How I Solved "Display Driver has Recovered" & Blue Screens with GTX 670 and Windows 7 x64


Mar 1, 2014
I've been lurking on this forum for quite some time, but I wanted to share another fix and sets of steps to take that might not be out there for this very frustrating and sometimes mysterious issue that has plagued me on and off this year and the last.

If you don't know/understand what this issue is:

You can pretty much be doing anything with your computer, from idling to playing a fully decked out DX11 game that pushes your GPU to the limit. The screen will go black for about 5-10 seconds, and possibly recover. A little error message pops up on your task bar that says "Display Driver Kernel has stopped responding and successfully recovered." or 2 other iterations of a similar message. Most likely your game or program you were using will crash. Sometimes you will even get a BSOD and have to do a full restart. Its a very annoying issue that can have many factors to its cause, which is why its so hard to solve.

I'm going to try to condense this article as much as possible so you can get a quick set of steps instead of reading a bunch of paragraphs. If anyone does want more information, I may include spoiler tabs for each step in the future explaining each solution and why its possibly a factor in solving this problem.

My specs, if you would like to know on what type of hardware this was solved:

Operating System
MS Windows 7 Ultimate 64-bit SP1
Intel Core i7 960 @ 3.20GHz 46 °C
Bloomfield 45nm Technology
6.0GB Triple-Channel DDR3 @ 534MHz (8-8-8-20)
ASUSTeK Computer INC. SABERTOOTH X58 (LGA1366) 34 °C
Generic Non-PnP Monitor (1920x1080@60Hz)
NVIDIA GeForce GTX 670 Gigabyte
Hard Drives
2930GB Seagate ST3000DM001-1CH166 ATA Device (SATA) 31 °C
Optical Drives
DTSOFT Virtual CdRom Device
Razer Surround Audio Controller
Operating System
MS Windows 7 Ultimate 64-bit SP1
Installation Date: 28 May 2011, 21:49

There are a few types of solutions that I used, the combination of them is what most likely solved this issue. Or it could have been one of them. Its very hard to tell, but I would recommend all of them.

Hardware Solution Possibilities:

All of these steps can eliminate blue screens and/or "Display Recovered" errors as far as I know.

1. Re-seat your GPU, its cables, RAM, PSU and its cables. Make sure they are snug in their slots.
2. Use an Air Can to blow out excessive dust from parts (CPU/GPU Fan, PSU & Fan, Other Case Fans and any other nooks and crannies)
3. Be sure that you are getting proper airflow and that no parts are overheating.
4. Make sure that your hard drives are functioning correctly and that you have no signs of a dying drive (Slow Performance, I/O Errors, Bad Blocks as indicated in Event Viewer)
5. Run memory and stress tests on your GPU and RAM to see if there are hardware issues with either part. For a good, free GPU test, you can try OCCT. For your RAM, Windows has its own tool built in (Windows Memory Diagnostic Tool), though it may not be as thorough as MemTest. Both are good choices. If these programs do find faults, its most likely a hardware issue you are experiencing.

Software Solution Possibilities:

1. Make sure you are updated to the latest Windows. For Windows 7, this is Service Pack 1. There are over 80-120 updates including increased system stability and other fixes from Microsoft after upgrading.
2. Try a round of uninstalling & reinstalling your Drivers for your GPU in Safe Mode. Driver Sweeper's uninstallation method is a good way to be sure there aren't extra registry keys floating around from an older driver installation. First, try using the drivers from the manufacturer's website. If you continue to have issues, uninstall again and try using the drivers from Windows Update.
3. Be sure that important drivers, such as ones for your Motherboard or CPU are installed and if installed, that they are not causing issues.
4. Try not to use "invasive" Anti-virus/Anti-Spyware software that change system files or create strict protocol for data, which can cause hiccups with drivers if they behave unexpectedly in the "eyes" of the software. (Examples: Symantec Norton Antivirus, ZoneAlarm, Kaspersky Internet Security, McAfee)
5. Scan for Viruses or Malware. There is a BitCoin (digital farmable currency) virus out there that uses a network of trojaned computers to mine BitCoins using the processing power of many GPUs at once. It can bring your GPU to its knees and cause this error.
6. If you believe you might be having some overheating issues, try increasing your fan speed on your GPU to see if it stabilizes performance. (EVGA Precision X is a good tool).
7. If your GPU was factory overclocked or manually overclocked, try resetting it to factory settings.
7. You can try Microsoft's take on the solutions to the issue.
8. It COULD be an issue with the driver itself, but about 90% of the time its the driver not behaving well with other drivers.

I hope that this has helped anyone in need of fixing this issue, and if it has, I'm very glad.

If I missed anything or made a mistake, please feel free to point it out and I can correct it.