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Windows 7: Random BSODs, mostly IRQL_NOT_LESS_OR_EQUAL

21 Jun 2012   #1

Windows 7 Ultimate x64

Hello everyone, long time lurker and first time poster here.

Is Windows 7 . . .
- x86 (32-bit) or x64 ?
64 Bit
- the original installed OS on the system?
Windows 7 Ultimate
- an OEM or full retail version? Full Retail
- OEM = came pre-installed on system

- Full Retail = you purchased it from retailer
- What is the age of system (hardware)? 23 months
- What is the age of OS installation
(have you re-installed the OS?) 2 months

So I have a custom built desktop computer that has done me well for nearly two years...except for one problem. It BSODs randomly, and on sometimes up to ten times a week. I've tried fixing it myself several times, but alas they always return. I think it's now a good time to fix the problem once and for all.

So a little bit of background. This computer was originally only running a Spinpoint F3 and Windows was installed on a dedicated partition. BSODs happened regularly and there have been two clean installations on that hard drive. A couple months ago I got a Crucial M4 SSD and did a clean Windows installation. Again, same BSODs. Besides the clean installs, I have done a few other things to fix the problems. I shut down all of my overclocks and ran stress tests such as Prime95, LinX, and OCCT. No problems during the stress tests. But then as I was using the computer normally: BSOD. So overclocked it again and ran the stress tests again overnight and the computer didn't have any problems, but not too long afterwards, it BSODed again. I have also run memtest overnight without any problems. My temperatures are also within acceptable to excellent ranges. I've tried several graphics drivers and made sure everything is up to date including my SSD firmware.

I will say, most BSODs occur directly after a gaming session. If it's after a gaming session, it's usually IRQL_NOT_LESS_OR_EQUAL. If it's random, then it's usually a generic BSOD. Now, early on during my ownership, I temporarily ran an HD3450, which didn't result in any BSODs. Additionally, I have noticed a decline in BSODs after dusting out the GPU. But when I say decline I mean about halved (BSODs still occur). Though that might have just been a coincidence. So I get the feeling that the root of the problem might be the GPU: a GTX 470. I've reseated it and changed the power supply cables, but that made no difference. Temperatures seem to be fine and it is NOT overclocked. I wish I still had access to the old Radeon to confirm if it really is the problem.

So, that's the story. I've attached Windows_NT6_BSOD_jcgriff2 and the system health report. Hopefully I can get to the bottom of this.


My System SpecsSystem Spec

22 Jun 2012   #2

Windows 7 Ultimate x64

Well, shortly after posting, I got another BSOD. This time it was the uncorrectable hardware error (I don't recall getting this one often).
My System SpecsSystem Spec
22 Jun 2012   #3

Windows 7 Ultimate x64 update. I cleaned the whole system out (including a thorough heatsink cleaning) and reapplied thermal paste. Temperatures are all fine. I then ran Prime95 and all was well, so I left and waited for it to complete 10 tests. I came back around the seventh test and woke the screen up. Seconds later, BSOD. Now, maybe it failed a stress test, but it went up to the seventh test without hesitation. I have a bad feeling my intervention triggered the BSOD. The error was "an attempt was made to execute non-executable memory" (this one has occurred often as well).

Anyone have any ideas?
My System SpecsSystem Spec

24 Jun 2012   #4

Windows 7 Home Premium 64 Bit

Problematic Software:
Start Menu\Programs\MSI Afterburner	DarkReactor\Alishan:Start Menu\Programs\MSI Afterburner	DarkReactor\Alishan
  • MSI Afterburner/RivaTuner is known to cause instability with systems. Please remove the software.

Drivers in need of removal/updating:
RTCore64.sys Wed May 25 00:39:12 2005 (42941D90)
yk62x64.sys Wed May 20 02:14:06 2009 (4A13BBCE)
CtClsFlt.sys Sun Jun 14 23:06:41 2009 (4A35D6E1)
  • MSI Afterburner/RivaTuner is known to cause instability with systems. Please remove the software.
  • yk62x64.sys is your Marvell Yukon networking driver. Update from your motherboard support site.
  • CtClsFlt.sys is your Creative Camera Class Upper Filter Driver and should be updated from Creative support.

For your SSD, there may be indications of it disappearing from the system: Try doing a power cycle of the SSD. The following steps should be carried out and take ~1 hour to complete.
  1. Power off the system.
  2. Remove all power supplies (ac adapter then battery for laptop, ac adapter for desktop)
  3. Hold down the power button for 30 seconds to close the circuit and drain all components of power.
  4. Reconnect all power supplies (battery then ac adapter for laptop, ac adapter for desktop)
  5. Turn on the system and enter the BIOS (see your manual for the steps to enter the BIOS)
  6. Let the computer remain in the BIOS for 20 minutes.
  7. Follow steps 1-3 and physically remove the SSD from the system by disconnecting the cables for a desktop or disconnecting the drive from the junction for a laptop.
  8. Leave the drive disconnected for 30 seconds to let all power drain from it.
  9. Replace the drive connection(s) and then do steps 4-8 again.
  10. Repeat steps 1-4.
  11. Start your computer normally and run Windows.

The above steps were a result of: Why did my SSD "disappear" from my system? - Crucial Community

While that may not be your drive, a power cycle should be the same on all SSD drives. See how the system responds after the SSD power cycle.
My System SpecsSystem Spec
24 Jun 2012   #5

Windows 7 Ultimate x64

Thanks for thorough response! I'll look into uninstalling MSI Afterburner (though that's what I use to manage my GPU profiles) and I'll update those two drivers.

Don't think I've ever had the SSD disappearing issues, but I'm familiar with the power cycle process so I'll go ahead and give that a shot as well.

Actually, I didn't mention this, but after my last post I decided to try reverting back to stock CPU settings and see if a BSOD occurs (like it did the last time I reverted to stock). And, well, it's been two days and nothing has happened (maybe last time it was a fluke?). I'm going to keep stress testing it and doing day to tasks to see if anything happens. If not, I'll revert to the full 4 GHz and see if the BSODs reoccur. I would be surprised if it ends up being an unstable overclock because I've run both Prime95 and the Intel Burn Test overnight without hiccups before, though it certainly seems like it might be the problem.

Thanks again!
My System SpecsSystem Spec
24 Jun 2012   #6

Windows 7 Home Premium 64 Bit

You're welcome. Let us know what your stress tests reveal.
My System SpecsSystem Spec


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