geoff.yates
1 Nickel

755 MT, cache issues and corrupt downloads

I have a Dell Optiplex 755 that I purchased second hand on eBay a fair while back. It is the mini tower variant. The only item that I know to have been added to it after manufacture is an nVidea Quadro FX580 video card. I have used the computer for a few years without any problems.

CPU Intel Core 2 Duo E6850 3 GHz 64bit
RAM Crucial 8Gb (replaced 4Gb of existing memory)
SSD Crucial SSD 500Gb (replaced Seagate 250Gb Hard Disk Drive)
Network Adaptor Intel 82566DM-2
Video adaptor nVidea Quadro FX580 video card
(there is another Intel video adaptor on board)

Windows 7 Professional 64 bit

Recently I decided to give it a general hardware upgrade and fitted 8Gb of brand new Crucial memory, and also a brand new Crucial solid state 500Gb drive.

I then reinstalled Windows 7 Pro x64 using a Dell re-install disk. Then I used the Optiplex 755 Drivers and Utilities Disk to see which items of hardware would require drivers, although by now of course most of the drivers on the disk have been superseded.

Everything seemed to go quite well and to begin with it seemed that all was perfect. It was a little bit later that problems started to appear.

I use a mp3 download facility and one option is to play the track on-the-fly (using a player provided by the browser) as it is being downloaded. I have done this hundreds of times over the years without any problem. But after the hardware upgrade I am now finding that sometimes the track will start to play for just a few seconds and then jump forwards to a later point, play there for a while and then jump again to some other point. It is as if the mp3 has been broken into roughly three or four parts and those have not been joined up in the correct sequence.

When this happens in Firefox, the same problem will also be present in Chrome. Also if in those circumstances I try to download the track and then play it in Windows Media Player the problem is still there - downloading from either of the browsers.

I asked the mp3 download service provider about the problem and they said to clear my cookies and empty the cache. This was certainly good advice - it worked! But not for long. After a fairly short time the problem as back, although I did discover it was only the cache that needed to be cleared, and not the cookies.

So at least I knew the problem was the cache.

As time went by I noticed that there were other problems, all of which involved some sort of download. One file I attempted do download three times, from exactly the same link, and each of the downloads were different. Yet on a different computer there was no problem, and comparing multiple downloads of the same file from the same link showed no difference.

Another issue was with various downloads not working at all. Firefox gave a message roughly like THIS_OR_THAT and Chrome gave a message something like 'invalid credentials' or 'expired certificate'. Those are only rough examples to show the general format of the messages. Attempting the same downloads from the same site at the same time using a different computer worked just fine.

The only changes I have made are:
Replace 4GB of original memory with 8GB of Crucial memory
Replace Seagate 250GB Hard Disk Drive with Crucial 500GB Solid State Drive
I am not sure which version of Internet Explorer I had to start with and therefore cannot be sure if it has changed.
The computer was previously set to never sleep or hibernate, after the upgrade it is set to sleep or hibernate.

I have spent quite some time searching the internet for solutions and it seems that two answers might be the drivers for the network adaptor or the installation/use of Internet Explorer 11, and maybe versions 10 and 9 as well. I am not sure which version of IE was installed before the upgrade - I never used it!

I have updated the drivers for the network adaptor and rolled back the version of Internet Explorer to 8, which is the version Win 7 Pro x64 comes with when first installed.

Before the recent upgrade I had used the computer for years and hundreds and thousands of downloads without bothering to clear the cache even once! Or needing to.

Maybe the rollback to IE8 will do it - but maybe not. I have tried so many things and none of them seemed to work.

So that is why I am asking here to see if anyone else has had the same problems or has any ideas as to what the cause of the problems might be. As I see it if the computer worked before there should be some way of getting it sorted out again. Unless, of course, the fitting of the new increased memory or the fitting of the new solid state bigger capacity drive are in some way the cause of the problem.

Big thanks in advance to anyone that can help.

 

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9 Replies
Tesla1856
6 Thallium

Re: Optiplex 755 MT cache issues and corrupt downloads

There are so many things it could be, and ways to troubleshoot it.

Have you tried running this mystery "MP3 website" from another computer or laptop? Meaning, are you sure the problem is even on "your side"? While their website is the obvious problem, your ISP (remember, Net Neutrality is abolished), your router, etc. are all possible candidates.

You are using Windows-7 which is very old. At least 3 versions of Windows behind.
You are running Windows-7 64bit which is not only old but rare. Not sure why you expect everything to work fine.

You are going the wrong way with IE and your browsers. IE-11 is basically abandon-ware. Since you can't run Edge, you should be running (latest) Chome or FireFox.

There are well-known and established procedures for checking a machine's ram, HDD/SSD, NIC, etc.

I've seen problems like yours before:
1. Customer with old Dell could not download any files properly. It was a piece of OEM Trend Micro Anti-Virus that would not uninstall (even with their removal tool).

