xp detecting hardware faults - BSOD

  georgemac 17:09 28 Dec 2003

I have a system with GigaByte Ga7vrxp rev 1.1 motherboard, amd athlon 2000, 2 x 256 mb sticks of crucial PC2100 DDR, floppy, cd-rw, dvd writer, 40 gbyte hard drive, sound card, network card & modem. Has run beautiffily since I built it with no problems.

I started to get some BSOD, windows detected hardware fault.

I tried each stick of memory on it's own, same problem.

I decided to reinstall xp (stupid) and kept getting the same BSOD during installtion, although some of them mentioned conflict errors.

I am now at the stage where I have deleted the c partition, intending to reformat and reinstall, with valuable data on the other partition, which is backed up to dvd but I cannot copy the info from the dvd on my other pc, it gives read errors although it can see it.

I have removed the sound card, modem and lan card, and still get the BSOD when installing windows, before I even get to the stage of copying files. Even if I can get to installation, windows now has my backup partition shown as the c: drive and wants to install there, which I guess I could then move all the data to the other partition.

If I had to guess it would be faulty motherboard, any ideas?

  Diodorus Siculus 17:45 28 Dec 2003

I suppose that there is always a chance that you have two dodgy RAM modules - but more likely that the mobo has a fault somewhere. Can you try a different RAM module? Have you done a search on google for the specific error message you are getting?

  LastChip 17:54 28 Dec 2003

Do you have an old floppy start up disk? If so, will it boot to a DOS prompt without problems?

If it does, it may not be a serious hardware problem.

As with all diagnosis, you really have to start at the beginning!

Crucial memory is known to be generally excellent and it is doubtful that this will be your problem, but even the best quality suppliers sometimes get faulty batches. Do you have one of the better memory check programs available on floppy to run and check your memory?

Finally (for now), you could use your hard drive manufacturers disk checking utility, to make sure your drive is not failing.

Remember, all you need for a working machine, is a motherboard and cpu, one stick of memory, graphics card and a floppy drive!

  georgemac 18:02 28 Dec 2003

I can easily make a boot floppy, but as it is booting from cd rom would there be any advantage? I can access the bios settings no problem on boot up.

I do not have a memory tester for ddr ram to run on floppy, if anyone can point me to one I would be grateful and would do this. The memory is from different batches, and altough I have had a cruciall ddr fail before which gave me endless problems, I would think both failing at the same time would be unlikely? If anyone can point me at a memory tester though I will try it.

Also this PC has PC133 ram but supports ddr also, so I guess I could test the RAM in this machine.

Had not thought about the hard drive, will see if I can download something, but again it would have to run from floppy? Or I could remove the hard drive and fit it to this PC as slave.

  LastChip 20:24 28 Dec 2003

click here

Seagate and Maxtor both have dedicated software you can download to test their drives, available from their sites.

For Seagate click here

For Maxtor click here

Read carefully first, as I am not sure whether the Maxtor offering wipe's your drive clean. I have used the Seagate version and know that it simply checks the drive for faults.

If it boots OK from a CD ROM, I doubt you have a motherboard problem, though I guess it's not impossible.

  Gaz 25 20:27 28 Dec 2003


  Giggle n' Bits 20:39 28 Dec 2003

hopefully XP being a fatory install or legit MS Cd, what other 3rd party software do you run ?
Happen to be running AOl or Zone Alarm ?

  georgemac 21:19 28 Dec 2003

no zone alarm or aol, and now no other 3rd party software as I managed to format the c: partition to ntfs during a setup attempt.

it goes through setup but always crasges at some point early in the process. I have trawled the ms knowledge base with the recorring bsod messages

stop 0x0000008e points at ram faults

DRIVER_IRQL_NOT_LESS_OR_EQUAL suggests ram or corrupted virtual ram page - hard disk

stop 0x000000d1 behaviour occurs if more than 1 mylex raid controller is installed? look for an updated dac2w2k.sys driver although how I could do anything with this during the setup process is beyond me

I have checked all the bios settings and disabled the onboard promise raid controller as I do not need it.

A lot of times after the crash, the reset function does not work, I have to actually power down at the mains before it will restart

I have downloaded docmemory and am running this from floppy at present, no errors so far, thanks for the link to memtest86, I may also try that.

I have also downloaded the maxtor hard disk utility so will try that, hopefully I will not lose all the data!

once when rebooting it refused to do anything at all, even after switching off at mains, was very strange. Will keep plugging away, thanks for the suggestions.

  georgemac 21:22 28 Dec 2003

on the psot page for pci information where it lists the irq's

multimedia controller irq 10
ethernet controller irq 10
agp vga controller irq 10
onboard ide irq 14,5
usb controller irq 10 and is listed 5 times

will have to check this pc at boot to see what it shows.

  jimv7 21:42 28 Dec 2003

Have you access to another cpu as a faulty 1 can give these or similar error messages.

  LastChip 21:51 28 Dec 2003

There are not enough IRQ's to go around, so most modern hardware is configured to share IRQ's.

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