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Vista 32bit BSODs -- Sound Issue? Card recommendation?

Last response: in Windows Vista
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March 12, 2008 5:32:51 PM

I just upgraded the following build (that was getting frequent BSODs in XP Home) to Vista 32bit Premium. This was my 3rd Intel motherboard (each had roughly same issues). Now, wouldn't you know it, I'm getting BSODs in Vista. The VISTA error messages that do show up after rebooting often acknowledge that this is a Vista problem, and will suggest a fix -- none of which have worked (and at least one of them wouldn't load -- was told to install it but that "didn't apply" when I tried). This motherboard has the Realtek ALC880 audio chipset.

The latest STOP error I'm getting is 0x00000124. (something about the 2nd processor clock...)

I've installed a MS fix associated with Intel processors w/no change.

However, most of what I'm reading on discussion boards is saying that this is a sound driver issue. I've seen Realtek, Soundblaster, and Creative drivers mentioned. (drivers? chipsets? -- sorry -- don't know what they're specifically talking about)

[Prior to reading so many articles about sound drivers I had run memtest, changed timings, voltages, changed video card drivers (from nVidia site, EVGA site, and those provided by Vista), sound drivers (from most recent back to Vista-provided), etc. I realize that I'm mixing memory brands, but have found no errors pointing specifically to memory. I've also tried removing one stick and still get the same problem]

Does anyone out there have any experience with this problem? Have you found a fix? I've heard that some people have gotten rid of the BSODs by disabling onboard sound, but I don't know if getting a separate sound card would fix the problem. I don't know enough about sound card manufacturers to know what to avoid or to know what's been thoroughly tested with Vista.

Thanks. Mcaren

ECS 945P-A (1.1) LGA 775 Intel 945P ATX Motherboard
Intel Core 2 Duo E6300 Conroe 1.86GHz LGA 775 Processor Model BX80557E6300
MASSCOOL 8WA741 92mm Ball CPU Cooler
ePOWER ZU-550W ATX12V Version 2.0 / EPS12V 550W Power Supply
Kingston 1GB 240-Pin DDR2 SDRAM DDR2 800 (PC2 6400) Desktop Memory
Patriot 1GB 240-Pin DDR2 SDRAM DDR2 800 (PC2 6400) Desktop Memory Model PSD21G8002
EVGA 256-P2-N615-TX GeForce 7600GT 256MB 128-bit GDDR3 PCI Express x16 SLI Supported Video Card
SAMSUNG SpinPoint T Series HD501LJ 500GB 7200 RPM SATA 3.0Gb/s Hard Drive
U.S. Robotics USR5417 PCI Wireless MAXg Adapter
March 12, 2008 11:07:39 PM

Well, if it makes any difference, I disabled onboard audio in bios and checked the device manager in Vista afterwards and saw no audio devices. BSOD'd again -- this time Stop 0x00000101 (haven't looked at that code yet to see what it means).

Geesh...

I'm in the realm of having only the my Intel Processor, EVGA nVidia 7600GT and a SATA hard drive as common denominators for all of my Windows XP & Vista BSODs. I've tried two types of RAM, different motherboards (one w/nVidia chipset and at least one without) -- different codes, but still BSODs. Stop errors vary, so makes finding the culprit hard.

Have not tried Kubuntu on this motherboard yet. I did run it on my last two (as a dual boot w/XP) and it did not crash.

Any ideas? Thanks. mcaren
March 13, 2008 3:17:05 AM

Have you tried testing the hard drive with any tools or utilities?
March 14, 2008 12:42:05 PM

Yes, I've tested the hard drive using some UBCD Win, (and a couple of other ones -- too many to remember). I would not think it was the hard drive simply because I've also tested these builds using other hard drives as the boot drive (at least w/the XP builds). I didn't with this one because I only had about 14GB free on an old HD and I didn't want to risk having too little space for a successful Vista install.

I'm not sure about the processor tho. It's so hard to tell from Windows errors what the problem actually is -- the errors seem to vary with every software or hardware configuration change, and they aren't consistent with the hardware (if applicable) error that they mention.

I seem to remember about a year ago having a few months of BSOD-free computer use (another motherboard & XP) -- I had disabled several XP services at the time. I can't remember what caused me to have to reinstall (which started the whole BSOD thing again); probably some software program that required a service to be restarted (I didn't take good notes to remember a "good" configuration). That'll teach me...

I was convinced with my last motherboard that the crashes were due to nVidia driver issues (nVidia chipset as well as video); now I don't know what to do. I am tempted to buy another CPU, but really don't have the extra money to risk that not being the problem.

I'm also crashing in safe mode... if that gives anyone a clue.

Thanks. mcaren
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