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LSASS.EXE (The Endpoint Format is Invalid)

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May 27, 2003 2:30:41 PM

I am using XP Home and twice in the past month, after having reason to reboot my PC, I have received a window entitled “LSASS.EXE – System error”, with “The Endpoint Format is Invalid” text in the window. The mouse pointer is visible but does not move and the PC has hung. This happens after the XP window showing the green bar moving from left to right disappears and is at the point when the users that can be logged on are shown. I have noticed that during boot up my Microsoft Optical USB mouse is illuminated but as soon as the XP window with the green bar appears the light goes out, as if power to the mouse has gone. Also, my USB Alcatel Speedtouch ADSL modem does not power up properly, I get a flashing red light on the left hand light on the modem. I can only press the reset switch to reboot the PC. I have gone into safe mode, where the mouse worked but not the modem. Suspecting that it may be USB related, I removed all my USB devices, scanner, printer, modem, mouse and game pad and reinserted them. The PC then booted up OK. LSASS.EXE is present under C\WINDOWS\system32 but I cannot determine what it does. I have searched the web but cannot find any reference to this problem. I can find LSASS.EXE listed many times under Google, but the links don’t provide any help. Any ideas?
May 28, 2003 11:41:30 AM

A few thoughts:

First, try disabling the Net Logon service under Administrative Tools\Component Services\Services (Local) in the Control Panel. Unless your computer is on a domain, and needs password authentication to log onto the domain, you don't need this service to run.

It sounds like you may have too many USB devices connected directly to the USB ports on the computer. There are low-powered USB devices, and high-powered USB devices. A single passive, self-powered hub (two ports) can only handle one low-powered and one high-powered device at one time ... <i>at best</i>. More than that (especially with Intel boards, which won't allow much leeway past 500mA ... if any) and one of the devices will fail to start correctly during the boot, causing an error message. In this instance, the device that isn't starting is the modem, which is why the drivers aren't loading (and the modem isn't synchronizing) during the boot. It's much like an IRQ conflict.

You might consider investing in something like a 4-port powered USB hub to handle everything you've got. (You can pick up one at a local Wal-Mart for about $20.00 or so.) Not all devices will work with an external hub (like a high-powered bi-direction printer or a scanner), but at the very least, you could shift over the mouse and the Alcatel modem to the powered hub (and possibly the game pad). The mouse and game pad are a low-powered devices ... but the modem is not.

Note: Low-power devices are ones that draw 100mA or less, like a keyboard.

Other things you can try are to go to the properties for the USB Host Controllers in the Device Panel and click the check box for "Don't tell me about USB errors". The same goes for the Power Management tab, where the computer will attempt to turn off USB devices to save power.

Next, updating drivers can help ... specifically the chipset drivers and the modem. The latest modem drivers can be found at the <A HREF="http://www.speedtouchdsl.com/support.htm" target="_new">Alcatel</A> web site.

Interestingly enough, this kind of problem sometimes takes a while to show up. A computer might correctly load all the devices and drivers for the USB devices at first (even though the power demand is too high) and then after a few weeks, it suddenly won't load everything anymore.

Sometimes this is not just due to a problem with the power demand, but also with the APIC IRQ controller in the BIOS having some compatibility issues with the current BIOS version, and the accumulation of errors over a period of time forces Windows to start having difficulty accepting all the devices and loading up the drivers with Plug & Play.

The workaround for that is to either wait and plug in one or two of the USB devices after Windows is already loaded up and running (which might require plugging and unplugging a device several times before it will show up as correctly connected in the Device Manager) ...

Or ...

Switching the APIC controller in the BIOS to PIC, and reinstalling/repairing the OS ...

Or ...

Flashing the BIOS, and hoping the newer version loads the APIC controller without any issues. But, IMHO, you can't depend on a newer version having had this problem addressed, so using the older PIC controller with a clean installation of the operating system is a better solution. In fact, unless you are running a board with more than one processor (and an operating system that supports this feature ... Win9x doesn't), the newer APIC controller isn't really needed, and using the PIC controller is a better idea.

