    They that can give up essential liberty to obtain a little temporary
    safety deserve neither liberty nor safety. ~Benjamin Franklin

    Many people would rather die than think; in fact, most do. ~Bertrand Russell

    The philosopher has never killed any priests, whereas the priest has
    killed a great many philosophers.
    ~ Denis Diderot
     
  5. Bruce Chambers

    Bruce Chambers Flightless Bird

    Antares 531 wrote:
    > Is there an easy, straight forward way to check the RAM memory sticks
    > in my computer? This is an older computer, running Windows XP Pro with
    > SP3 installed.
    >
    > The computer has a Gigabyte S-Series motherboard...GA-P35-DS3L with an
    > Intel P35 Express chipset.
    >
    > I set it up with an Intel Core 2 Duo CPU, E6750l @ 2.66 GHz and two
    > 2.67 GHz, 2.0 GB RAM sticks.
    >
    > From time to time, when I try to start this computer it will beep a
    > series of beeps of about one second on and one second off. At this
    > time the CPU cooling fan will start and stop in sync with the beeps.
    >
    > I can press the OFF switch and do a restart and this usually clears
    > the problem for the time being, but it will show up again the next
    > time I do a cold start. This may indicate a thermally related problem,
    > but I don't know how to check this out.
    >
    > Sometimes, during shut-down, I see a very brief error message that
    > doesn't last long enough for me to read, but it seems to be indicating
    > a problem with writing or reading some RAM address.
    >
    > How is the best way to check the RAM out and verify that the problem
    > is in the RAM sticks, before I go buy replacements?
    >
    > Thanks, Gordon



    You can use MemTest86 (http://www.memtest86.com/) It's free. Then you
    can check with the motherboard manufacturer for any additional
    diagnostic utilities.

    Additionally, the motherboard's manufacturer's web site should be able
    to tell exactly what that specific pattern (number and interval) of the
    "Beep Codes" means.

    Since you suspect a "thermally related problem," you should also check
    to ensure that all of the computer's airways are free of obstruction and
    that all of the cooling fans are working. Further, you should blow out
    any dust or debris that has built up inside the computer's case. Sadly,
    though, if it does turn out that you do have a "thermally related
    problem," you may well have to replace the damaged component(s); thermal
    damage is irreversible.


    --

    Bruce Chambers

    Help us help you:
    http://www.catb.org/~esr/faqs/smart-questions.html

    http://support.microsoft.com/default.aspx/kb/555375

    They that can give up essential liberty to obtain a little temporary
    safety deserve neither liberty nor safety. ~Benjamin Franklin

    Many people would rather die than think; in fact, most do. ~Bertrand Russell

    The philosopher has never killed any priests, whereas the priest has
    killed a great many philosophers.
    ~ Denis Diderot
     
  6. Paul

    Paul Flightless Bird

    Antares 531 wrote:
    > Is there an easy, straight forward way to check the RAM memory sticks
    > in my computer? This is an older computer, running Windows XP Pro with
    > SP3 installed.
    >
    > The computer has a Gigabyte S-Series motherboard...GA-P35-DS3L with an
    > Intel P35 Express chipset.
    >
    > I set it up with an Intel Core 2 Duo CPU, E6750l @ 2.66 GHz and two
    > 2.67 GHz, 2.0 GB RAM sticks.
    >
    > From time to time, when I try to start this computer it will beep a
    > series of beeps of about one second on and one second off. At this
    > time the CPU cooling fan will start and stop in sync with the beeps.
    >
    > I can press the OFF switch and do a restart and this usually clears
    > the problem for the time being, but it will show up again the next
    > time I do a cold start. This may indicate a thermally related problem,
    > but I don't know how to check this out.
    >
    > Sometimes, during shut-down, I see a very brief error message that
    > doesn't last long enough for me to read, but it seems to be indicating
    > a problem with writing or reading some RAM address.
    >
    > How is the best way to check the RAM out and verify that the problem
    > is in the RAM sticks, before I go buy replacements?
    >
    > Thanks, Gordon


    I'll add one other suggestion.

    Currently, your two RAM sticks are plugged in "dual channel".
    That doesn't guarantee complete test coverage.

    You can also install both the sticks, on the same channel.
    That is called "single channel mode".

    The advantage of doing that, is you can run two checks in
    single channel mode. For example, in single channel mode,
    the RAM sticks are "stacked" in the address space. Say the
    first time, you are unlucky, and the bad memory hides in the
    BIOS space below 1 megabyte.

    +---+
    | |
    | |
    | |
    | |
    | |
    | |
    +---+

    +---+
    | |
    | |
    | |
    | |
    | | \___ Bad memory in BIOS 640KB area. Can't be tested.
    | X | /
    +---+

    Now, swap the two sticks in their single channel configuration.
    The configuration is still single channel, but the DIMMs are
    now stacked differently in the address space. The bad memory is
    now "half way up". Running memtest86 this time, will show the error.

