BSOD: Page Fault, Bad Pool Header et al

By Dogmatix ยท 22 replies
Apr 22, 2006
  1. Hi,

    I have recently been getting Blue Screens of Death on my Windows XP PC. These have normally either been of the "page fault in nonpaged area" or "bad pool header" type, but some have been without such a name. Sometimes stop code 8E is mentioned, sometimes win23k.sys is mentioned.

    As far as I am aware, I have up-to-date drivers, and I have checked the hardware (Shuttle ST62K) as far as I can. I even re-installed XP, which is a right royal pain in the neck, because af all the programmes etc. that have to be re-installed. Re-installing XP is a procedure which I would really, really like to avoid if possible.

    Anyway, I have zipped the last fifteen minidumps into three zip files and attached them, and if anyone can take a butchers and translate them, and give me some tip as to where the culprit lies, I would be grateful.


    Attached Files:

  2. kirock

    kirock TS Rookie Posts: 1,221

    Please give us our system specs, including type of PSU and rated watts and the amps on each of the 3.3, 5 amnd 12V outputs. you can read this off the label on the side of the power supply, need to remove side of case.

    Have you added any new hardware or software lately?
  3. Tedster

    Tedster Techspot old timer..... Posts: 6,002   +15

    three of your crash dumps point to hardware error at your hard disk. Most like likely you do not have the correct drivers or something is amiss.
  4. Dogmatix

    Dogmatix TS Rookie Topic Starter


    the system is a Shuttle ST62K "Zen" barebones PC with an external laptop-type power supply unit, this being the standard unit supplied with the PC.

    Last year, I took the PC (and PSU) back to the store and they checked the power supply and found no problem. They ran a stess test, and ended up replacing the RAM and said any further problems were in the software, not the hardware.

    I have run a MEMTEST on the RAM, no errors reported.

    The BSOD's have occurred irregularly for the last six months, and did not coincide with new software. I cannot doscern any pattern as to what the PC was doing when a BSOD occurred.

    I have not added any hardware recently (there's not much room in there anyway...).

    Processor is a Pentium 4 at 2.4 GHz. RAM is 512MB. I assume that the RAM is the correct type as the shop fitted it. I have not overclocked anything or otherwise fiddled with the BIOS settings.

    Do the minidumps indicate any consistent pattern?

  5. kirock

    kirock TS Rookie Posts: 1,221

    Stop 0x00000050 or PAGE_FAULT_IN_NONPAGED_AREA

    Requested data was not in the memory or at least not at that address. Faulty driver most likely, but defective memory (including main memory, L2 RAM cache, video RAM) or incompatible software (including remote control and antivirus software) might cause Stop 0x50 messages.

    Try removing the RAM and clean the copper fingers with an eraser. I'm very suspicous of any 180W encapsulated PSU, put a fan blowing on it and maybe take the case off the Zen and do the same. Now run the heaviest 3D application you have. If you're not a gamer try 3DMark05 or 3Dmark06 (free download). I'm suspecting an overheating issue with the PSU or the case itself.
    You do keep the fans clean and open it up once in awhile and blow the dust out with compressed air can right?
  6. Dogmatix

    Dogmatix TS Rookie Topic Starter


    yes, I do keep the fan and the rest of the insides clean. I cannot open the PSU, of course.

    I have cleaned the RAM stick contacts, and tried switching sockets, all to no avail. Each time I try something, and no BSOD happens for a few weeks, and I think I've fixed it... up comes a BSOD. In addition to the BSOD's I mentioned, I also remember an IRQ type one.

    I thought it might be an overheating problem, although I am not a gamer and have no 3D-graphics-rich programmes. I had the cover off and a fan blowing on the PC, but as expected, this didn't help. The processor never gets really hot, not with the applications I run (mostly Word/Excel, photo apps, Firefox, that sort of stuff), and the PSU never gets beyond warm, either. So I do not think it is overheating.

    I had also suspected my antivirus prgramme at one point, so I switched from Norton to F-Secure. Didn't help.

    The hard disk is the one supplied with the PC, and the supplier is an official Shuttle supplier, so I assume that is is compatible with the PC (same goes for the RAM). Now the HDD does get a little warm, which is apparently quite normal.

    I was rather hoping that the minidumps point to a specific problem, like a faulty driver or something.