That's my input ... hope it helps! :wink:

Toey

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May 28, 2003 6:05:30 PM

Thanks for the thorough response. I think the USB idea is a red herring, as it did the same thing again after I rebooted after installing new printer drivers, but the USB fix didn't make any difference. After spending most of the afternoon trying various things, I reinstalled XP using the repair option and I was able to get into Windows, albeit with a ton of write delay errors. After cancelling these messages and rebooting several times, I am now back to my original configuration. On each reboot the PC ran chkdsk and found a lot of errors, wrong file sizes, orphaned files etc. I have set a new restore point, but the previous ones did not help me. I have a 300w PSU and run a Radeon 9500 Pro graphics card, 5 USB devices, PCI TV Card, SoundBlaster 4.1 Digital Sound Card and a P4 2.53GHz and it runs on an Asus P4PE mobo, all self-built. THE PSU has the additional power connector for P4 CPU's. Is 300w enough? Also, and this may be another topic, how do you use the Recovery Console? I was able to get into it, but couldn't see how it could help me, apart from displaying DOS commands. I will try your suggestions and come back with any progress.
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May 28, 2003 6:50:10 PM

You may want to upgrade to at least a 350W PS, if not a 400W. I'm using a 350W in mine, with almost as many devices you have.

<font color=red> If you design software that is fool-proof, only a fool will want to use it. </font color=red>
May 28, 2003 11:52:50 PM

<A HREF="http://support.microsoft.com/?kbid=314058" target="_new">Description of the Windows XP Recovery Console</A>

A 300W PSU may very well not be enough for that system, depending on the make and model. Personally, I wouldn't have installed anything less than a decent 400W with the amount of components that you've described, especially with the Radeon card and the P4 processor. I'd have to assume that you also have at least two optical devices, one or more hard drives, and some kind of cooling solution. In a situation like that, 300W is cutting it very close, with little in the way of redundancy.

Considering the errors on the hard drive, you might consider downloading a diagnostic program from the drive manufacturer and doing some testing.

I don't necessarily think the items mentioned in the previous post are a "red herring", as you described. Simply disabling the Net Logon service would not have corrected the actual problem if the USB devices are drawing too much power ... it just would have removed this particular error message when the Alcatel modem could not be started. If the modem couldn't start, that is because the drivers could not be loaded. If there isn't adequate power, then the computer must make a decision about which devices to load, and which to ignore. Again, this is much like an IRQ conflict.

As for the APIC controller in the BIOS ... (if this exists in your BIOS version) ... conflicts between this IRQ controller and the BIOS can cause similar events to occur ... which is why I mentioned it as a possible problem. I recall running a system that could not load or install most USB devices with this controller enabled. Rebooting with something like a USB joystick connected to the system would cause the video card to be disabled! I could run a mouse and a USB modem ... but add the third device, and Windows would sacrifice the card ... as well as the third USB device.

If I was in your position, I'd do four things. First, I'd install a decent 400W PSU (or better). Next, I'd check the BIOS for the APIC controller, and if this controller is enabled, switch it to PIC. Then I'd add a powered USB hub, and run the mouse, game pad, and modem off of this device. Then I'd format and do a clean installation of the operating system ... and the very first drivers I'd install would be for the chipset, and then for the modem.

As long as the drive (and the rest of the hardware) is undamaged, these things should solve your problem. If not, you may be looking at issues with the physical memory or the mainboard (such as the IDE controller, or faulty capacitors) ... or even problems due to excessive heat (which could very well include the PSU.)

Mind you, while advising someone remotely without seeing the system in question sometimes devolves to making "guesses", at least the guesses are somewhat educated. :lol: 

Get back with us and post what kind of results you get after making some changes.

Toey

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May 29, 2003 3:59:37 PM

Toey... if he changes the APIC option to PIC, wouldn't that mean he would HAVE to do a reload of the OS anyway?

I'm kind of wondering about the option myself... my computer is currently working fine with APIC mode enabled... but I keep hearing that the computer will perform better with PIC enabled.

