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Windows 7: BSOD 1-3 Times a Day, Usually While Not In Use

11 Oct 2012   #1

Windows 7 Ultimate x64
BSOD 1-3 Times a Day, Usually While Not In Use


I could use some help figuring out why my system is throwing almost daily BSODs. First, a bit of background (maybe excessive, but could be helpful). I have a Dell XPS 720. My boyfriend bought it in March 2008 and ran it with Windows XP and loved it. Earlier this year, he upgraded it to Windows 7 Ultimate so he could expand the RAM and began experiencing numerous BSODs and distortion of his photos while editing that was only visible on his system. He had a lot on his plate at the time, tons of photos to edit, and got really frustrated with it. After messing with it for weeks, he finally threw up his hands and bought a newer system with 7 already loaded on it. When he finally got over his desire to burn the XPS, he gave it to me to try to tinker with, since I didn't have any time crunches and I'd been wanting another desktop since my own died 4 years ago.

So I popped in new drives, did a fresh install of Windows 7 Ultimate, and had no issues, at first. Everything ran smoothly and awesomely. Installed some photo editing software, no issues. So started doing Windows Updates, and after a day or two of churning through those, I started getting BSODs. So I checked a few things, looked on Dell's site for driver updates (but they never did any for XPS for Win 7), etc. Wiped the drive, reinstalled, and again started doing the updates, this time in small batches of 20. Eventually started getting more BSODs and figured out the culprit - Windows Update was pushing out a crappy driver for the Nvidia GeForce 8800 GT card in the system! I did one more wipe, hide that update, then installed the recently released Win 7 driver from Nvidia. Did the remaining updates with no more issues except SP1 would never install. Also had no more BSODs.

Through all that, my system was getting online by jacking to my laptop and using its wifi. After a week of stability, I went to BestBuy to get a wireless card for the XPS. They didn't have any PCI cards (above their price point locally....whatever), so I took the Netgear WNA 3100 USB wifi the clerk recommended. After installing it on 9/21, I kept having issues with its software crashing (and taking the wifi with it), which then for some reason killed my task bar and weird issues. I disabled the software (uninstalling rendered the wifi useless), which solved that issue, though it still randomly doesn't work after a restart until I unplug and replug the wifi.

On 9/27, I began getting BSODs again, and after days of doing various searches, fix attempts, etc, I'm at a loss. I've already gone through and updated the sound card drivers with the latest from Soundblaster, the video card with the newest release from Nvidia (from yesterday), and the USB thing with the newest from Netgear. I'm current on all the Windows update except the aforementioned SP1 which continued to fail all install attempts so I pretty much gave up on it. I looked through the errors with BlueScreenView, but I'm not knowledgeable enough to really understand what I'm seeing. I did try searching the different driver names shown with BSOD, but I didn't find any consistent answers. I've run memtest multiple times, no issues there. I've run a disk check and also no issues found on any of the three disks.

Here are the system specs:
  • Windows 7 Ultimate x64
  • Intel Core2 2.40 GhZ Quad CPU Q6600
  • 4 GB Ram
  • Soundcard: Soundblaster X-Fi Gamer
  • Video Card: Nvidia GeForce 8800 GT
  • Monitor: Samsung SyncMaster 933
  • The three hard drives are all 750 GB Seagate drives
And attached are the files per the instructions. So any ideas? The BSODs annoy me slightly, but most actually happen while I'm asleep or at work, so they aren't hideously disruptive. My sweetie feels bad, though, so I'd love to be able to solve these issues for good.

My System SpecsSystem Spec
12 Oct 2012   #2

Microsoft Community Contributor Award Recipient

Microsoft Windows 10 Pro Insider Preview 64-bit

Welcome aboard.

► The BIOS is very old, try to update it.
Machine ID Information [From Smbios 2.3, DMIVersion 35, Size=2568]
BiosMajorRelease = 0
BiosMinorRelease = 0
BiosVendor = Dell Inc.                
BiosVersion = A02
BiosReleaseDate = 07/18/2007
SystemManufacturer = Dell Inc.                
SystemProductName = Dell XPS720                  
BaseBoardManufacturer = Dell Inc.          
BaseBoardProduct = 0YU822
BaseBoardVersion = A00
► You have AVG antivirus installed.
Start Menu\Programs\AVG    Public:Start Menu\Programs\AVG    Public
I would suggest you to get rid of AVG and use Microsoft Security Essentials - Free Antivirus for Windows

► The crash indicated to your Netgear (USB?) Network Adapter Driver.
*                                                                             *
*                        Bugcheck Analysis                                    *
*                                                                             *

Use !analyze -v to get detailed debugging information.

BugCheck C1, {fffff98049144f30, fffff980491444a2, 4140d8, 23}

Unable to load image \SystemRoot\system32\DRIVERS\bcmwlhigh664.sys, Win32 error 0n2
*** WARNING: Unable to verify timestamp for bcmwlhigh664.sys
*** ERROR: Module load completed but symbols could not be loaded for bcmwlhigh664.sys
Probably caused by : nwifi.sys ( nwifi!EtwEx_tidActivityInfoTransfer+98 )

Followup: MachineOwner
The Driver is of April, 2011. Update the driver, you may search in Welcome to NETGEAR Support.

Let us know the results.
My System SpecsSystem Spec
12 Oct 2012   #3

Windows 7 Ultimate x64

Thank you :-)

I've updated the BIOS to A06, which is the last version released by Dell for this system, and I've removed AVG and installed Security Essentials.

