Question BSoD Loop So Bad, Can't Even Move Around In BIOS

ryangratzer2000

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I have no clue what's going on with my computer. I was playing games yesterday, then I went to go grab something and then I come back to my PC blue screening with the IRQL NOT LESS OR EQUAL, it threw the tcpip.sys file saying that was the culprit, but I haven't even been able to get back into Windows since then. My computer is on a constant restart loop and has failed so many times that it's at the Preparing Automatic Repair, but it freezes at that point and will never move on to the next step. I then wanted to change some BIOS settings as well as the boot order to load my Windows 10 USB Install to try and repair it. I will be able to get in the BIOS for under 10 seconds, then my PC restarts, I am able to get into the BIOS again but then it's frozen. My mouse and keyboard become unresponsive and I just can't do anything. I just want to backup my SSD before wiping it, so just a clean install isn't really an option for me. No PC upgrades have been made, and I have not touched the components.

CPU: Intel Core i7-8700k
MOBO: Gigabyte AORUS Z370 Gaming 5
GPU: EVGA GeForce GTX 1080
RAM: 16GB Corsair Vengeance
SSD: HP S600 120GB
HDD: Western Digital Blue 1TB
 

Darkbreeze

Retired Mod
If you're having problems in the BIOS, then your Windows installation IS NOT the problem. There is nothing related to Windows that could have a cause or effect relationship with the BIOS environment.

That can basically ONLY be the BIOS firmware image itself or some kind of actual hardware issue.

I'd start with a hard reset of the BIOS

BIOS Hard Reset procedure

Power off the unit, switch the PSU off and unplug the PSU cord from either the wall or the power supply.

Remove the motherboard CMOS battery for about three to five minutes. In some cases it may be necessary to remove the graphics card to access the CMOS battery.

During that five minutes while the CMOS battery is out of the motherboard, press the power button on the case, continuously, for 15-30 seconds, in order to deplete any residual charge that might be present in the CMOS circuit. After the five minutes is up, reinstall the CMOS battery making sure to insert it with the correct side up just as it came out.

If you had to remove the graphics card you can now reinstall it, but remember to reconnect your power cables if there were any attached to it as well as your display cable.

Now, plug the power supply cable back in, switch the PSU back on and power up the system. It should display the POST screen and the options to enter CMOS/BIOS setup. Enter the bios setup program and reconfigure the boot settings for either the Windows boot manager or for legacy systems, the drive your OS is installed on if necessary.

Save settings and exit. If the system will POST and boot then you can move forward from there including going back into the bios and configuring any other custom settings you may need to configure such as Memory XMP, A-XMP or D.O.C.P profile settings, custom fan profile settings or other specific settings you may have previously had configured that were wiped out by resetting the CMOS.

In some cases it may be necessary when you go into the BIOS after a reset, to load the Optimal default or Default values and then save settings, to actually get the hardware tables to reset in the boot manager.

It is probably also worth mentioning that for anything that might require an attempt to DO a hard reset in the first place, IF the problem is related to a lack of video signal, it is a GOOD IDEA to try a different type of display as many systems will not work properly for some reason with displayport configurations. It is worth trying HDMI if you are having no display or lack of visual ability to enter the BIOS, or no signal messages.

Trying a different monitor as well, if possible, is also a good idea if there is a lack of display. It happens.



And if that fails to help at all then I'd move on to a bench test with minimal hardware, including ONLY the boot drive without any secondary storage drives attached and a single stick of RAM.

 

Colif

Win 10 Master
Moderator
it threw the tcpip.sys file saying that was the culprit,
its not the cause, its victim.
tcpip.sys = transmission control protocol/internet protocol. Used by windows to talk to lan drivers, among other things.

now it might not help with the bios but its likely your LAN or WIFI drivers that caused the bsod. if you use ethernet, could try removing cable and see if it makes any different booting, maybe chip is problem.
 

ryangratzer2000

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If you're having problems in the BIOS, then your Windows installation IS NOT the problem. There is nothing related to Windows that could have a cause or effect relationship with the BIOS environment.

That can basically ONLY be the BIOS firmware image itself or some kind of actual hardware issue.

I'd start with a hard reset of the BIOS

BIOS Hard Reset procedure

Power off the unit, switch the PSU off and unplug the PSU cord from either the wall or the power supply.