  7. Tedster

    Tedster Techspot old timer..... Posts: 6,002   +15

    run memtest86+ booted from a floppy.
  8. Dogmatix

    Dogmatix TS Rookie Topic Starter

    There it goes again - another BSOD. Stop code 8E, win32k.sys. Minidump attached.

    The PC was running for about half-an-hour with the top off. Overheating is not an issue. The RAM stick has been cleaned and switched sockets and survived a RAM test, and it's the RAM stick the shop put in to replace a defective one, and they checked it too, so I don't think it's the RAM, either.

    What does that leave? A driver - but which one? The hard drive? How can I prove that? Something else - like what?
  9. kirock

    kirock TS Rookie Posts: 1,221

    Unfortunately I cannot read the minidumps, TS does have several ppl who can, so you'll have to wait for another member on that info. In the mean time try turning off some of WinXP huge number of services in order to streamline the OS and possibly reduce any driver conflicits.

    You can do this by opening the run command from the Start button and typing services.msc. Now sort everything by Status. It would take me too long to walk you thru the services that are safe to turn off and ones that are kernel or core OS which you can't. but there is great info on this here:

    Also this little program I use to quickly coontrol my Start-up list and it works great.
    I'm a gamer and I have my processes down to only 22. I think it was something like 42 before I did the above and the Start-up manager.

    Have a read my post here just to get a feel of what I'm thinking:
  10. Dogmatix

    Dogmatix TS Rookie Topic Starter

    Just got back from a trip during which I left Memtest running: 13 passes, no errors. No overheating (not even overwarming).

    Had a butchers at those services: 54 started, another 38 not started. The descriptions given make them all look terribly important, and I am hesitant to go mucking about in there.

    I don't think it's my F-Secure antivirus programme, as I de-installed it and installed a newer version a few days ago.
  11. cpc2004

    cpc2004 TS Evangelist Posts: 1,994


    Your debug report
    Mini032106-01.dmp BugCheck 10000050, {e5f5ef98, 0, bf81430a, 2}n
    Probably caused by : win32k.sys ( win32k!RGNOBJ::UpdateUserRgn+14 )

    Mini032206-01.dmp BugCheck 1000008E, {c0000005, 0, f1937164, 0}
    Probably caused by : win32k.sys ( win32k!GrePolyPatBlt+59 )

    Mini032606-01.dmp BugCheck 10000050, {edbc398c, 1, bfa36423, 0}
    Probably caused by : ati2cqag.dll ( ati2cqag+20423 )

    Mini032806-01.dmp BugCheck 19, {20, e29afaa8, e29afae8, c080408}
    Probably caused by : ntoskrnl.exe ( nt!ExFreePoolWithTag+2be )

    Mini040706-01.dmp BugCheck 10000050, {ff9f7ba6, 0, ff9f7ba6, 0}
    Probably caused by : ati2dvag.dll ( ati2dvag+20adb )

    Mini042206-01.dmp BugCheck 1000008E, {c0000005, bf803391, f19e3f40, 0}
    Probably caused by : win32k.sys ( win32k!WatchdogDrvBitBlt+26 )

    Probably it is faulty video card or software error at ATI display card driver. Upgrade ATI display card driver. Run 3DMark 2005 to test your video card.
    Maybe your ATI video card is overheat.
  12. Dogmatix

    Dogmatix TS Rookie Topic Starter

    Well, I downloaded this 3DMark05, but it won't run because of something called PixelShader being missing or not supported. Plus it wants me to pay before it will do anything useful.

    My PC has an on-board graphics processor (ATI Radeon 9100 IGP) with, as far as I am aware, the latest driver.
  13. kirock

    kirock TS Rookie Posts: 1,221

    Ok uninstall the F-secure, i just had another BSOD thread related to it. Dwnload and install AVG. It's very good and free.

    Also this about the Win32K.sys error as reported in mindumps:

    To get around the complexities of the services, dwnload this program, I use this too (after I did it manually and it really only turned off the services I had already) Sorry I forgot I had this:

  14. Tedster

    Tedster Techspot old timer..... Posts: 6,002   +15

  15. Dogmatix

    Dogmatix TS Rookie Topic Starter

    I did; 13 passes, no errors. And I know the RAM to be compatible with the motherboard.

    I have defragmented the system partition and re-created the pagefile. I have uninstalled the ATI drivers, but not yet installed new ones (the graphics are a bit sluggish, but I can live with it long enough to see if the ATI drivers are causing the problem). As for the F-Secure package, I can disable that for a while, too, as I have a firewall on my ADSL router (the XP firewall is also disabled).

