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By swisstonyholmes · 17 replies
Jul 24, 2009
  1. Hi this is my first post so here goes,

    I've been setting up an old machine for a friend with a brand new hardrive running Windows XP, but every so often the system BSOD's on me. The reason for doing a clean install on a new hardrive was a) the original hardrive was running low on space and b) the old setup had viruses and also BSOD problems but no BSOD error messages were recorded until now. Before installing the new hardrive I thought I would run memtest for a while to see if any problems occurred, as I've had similar problems in the past with BSOD and it was the RAM at fault. No such luck here though memtest ran for 24Hrs without any errors.

    Next I installed the new hardrive with Windows XP and all of the latest updates which installed without any problem at all. Next I installed antivirus and any other relevant software without a problem no BSOD's yet. I then slaved up the original hardrive (after scanning it for viruses first) to retrieve any personnel documents, music and videos. This was when was my first BSOD happened right in the middle of copying videos over the BSOD error message read IRQL_NOT_LESS_OR_EQUAL. I rebooted the system then continued to copy the remaining files when AVG popped up and said it had found a virus in a file a was trying to copy. So I stopped the copying process and scanned the original slaved drive with AVG and Lavasoft's Ad Aware when it BSOD again the error message read PAGE_FAULT_IN_NONPAGED_AREA.

    After retrieving as much data as I could from the original hardrive I thought the BSOD could be to do with the original hardrive being faulty. So I then formatted the original hardrive to be used as extra storage which formatted ok and removed it from the system at the next re-boot to see if it cured the BSOD's. It didn't seem to cure the BSOD's as randomly they seem to keep appearing with no apparent trigger, so I now suspect another piece of hardware or driver.

    Other thing's I've tried already include:

    Switching the memory from one socket to another. Still BSOD's.
    Completed the malware and spyware cleaning recommended on this forum. Still BSOD's.
    Thrown it out the window!! Still BSOD's.

    Can anyone please help as this is the last problem before the system is complete (or goes in the bin!) .

    Thanks in advance,

  2. Route44

    Route44 TechSpot Ambassador Posts: 11,979   +71

    IRQL NOT LESS OR EQUAL error code is 0xA and these are caused by either hardware or drivers attempting an IRQ Level that they shouldn't.

    Requested data was not in memory. An invalid system memory address was referenced. Defective memory (including main memory, L2 RAM cache, video RAM) or incompatible software (including remote control and antivirus software) might cause this Stop message, as may other hardware problems (e.g., incorrect SCSI termination or a flawed PCI card).

    So as you can tell it can be anything at this point. I am concerned that AVG did find that virus. Also, have you diagnosed the harddrive with the HDs manufacturer's free diagnostic utility?

    Can you attach the five most recent minidump in your next post?
  3. swisstonyholmes

    swisstonyholmes TS Rookie Topic Starter Posts: 98

    Thanks for your help route 44,

    I haven't tried any diagnostic tools yet but I will do and let you know the result. I have attached the last 5 minidump files as requested.
  4. Route44

    Route44 TechSpot Ambassador Posts: 11,979   +71

    Two errors are 0xA and both specifically cited memory corruption as your cause of problems.

    The other four cited the driver SiWinAcc.sys as the problem. This is a SATA disk accelerator driver for Windows SATA drive/SATA Hard Drive Controller Driver.

    Corrupted memory can wreack havoc on the stability of any system. So before even bothering with SiWinAcc.sys the first, best step you can take is to run Memtest on your RAM.

    See this link and follow the instructions: https://www.techspot.com/vb/topic62524.html (there are newer versions since this tutorial was made).

    Let it run for a LONG time. The rule is a minimum of 7 Passes; the more Passes after 7 so much the better.. There are 8 individual tests per Pass. Many people will start this test before going to bed and check it the next day.

    f you have errors you have corrupted memory and it needs to be replaced.

    Also, with errors you need to run this test per stick of RAM. Take out one and run the test. Then take that one out and put the other in and run the test. If you start getting errors before 7 Passes you know that stick is corrupted and you don’t need to run the test any further on that stick.

    ** Get back to us with the results.
  5. swisstonyholmes

    swisstonyholmes TS Rookie Topic Starter Posts: 98

    Route 44,

    Thanks for the reply, first of all I have downloaded and run the Seagate Seatools for Windows as suggested and the results are as follows:

    My drives are both Maxtor model numbers: STM3500418AS (new drive) & STM3320820AS (original drive)

    Smart Test - Failed for both drives even though they are both smart compatible, not sure this has anything to do with my problem but reporting it any way.

    Short Drive Self Test - Both drives passed

    Long Drive Self Test - I will get back to this later, just giving you the results in order of the manufactures test list

    Short Generic Test - Both drives passed

    Long Generic Test - Keep reading and you will find out what happened

    Back to the results of the long drive self test, both drives were tested at the same time the 320Gb drive passed without any problems. The new 500Gb seemed to freeze half way through testing of both drives, when I say freeze I mean the progress bar stopped moving so I left it to run the tests when I came back BSOD! the error read:


    STOP 0X0000001A (0X00041284, 0X017BB001, 0X000032B8, 0XC0883000)

    I then rebooted the computer tried to run the Seagate tools again but was confronted with an error message:


    I have attached a screen dump of the exact error message. Tried to run the tools again and it started fine. I then continued to test the 500Gb drive on its own and the drive passed 2nd time round.

    Continued to the long generic testing, tested both drives at once went away and left it to it. Come back and BSOD! the error read:


    STOP 0X0000000A (0XEA8304, 0XEA830468, 0X000000FF, 0X00000001, 0X80541B72)

    I'm not sure if the BSOD happened during the testing or after the test had completed. So I rebooted again and ran the long generic test on the single 320Gb drive went away and left it to it. Come back again BSOD! the error read:


    STOP 0X000000D1, (0XFFFFFFFF, 0X000000FF, 0X00000008, 0XFFFFFFFF)

    I have now given up running any more tests and thought I should post the latest minidumps here. See what you think.

