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BSoD for no apparent reason

Last response: in Windows Vista
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August 17, 2009 5:20:20 PM

I just got my first BSoD since installing vista 2 days ago alongside trusty old Linux (no games on Linux :(  ) - I don't know what caused the BSoD, but I was doing lots of stuff when it was happening:
AVG8 virus scan in background
Using 7zip to extract a 4GB 7z file straight off a double layer DVD
Starting the game 'Racedriver GRID'.

I'd started the game after I realized that my system was under enough load already - so I alt-tabbed out of it (while it was still loading) so I could kill the process (fastest way of exiting lol). About 2 minutes after I pressed alt-tab, my system completely went head over heels and threw BSoD. I know that I don't have any hardware faults, and all my drivers are fine - the only installed one is my graphics driver straight from nvidia - not even beta.

Now of course I realize the the load my system was going through at that point - but surely that shouldn't make the whole OS crash? If so, it's true what they say about Windows being unstable. I don't have much experience in windows really (been using Linux + MacOS all my computer using life). The only time I've had a kernel panic on Linux was when my HDD had a head crash and died, a while ago now.

I know that my system didn't overheat, I've subjected it to about 100 loops of the blowfish benchmark while calculating PI to 2^64 places - short version is that my system is perfectly stable heat-wise.

Thanks for any clues as to what caused this crash - if it is indeed a design fault/bug, then out goes Vista and I'll let Linux reclaim its lost HDD space. I can't deal with an OS that crashes under load.

More about : bsod apparent reason

August 17, 2009 7:38:41 PM

Please go to the control panel|system|advanced system properties|advanced|startup and recovery settings and uncheck the automatic restart box.
If you should happen to have another BSOD it will then produce a code to help find the trouble.

I hope you dont have to use it as Vista is pretty good but just in case you do.
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August 17, 2009 10:08:10 PM

pat mcgroin said:
Please go to the control panel|system|advanced system properties|advanced|startup and recovery settings and uncheck the automatic restart box.
If you should happen to have another BSOD it will then produce a code to help find the trouble.

I hope you dont have to use it as Vista is pretty good but just in case you do.


Actually I always had that option enabled - sorry I forgot to tell you what the error was. It was PAGE_FAULT_IN_NONPAGED_AREA - I forget the exact code but I'll note it down if it happens again.
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August 18, 2009 4:12:41 PM

Page faults usually indicate trouble with your memory - Please check in the Bios to ensure your Dimms are set to the manufacturer's recommended timings, speed, and voltages. That the command rate is 2T, and I also highly recommend checking and setting tRFC("Refresh to Activate Delay" - some Bios' use different initials) to 54 or greater.
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August 18, 2009 4:21:56 PM

May not be a bad idea to download and run prime95 to thoroughly test your RAM.
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August 18, 2009 4:39:42 PM

My RAM's fine, I've run memtest86+ on it and it came up fine. It's good memory with heatsinks, and it's on stock speeds/voltages. There's no reason it should have failed and anyway I know it's fine. I think it's just Windows being unstable as ever. Besides on Linux I often use my RAM to the max (virtual machines galore) and never get any problems.
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August 18, 2009 6:01:11 PM

You're the one asking for help. Take it or don't.
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August 18, 2009 6:11:47 PM

aford10 said:
You're the one asking for help. Take it or don't.


You're the one being rude. I was actually helping the people helping me by eliminating a certain answer to my problem. Have a nice day :fou: 
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August 18, 2009 6:53:05 PM

You got advice from 2 knowledgable posters pointing towards your RAM. RAM is flaky. They can work one day and not the next. You know they're fine though, no need to check. So good luck fixing your problem.
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August 18, 2009 7:07:38 PM

srynznfyra said:
Actually I always had that option enabled - sorry I forgot to tell you what the error was. It was PAGE_FAULT_IN_NONPAGED_AREA - I forget the exact code but I'll note it down if it happens again.



I poked around some - another possible cause is a rootkit virus: http://support.microsoft.com/kb/894278
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August 18, 2009 7:43:19 PM

Scotteq said:
I poked around some - another possible cause is a rootkit virus: http://support.microsoft.com/kb/894278


I doubt this is the problem actually. I only installed Vista 2 days before it happened. Also, I didn't even get a error in the event log about it...just nothing...I'm not gonna worry about it for now. I don't even use Windows 99% of the time. I'm actually posting this from Linux. If it happens again I'll start to worry. But anyway, to anyone saying windows NT doesn't crash: it does, much more than *nix. I've had multiple BSoDs on all my windows installations, on all of my computers that have come into contact with the horrendous OS (ranging from custom built machines to OEM dell optiplexes). :whistle: 
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August 18, 2009 7:55:00 PM

Sounds like user error.
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August 18, 2009 8:39:46 PM

aford10 said:
Sounds like user error.


Ahem, extracting a large file off a DVD while scanning the disk for viruses and launching a game at the same time might understandably make the system hang for a while, but it certainly should NOT make it crash. It was a vanilla vista installation with SP1, with the nvidia 190 drivers installed. It wasn't user error, it was developer error. Windows sucks! That's one of the few times that you can sound like a n00b but actually be right. Windows does, certainly, suck.
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August 18, 2009 8:45:45 PM

There's a lot of things that can cause BSODs. Your RAM could be flaky, voltage off, bad driver...there's a lot of things that it could be. You can't just blindly blame it on the OS.
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August 18, 2009 9:05:39 PM

aford10 said:
There's a lot of things that can cause BSODs. Your RAM could be flaky, voltage off, bad driver...there's a lot of things that it could be. You can't just blindly blame it on the OS.