  16. Dogmatix

    Dogmatix TS Rookie Topic Starter

    I de-installed the ATI drivers, but the scrolling was too sluggish for comfort, so I downloaded the latest ATI driver version and installed it (just the driver, not the "Catalyst" control centre).

    Guess what happened soon after......

    I'll give you a clue: the minidump is attached.

    So: it looks like the ATI driver is causing the crashes. But why? If I install a just-downloaded, up-to-date driver for my PC, why would it cause crashes? What can be done? The graphics processor is on-board; I can't remove it, and I don't want to use the only PCI slot for another one. Is something else wrong here, something that doesn't like ATI drivers?

  17. howard_hopkinso

    howard_hopkinso TS Rookie Posts: 24,177   +19

    Maybe try another video card. See if that helps.

    Regards Howard :)
  18. Dogmatix

    Dogmatix TS Rookie Topic Starter

    As I mentioned above, the graphis processor is ON BOARD and cannot be removed. This PC only has one PCI slot, no AGP, and even if a suitable graphics card could be found, this is not a proper solution as it would block the only PCI slot.
  19. howard_hopkinso

    howard_hopkinso TS Rookie Posts: 24,177   +19

    I understand your predicament.

    But, if your onboard graphics card is faulty, no amount of changing drivers etc will fix it. Your only other option would be to think about getting another mobo.

    You could try leaving the side panel off of your case and aiming a deskfan blowing into your case. If the crashes become less frequent, then it`s an overheating problem.

    Regards Howard :)
  20. kirock

    kirock TS Rookie Posts: 1,221

    I think he's done that already too Howard. I really don't like the stupid laptop type 180W PSU this Zen cube runs on. My suggestion is to force the store to exchange it for a new one just to be sure.

    This may sound ridiculous be see if you can run the thing with the PSU hanging INSIDE the fridge. (if the cable is long enough). Obviously this will be annoying because you'll have to run the PC for several hours to see if it stops BSODing.

    Did you try the gameXP program yet to turn off un-needed services for you? Again just trying to reduce any driver conflicts. Does it stop BSODing when running on default Windows gfx driver?
  21. Dogmatix

    Dogmatix TS Rookie Topic Starter

    Hi everyone,

    I just wanted to report that it would appear that the problem may possibly be solved (there's nothing like being certain....).

    I decided to re-install Windows (I wanted a bigger hard-disc anyway), but the BSOD's started coming on the new installation fairly soon. I found that by disabling the ATI graphics driver and using the Windows default version. Not very smooth, but at least the BSOD's stopped. However, the problem could not be the ATI driver alone, as this was the latest compatibel version, and not corrupted. As far as I could see, the only suspect remaining was the BIOS, so I got a fresh download (I don't know if it is the same version as before or not) and flashed it. I also changed two settings: I disabled the Memory Hole (whatever that may be) and also the BIOS caching. And that seems so far to have done the trick.

    I don't know if it was the new BIOS or one of those settings that did it. I could experiment a bit to find out, but now that the system appears to be running smoothly, I can't really be bothered.

    Thanks for all your help and tips. If I have any more problems, like Arnie, I'll be back.

  22. necro1234

    necro1234 TS Rookie

    mmm I have a similar problem that people can throw ideas my way if they like.
    I get the page fault in non pagable area error often but...
    It only occurs if the PC is left running for say 30 minutes, I let it cool down and it goes away.
    Now here is my confusion.
    Overheating it has to be right?, well that PC can run for weeks without any issue, no BSOD's ever, only on a reboot where XP SP2 is in its first loading stages it bombs out.
    Attempting to get into safe mode always bombs on AGP440.SYS.
    Leave it for an hour and boot up and all is well again.
    I've swopped out memory and switched memory sockets, I've put in an old video card, I've run Spinrite on my HDD, I've tried Memtest86, all seems fine.
    I've also tried various Nvidia drivers for my Evga 7800GS card.

    My PC has some good cooling in it and I keep all the "dut bunnies" at bay, it also is in a cool room that has Aircon so I don't see why any overheating should be an issue.

    Over all I'm really confused as to why it only dies on a reboot once it heats up a little (and from AsusProbe and the Nvidia Software its not heating up that much)

    Any quick ideas? (sorry I dont have minidumps or anything on hand, at work n came across this post.)


  23. williaml337

    williaml337 TS Rookie Posts: 24

    Definitely a hardware problem.
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