Remove the motherboard CMOS battery for about three to five minutes. In some cases it may be necessary to remove the graphics card to access the CMOS battery.

During that five minutes while the CMOS battery is out of the motherboard, press the power button on the case, continuously, for 15-30 seconds, in order to deplete any residual charge that might be present in the CMOS circuit. After the five minutes is up, reinstall the CMOS battery making sure to insert it with the correct side up just as it came out.

If you had to remove the graphics card you can now reinstall it, but remember to reconnect your power cables if there were any attached to it as well as your display cable.

Now, plug the power supply cable back in, switch the PSU back on and power up the system. It should display the POST screen and the options to enter CMOS/BIOS setup. Enter the bios setup program and reconfigure the boot settings for either the Windows boot manager or for legacy systems, the drive your OS is installed on if necessary.

Save settings and exit. If the system will POST and boot then you can move forward from there including going back into the bios and configuring any other custom settings you may need to configure such as Memory XMP, A-XMP or D.O.C.P profile settings, custom fan profile settings or other specific settings you may have previously had configured that were wiped out by resetting the CMOS.

In some cases it may be necessary when you go into the BIOS after a reset, to load the Optimal default or Default values and then save settings, to actually get the hardware tables to reset in the boot manager.

It is probably also worth mentioning that for anything that might require an attempt to DO a hard reset in the first place, IF the problem is related to a lack of video signal, it is a GOOD IDEA to try a different type of display as many systems will not work properly for some reason with displayport configurations. It is worth trying HDMI if you are having no display or lack of visual ability to enter the BIOS, or no signal messages.

Trying a different monitor as well, if possible, is also a good idea if there is a lack of display. It happens.



And if that fails to help at all then I'd move on to a bench test with minimal hardware, including ONLY the boot drive without any secondary storage drives attached and a single stick of RAM.

I just really don't understand what my problem is, I've reseated hardware, I've tried each stick of ram by itself. I removed the CMOS battery, and have unplugged all other HDDs. It still just freezes at random points of startup. I got it to boot to my Windows 10 USB, and when the screen says "Loading Files..." it will freeze at a random point.

It did this for the preparing automatic repair as well. Just froze at a random spot and did nothing. I had received multiple blue screen error codes last night, each time it restarted it was a new error code. I had things like IRQL NOT LESS OR EQUAL with no driver as the error, and then I had the same error with drivers listed below. I then had the error about Attempted to write to readonly memory and other errors that I didn't write down. I removed my WiFi card in hopes of that working, but it hasn't. I just don't know what the issue is.
 

ryangratzer2000

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I just really don't understand what my problem is, I've reseated hardware, I've tried each stick of ram by itself. I removed the CMOS battery, and have unplugged all other HDDs. It still just freezes at random points of startup. I got it to boot to my Windows 10 USB, and when the screen says "Loading Files..." it will freeze at a random point.

It did this for the preparing automatic repair as well. Just froze at a random spot and did nothing. I had received multiple blue screen error codes last night, each time it restarted it was a new error code. I had things like IRQL NOT LESS OR EQUAL with no driver as the error, and then I had the same error with drivers listed below. I then had the error about Attempted to write to readonly memory and other errors that I didn't write down. I removed my WiFi card in hopes of that working, but it hasn't. I just don't know what the issue is.
To clarify, my BIOS is no longer an issue. But, now I can't get it to do anything else.
 

ryangratzer2000

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Also had another question, since I have important files on my SSD, do you think I could purchase a new SSD, install Windows on it and then access my old SSD to take the files off of it? My separate HDDs have all my games and other things on it, but I wanted to keep the things on my Desktop at least from the SSD.
 

ryangratzer2000

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So I figured out what may have caused this whole thing, but now it's all about how to fix it. I had used Driver Booster after a few BSoD loops weeks ago, it seemed to have fixed it for about 3 weeks until yesterday. I have read that Driver Booster sucks and I shouldn't have used it, but now I don't know how to fix it. I can't even get into the Windows Installer to do a fresh install. It just goes past the Loading Files... then the AORUS screen, and then a blue screen error.
 

ryangratzer2000

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its not the cause, its victim.
tcpip.sys = transmission control protocol/internet protocol. Used by windows to talk to lan drivers, among other things.

now it might not help with the bios but its likely your LAN or WIFI drivers that caused the bsod. if you use ethernet, could try removing cable and see if it makes any different booting, maybe chip is problem.
Since nothing has been working, do you think it's the motherboard? I've been reading about how the motherboard is a big culprit of BSoD issues. I don't really know how to test the parts that well.
 

ryangratzer2000

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Ruled out the SSD (which has my Windows installation on it.), plugged it into a working computer and it booted up no problem with no blue screen issues. Still backed it up just in case. Running Malwarebytes as well to see if anything is wrong with the drive still.