    +---+
    | |
    | |
    | |
    | |
    | |
    | X | ___ Bad memory can be detected
    +---+

    +---+
    | |
    | |
    | |
    | |
    | | \___ BIOS 640KB area.
    | | /
    +---+

    So if you aren't seeing any errors, without moving the DIMMs,
    you can reconfigure the memory sticks, and run a couple additional
    tests in single channel mode.

    Paul
     
  7. Antares 531

    Antares 531 Flightless Bird

    On Sat, 08 May 2010 14:22:46 -0500, Antares 531
    <gordonlrDELETE@swbell.net> wrote:

    >Is there an easy, straight forward way to check the RAM memory sticks
    >in my computer? This is an older computer, running Windows XP Pro with
    >SP3 installed.
    >
    >The computer has a Gigabyte S-Series motherboard...GA-P35-DS3L with an
    >Intel P35 Express chipset.
    >
    >I set it up with an Intel Core 2 Duo CPU, E6750l @ 2.66 GHz and two
    >2.67 GHz, 2.0 GB RAM sticks.
    >
    >From time to time, when I try to start this computer it will beep a
    >series of beeps of about one second on and one second off. At this
    >time the CPU cooling fan will start and stop in sync with the beeps.
    >
    >I can press the OFF switch and do a restart and this usually clears
    >the problem for the time being, but it will show up again the next
    >time I do a cold start. This may indicate a thermally related problem,
    >but I don't know how to check this out.
    >
    >Sometimes, during shut-down, I see a very brief error message that
    >doesn't last long enough for me to read, but it seems to be indicating
    >a problem with writing or reading some RAM address.
    >
    >How is the best way to check the RAM out and verify that the problem
    >is in the RAM sticks, before I go buy replacements?
    >
    >Thanks, Gordon


    Thanks to all of you for your quick responses. I downloaded the
    memtest34a.zip file but could not unzip it because it requires a
    password. How may I get this password?

    Gordon
     
  8. Paul

    Paul Flightless Bird

    Antares 531 wrote:
    > On Sat, 08 May 2010 14:22:46 -0500, Antares 531
    > <gordonlrDELETE@swbell.net> wrote:
    >
    >> Is there an easy, straight forward way to check the RAM memory sticks
    >> in my computer? This is an older computer, running Windows XP Pro with
    >> SP3 installed.
    >>
    >> The computer has a Gigabyte S-Series motherboard...GA-P35-DS3L with an
    >> Intel P35 Express chipset.
    >>
    >> I set it up with an Intel Core 2 Duo CPU, E6750l @ 2.66 GHz and two
    >> 2.67 GHz, 2.0 GB RAM sticks.
    >>
    >>From time to time, when I try to start this computer it will beep a
    >> series of beeps of about one second on and one second off. At this
    >> time the CPU cooling fan will start and stop in sync with the beeps.
    >>
    >> I can press the OFF switch and do a restart and this usually clears
    >> the problem for the time being, but it will show up again the next
    >> time I do a cold start. This may indicate a thermally related problem,
    >> but I don't know how to check this out.
    >>
    >> Sometimes, during shut-down, I see a very brief error message that
    >> doesn't last long enough for me to read, but it seems to be indicating
    >> a problem with writing or reading some RAM address.
    >>
    >> How is the best way to check the RAM out and verify that the problem
    >> is in the RAM sticks, before I go buy replacements?
    >>
    >> Thanks, Gordon

    >
    > Thanks to all of you for your quick responses. I downloaded the
    > memtest34a.zip file but could not unzip it because it requires a
    > password. How may I get this password?
    >
    > Gordon


    This is the MD5 sum for the download I got.

    3a1054b84b996b57f77ec685fec8aa2e *memtest34a.zip 67,514 bytes

    I had no trouble extracting that with 7-ZIP. There is
    no evidence here of a password.

    install.bat
    memtest.bin
    rawrite.exe
    README.txt

    The README.txt file accompanying the download, should be
    opened with Wordpad.

    If you upload the file in question to virustotal.com, you should
    end up on this page. I got here using the hash search function.
    If you don't have a copy of the MD5sum program or equivalent,
    uploading the file, will compute the MD5sum for you.

    http://www.virustotal.com/analisis/...4c92b4abdf567b02603c609c8ca3a98f17-1268488951

    It could be the file is corrupted, or your version of Winzip is old
    or something.