    With regards to my installed memory and running memtest, I ran memtest a while ago for 24Hrs with no errors so i presumed the memory was ok. I haven’t seen the link you posted with regards to running memtest before. I will have a good read and run it again and post any results I have. Just for your information the memory installed is:

    Buffalo DD402 - 512/B
    64M x 64 DDr SDRAM
    Non Ecc

    Once again thanks for your help.
  6. Vepar

    Vepar TS Rookie Posts: 22

    Hello everybody! This is my first post. The reason why I join techspot is this several blue screen errors! I see some old posts from guy name howard_hopkinso and i think he is right! This is my problem so please help! I upgrade my computer ram memory for 1 GB. My computer is old 9 years. I know that its funny but it is using to me well so... My motherboard is gigabyte GA-8PE667 Ultra. Type of ram memory is DDR 1. So I upgrade my ram 2 months ago. The blue screen messages started to appear only 2 weeks ago. Blue screen messages are ALCXWDM.SYS ( Sound driver error), Stack-based Buffer ( I read that that is virus, like attacker in system), and PFN_LIST_CORRUPT. These 3 blue screens are troubling me. I doubt that that is becouse ram becouse there is some time space betwean upgrade and blue screen errors. If you can help me I will be grateful but if you know way how to contact these guy howard_hopkinso please tell me! Thanks......
  7. Vepar

    Vepar TS Rookie Posts: 22

    And, I forgot, I upgrade 1 GB RAM and now I have 1.256 GB. Processor 2.02 GHz and graphic card is ATI RADEON 9000 Family. I will buy another computer for 7 months but I would like that in betwean I can use this computer.
  8. Route44

    Route44 TechSpot Ambassador Posts: 11,979   +71

    @ swisstonyholmes - back up all your information NOW. Failing the S.M.A.R.T. test means something is going on with your harddrives and if they fail completely data recovery is very expensive. Good move on your part testing the harddrives. I would still test memory.

    Edit Update - Two of three dumps specifically cited memory corruption. The other simply cited a Windows OS driver and they are too general to be of much help.

    @ Vepar, please make your own post because we are helping the OP swisstonyholmes with his issues. That being said PFN_LIST_CORRUPT is a very strong indicator of corrupted memory.

    Again, make your own post and we will be more than glad to help you. Give us your system specks including OS and security software. Also, please read the sticky Before Posting Your Minidumps by Julio. As for howard-hopkinso he was banned a few years ago, but there many here who can help you.
  9. Vepar

    Vepar TS Rookie Posts: 22

    Sorry for interupting once again, but how to make my own topic/thread?
  10. Route44

    Route44 TechSpot Ambassador Posts: 11,979   +71

    Right under the title BSOD Help & Support is the button that says New Thread. Click it...
  11. swisstonyholmes

    swisstonyholmes TS Rookie Topic Starter Posts: 98

    Route 44,

    I have run Memtest86 V2.11 on my one and only RAM stick for 10hrs on standard configuration it passed with 42 passes and 0 errors. I guess this gives us a reasonable level of confidence that the RAM is ok? I have attached a photo of the results screen just in case there is any other information you require.

  12. Vepar

    Vepar TS Rookie Posts: 22

    Route 44- come to topci--> blue screen error ALCXWDM.SYS...

    And New error is PAGE_FAULT_IN_NONPAGED_AREA if this change anything?
  13. Route44

    Route44 TechSpot Ambassador Posts: 11,979   +71

    @ swisstonyholmes - we've been seeing a lot of memory corruption issues actually turn out to be the BIOS not setting the RAM at proper voltage. Is your RAM set at the recommended voltage?

    Also, your harddrives are a main concern here. Have you backed up all important data?
  14. swisstonyholmes

    swisstonyholmes TS Rookie Topic Starter Posts: 98

    Route 44,

    How do I check to see if the RAM is set at the proper voltage, is it in the BIOS setup? and what is the recommended voltage for my RAM, is this CL2.5?

    Just for your information Memtest finished testing with 81 passes and 0 errors.

    I'm backing up all important data now.

  15. Route44

    Route44 TechSpot Ambassador Posts: 11,979   +71

    Yes, you can find and change the voltage setting in your BIOS. Most motherboards do it automatically but we have been finding that some set it not to the RAM specifications. The CAS 2.5 is memory timings and not voltage.

    Can you tell us the make and model number of your RAM?
  16. swisstonyholmes

    swisstonyholmes TS Rookie Topic Starter Posts: 98

    Route 44,

    Buffalo DD402 - 512/B
    64M x 64 DDr SDRAM
    Non Ecc

  17. swisstonyholmes

    swisstonyholmes TS Rookie Topic Starter Posts: 98

    Route 44,

    Just a quick update, I've replaced the RAM with two 512 sticks and have run the Seagate tools tests twice on the long generic and twice on the long drive self test. I then ran AVG virus scan the same time as Ad Aware scan and so far NO MORE BSOD'S!!! Hurray. :haha:

    Are there any other tests I can do to 100% guarantee that the system is now ok?

    I guess what I can learn from this is that Memtest is never 100% right.

    Thanks for your assistance, I will be sure to come back and post on this forum again.

  18. Route44

    Route44 TechSpot Ambassador Posts: 11,979   +71

    Excellent! Bad memory has been known on occasion to pass memtest but this is the exception and not the rule. It looks like replacing the RAM did the trick. It could be that your motherboard did not like your previous 1.256 RAM configuration.

    Or it could be one or more of your memory sticks was indeed corrupted.
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