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Windows 7: Display Driver stopped responding and has recovered (plus BSODs)


26 Jan 2012   #1

Windows 7 Home Premium 64-bit
 
 
Display Driver stopped responding and has recovered (plus BSODs)

I'm writing this on my laptop (working fine).

I have had a problem that has been plaguing me for years now. I'll first list my current hardware and spec information:

MSI p67a-gd65 mobo ~ 1 week old
Intel i7 2600 (locked) ~ 1 week old
12 GB Corsair Vengence DDR3 1600 RAM ~ 7 weeks old (a little over 2 months)
Corsair Force3 120GB SSD (primary boot drive) ~ 7 weeks old
WD Caviar Black 2TB spinning HDD (data drive) ~ 1 year old
900 watt power supply (I can dig in and find the brand and model info if necessary ~ 5 weeks old
Nvidia GTX 560 TI 1.2GB DDR5 onboard ~ 7 weeks old
Windows 7 Ulti Upgrade disc ~ last fresh (full wipe) install was 1 week ago. I don't have my old vista dvd anymore so I had to do a double stack for the upgrade to work.

I think that's the relevant hardware.

This morning the computer began up with the same old BS I've been fighting with for years. I'm cruising along (usually in the morning) and open up something with small requirements, such as firefox. Suddenly the mouse stops responding for about 2-3 seconds. That's followed by a full black screen as though the monitor has turned off. That holds for 3-5 seconds. Then, the screen returns with a pop up on the lower right taskbar with the message "Display Driver stopped responding and has recovered." That is the usual routine. Sometimes (maybe 10% of the time) It will full on BSOD and dump memory to disc. When this black screen/recovery cycle starts up, it usually keeps going every 10-15 seconds. In other words, it will come back with that error message, I'll regain control of the mouse, and back to smooth sailing for a short time. It almost always returns within 5-30 seconds. The more I push through this error, the more frequently it seems to happen. Eventually, I get a BSOD dump or the cycle's frequency becomes so close together the computer is unusable.

Some history. I first noticed something like this happening around 3 years ago, while using vista. Every once in awhile I'd get a kernel error that pointed to something along the lines of "knneddleenn.exe" (don't remember the exact letter order but it seemed to be related to graphics drivers). I upgraded my video card and everything returned to normal....for awhile. Eventually, 6-9 months later, I had the same problem come up. I simply upgraded video cards again, and success, it worked again...for awhile. Fast forward to about two and a half months ago. Completely different computer hardware. Not a shred of that original system from 3 years ago remains, right down to mouse/keyboard and monitor. I had a system using a core2duo processor and an nvidia 240 gt video card. Same basic problem, except the error message with windows 7 is "Display Driver stopped responding and has recovered". When I get a BSOD it points to a filename exactly like the old vista error message (that "knneddleenn.exe").

So, two and a half months ago, I bought a new video card, a 460 GT. Everything was fine for about 2 weeks. Then it came back. So I know it couldn't be the video card. I had suspected that all along. I began throwing money at the problem. I swapped in a x58 sabretooth mobo and a core i7 960 processor. With the new mobo came the memory. 2 weeks in the clear, then back to the same problem. Buy new power supply, problem persists. I took it to Fry's Electronics (at my wits end). After 2 weeks of incompetance, they tell me it's the SSD. I know that's not the case, but I buy one anyway and install it clean. Diagnostics always seem to throw a false positive on SSDs. Good for about 4-5 days, then it's back.

I've monitored hardware temps. Everything is better than good. Nothing is getting up past mid 40s *C. I've tried a few registry edits that have been recommended on the internet with no effect. They involved modifying some TDR entries. I've done clean installs on several different nvidia drivers (most recent, the one that came with the video card, the betas, legacy ~180.XX), no changes to the problem.

So now about 2 weeks ago I bought ANOTHER new mobo and processor. This time it's the ones listed at the top of this post. New gen i7 with a mid-level board (having dropped ~$1500 in the last couple of months I've started settling for mid level gear).

The oldest piece of hardware is MAYBE a year old and it's a data drive that has nothing necessary for windows on it. The boot drive holds all OS and driver installations. I'm getting ready to format that drive just to rule it out.

Sorry for the long one. I've explained all of this to every tech that would listen and usually they just give me a dumbfounded look. I wanted to make sure I covered everything. I'm unable to access to computer in question right now to get any files that you might need, but I can attempt to get them this evening if you need them. I'm really hoping someone else out there has dealt with this sort of problem before. I've loaded my .45 with the intention of shooting this machine before calmer heads prevailed.