2. Long ago I had a computer doing similar random things online. It was a bad NIC. How the error-checking wasn't catching it, I'll never know.

3. Not to long ago, on an old Windows-7 computer ... files getting corrupted. Turned out to be a (new expensive) bad SanDisk flash-drive. Windows could not tell files were getting corrupted on writing to it. The flash-drive's controller was masking-it somehow. Needless to say, I never buy SanDisk anything any more. IIRC, I used this program called FastCopy (to track it down) because it VERIFIED every file write. Very easy to see problem.

Like any other complex computer/network problem ... you minimize environment and find something that works 100%. Then, you slowly more forward. Keep good notes.


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bradthetechnut
3 Cadmium

Re: Optiplex 755 MT cache issues and corrupt downloads

You might need to rollback your SSD to a 256 GB model.  I'm impressed you got an Optiplex 755 to take an SSD; though SSD's aren't listed in the manual.  Optiplex 755 Manual

I checked on Dell Precision's 3500 & 5500 due to their large capacities, including multiple HDD's.  While they can take HDD's in the TB's, the max listed for SSD is 256 GB.  The spec. sheet for a 7500 didn't list a max SSD, though SSD is mentioned.

I've experimented with exceeding max capacities for storage and ultimately my device froze.  Yours appears to be in some working order, but is giving you a lot of problems you didn't have before.

My suggestion is try a 256 GB SSD instead of 500 GB.  If you're still having problems, going back to HDD(s) might be your best bet.

Please continue to post as to how it goes.  Best of luck!! Smiley Happy

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geoff.yates
1 Nickel

Re: Optiplex 755 MT cache issues and corrupt downloads

I have tried downloading from the "mystery mp3 site" using another computer. A dell D530. This is fed from the same modem and the same ISP. The only difference is that the link between the modem and the D530 is wireless whereas the link between the modem and the 755 is wired (CAT 6). The mp3 site plays just fine in the D530. In addition I tried accessing it from a mobile phone (cell phone) running android and it works just fine there too.

So it does seem that the problem is "my side". But not my ISP or my router - as both serve the D530 with no problems. And that leaves the computer.

It is true that Win 7 Pro is very old, and 64 bit rare, however that is what was running before without the problems I have stated above. So that suggests it is not the old, rare operating system.

I do not normally use IE at all. My main browsers are Firefox and Chrome. The version of Chrome is always up to date, but with Firefox I keep to an older version that I specially like. This older version did not cause any problem before the upgrade, and in addition it causes no problem on the D530 which I have it running on as well. So that suggests it is not the browser/s I am using.

I am not aware of the procedures for checking a machine's ram, HDD/SSD, NIC, etc - I would be interested to find out about them. The NIC is (I think) intrinsic to the motherboard so it is unlikely that has changed. Of course the HDD/SSD and the RAM have both been changed so those might be likely causes.

I notice from the post by bradthetechnut that the problem might be the capacity of the SSD (too high) so that might be another pointer in that direction.

I've seen problems like yours before:
1. This was a clean install, so there cannot be any remains of previous Anti-Virus.

2. The NIC has not been changed, and is intrinsic to the motherboard. So the chances of that having become defective seem very small to me.

3. Maybe it is the new SSD. It is something that has changed, plus of course the comment from bradthetechnut as referred to above.

Looking at the above I think the first thing to try might be reverting to the original hard disk drive which was a Seagate 250GB. It will be exactly the same one that was removed from the computer before the upgrade. Unfortunately the software on that became completely **bleep** up when I tried to get rid of Kaspersky Anti Virus and therefore it will need to be another clean install. That means that it might not be possible to exactly replicate the software situation that existed previously.

Thank you for your time and effort helping me.

 

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geoff.yates
1 Nickel

Re: Optiplex 755 MT cache issues and corrupt downloads

Thank you for your suggestions. I will try a clean re-install on the original hard disk drive. Unfortunately the files on that became **bleep** up when I tried to uninstall Kaspersky Anti Virus.

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Tesla1856
6 Thallium

Re: Optiplex 755 MT cache issues and corrupt downloads


@geoff.yates wrote:

1. I have tried downloading from the "mystery mp3 site" using another computer. A dell D530. This is fed from the same modem and the same ISP. The only difference is that the link between the modem and the D530 is wireless whereas the link between the modem and the 755 is wired (CAT 6). The mp3 site plays just fine in the D530. In addition I tried accessing it from a mobile phone (cell phone) running android and it works just fine there too.

2. So it does seem that the problem is "my side". But not my ISP or my router - as both serve the D530 with no problems. And that leaves the computer.

3. It is true that Win 7 Pro is very old, and 64 bit rare, however that is what was running before without the problems I have stated above. So that suggests it is not the old, rare operating system.

4. I do not normally use IE at all. My main browsers are Firefox and Chrome. The version of Chrome is always up to date, but with Firefox I keep to an older version that I specially like. This older version did not cause any problem before the upgrade, and in addition it causes no problem on the D530 which I have it running on as well. So that suggests it is not the browser/s I am using.

