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Bad pool header with blue screen of death

A. User asked on

Hi there

Just a while ago my Windows 7 Professional (64-bit) laptop suddenly crashed with a blue screen saying bad pool header. It made this memory dump (found it in the Windows\minidumps folder. Minidump on OneDrive

I have checked for solutions with Problem Reporting but it hasn't come up with anything yet. At the time I had a few tabs open in Google Chrome, was installing Microsoft Access 2013 and had Microsoft Word starter 2010 open after reinstalling it.

It seemed to happen as soon as I tried to close Word 2010 and everything just stopped and the bluescreen came up instantly. I'm not sure if the Access installation had finished or was still 'finalising the installation' as it was last time I checked it.

Any ideas what could've happened? I found another post that said it may be a problem with RAM and I should use the Driver Verifier and some other tools. Another post on this forum

Thanks

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The answered status icon Answer
Patrick Barker replied on

Hi,

The attached DMP file is of the BAD_POOL_HEADER (19) bug check.

This indicates that a pool header is corrupt.

1. Uninstall Malwarebytes Pro as it may be causing corruption.

2. If the above fails, enable Driver Verifier:

Driver Verifier:

What is Driver Verifier?

Driver Verifier is included in Windows 8/8.1, 7, Windows Server 2008 R2, Windows Vista, Windows Server 2008, Windows 2000, Windows XP, and Windows Server 2003 to promote stability and reliability; you can use this tool to troubleshoot driver issues. Windows kernel-mode components can cause system corruption or system failures as a result of an improperly written driver, such as an earlier version of a Windows Driver Model (WDM) driver.

Essentially, if there's a 3rd party driver believed to be at issue, enabling Driver Verifier will help flush out the rogue driver if it detects a violation.

Before enabling Driver Verifier, it is recommended to create a System Restore Point:

Vista - START | type rstrui - create a restore point
Windows 7 - START | type create | select "Create a Restore Point"
Windows 8/8.1 - http://www.eightforums.com/tutorials/4690-restore-point-create-windows-8-a.html

How to enable Driver Verifier:

Start > type "verifier" without the quotes > Select the following options -

1. Select - "Create custom settings (for code developers)"
2. Select - "Select individual settings from a full list"
3. Check the following boxes -
- Special Pool
- Pool Tracking
- Force IRQL Checking
- Deadlock Detection
- Security Checks (Windows 7 & 8)
- DDI compliance checking (Windows 8)
- Miscellaneous Checks
4. Select  - "Select driver names from a list"
5. Click on the "Provider" tab. This will sort all of the drivers by the provider.
6. Check EVERY box that is NOT provided by Microsoft / Microsoft Corporation.
7. Click on Finish.
8. Restart.

Important information regarding Driver Verifier:

- If Driver Verifier finds a violation, the system will BSOD. To expand on this a bit more for the interested, specifically what Driver Verifier actually does is it looks for any driver making illegal function calls, causing memory leaks, etc. When and/if this happens, system corruption occurs if allowed to continue. When Driver Verifier is enabled, it is monitoring all 3rd party drivers (as we have it set that way) and when it catches a driver attempting to do this, it will quickly flag that driver as being a troublemaker, and bring down the system safely before any corruption can occur.

- After enabling Driver Verifier and restarting the system, depending on the culprit, if for example the driver is on start-up, you may not be able to get back into normal Windows because Driver Verifier will detect it in violation almost straight away, and as stated above, that will cause / force a BSOD.

If this happens, do not panic, do the following:

- Boot into Safe Mode by repeatedly tapping the F8 key during boot-up.

- Once in Safe Mode - Start > Search > type "cmd" without the quotes.

- To turn off Driver Verifier, type in cmd "verifier /reset" without the quotes.
・    Restart and boot into normal Windows.

If your OS became corrupt or you cannot boot into Windows after disabling verifier via Safe Mode:

- Boot into Safe Mode by repeatedly tapping the F8 key during boot-up.

- Once in Safe Mode - Start > type "system restore" without the quotes.

- Choose the restore point you created earlier.

-- Note that Safe Mode for Windows 8/8.1 is a bit different, and you may need to try different methods: 5 Ways to Boot into Safe Mode in Windows 8 & Windows 8.1

How long should I keep Driver Verifier enabled for?

I recommend keeping it enabled for at least 24 hours. If you don't BSOD by then, disable Driver Verifier. I will usually say whether or not I'd like for you to keep it enabled any longer.

My system BSOD'd with Driver Verifier enabled, where can I find the crash dumps?

They will be located in %systemroot%\Minidump

Any other questions can most likely be answered by this article:
http://support.microsoft.com/kb/244617

Regards,

Patrick

Debugger/Reverse Engineer.
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The answered status icon Answer
Patrick Barker replied on

Good to hear, Zac.

To answer your question, use the laptop for awhile like you regularly would. If no crashes in the amount of time that it usually took to crash before, consider it solved. Don't enable Driver Verifier unless the system crashes again.

Please keep me updated in any case.

Regards,

Patrick

Debugger/Reverse Engineer.
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