I know that my hardware is absolutely fine. 1 and a half weeks ago my old drive failed (actually a new drive, but dud) - it was only after rigorous tests of all of my computer hardware that I finally found out it was the HDD. I've actually done 2 memtest86 tests of my RAM - it's absolutely fine. CPU's fine, well I overclocked it and ran a something like 50 loop or something of the blowfish benchmark (I forget) - EDIT: it was 100 loops actually (remember now) and I was also doing something else CPU intensive at the same time - I've sinced underclocked it to stock as I don't need the extra speed and heat. HDD's absolutely fine aswell (been very reliable ever since I got it in December last year when I built my system). Motherboard's crap but luckily that doesn't mean crapped out - it's fine. Graphics card - wouldn't probably have anything to do with this but with the core overclocked by 200MHz it still doesn't ever get over 55 degrees C. Umm, oh yeah the PSU's 420 watts and it's thermaltake and extra reliable. I measured my system on one of those PSU measurers (the antec one) and it recommended (with the 20% capacitor decay thingy) a 350 watt PSU so that should be fine. That's with an overclocked CPU and an extra DVD drive (as I had one installed then). Short version: my hardware is FINE!!!!! :D 

BTW, I'm not blaming the OS on just this, as I said I've had OS crashes (bsods) on all windows installations I've ever done on any computer with any installation disk - always less than three months after the install it seems. BTW, you can safely say that windows sucks purely because it all depends on the GUI - if the GUI crashes then the OS crashes! How stupid is that? On Linux if the GUI crashes you drop to a command line. If it was a crash due to flaky RAM or whatever you can just start it up again with something such as sudo /etc/init.d/gdm restart. I sincerely don't know why Windows decides not to run ontop of a command line.
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August 18, 2009 9:18:10 PM

If you've had BSODs on every system you've built within 3 months, you don't know what you're doing, or you've had a serious string of bad luck w/ hardware.

A bad OC could also cause BSOD.

And thermaltake is middle of the pack as far as quality.

Windows has a command prompt in the GUI and you can boot into command prompt.
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August 18, 2009 9:29:03 PM

aford10 said:
If you've had BSODs on every system you've built within 3 months, you don't know what you're doing, or you've had a serious string of bad luck w/ hardware.

A bad OC could also cause BSOD.

And thermaltake is middle of the pack as far as quality.

Windows has a command prompt in the GUI and you can boot into command prompt.


WIndows has DOS emulator GUI app. Not a command line. And it doesn't run ontop of a CLI either, it just crashes if the GUI crashes. Not good.

I haven't had bad luck with hardware, this is the only computer I've overclocked (and since returned to stock voltages, speeds, everything). And if I've had bad luck with hardware why is it that Linux runs absolutely fine, speedy, without crashes or anything on all my hardware? (except just before my old HDD crashed). Erm, thermaltake is good enough, reliable. It's not a lemon market and I'm not running a core i7 either.

What makes you think that being able to boot into a DOS CLI is the same as being a CLI based OS?
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August 19, 2009 12:03:33 AM

Didn't say it was the same. Just pointing out that there is the option to use commands when needed.

You obviously are just here to gripe about windows, since you won't take anyone's advice. Maybe you should send an email to Bill Gates.

Like I said. Good luck fixing your problem.
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August 19, 2009 12:06:30 AM

aford10 said:
Didn't say it was the same. Just pointing out that there is the option to use commands when needed.

You obviously are just here to gripe about windows, since you won't take anyone's advice. Maybe you should send an email to Bill Gates.

Like I said. Good luck fixing your problem.


Umm..I'm not talking about being able to run commands. I'm talking about a sturdy, stable system backend to fall back on.

Well seeing as windows crashed to its knees because of software error am I expected to still like it?

I know what the problem is now: the great big
Viruses,
Intruders,
Spyware,
Trojans and
Adware.

Yes: vista is a virus in my eyes!
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August 19, 2009 3:50:48 PM



..well... unlikely to have any productive discussion now. Not tracking this thread any more.
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August 19, 2009 4:27:45 PM

One other thought and you may know this already.
Check the voltage required on your ram and set it correctly in the bios.
Vista can be sensative to that.
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August 20, 2009 9:16:43 PM

pat mcgroin said:
One other thought and you may know this already.
Check the voltage required on your ram and set it correctly in the bios.
Vista can be sensative to that.


My RAM is actually very flexible with voltages (has heatsinks) - it's from a good make, Patriot. (Not that I'm a patriot or anything :) ).
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August 20, 2009 9:18:21 PM

I now know what must have caused it. There was a bad sector on the DVD, probably a scratch (the DVD's pretty low quality). Bad sectors on DVDs shouldn't cause a OS to crash, and I am blaming windows for the crash because I didn't have any notable third party drivers instlaled anyway. It was pretty much a vinilla vista installation. Vista ultimate my ***. Vista ultimate crap more like.
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August 20, 2009 10:12:27 PM

Ive had it for years with no trouble.
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August 20, 2009 10:15:08 PM

pat mcgroin said:
Ive had it for years with no trouble.


What do you do with your computer? Because I put it under load to the extreme every now and then, I also put my hardware under stress. It all seems to be utterly stable on Linux though. I haven't had a single kernel panic on Linux with my current hardware (even with my HDD that had a head crash). On windows (multiple versions, xp, vista, etc.) I've had at least 20, 30 BSoDs. Not good if you ask me.
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August 21, 2009 1:17:16 PM

Have you had a BSOD recently and able to write down the code that it produced?
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August 21, 2009 1:23:33 PM

pat mcgroin said:
Have you had a BSOD recently and able to write down the code that it produced?


No, which is a shame really. All I remembered was that it was PAGE_FAULT_IN_NONPAGED_AREA. It's the same error I used to get when I had bad sectors on my old HDD (that's now broken). This time it was bad sectors on a DVD though, which shouldn't cause a problem like this.
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