5. I am not aware of the procedures for checking a machine's ram,

6. HDD/SSD, NIC, etc - I would be interested to find out about them. The NIC is (I think) intrinsic to the motherboard so it is unlikely that has changed.

6a. Of course the HDD/SSD and the RAM have both been changed so those might be likely causes.

7. I notice from the post by bradthetechnut that the problem might be the capacity of the SSD (too high) so that might be another pointer in that direction.

8. I've seen problems like yours before:
1. This was a clean install, so there cannot be any remains of previous Anti-Virus.

9. 2. The NIC has not been changed, and is intrinsic to the motherboard. So the chances of that having become defective seem very small to me.

10. 3. Maybe it is the new SSD. It is something that has changed, plus of course the comment from bradthetechnut as referred to above.

11. Looking at the above I think the first thing to try might be reverting to the original hard disk drive which was a Seagate 250GB. It will be exactly the same one that was removed from the computer before the upgrade.

12. Unfortunately the software on that became completely **bleep** up when I tried to get rid of Kaspersky Anti Virus and therefore it will need to be another clean install. 

13. Thank you for your time and effort helping me.

 


1. Perfect, good troubleshooting

2. Agreed

3. Sometimes you just have to move forward. Sometimes to fix strange problems. You have to move forward eventually anyway, and when clean-installing a new HDD/SSD ... it's as good a time as any.

4. You were stuck on IE for some reason and going backwards. Was just trying to say "Run a currently supported browser (not IE-11)".

5. Machine's (long) ePSA is good. www.MemTest86.com is even better. Not a single error should appear in 2-consecutive passes.

6. It's trivial to disable on-board NIC and drop-in a spare PCIe NIC.

6a. Correct

7. This is because SSDs were expensive back then, and that is what Dell sold. There is no 256gb limit. However, that in no way means the new SSD is good.

8. It was just an example of how something hidden can effect downloads. Uninstaller-tool was used and there were no (visible) browser plugins left either.

9. See above. You can weigh probabilities now, but keep it in mind for later.

10. You can test SSD with:
a. SMART status - Crystal DiskInfo is favorite. His DiskMark is a good stresser. Passmark has a free SMART tool also.
b. Manufacturer supplied diag-suite
c. Copying files around drives with that FastCopy util (with Verify on).

11. Yes, a different disk since SSD was new and then the problems started. Likelihood of new SSD being problem depends on above testing.

12. That is strange, but Anti-Virus digs-in deep now-days (it has to). When you move to Windows-10 64bit, stock/free Windows-Defender is good.

13. You are welcome. I like a good puzzle challenge. I'm just glad it's not one of the system I use or support. 

 


Registered Microsoft Partner and Apple Developer
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bradthetechnut
3 Cadmium

Re: Optiplex 755 MT cache issues and corrupt downloads

#7 by Tesla1856 I believe is referring to:  There is no 256 GB SSD limit listed for the Optiplex 755, as the manual doesn't refer to any SSD's or capacities.

If a 256 GB SSD limit seems strange as it's not "250 GB," that's straight from the spec. sheets for Dell Precision's as mentioned.

If an item exceeds storage capacity, it doesn't have to be full to cause problems.

Back to the 755 - You are right on with 8 GB being the max capacity for RAM.  Max speed being 800 MHz.  667 MHz was another option for it.  You said you installed brand new memory, so all the chips should be exactly the same and not causing any trouble.  If in doubt or if you want to check it out, a memory test can still be ran as Tesla1856 suggested in #5.

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bradthetechnut
3 Cadmium

Re: Optiplex 755 MT cache issues and corrupt downloads

Going a little newer, but staying in the Optiplex family, a pointer or a little fyi I thought you'd like to know - Optiplex's 7010 & 9010 list an SSD capacity of 128GB.  Those are at the upward end of that generation of Optiplex's.  An Optiplex 390 doesn't list an SSD.

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geoff.yates
1 Nickel

Re: Optiplex 755 MT cache issues and corrupt downloads

Hi everyone and sorry for the delay in replying.

After much experimentation and wasted time it does indeed turn out that the problem was the SSD. Unfortunate that Crucial claimed it to be compatible with the Optiplex 755 when it seems that it is not!

And thanks for the mention of Crystal Disk Info. I tried fitting a second-hand conventional hard disk drive and tested it with Crystal. The result was 'caution' or something like that. So I took that out and then fitted a brand new conventional hard disk drive. So all seems to be OK right now.

One good thing about Dell is this community forum. More than once I have come here and found solutions to problems. A big thank you to everyone that has helped on this occasion!

 

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bradthetechnut
3 Cadmium

Re: Optiplex 755 MT cache issues and corrupt downloads

You're welcome! 

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I'm a big fan of Dell, a Dell user, and not an employee. This forum is mainly user to user with occasional moderation or additional knowledge by a Rockstar or Dell employee.
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