Sounds like now my last few options for testing are:
  • Motherboard
  • CPU
  • Replace CMOS battery (rare that it would be this, but cheaper than buying new parts.)
  • PSU
 

ryangratzer2000

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Ruled out the SSD (which has my Windows installation on it.), plugged it into a working computer and it booted up no problem with no blue screen issues. Still backed it up just in case. Running Malwarebytes as well to see if anything is wrong with the drive still.

Sounds like now my last few options for testing are:
  • Motherboard
  • CPU
  • Replace CMOS battery (rare that it would be this, but cheaper than buying new parts.)
  • PSU
Should mention that I ruled out RAM as well, I placed a good stick of RAM in my PC and it still had issues.
 

Darkbreeze

Retired Mod
Clean install, and go from there. And make SURE it IS a CLEAN install. Meaning, no secondary drives connected during the installation, at all. Just the target drive and the USB or optical drive you are installing from. Be sure on the screen where it asks where you want to install Windows that you delete ALL of the existing partitions on the target drive and then install to the unpartitioned, unformatted space. Windows will create ALL required partitions and perform any necessary formatting, automatically.

 

ryangratzer2000

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Clean install, and go from there. And make SURE it IS a CLEAN install. Meaning, no secondary drives connected during the installation, at all. Just the target drive and the USB or optical drive you are installing from. Be sure on the screen where it asks where you want to install Windows that you delete ALL of the existing partitions on the target drive and then install to the unpartitioned, unformatted space. Windows will create ALL required partitions and perform any necessary formatting, automatically.

If you read up a little bit, I explained that this isn't possible. I have the Windows 10 Official USB Installer plugged in, and only my drive that I want to install it on. It gets to the Loading Files... part and then goes to the AORUS screen, and then immediately blue screens. I literally cannot get to the part of the process to select my language, etc. This is definitely a hardware problem and I feel like it's the Mobo, because my CPU has no bent pins or anything like that as far as I can see.
 

Darkbreeze

Retired Mod
You ran Windows memory diagnostic, but have you run Memtest86? That is the test you FIRST want to run, when testing for physical memory or memory configuration errors. And, you want to run it ON the machine that is having troubles, if possible. If you can't even get Memtest to run, then there is, no doubt, a hardware issue, because it doesn't involve Windows at all.

Memtest86


Go to the Passmark software website and download the USB Memtest86 free version. You can do the optical disk version too if for some reason you cannot use a bootable USB flash drive.


Create bootable media using the downloaded Memtest86. Once you have done that, go into your BIOS and configure the system to boot to the USB drive that contains the Memtest86 USB media or the optical drive if using that option.


You CAN use Memtest86+, as they've recently updated the program after MANY years of no updates, but for the purpose of this guide I recommend using the Passmark version as this is a tried and true utility while I've not had the opportunity to investigate the reliability of the latest 86+ release as compared to Memtest86. Possibly, consider using Memtest86+ as simply a secondary test to Memtest86, much as Windows memory diagnostic utility and Prime95 Blend or custom modes can be used for a second opinion utility.


Create a bootable USB Flash drive:

1. Download the Windows MemTest86 USB image.

2. Right click on the downloaded file and select the "Extract to Here" option. This places the USB image and imaging tool into the current folder.

3. Run the included imageUSB tool, it should already have the image file selected and you just need to choose which connected USB drive to turn into a bootable drive. Note that this will erase all data on the drive.



No memory should ever fail to pass Memtest86 when it is at the default configuration that the system sets it at when you start out or do a clear CMOS by removing the CMOS battery for five minutes.

Best method for testing memory is to first run four passes of Memtest86, all 11 tests, WITH the memory at the default configuration. This should be done BEFORE setting the memory to the XMP profile settings. The paid version has 13 tests but the free version only has tests 1-10 and test 13. So run full passes of all 11 tests. Be sure to download the latest version of Memtest86. Memtest86+ has not been updated in MANY years. It is NO-WISE as good as regular Memtest86 from Passmark software.