I searched the Netgear forums and double checked their downloads, and according to them I have the latest one for wifi adapter (only other results basically noted people dumped it and got something else :-P). I'll try reinstalling it again, then wait and see if I still get any BSODs after the aforementioned changes
My System SpecsSystem Spec

13 Oct 2012   #4

Windows 7 Ultimate x64

I got another BSOD. I tried running SFC /scannow but it kept failing before finishing, even after disabling the antivirus. I tried the SP1 install again as well, and it also failed.

So I completely uninstalled Netgear's software and disconnected the wifi. I also booted into safe mode and ran SFC /scannow several times more. It got through and kept reporting it found some corrupted files but couldn't fix them. So I ran again. I think I ran it about seven times, then it cancelled itself because I had opened Windows Explorer. I closed that, then told it to run again - and got another BSOD.

I rebooted into full windows and ran the findstr command I'd seen another thread about how to figure out what drivers SFC couldn't fix.

I attached the updated files, plus the screen of SP1's error and the info from the SFC log.
My System SpecsSystem Spec
13 Oct 2012   #5

Microsoft Community Contributor Award Recipient

Microsoft Windows 10 Pro Insider Preview 64-bit

The latest crash is caused by nvstor.sys, nVidia storage driver.
fffff880`01fb2378  fffff880`0106f546Unable to load image \SystemRoot\system32\DRIVERS\nvstor.sys, Win32 error 0n2
*** WARNING: Unable to verify timestamp for nvstor.sys
*** ERROR: Module load completed but symbols could not be loaded for nvstor.sys
lmvm nvstor
start             end                 module name
fffff880`01067000 fffff880`01092000   nvstor   T (no symbols)           
    Loaded symbol image file: nvstor.sys
    Image path: \SystemRoot\system32\DRIVERS\nvstor.sys
    Image name: nvstor.sys
    Timestamp:        Sat Mar 20 02:15:11 2010 (4BA3E257)
    CheckSum:         0002FBF6
    ImageSize:        0002B000
    Translations:     0000.04b0 0000.04e4 0409.04b0 0409.04e4
It is of march, 2010. Try to update it, if not possible, uninstall it. Windows will configure the generic drivers at the next restar rightly.
My System SpecsSystem Spec
13 Oct 2012   #6
Microsoft MVP

Windows 7 Ultimate X64 SP1

You might have a crack at this: Windows Update - Reset

Try these steps to install only the graphics driver.

1.Download the preferred driver and save it to the desktop.
2.Double click the installer and you will see a screen where it will be extracted to, change that to your desktop.
3.Open Device Manager through Control Panel.
4.Expand Display adapters and right click the name for yours and choose Update Driver\Browse my Computer. Select the driver folder you just saved on the desktop. Click Next.
5. Your system should say "Windows has successfully updated your driver software".

If you get a window saying you already have the most current driver, go back to step 4 and choose Uninstall Driver software instead. Then restart from step 3.
Attachment 228491 Attachment 228492


Some hardware tests to run, especially the RAM test.

Graphics card:

Hard drive(s):
Pick one for your HDD brand or use Seatools.
7 Free Hard Drive Testing Software Tools

RAM (memory):
This will require memtest on a bootable CD or USB stick.
RAM - Test with Memtest86+
My System SpecsSystem Spec
13 Oct 2012   #7

Windows 7 Ultimate x64

Hmm, that is odd. Could it be because I was in safe mode? I have the very latest drivers from Nvidia, which were released last week. I'll try reinstalling them again just to be sure.

I set the Windows Memory diagnostic to run on Extended for 10 passes last night before going to sleep. It's on #5 now and still showing no problems. Should I let it finish before trying memtest?

Will try the update reset and getting Samsung's HD tester now.
My System SpecsSystem Spec
13 Oct 2012   #8

Microsoft Community Contributor Award Recipient

Microsoft Windows 10 Pro Insider Preview 64-bit

nvstor is not related with your latest nvidia driver, which is display driver. nvstor.sys is storage driver, an alternative of msahci.sys. You need not to reinstall display driver, that is nlddmkm.sys at all, and it will not solve your issue.

Go to Device Manager, Disc drive ... expand it> Select disc, right click > uninstall. nvstor.sys will be uninstalled.

At the next reboot, the generic driver msahci.sys will be loaded.
Attachment 236401
My System SpecsSystem Spec
13 Oct 2012   #9

Windows 7 Ultimate x64

I was typing my response to let you know I did that, when I got another BSOD. Updated file attached. I uninstalled all the drives listed on my drive section, did all the restarts, etc. Looking at the list of loaded drivers, though, it put back the NVidia instead of getting that other one you mentioned

Before I did the drive install, I also shut down and went back to the very basics - double checked all the connections, etc. While I was in there, I got the fuller hard drive details I was missing earlier: all three are Seagate Barracuda 7200.11 750 GB SATA drives.
My System SpecsSystem Spec
13 Oct 2012   #10
Microsoft MVP

Windows 7 Ultimate X64 SP1

Windows memory diagnostic doesn't do as thorough a test as memtest86+.

Installing the graphics driver as I posted will not install the nVIDIA control panel which can mess things up.
My System SpecsSystem Spec

 BSOD 1-3 Times a Day, Usually While Not In Use

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