    Paul
     
  9. HeyBub

    HeyBub Flightless Bird

    Antares 531 wrote:
    > Is there an easy, straight forward way to check the RAM memory sticks
    > in my computer? This is an older computer, running Windows XP Pro with
    > SP3 installed.
    >
    > The computer has a Gigabyte S-Series motherboard...GA-P35-DS3L with an
    > Intel P35 Express chipset.
    >
    > I set it up with an Intel Core 2 Duo CPU, E6750l @ 2.66 GHz and two
    > 2.67 GHz, 2.0 GB RAM sticks.
    >
    > From time to time, when I try to start this computer it will beep a
    > series of beeps of about one second on and one second off. At this
    > time the CPU cooling fan will start and stop in sync with the beeps.
    >
    > I can press the OFF switch and do a restart and this usually clears
    > the problem for the time being, but it will show up again the next
    > time I do a cold start. This may indicate a thermally related problem,
    > but I don't know how to check this out.
    >
    > Sometimes, during shut-down, I see a very brief error message that
    > doesn't last long enough for me to read, but it seems to be indicating
    > a problem with writing or reading some RAM address.
    >
    > How is the best way to check the RAM out and verify that the problem
    > is in the RAM sticks, before I go buy replacements?
    >
    > Thanks, Gordon


    In spite of another's assertion that thermal problems cannot be fixed, there
    is at least one that can.

    If one (or more) of the contacts for your RAM is bent, slightly corroded,
    crooked, or otherwise making a poor contact when cold, the chip might just
    make sufficient contanct when slightly warmed as the metal contacts bend or
    expand.

    Here's a cheap (possible) fix. Remove the RAM modules. Go over the contacts
    lightly with a pencil eraser. Re-seat the sticks.

    Also, prayer doesn't cost anything.
     
  10. Antares 531

    Antares 531 Flightless Bird

    On Sun, 9 May 2010 12:02:46 -0500, "HeyBub" <heybub@gmail.com> wrote:

    >Antares 531 wrote:
    >> Is there an easy, straight forward way to check the RAM memory sticks
    >> in my computer? This is an older computer, running Windows XP Pro with
    >> SP3 installed.
    >>
    >> The computer has a Gigabyte S-Series motherboard...GA-P35-DS3L with an
    >> Intel P35 Express chipset.
    >>
    >> I set it up with an Intel Core 2 Duo CPU, E6750l @ 2.66 GHz and two
    >> 2.67 GHz, 2.0 GB RAM sticks.
    >>
    >> From time to time, when I try to start this computer it will beep a
    >> series of beeps of about one second on and one second off. At this
    >> time the CPU cooling fan will start and stop in sync with the beeps.
    >>
    >> I can press the OFF switch and do a restart and this usually clears
    >> the problem for the time being, but it will show up again the next
    >> time I do a cold start. This may indicate a thermally related problem,
    >> but I don't know how to check this out.
    >>
    >> Sometimes, during shut-down, I see a very brief error message that
    >> doesn't last long enough for me to read, but it seems to be indicating
    >> a problem with writing or reading some RAM address.
    >>
    >> How is the best way to check the RAM out and verify that the problem
    >> is in the RAM sticks, before I go buy replacements?
    >>
    >> Thanks, Gordon

    >
    >In spite of another's assertion that thermal problems cannot be fixed, there
    >is at least one that can.
    >
    >If one (or more) of the contacts for your RAM is bent, slightly corroded,
    >crooked, or otherwise making a poor contact when cold, the chip might just
    >make sufficient contanct when slightly warmed as the metal contacts bend or
    >expand.
    >
    >Here's a cheap (possible) fix. Remove the RAM modules. Go over the contacts
    >lightly with a pencil eraser. Re-seat the sticks.
    >
    >Also, prayer doesn't cost anything.
    >

    Thanks, Bub, I tried that and even tried seating only one memory card
    at a time but this didn't resolve the problem. I'm not sure that the
    problem is with the memory cards. That is, it may be a motherboard
    problem such as a bad solder joint or cracked conductive trace on the
    board.

    I still haven't gotten the MemTest software to work. I read the Readme
    text file that came with the download and this seems to indicate that
    it is a Linux software. This may mean that it won't work on a Windows
    XP setup.