If there are ANY errors, at all, then the memory configuration is not stable. Bumping the DRAM voltage up slightly may resolve that OR you may need to make adjustments to the primary timings. There are very few secondary or tertiary timings that should be altered. I can tell you about those if you are trying to tighten your memory timings.

If you cannot pass Memtest86 with the memory at the XMP configuration settings then I would recommend restoring the memory to the default JEDEC SPD of 1333/2133mhz (Depending on your platform and memory type) with everything left on the auto/default configuration and running Memtest86 over again. If it completes the four full passes without error you can try again with the XMP settings but first try bumping the DRAM voltage up once again by whatever small increment the motherboard will allow you to increase it by. If it passes, great, move on to the Prime95 testing.

If it still fails, try once again bumping the voltage if you are still within the maximum allowable voltage for your memory type and test again. If it still fails, you are likely going to need more advanced help with configuring your primary timings and should return the memory to the default configuration until you can sort it out.

If the memory will not pass Memtest86 for four passes when it IS at the stock default non-XMP configuration, even after a minor bump in voltage, then there is likely something physically wrong with one or more of the memory modules and I'd recommend running Memtest on each individual module, separately, to determine which module is causing the issue. If you find a single module that is faulty you should contact the seller or the memory manufacturer and have them replace the memory as a SET. Memory comes matched for a reason as I made clear earlier and if you let them replace only one module rather than the entire set you are back to using unmatched memory which is an open door for problems with incompatible memory.

Be aware that you SHOULD run Memtest86 to test the memory at the default, non-XMP, non-custom profile settings BEFORE ever making any changes to the memory configuration so that you will know if the problem is a setting or is a physical problem with the memory and it is a good idea to run it AGAIN, after enabling the XMP profile to verify that none of the XMP specific profile settings or timings are in disagreement with the motherboard, especially if it is a memory kit that is not already shown to be validated for that board on the memory manufacturer or motherboard manufacturer's compatibility list.
 

Darkbreeze

Retired Mod
Also, it could possibly be a problem with your installer media or a Windows driver issue.

I would download and create bootable Ubuntu (Or another flavor of bootable Linux distro) and run off that to see if you have any problems in the Linux environment. If you don't then you know for certain that it is either a Windows installation media or driver related issue. And at this late date it should not be a driver related issue just to install Windows.

Either that or there is more to the story we don't know.
 

ryangratzer2000

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You ran Windows memory diagnostic, but have you run Memtest86? That is the test you FIRST want to run, when testing for physical memory or memory configuration errors. And, you want to run it ON the machine that is having troubles, if possible. If you can't even get Memtest to run, then there is, no doubt, a hardware issue, because it doesn't involve Windows at all.

Memtest86


Go to the Passmark software website and download the USB Memtest86 free version. You can do the optical disk version too if for some reason you cannot use a bootable USB flash drive.


Create bootable media using the downloaded Memtest86. Once you have done that, go into your BIOS and configure the system to boot to the USB drive that contains the Memtest86 USB media or the optical drive if using that option.


You CAN use Memtest86+, as they've recently updated the program after MANY years of no updates, but for the purpose of this guide I recommend using the Passmark version as this is a tried and true utility while I've not had the opportunity to investigate the reliability of the latest 86+ release as compared to Memtest86. Possibly, consider using Memtest86+ as simply a secondary test to Memtest86, much as Windows memory diagnostic utility and Prime95 Blend or custom modes can be used for a second opinion utility.


Create a bootable USB Flash drive:

1. Download the Windows MemTest86 USB image.

2. Right click on the downloaded file and select the "Extract to Here" option. This places the USB image and imaging tool into the current folder.

3. Run the included imageUSB tool, it should already have the image file selected and you just need to choose which connected USB drive to turn into a bootable drive. Note that this will erase all data on the drive.



No memory should ever fail to pass Memtest86 when it is at the default configuration that the system sets it at when you start out or do a clear CMOS by removing the CMOS battery for five minutes.

Best method for testing memory is to first run four passes of Memtest86, all 11 tests, WITH the memory at the default configuration. This should be done BEFORE setting the memory to the XMP profile settings. The paid version has 13 tests but the free version only has tests 1-10 and test 13. So run full passes of all 11 tests. Be sure to download the latest version of Memtest86. Memtest86+ has not been updated in MANY years. It is NO-WISE as good as regular Memtest86 from Passmark software.