Thanks!



*edit* I've attached the 2 dump files from the directory you specified. I've never played around with these, so let me know if I've done it wrong. It's in .rar format.

My System SpecsSystem Spec
.

26 Jan 2012   #2

Win 8 Release candidate 8400
 
 

Quote   Quote: Originally Posted by ceri23 View Post
I'm writing this on my laptop (working fine).

I have had a problem that has been plaguing me for years now. I'll first list my current hardware and spec information:

MSI p67a-gd65 mobo ~ 1 week old
Intel i7 2600 (locked) ~ 1 week old
12 GB Corsair Vengence DDR3 1600 RAM ~ 7 weeks old (a little over 2 months)
Corsair Force3 120GB SSD (primary boot drive) ~ 7 weeks old
WD Caviar Black 2TB spinning HDD (data drive) ~ 1 year old
900 watt power supply (I can dig in and find the brand and model info if necessary ~ 5 weeks old
Nvidia GTX 560 TI 1.2GB DDR5 onboard ~ 7 weeks old
Windows 7 Ulti Upgrade disc ~ last fresh (full wipe) install was 1 week ago. I don't have my old vista dvd anymore so I had to do a double stack for the upgrade to work.

I think that's the relevant hardware.

This morning the computer began up with the same old BS I've been fighting with for years. I'm cruising along (usually in the morning) and open up something with small requirements, such as firefox. Suddenly the mouse stops responding for about 2-3 seconds. That's followed by a full black screen as though the monitor has turned off. That holds for 3-5 seconds. Then, the screen returns with a pop up on the lower right taskbar with the message "Display Driver stopped responding and has recovered." That is the usual routine. Sometimes (maybe 10% of the time) It will full on BSOD and dump memory to disc. When this black screen/recovery cycle starts up, it usually keeps going every 10-15 seconds. In other words, it will come back with that error message, I'll regain control of the mouse, and back to smooth sailing for a short time. It almost always returns within 5-30 seconds. The more I push through this error, the more frequently it seems to happen. Eventually, I get a BSOD dump or the cycle's frequency becomes so close together the computer is unusable.

Some history. I first noticed something like this happening around 3 years ago, while using vista. Every once in awhile I'd get a kernel error that pointed to something along the lines of "knneddleenn.exe" (don't remember the exact letter order but it seemed to be related to graphics drivers). I upgraded my video card and everything returned to normal....for awhile. Eventually, 6-9 months later, I had the same problem come up. I simply upgraded video cards again, and success, it worked again...for awhile. Fast forward to about two and a half months ago. Completely different computer hardware. Not a shred of that original system from 3 years ago remains, right down to mouse/keyboard and monitor. I had a system using a core2duo processor and an nvidia 240 gt video card. Same basic problem, except the error message with windows 7 is "Display Driver stopped responding and has recovered". When I get a BSOD it points to a filename exactly like the old vista error message (that "knneddleenn.exe").

So, two and a half months ago, I bought a new video card, a 460 GT. Everything was fine for about 2 weeks. Then it came back. So I know it couldn't be the video card. I had suspected that all along. I began throwing money at the problem. I swapped in a x58 sabretooth mobo and a core i7 960 processor. With the new mobo came the memory. 2 weeks in the clear, then back to the same problem. Buy new power supply, problem persists. I took it to Fry's Electronics (at my wits end). After 2 weeks of incompetance, they tell me it's the SSD. I know that's not the case, but I buy one anyway and install it clean. Diagnostics always seem to throw a false positive on SSDs. Good for about 4-5 days, then it's back.

I've monitored hardware temps. Everything is better than good. Nothing is getting up past mid 40s *C. I've tried a few registry edits that have been recommended on the internet with no effect. They involved modifying some TDR entries. I've done clean installs on several different nvidia drivers (most recent, the one that came with the video card, the betas, legacy ~180.XX), no changes to the problem.

So now about 2 weeks ago I bought ANOTHER new mobo and processor. This time it's the ones listed at the top of this post. New gen i7 with a mid-level board (having dropped ~$1500 in the last couple of months I've started settling for mid level gear).

The oldest piece of hardware is MAYBE a year old and it's a data drive that has nothing necessary for windows on it. The boot drive holds all OS and driver installations. I'm getting ready to format that drive just to rule it out.

