Back at the all-digital CES 2021 trade show, ASUS and the other big motherboard vendors announced its Z590 models designed for Intel's LGA1200 processors. With many of the models now common knowledge, Twitter technology enthusiast @momomo_us points out that ASUS is bundling MemTest86 inside the BIOS of its Republic of Gamers motherboards.

MemTest86 is a well known piece of software for diagnosing memory failures, not just in faulty memory, but also provides troubleshooting capabilities for unstable memory overclocks. It is known that Intel's Rocket Lake processors will have a stronger integrated memory controller (IMC) than its current Comet Lake counterparts, as we finally move up to DDR4-3200 native support. This is also prevalent in the available Z590 motherboard memory listings, with many boards including kits as fast as DDR4-5333 in its QVL lists for overclocked memory. 

As per @momomo_US's tweet, it looks as though ASUS has penned a deal with PassMark software to allow it to integrate MemTest86 directly into its UEFI firmware. This looks as though it will be only available on select Republic of Gamers models. MemTest86 is also available to all users, although without UEFI integration, users can download it onto a bootable USB flash drive and diagnose memory faults and unstable overclocks this way. 

With Intel and AMD both making strides in its out of the box Turbo and Boost clock speeds, it seems ASUS is emphasizing memory performance. It uses its own 'secret sauce', which it calls Optimem. It is a primary feature on its motherboards, which ASUS states should allow for tighter memory latencies at equivalent voltages. 

At present, it is not entirely clear exactly which Z590 models will be distributed with MemTest86 integrated into the UEFI firmware. As more Z590 models hit the retail shelves in the coming months, we should see a clearer picture.

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Source: @momomo_US

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  • abufrejoval - Monday, February 1, 2021 - link

    Should be a lot of fun finding all these rowhammer suceptabilitites that just keep getting worse and worse...

    https://arxiv.org/pdf/1904.09724.pdf
    Reply
  • Duwelon - Monday, February 1, 2021 - link

    Could be wrong, but I doubt MemTest86 can detect RowHammer at all, it tends to read / write large patches of RAM as quickly as possible and won't stop on any single row long enough to trigger any corruption that the attack describes.

    Anyway this feature is long overdue and I hope they bring it over to X570 boards too.
    Reply
  • Duwelon - Monday, February 1, 2021 - link

    Nevermind! Apparently they added a "Hammer" feature in 6.2 designed exactly for this, nice to know. Reply
  • Kougar - Monday, February 1, 2021 - link

    Shame, Memtest86+ was better last I tried them both out Reply
  • calc76 - Tuesday, February 2, 2021 - link

    memtest86+ finally put out a new update last April after not having been updated in 7 years.

    It will be interesting to see if it manages to continue to be maintained at all, it is certainly well behind memtest86 at this point.
    Reply
  • npz - Tuesday, February 2, 2021 - link

    Good luck to the dev with the old opensource fork, but even the current update is just a bugfix maintenance update still on 5.x from all those years, and still beta and waaaay behind Passmark's memtest Reply
  • Kougar - Tuesday, February 2, 2021 - link

    Is it really better now? I didn't remember the free version allowing USB boot, will give it a try. Reply
  • Valantar - Tuesday, February 2, 2021 - link

    I can never remember which is which, but IIRC the older one (which I'm guessing is not Passmark's test) has a bug causing freezes on multicore CPUs. Which is... rather problematic for a stability test. I remember having so many freezes stability testing my Ryzen system before finally figuring out that it was the test and not my RAM... Reply
  • npz - Tuesday, February 2, 2021 - link

    pretty convenient I guess... but it would seem more useful for AMD's platform than Intel as AMD is much more memory sensitive and stands to gain more with IF clock tied to mem clock, and more fragile with users pushing mem OC'ing. Reply
  • Alexvrb - Tuesday, February 2, 2021 - link

    Agreed, I would love to see manufacturers integrate this into AMD boards as well. Reply

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