|If neither scandisk won't work (it is run at a boot up) and you appear not to be able to run HD test utils... I'm wondering just what you're doing and how you're doing it. It doth seem very strange that you cannot run either approach successfully...? Are you following the process for (windows) scandisk correctly; likewise those for the HD utils? I have hard time believing the Samsung utils won't work when properly executed. Again are you reading and following "exactly" the instructions for it use?|
Scandisk is an option in the tools section of the drive properties; and when invoked you are told it can/will be scheduled to run when next you boot up. Thus one can wait until then, or simply reboot... and it will run...
As I said earlier... I have not found mem-test utils to be truly that beneficial; preferring to test/try by substitution etc. Have you reduced to a single stick (128Meg min) and tried with each in turn, and also perhaps a truly known to be good stick?
You might try a debug routine - but it's not an area i which I have "any" personal experience.
Windows can be set to run a bootlog file (records the entire boot-up sequence); and there may be an XP equivalent of the old '9x Dr. Watson which often noted what caused '98 to crash; but again I'm not au-fait with it... Perhaps see if others here can advise, and maybe a trawl on the www?
Overall the "erratic" aspect of this issue does still push me to either memory or an overheated (in the past) cpu... Remember that some apps. do push a cpu hard (demand/require a lot of work from the cpu) and thus its temperature can/will rise... If it has overheated in the past - it will likely be very vulnerable in the future...?
Also have you noted "exactly" which utils/apps give you the problems; and, having done so, checked on the appropriate websites for any input/help?