Sorry for the long one. I've explained all of this to every tech that would listen and usually they just give me a dumbfounded look. I wanted to make sure I covered everything. I'm unable to access to computer in question right now to get any files that you might need, but I can attempt to get them this evening if you need them. I'm really hoping someone else out there has dealt with this sort of problem before. I've loaded my .45 with the intention of shooting this machine before calmer heads prevailed.

Thanks!



We do need the DMP file as it contains the only record of the sequence of events leading up to the crash, what drivers were loaded, and what was responsible.

If you are overclocking STOP

You may be able to get the DMP files without crashing by booting into safe mode (F8) with networking.

To enable us to assist you with your computer's BSOD symptoms, upload the contents of your "\Windows\Minidump" folder.

The procedure:
Quote:
* Copy the contents of \Windows\Minidump to another (temporary) location somewhere on your machine.
* Zip up the copy.
* Attach the ZIP archive to your post using the "paperclip" (file attachments) button.
*If the files are too large please upload them to a file sharing service like "Rapidshare" and put a link to them in your reply.

To ensure minidumps are enabled:
Quote:
* Go to Start, in the Search Box type: sysdm.cpl, press Enter.
* Under the Advanced tab, click on the Startup and Recovery Settings... button.
* Ensure that Automatically restart is unchecked.
* Under the Write Debugging Information header select Small memory dump (256 kB) in the dropdown box (the 256kb varies).
* Ensure that the Small Dump Directory is listed as %systemroot%\Minidump.
* OK your way out.
* Reboot if changes have been made.
My System SpecsSystem Spec
26 Jan 2012   #3

Windows 7 Home Premium 64-bit
 
 

I attached what I think are the dump files. Let me know if they're wrong. I used .rar format if that's okay.
My System SpecsSystem Spec
.


27 Jan 2012   #4

Windows 7 Home Premium 64-bit
 
 

I can't even find a reader to read that .dmp file. Any clues as to what's going on? The computer started up this morning, but just starting up from a cold set takes about 15 minutes for some bizarre reason. It proceeds through the POST etc. then gets to the "Starting Windows" screen. The animation plays fine, but then it just sits. I've been staring at it for about 5 minutes so far. Earlier it finally booted up after about 15 minutes. I went to open firefox (to check this thread), and firefox locked up. I Xed it and forced it's closure. I then tried opening up ie9 and it wouldn't even try to open. Next, I went to Computer to right click and check my system specs (to see if all memory modules and hard drives were being recognized) and it just sat there. I then tried opening firefox again and BSOD. I'm 5 minutes into it's reboot staring at "Starting Windows".

Also, something I missed that is a fairly recent symptom. My data drive has started dropping out of Computer. I'll leave the set running for a few days at a time and suddenly one day in the middle of something the D drive will just disappear. Anything I was working on that was saved there crashes, but windows stays up. A reboot was fixing this, but not anymore (as the computer is nearly unusable). Everything has been much slower than the hardware would suggest.
My System SpecsSystem Spec
27 Jan 2012   #5

Windows 7 Home Premium 64-bit
 
 

Update: Between crashes, I managed to see my D drive (data drive, WD caviar black 2TB spinning disc). It seems to have lost about half a TB of information off it out of the blue. No idea why. Since that pretty much means that my data is all probably borked, and none of it is particularly life or death, I decided to reformat both drives this time. Clear everything out and start from scratch.

I loaded my windows 7 installation DVD into the drive. I rebooted and booted from DVD drive. If anyone is somewhat familiar with this process, there are 2 pre-load sequences before you actually see a graphic friendly screen. They executed fine. Next up was the "Starting Windows" screen. This took a solid 15 minutes. When it finally came up, I had the blue themed background and the installation menu, but now my mouse and keyboard weren't working. I had no way to input to the computer, so I hard booted. Repeat the cycle, mouse and keyboard are working now. I go to custom installation options and it asks me where I want to install windows (a list of hard drives appears). My data drive doesn't show up at all in this menu.

There's seriously no end to the frustration here. I'm dying. I consider myself a pretty computer literate guy. I'm the go-to guy in my circle of friends and family. This problem just keeps throwing different symptoms at me. I've replaced everything twice over now it seems. 3 different mobos, 3 different processors, 3 different video cards, a full new compliment of RAM, a new SSD, a new DVD drive, 2 new power supplies. The last remaining possible piece of hardware is my data drive, and it's not even being recognized by windows, so I don't see how it could be the cause of these problems. Everything is loading incredibly slow, even when bypassing the hard drives and booting directly from the windows installation DVD. This is just nuts!
My System SpecsSystem Spec
27 Jan 2012   #6

Win 8 Release candidate 8400
 
 

Quote   Quote: Originally Posted by ceri23 View Post
I attached what I think are the dump files. Let me know if they're wrong. I used .rar format if that's okay.

