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Random BSODs

By MarkF ยท 10 replies
Aug 30, 2005
  1. Hi,

    Like many people here I've been plagued with random BSODs and Stop errors; "error casued by device driver", "hardware failure" etc etc. After a number of months of frustration I got so fed up that I replaced practically everything. New motherboard, CPU, RAM, graphics card, power supply (400W) and even bought a UPS. The only thing remaining from the original system were the two HDDs and the CD/DVD writer. I couldn't believe it - it still crashed! I've since set a dual boot-up (Win2K + WinXP) on separate hard drives to try and test things, but it crashes just the same in either OS. I've tried heaps of things, like enabling the special pool feature, as per the Microsoft article KB188831, running driver verifier and deciphering WinDBG logs. It's beyond me, I have to say. I'd be really grateful if someone could examine the minidumps attached here and give me some advice.

    The system I'm running is:
    AMD Athlon64 3200+
    1.5 GB RAM
    Legend GE Force 5200FX graphics card
    Win2k & WinXP (dual boot on separate HDDs)

  2. C0d3Warr10r

    C0d3Warr10r TS Rookie Posts: 33

    Things to try...

    I don't mean to insult your intelligence, but here are a few things to try.

    • Go into device manager and check for any yellow "!"'s... If you find any, uninstall, and reinstall with the most recent drivers.
    • Check your MOBO manufactorer's website for latest BIOS update.
    • Install "Motherboard Monitor" and track the temps of your CPU and MOBO. Heat will often cause odd behavior.
    • Confirm that you have "stand-offs" seperating your MOBO from the MOBO-tray inside your case.

    Just some things to get you started, hope it helps.

  3. MarkF

    MarkF TS Rookie Topic Starter

    Hi C0d3Warr10r,

    Thanks for your tips.

    1) Everything's fine in the device manager. Not yellow "!"'s.

    2) The current BIOS version is 1.0a from 06/07/2005 (for an ECS K8T800-A mobo). The latest available version is 1.0e dated 15/07/2005. (Admittedly i'm a bit hesitant flashing the bios. I've never done it before and I'd hate to screw it up!! But there's always a first time I guess, if it should be done...)

    3) I'm pretty sure I can rule out overheating. I've used motherboard monitor and I've compared the temps with the values in the BIOS. It's been sitting quite stable on 42 deg when the computer is doing nothing.

    4) Sorry, not quite sure what you mean by stand-offs. Can you explain?

    Something else that I've just found out. After reading the threads here, I picked up from cpc2004 that the most likely cause of the 7f stop error is RAM. I downloaded and ran MemTest, and got a stack of errors from tests 5, 6 and 7. I have three 512 MB sticks, so I tested each one individually and they were all fine. I tested them two at a time (i.e. 1+2, 2+3 and 3+1) and they were all fine. When I put all three back in the slots I got errors again. I tried swapping the memory sticks into different slots and still got errors. So, now I'm testing the PC with only 2 sticks of RAM to see if it still crashes. Can anyone explain this...??

  4. C0d3Warr10r

    C0d3Warr10r TS Rookie Posts: 33

    Stand-offs are the copper screws underneath your motherboard that prevent it from grounding out on the case. W/ your memory errors noted in the last post though its highly unlikely your cause.


    If you have access to another computer that supports the same type of memory, I'd run Memtest on a different computer using your 3 sticks of ram from the troublemaker. This would either completely rule out your memory as the culprit, or determine that your motherboard is likely the cause. Either way, you are making headway.

    Good luck,

  5. cpc2004

    cpc2004 TS Evangelist Posts: 1,994

    From the stack trace of your minidump, windows crashes at nt!SwapContext. It is winodws kernel scheduler which is unlikely to crash unless it is hardware error.
    00000000 804d89f3 00000000 00000000 00000000 nt!KiTrap08+0x44 (FPO: TaskGate 28:0)
    8001003b ba1f0e00 09b4000e 01b821cd 5421cd4c nt!SwapContext+0xd0 (FPO: [0,2,0])
    It is faulty RAM. Refer the following url (problem owner case)
  6. MarkF

    MarkF TS Rookie Topic Starter

    Thanks guys. I'm trying some things out now. I'll confirm what's going on when I get to the bottom of it.

  7. cpc2004

    cpc2004 TS Evangelist Posts: 1,994

    Hi Mark,

    Your most recent crash is Bugcheck 7F with nt status 8 (ie double check). It can be hardware or stack overflow. Extend the stack size. If it still crashes, it is faulty RAM.

  8. James H

    James H TS Rookie

    Hello CPC2004. I have the same problem could you look at my debug file and tell me what you think is the case of the problem.

    Thank You.
  9. cpc2004

    cpc2004 TS Evangelist Posts: 1,994

    Hi James,

    Your debug log does not have microsoft symbol files. Do you connect to internet when you run kd? It is impossible to diagnostic your problem. Attach your minidumps here if you need further help
  10. MarkF

    MarkF TS Rookie Topic Starter

    For the record, it was a faulty motherboard. Thanks very much for your help guys!

  11. cpc2004

    cpc2004 TS Evangelist Posts: 1,994

    Hi Mark,

    Thanks for your information. RAM, L2 cache memory of CPU, cache memory of M/B and memory of Graphic card. If there has memory problem, it is hard to determine which hardware component is malfunction. I have to record all the confirmed faulty memory. This is my first confirmed case with faulty m/b causing memory corruption. According to my record over 90% of memory corruption are related to faulty ram.
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