*shrug*

The only real problem I have is that my Radeon 9700Pro will not run stably with my AGP mode set to 'Auto'... which means the card has to auto-detect the mode to run at. (in this case 8x). If I force 4x mode, it will run perfectly. I am using a Gigabyte 8INXP mobo. The reason I mostly blame the mobo is because it crashed 100% of the time when I first assembled the system. As soon as I updated the chipset drivers and mobo's BIOS, it was much more stable, but would still crash every now and then with AGP mode set to Auto. With it set to 4x, it's 100% stable... but I'd really like to get it 100% stable with 8x mode enabled. Fortunately, I suppose, AGP 8x isn't necessary... but it would still be nice to know that it will be there if it is needed somewhere down the line.

<font color=red> If you design software that is fool-proof, only a fool will want to use it. </font color=red>
May 29, 2003 5:56:15 PM

I just built a system and had a terrible time getting XP to install (see my post in the Windows XP forum). I finally did get it on and have had the same problem as you a couple of times. I'm also getting this weird thing where the PC will run a few minutes then shut down and reboot. I think that might have had something to do with trying to set up a network to my son's PC, but I'm not sure why that would happen. I'm also running a 9500 Pro board on an ASUS P4P800 and I'm starting to wonder if that is part of the problem. I see in the docs for the mobo that they suggest a 9500/9700 Pro board should have a S/N that ends with the last two digits lower than 30. Mine ends in 00.

Rod
May 29, 2003 7:14:14 PM

I think it <i>might</i> be possible to do a simple repair when switching from APIC to PIC, but I can't give you any solid data on that, since I've always done a fresh installation in that situation, just to avoid any possible stability issues. Sometimes it's better to be safe than sorry.

In retrospect, I'd have to agree with you ... the repair probably wouldn't be sufficient ... much like when switching from ACPI to Standard PC. You <i>can</i> do it, but you might not care much for the end result.

If your computer is working okay with the APIC controller, then I wouldn't worry about starting over with the older controller. I really don't think you'll see any difference in performance. Basically, if you are able to install all your devices without odd conflicts (meaning ... conflicts that don't appear in the Device Manager, or cause driver installations to fail, for no apparent reason) then the BIOS version you are using has no conflicts with the controller, and everything is functioning normally. Be thankful, and since it's not broken ...

So far, the only time I've seen this occur has been with Intel-chipset boards, like the Intel i850 on a Giga-Byte GA-8ITXE. That one gave me a fit for a solid month, until I finally discovered the problem with the IRQ controller. It made me so crazy I was just about at the point of hiring a guy from Cherokee to come out and dance around the machine, while wearing war paint and a bear skin.

Haven't seen the problem on a single VIA board, interestingly enough.

I've seen a lot of boards that are still unstable at AGP 8x, with several different chipsets, like the SiS 648, the VIA KT400, and the P4X400 ... but some of it also seems to depend on the video card. This is apparently a real problem with Radeon 9700 cards. Sometimes the systems can't even boot with AGP 8x enabled, as mentioned <A HREF="http://www.ati.com/support/infobase/4080.html" target="_new">here</A>. So far the only solution is to enable 2x or 4x, and then everything is fine. The cards run great with chipsets that only support AGP 4x, like the i845/i850 and KT333.

I think you will be looking at updating the BIOS at some time in the future, and hope that corrects the problem. What BIOS version will finally be the one that fixes the issue ... that remains to be seen. Just remember to back up the old version before flashing to the new one, because you never know how that's going to turn out.

It's not always easy to be cutting edge, which is primarily the reason that I'm still running systems that while fast enough, are not anything near what I could build, at any given point in time. I like to take nice long breaks and enjoy a few months of decent stability before jumping back into the fray and troubleshooting madly, installing drivers, tweaking with third-party apps, flashing the BIOS (both on the board and the video card), and basically just pulling out my hair, all in the name of the absolute best performance.

I'll probably build another system for myself at the end of the year, just for the newer games that will be released this summer and in the fall. But I doubt that I'll really be able to play them without having to fix <i>something</i> on a regular basis until summer of next year!