Both were xeRelated to NVIDIA Stereoscopic 3D 3D Vision automatically transforms hundreds of PC games into full stereoscopic 3D. Note: Located in \%WINDIR%\%System%\.

I would re-install the newest version of the driver to start.
My System SpecsSystem Spec
27 Jan 2012   #7

Windows 7 Home Premium 64-bit
 
 

I have tried reinstalling all sorts of nvidia drivers. I've used the most recent retail release, the disks that came with the cards, the beta drivers online, and several legacy drivers in the 180s and 190s. I understand and fully trust that you are correct that there is something wrong with the drivers, but I've thoroughly exhausted the driver route. Each of these driver installs were performed using a clean install, and many went into a freshly formatted copy of windows.

One of my working theories early on was that windows 7 and nvidia drivers had a compatability problem, and I've seen quite a bit on this possibility online, but I'd think this would be everywhere since nvidia and windows 7 are very common, rather than limited to me and a handful of internet forum posts (even if that handful numbers in the hundreds). I have to assume that there are tens of thousands of people with similar hardware configuration that aren't having problems.
My System SpecsSystem Spec
28 Jan 2012   #8

Win 8 Release candidate 8400
 
 

Quote   Quote: Originally Posted by ceri23 View Post
I have tried reinstalling all sorts of nvidia drivers. I've used the most recent retail release, the disks that came with the cards, the beta drivers online, and several legacy drivers in the 180s and 190s. I understand and fully trust that you are correct that there is something wrong with the drivers, but I've thoroughly exhausted the driver route. Each of these driver installs were performed using a clean install, and many went into a freshly formatted copy of windows.

One of my working theories early on was that windows 7 and nvidia drivers had a compatability problem, and I've seen quite a bit on this possibility online, but I'd think this would be everywhere since nvidia and windows 7 are very common, rather than limited to me and a handful of internet forum posts (even if that handful numbers in the hundreds). I have to assume that there are tens of thousands of people with similar hardware configuration that aren't having problems.

I have to aqssume that the drivers work for the largest part of all systems they are installed on. Every system is a unique combination of parts, drivers, and variables and for it to fail there must have to be a huge number of things happening at the same time.
My System SpecsSystem Spec
12 Feb 2012   #9

Windows 7 Home Premium 64 bit
 
 

This may sound trite, but the only thing that sounds common to all of your troubles is perhaps your wall socket, or UPS, especially considering the downgraded performance over time. Do you have a surge suppressor?
My System SpecsSystem Spec
12 Feb 2012   #10

Windows 7 Home Premium 64-bit
 
 

It's a real mind-F to have just received an email that this thread has a new response. I just spent the last hour or so trying to tackle this problem when I realized I had a new email. I checked my email and there's a response to this same issue from 2 weeks ago.

Anyway, I did suspect the house's power supply so I've moved wall sockets, isolating my computer from anything else. It still happened. Then I went so far as to hook it up to a UPS to rule out brief fluctuations. Still happening. It's currently in the UPS and I'm getting windows aero flickers in pretty regular intervals. It's not giving me full black screens or error messages on this latest reformat yet, but I suspect it will start up in the next week or two. I bought a laptop in the mean time for critical computer work (school/work).

My data drive stopped being recognized by windows in my most recent reformatting. I've been running on the SSD alone for the last week and a half. The problem went away for a week, so I figured maybe my data HDD was in some way the problem. I went out and bought a DOA seagate 3TB drive that I have yet to return. It's not showing up in BIOS. It's suspicious that my 2TB western digital data drive stopped showing up, and now a new seagate model is also not showing up. I intend to return it and pick up another make/model of data drive when I get a chance to make sure it is a problem with my set and not just some bad luck with spinning disk drives.

All I'm left with that hasn't been purchased in the last 3 months is software or my monitor (which seems highly unlikely given the computer's response). One of the key reasons I believe I can rule out the monitor is the effect on audio as well as visual hang ups. If the monitor was the problem, the audio would continue to play. It doesn't. Every other component has been replaced, and in some cases twice or even 4 times in the case of the mobo.

This is still unresolved and any help is appreciated.
My System SpecsSystem Spec
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 Display Driver stopped responding and has recovered (plus BSODs)




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