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DDR3 non-ECC vs DDR3 ECC memory

post #1 of 5
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Hi everyone, i would like to know what is the difference in performance/stability when using an ECC memory vs a non-ECC memory, i know that ECC means Error Checking Code, but what does it really mean? does ECC memory work with my computer?

Also, i've heard that ECC memory usually have a temp sensor as well.
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post #2 of 5
"Error-correcting code memory (ECC memory) is a type of computer data storage that can detect and correct the more common kinds of internal data corruption. ECC memory is used in most computers where data corruption cannot be tolerated under any circumstances, such as for scientific or financial computing." - Wikipedia

typically ECC memory is so expensive there's really no need. used to be that way.
as a typical user/consumer you have no use for ECC memory.
Edited by l0max - 12/15/12 at 7:57pm
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post #3 of 5
In situations where 1 bit soft errors would occur, ECC can fix them. In an otherwise stable system, these errors will still occur every so often from things like radioactive decay, or cosmic rays. However, they are not common. I estimate that with modern memory, you will see a single soft error once every 30-60 days with 16GiB of RAM.

ECC is critical for systems that need to run continually and have near perfect up time, or those that do long duration calculations that cannot contain errors. However, it's generally a waste for even the most demanding home uses.

Still, (unbuffered) ECC is not that expensive, so if you have a system that supports it, you may as well go for it, if there is any chance it will be useful. Do note however, that you need both motherboard and CPU support to make use of ECC. Generally this means server or workstation class boards and Xeon or Opteron CPUs.
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post #4 of 5
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Thanks guys for your responses +rep
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post #5 of 5
ECC memory does have a temp sensor. Although I haven't found a use for them yet
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