I might even wait until Longhorn is released, and <i>then</i> proceed with the nervous breakdown and sleepless nights, while I lie in bed and try to work through the latest computer adventure.

Sometimes I think I might be getting too old for this <i><font color=red>BLEEP!</font color=red></i> :wink:

Toey

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May 29, 2003 7:41:45 PM

If I was in your position, I'd flash the BIOS, switch the settings to the safest defaults, and then go with a fresh installation of the OS. Once that was done, I'd change the settings in the OS so that if there is a problem with a driver, the computer won't suddenly reboot.

That's accomplished at Start\Settings\Control Panel\System\Advanced\Startup and Recovery\Settings\System Failure. Clear the check boxes for "Automatically restart", and set the "Write debugging information" to (none).

If the problem is driver-related, the next reboot should bring up a BSOD with information that can help you determine the source of the problem. Most of the information (including the numbers) is searchable, using a search engine like <A HREF="http://www.google.com/advanced_search?hl=en" target="_new">Google</A>.

Be sure you are running the latest drivers for your devices, including the chipset, video card, and the NIC cards. If possible, burn these drivers to a disk before formatting, so you can install them quickly, without needing to resort to getting them over the 'Net at a later date, considering the size of some of the files, and whether or not they will be available when you need them.

Note: Before you flash a BIOS ... write down <i>everything</i> that you see. Documentation is a necessity; not an option. Be sure the BIOS is set to be flashable internally (there is often a setting that must be changed ... so refer to the mainboard manual for this information). Use three floppy disks. The first should be a Win9x <A HREF="http://www.mirrors.org/archived_software/www.bootdisk.c..." target="_new">boot disk</A> to start the system, a second disk with the flashing utility and the new BIOS, and the third disk should be blank. Save the old BIOS on the third floppy, before you perform the procedure ... just to be safe.

<i>Always</i> use freshly formatted and scanned floppy disks.

After a flash, it's a good idea to save the BIOS settings at the safest defaults, shut down the system, and clear the CMOS, either by removing the battery for a few minutes, or by using jumpers on the mainboard. Once the system has rebooted, you should be able to re-enter the BIOS, and change the settings for greater performance. Which is why you'll want that documentation at hand that I previously mentioned, as mainboard manuals and current BIOS features are not always the same.

This might sound complicated, and perhaps even seem like overkill, but in my experience, the best solution is often the old way, and getting everything compatible from the hardware level to the operating system software should be the primary focus when troubleshooting.

Toey

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May 29, 2003 8:24:31 PM

Thanks for all the advice. My PC is running fine now. As I said before, the PC never reboots on its own and the problem has only happened when I reboot the PC myself, never on a cold boot. My full specs are:
P4 2.53Ghz
512MB Crucial PC2700 RAM, (one stick)
Seagate 60GB HDD ATA V ST360015
Highpoint HPT302 UDMA/ATA133 PCI Controller Card
ASUS P4PE Mobo with latest Intel chipset drivers
BIOS is version 1002, there is version 1005 on the ASUS website that says the update is to Update Intel Micro-code for D1 stepping CPU, don't know what that is, so will leave it.
Radeon 9500 Pro 128MB RAM graphics Card
Sound Blaster 4.1 Digital PCI Sound Card
Hauppauge WinTV PCI TV Card
Aopen DVD Drive
Aopen CD-Writer
Asus Midi-Tower with 300w PSU
There are 6 USB ports. Connected to them is an Alcatel SpeedTouch USB powered ADSL modem
Microsoft Internet Pro Keyboard
Microsoft Intellimouse USB connected to a USB port on the keyboard
Lexmark Z52 USB printer
Cannon N670U USB powered scanner
Microsoft sidewinder USB game pad
I have installed all Windows XP updates and latest manufacturer's drivers for all the peripherals and internal cards.
I don't want to format and reinstall XP if I can help it, but I am backing up more often now! I will try a more powerful PSU, at least 400w, and let you guys know how it goes. Any ideas for a PSU? I have heard that Enermax are good.
!