tracking down faulty driver

  Belinda 15:42 05 Sep 2007

My PC occasionally restarts without warning, or shows the blue screen of death. Reporting the problem to MS produces the information that there's a faulty driver somewhere. There are no new bits of hardware, so it's difficult to figure out which driver is to blame. I've just reformatted the hard drive and reinstalled everything, and the problem is re-occurring.

Does anyone have any helpful ideas about the fastest way to identify the faulty driver? Are there any tools I can use to help?

I need the PC to run my business, and can't really afford to take it out of action for days at a time.

  Fruit Bat /\0/\ 19:08 05 Sep 2007

Sorry no quick way.

make sure you have the latest drivers for your equipment start by updating your graphics driver as these are usually the culprit.

  I am Spartacus 19:20 05 Sep 2007

Does anything show as an error in Event Viewer under System. Driver problems may show up there.

  Fruit Bat /\0/\ 19:43 05 Sep 2007

Auto-reboot disable:
When Running windows and it crashes you will get a blue screen and it will automatically restart, often it will restart too fast for you to see the error message.
To disable auto restart on system failure, so you can see the error message.

1. Go to Start -> Control Panel -> System (Windows+Pause works, too)
2. Go to Advanced
3. Under the Startup and Recovery section, click Settings...
4. Under System Failure un-check "Automatically restart"

Post the message if you can.

  Belinda 19:59 05 Sep 2007

I shall follow all your suggestions and see what happens. Thanks so much for your help with this - I'm very grateful.

Brain is now shutting down for the evening, so shan't attempt these fixes tonight.


  Belinda 10:59 06 Sep 2007

Good morning. I unchecked the automatic restart, which produced a BSOD declaring that there's a "system driver synchronisation viewer issue". Can anyone translate this from geek-speak to english??

It appears that the graphics driver is the latest one, so I'm trying to uninstall it and reinstall an older one to see if that helps.

When I start normally the PC crawls very slowly - things that should take a second take minutes. When I use 'safe mode' it works at normal speed. This seems significant but I don't know enough to take it further. Any advice gratefully received.

Thanks again,

  I am Spartacus 13:31 06 Sep 2007

That sounds as though it's the graphics driver. In safe mode it doesn't load and uses a generic windows driver instead.

Are you using Vista?

Also what graphics card is it?

  woodchip 13:38 06 Sep 2007

You can find the Program, Slow methodical By using MSCONFIG from Run in the startup tab you need to make a note of the program you remove the tick from, then restart computer if it does not start restart in Safe Mode by tapping F5 as it starts, then put the tick back. If it gets to Windows OK after removing a tick, test windows for a while to see if the problem is still there. If it is go back to square one and put the tick back and remove another one. And so on

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