    Gordon
     
  11. SC Tom

    SC Tom Flightless Bird

    "Antares 531" <gordonlrDELETE@swbell.net> wrote in message
    news:kb0eu51ar97922fas8717ecrm15ajefd1i@4ax.com...
    > On Sun, 9 May 2010 12:02:46 -0500, "HeyBub" <heybub@gmail.com> wrote:
    >
    >>Antares 531 wrote:
    >>> Is there an easy, straight forward way to check the RAM memory sticks
    >>> in my computer? This is an older computer, running Windows XP Pro with
    >>> SP3 installed.
    >>>
    >>> The computer has a Gigabyte S-Series motherboard...GA-P35-DS3L with an
    >>> Intel P35 Express chipset.
    >>>
    >>> I set it up with an Intel Core 2 Duo CPU, E6750l @ 2.66 GHz and two
    >>> 2.67 GHz, 2.0 GB RAM sticks.
    >>>
    >>> From time to time, when I try to start this computer it will beep a
    >>> series of beeps of about one second on and one second off. At this
    >>> time the CPU cooling fan will start and stop in sync with the beeps.
    >>>
    >>> I can press the OFF switch and do a restart and this usually clears
    >>> the problem for the time being, but it will show up again the next
    >>> time I do a cold start. This may indicate a thermally related problem,
    >>> but I don't know how to check this out.
    >>>
    >>> Sometimes, during shut-down, I see a very brief error message that
    >>> doesn't last long enough for me to read, but it seems to be indicating
    >>> a problem with writing or reading some RAM address.
    >>>
    >>> How is the best way to check the RAM out and verify that the problem
    >>> is in the RAM sticks, before I go buy replacements?
    >>>
    >>> Thanks, Gordon

    >>
    >>In spite of another's assertion that thermal problems cannot be fixed,
    >>there
    >>is at least one that can.
    >>
    >>If one (or more) of the contacts for your RAM is bent, slightly corroded,
    >>crooked, or otherwise making a poor contact when cold, the chip might just
    >>make sufficient contanct when slightly warmed as the metal contacts bend
    >>or
    >>expand.
    >>
    >>Here's a cheap (possible) fix. Remove the RAM modules. Go over the
    >>contacts
    >>lightly with a pencil eraser. Re-seat the sticks.
    >>
    >>Also, prayer doesn't cost anything.
    >>

    > Thanks, Bub, I tried that and even tried seating only one memory card
    > at a time but this didn't resolve the problem. I'm not sure that the
    > problem is with the memory cards. That is, it may be a motherboard
    > problem such as a bad solder joint or cracked conductive trace on the
    > board.
    >
    > I still haven't gotten the MemTest software to work. I read the Readme
    > text file that came with the download and this seems to indicate that
    > it is a Linux software. This may mean that it won't work on a Windows
    > XP setup.
    >
    > Gordon


    Try this one: Memtest86+ http://www.memtest.org:80/

    Create the boot CD, put it in, boot up, and let it run. Any of the ones like
    this (and the original Memtest) that create a boot CD care less what the OS
    is since it never gets that far in the boot process.
    --
    SC Tom
     
  12. Paul

    Paul Flightless Bird

    Antares 531 wrote:

    >
    > I still haven't gotten the MemTest software to work. I read the Readme
    > text file that came with the download and this seems to indicate that
    > it is a Linux software. This may mean that it won't work on a Windows
    > XP setup.
    >
    > Gordon


    Have your blank floppy ready. Double click install.bat .
    Install.bat uses rawrite.exe to prep the floppy. The contents
    of the floppy should be removed in the process, and the copy
    of memtest.bin will be put in its place. Note that, this installer,
    does not place a file system on the floppy. You cannot use "dir" in
    DOS and list the contents of the floppy. And yet, the floppy will
    be bootable, after it has been prepared.

    install.bat
    memtest.bin
    rawrite.exe
    README.txt

    As long as your boot order has the floppy first, you can then
    insert the floppy, shutdown and reboot, and the floppy should
    start to boot.

    This is the contents of the install.bat file. You can view the
    ..bat file, by dropping it on an open notepad window. So
    this installer, uses the rawrite program, to write the
    memtest.bin code into the floppy, destroying the previous
    contents of the floppy in the process.

    *******
    @echo off
    REM Memtest86 DOS/Windows install script

    echo ##############################################################
    echo # #
    echo # Memtest-86 Installation #
    echo # This installation creates a bootable floppy disk. #
    echo # #
    echo # Memtest is a standalone memory test and must be booted #
    echo # from a floppy disk. Memtest cannot be executed under #
    echo # DOS or Windows. #
    echo # NOTE: Windows will not be able to read the floppy after #
    echo # the test is installed. This is normal. #
    echo # #
    echo ##############################################################
    echo .

    REM Are both files here?
    if not exist .\rawrite.exe goto NO_PGM
    if not exist .\memtest.bin goto NO_BIN

    rawrite -f memtest.bin
    if ERRORLEVEL == 1 goto ERROR
    echo Done!
    echo To run Memtest86, leave the floppy in the drive and reboot.
    goto EXIT

    :NO_PGM
    echo Error: Can't find "rawrite.exe". This program must be in the
    echo same directory as the install script.
    goto ERROR

    :NO_BIN
    echo Error: Can't find "memtest.bin". This file must be in the
    echo same directory as the install script.
    goto ERROR

    :ERROR
    echo Installation failed!

    :EXIT
    *******

    HTH,
    Paul
     

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