If there are ANY errors, at all, then the memory configuration is not stable. Bumping the DRAM voltage up slightly may resolve that OR you may need to make adjustments to the primary timings. There are very few secondary or tertiary timings that should be altered. I can tell you about those if you are trying to tighten your memory timings.

If you cannot pass Memtest86 with the memory at the XMP configuration settings then I would recommend restoring the memory to the default JEDEC SPD of 1333/2133mhz (Depending on your platform and memory type) with everything left on the auto/default configuration and running Memtest86 over again. If it completes the four full passes without error you can try again with the XMP settings but first try bumping the DRAM voltage up once again by whatever small increment the motherboard will allow you to increase it by. If it passes, great, move on to the Prime95 testing.

If it still fails, try once again bumping the voltage if you are still within the maximum allowable voltage for your memory type and test again. If it still fails, you are likely going to need more advanced help with configuring your primary timings and should return the memory to the default configuration until you can sort it out.

If the memory will not pass Memtest86 for four passes when it IS at the stock default non-XMP configuration, even after a minor bump in voltage, then there is likely something physically wrong with one or more of the memory modules and I'd recommend running Memtest on each individual module, separately, to determine which module is causing the issue. If you find a single module that is faulty you should contact the seller or the memory manufacturer and have them replace the memory as a SET. Memory comes matched for a reason as I made clear earlier and if you let them replace only one module rather than the entire set you are back to using unmatched memory which is an open door for problems with incompatible memory.

Be aware that you SHOULD run Memtest86 to test the memory at the default, non-XMP, non-custom profile settings BEFORE ever making any changes to the memory configuration so that you will know if the problem is a setting or is a physical problem with the memory and it is a good idea to run it AGAIN, after enabling the XMP profile to verify that none of the XMP specific profile settings or timings are in disagreement with the motherboard, especially if it is a memory kit that is not already shown to be validated for that board on the memory manufacturer or motherboard manufacturer's compatibility list.
I'll try Memtest86 tomorrow, going to swap out my Mobo as well to rule that out.
 
Reactions: Darkbreeze

Darkbreeze

Retired Mod
Yeah, I mean, if you have another motherboard, that's a really good idea. I normally don't automatically recommend that because most people don't have a second board that is compatible with their main system AND usually aren't willing to go buy one just for testing.

However................getting a second board is ALWAYS a good idea, even if you are not having problems, if you plan to run the system for as long as possible since down the road finding decently priced boards for older platforms, that aren't just as used as what you already have, is usually pretty difficult. That way, you already have one that is new or little used to replace the main one with if and when it fails. So, either way, not a bad idea.

Let us know how it goes but I'm with Colif on this, it's likely something to do with your onboard LAN/Ethernet adapter, and swapping boards will certainly tell you if that's the case or not. If it is, I'd RMA it immediately. Most all boards have a 3 year warranty so it should likely still be covered.
 

ryangratzer2000

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Yeah, I mean, if you have another motherboard, that's a really good idea. I normally don't automatically recommend that because most people don't have a second board that is compatible with their main system AND usually aren't willing to go buy one just for testing.

However................getting a second board is ALWAYS a good idea, even if you are not having problems, if you plan to run the system for as long as possible since down the road finding decently priced boards for older platforms, that aren't just as used as what you already have, is usually pretty difficult. That way, you already have one that is new or little used to replace the main one with if and when it fails. So, either way, not a bad idea.

Let us know how it goes but I'm with Colif on this, it's likely something to do with your onboard LAN/Ethernet adapter, and swapping boards will certainly tell you if that's the case or not. If it is, I'd RMA it immediately. Most all boards have a 3 year warranty so it should likely still be covered.
Running Memtest86 right now, I have not been even able to start the tests. I made it to the Config/Exit screen once and it froze there. Now it just freezes on the the testing multiprocessor support. I'm not sure if this freezing issue is indicative of a RAM problem. I'm getting very annoyed by this. It also turns out I didn't have an extra 1151 socket motherboard like I had thought, only have 1150 boards. Really sucks, going to look into RMA'ing the board even though it might not be the problem. I believe I might just be within the 3-year window.
 

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