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Windows 7: How do I find out what driver is causing the problem?

06 Oct 2010   #1

Windows 7 Professional 32-bit Service Pack 1
How do I find out what driver is causing the problem?

I got stop code 0x000000C5. Googling this, I found how to run driver verifier.

MS was confusing, so I went to this web site: Using Driver Verifier

however, I am getting the impression that driver verifier is supposed to CAUSE a BSOD if there is a problem.

I know I need to run driver verifier because Windows told me that in the message I got during the Blue Screen.

Please clear all this up for me and tell me how exactly I can locate the offending driver. Device Manager shows no problems.

My System SpecsSystem Spec
07 Oct 2010   #2
Microsoft MVP


First off, please follow the instructions here to get us some more info to help diagnose the problem:

The site you used is a good, generic description of Driver Verifier. Unfortunately, the default settings won't tell you much - especially if it's not generating BSOD's (yes, it's supposed to do that).

But it doesn't treat this (from the description of the STOP 0xC5 error here: BSOD Index )
To debug this error, use the special pool option of Driver Verifier. If this fails to reveal the driver that caused the error, use the Global Flags utility to enable the special pool by pool tag.
When I use Driver Verifier, I first check to be sure that the Driver Verifier will pick up on the error that occurred (this is the Special Pool thing above)
Then I test all 3rd party drivers with all of the tests (I'll post my instructions later on). This ensures that, if this is a 3rd party driver problem, that it's most likely that Driver Verifier will pick it up.
And, if Driver Verifier doesn't pick it up, then I can be fairly sure that it's either a hardware problem, a compatibility issue, or a Windows problem.

So, please follow these instructions for using Driver Verifier:
Using Driver Verifier is an iffy proposition. Most times it'll crash and it'll tell you what the driver is. But sometimes it'll crash and won't tell you the driver. Other times it'll crash before you can log in to Windows. If you can't get to Safe Mode, then you'll have to resort to offline editing of the registry to disable Driver Verifier.

So, I'd suggest that you first backup your stuff and then make sure you've got access to another computer so you can contact us if problems arise. Then make a System Restore point (so you can restore the system using the Vista/Win7 Startup Repair feature).

Then, here's the procedure:
- Go to Start and type in "verifier" (without the quotes) and press Enter
- Select "Create custom settings (for code developers)" and click "Next"
- Select "Select individual settings from a full list" and click "Next"
- Select everything EXCEPT FOR "Low Resource Simulation" and click "Next"
NOTE: You can use Low Resource Simulation if you'd like. From my limited experimentation it makes the BSOD's come faster.
- Select "Select driver names from a list" and click "Next"
Then select all drivers NOT provided by Microsoft and click "Next"
- Select "Finish" on the next page.

Reboot the system and wait for it to crash to the Blue Screen. Continue to use your system normally, and if you know what causes the crash, do that repeatedly. The objective here is to get the system to crash because Driver Verifier is stressing the drivers out. If it doesn't crash for you, then let it run for at least 36 hours of continuous operation (an estimate on my part).

Reboot into Windows (after the crash) and turn off Driver Verifier by going back in and selecting "Delete existing settings" on the first page, then locate and zip up the memory dump file and upload it with your next post.

If you can't get into Windows because it crashes too soon, try it in Safe Mode.
If you can't get into Safe Mode, try using System Restore from your installation DVD to set the system back to the previous restore point that you created.

If that doesn't work, post back and we'll have to see about fixing the registry entry off-line:
Delete these registry keys (works in XP, Vista, Win7):
        HKEY_LOCAL_MACHINE\SYSTEM\CurrentControlSet\Control\Session Manager\Memory Management\VerifyDrivers
        HKEY_LOCAL_MACHINE\SYSTEM\CurrentControlSet\Control\Session Manager\Memory Management\VerifyDriverLevel
More info on this at this link: Using Driver Verifier to identify issues with Windows drivers for advanced users
My System SpecsSystem Spec

 How do I find out what driver is causing the problem?

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