Bluescreen problems

Discussion in 'Alienware 17 and M17x' started by Dusk Star, May 10, 2012.

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  1. Dusk Star

    Dusk Star Notebook Consultant

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    Recently, my R3 has begun having BSOD problems, with a DRIVER_POWER_STARE_ERROR message. After talking with alienware support, the tech's solution was to completely disable the integrated graphics (or completely disable the dedicated) through a modded bios he provided. He also said that this was the only way to fix the problem, and that switching to an AMD card from my 460m would not solve the problem, nor would reinstalling windows.

    So, what should I do? It sure sounds like a hardware problem, given that a windows reinstall would not fix it. If it is, can I get alienware to replace it under my extended warranty?

    It is semi-stable, so I can use it for most tasks, but gaming causes a crash upon exiting or while playing. And it will often crash at night, while completely idle. (the times don't line up with any scheduled tasks, at least, and I'm not on it at 5am)

    Any help would be appreciated! Thank you!

    last couple dmp files are attached.
     

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  2. Dusk Star

    Dusk Star Notebook Consultant

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    The support guy I talked to did offer (after me asking) to "upgrade" me to the 6870m. Would this help?

    at the very least, it would make upgrading to a 7970m later easier, right?
     
  3. aznpos531

    aznpos531 Notebook Evangelist

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    I'm at work right now but I'll analyze your dump file when I get home later today. 0x9F stop errors are usually caused by driver issues and are rarely a result of hardware issues so I'm not sure switching out your 460M for a 6870M would help. Did the tech mention what made them think it was a hardware issue?
     
  4. Dusk Star

    Dusk Star Notebook Consultant

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    First, thank you for taking a look at them!

    The tech did not say it was a hardware problem, but had said that doing a reformat and reinstall of windows would not fix the problem. (almost everything on my computer is backed up to a combination of google music, dropbox and sugarsync, excluding programs and large media files, so I wouldn't lose much) If it is a driver problem, why would switching graphics card brands not work? Wouldn't they rely on different drivers, or might it be related to the intel IGP ones, instead?

    Anything you can do will be appreciated! Thank you!
     
  5. SlickDude80

    SlickDude80 Notebook Prophet

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    that's not an upgrade...you want them to *upgrade you to a 6990.

    and there's nothing wrong with disabling integrated graphics except that you paid for a laptop that has integrated graphics as an option
     
  6. aznpos531

    aznpos531 Notebook Evangelist

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    I should re-word and say that switching to the ATI graphics card may not resolve the issue. Driver issues may not be isolated to one driver alone and can involve several drivers. We won't know for sure until I take a look at your dump files.
    Speaking of which, did the Dell tech analyze your dump files?
     
  7. Dusk Star

    Dusk Star Notebook Consultant

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    No, the dell tech just opened up Nirsoft BlueScreenView, saw the error code, and went "this is your problem, there is no other solution except to permanently disable your IGP" He didn't save them or transfer the files to his computer, if that is what you mean.


    Heh. I asked about a 6990m, and he said $600 USD. For that price, I could get a 7970m, which just seemed to be a little overpriced... And I definitely need the integrated graphics, as I use my laptop for school and travel... 1-2 hour battery life is not really workableable :(
     
  8. aznpos531

    aznpos531 Notebook Evangelist

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    BlueScreenView is ok for quick and dirty analyses of dump files but the programs "interpretations" of the dumps have been known to be less accurate. Windows Debugging Tools are the gold standard for analysing dump files. There is absolutely no way he could have known for sure that it was a hardware problem just from looking at BlueScreenView. He may have been just going on experience but like I said, 0x9F stop errors are rarely caused by hardware problems. The fact that your system crashed while idle (when your 460M should be powered down) is further evidence to that end.
     
  9. Dusk Star

    Dusk Star Notebook Consultant

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    Well, he did NOT say that it was a hardware problem, but did say that there was nothing I could do in software to fix it, which to me meant hardware. (if that makes sense)
     
  10. aznpos531

    aznpos531 Notebook Evangelist

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    Well if he suggested the switch to an ATI card he probably thinks it's a hardware problem. The BlueScreenView probably pointed to nvlddmkm.sys. If that's the case (I'll confirm when I get home) you may want to try a clean install of the nVidia drivers.

    edit: As I suspected the dump files pointed to nvlddmkm.sys as the cause. Please follow the instructions here to reinstall your drivers: How to: Remove your Nvidia GPU Drivers. Please read this as well: GeForce Driver Installation Guide A guide to ensure your drivers are installed properly.
     
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