Blue Screen of Death

Not since I dumped my Windows 98 operating system have I seen the blue screen of death. Windows XP has offered a stable environment for the last number of years and I have avoided upgrading to a newer version. Windows 7 is getting better reviews than Vista but I am waiting, for now. I did try Ubunto and Mint but only as a temporary measure while combating system errors and viruses. Now, how do you deal with the 'Driver IRQL not less or equal' error?

Blue Bud Screen of Death
I almost hired a technician this week. I actually had one on the phone. My computer has been spontaneously rebooting, freezing or just not loading. Reminds me of David Letterman's Top 10 Least Popular New Car Options, Intermittent steering. By CD-ROM was not being recognized so I could not reload any fixes from the disk. I was lazy and called a technician. The spark went off in my brain though, and I said, what the hell am I doing? I can fix this. Every couple years or so my PC gets hit by a failure or a virus. I can usually fix it. If I can't, I get help from Mike O.
I ran through the usual steps, various anti-virus and malware scans. I ran the checkdisk options as well as the system file checker. But of course, SFC requires the original Windows discs, which of course requires a working CD-ROM. So, therefore the call to the technician. My BIOS was detecting the CD-ROM, Windows was not. The tech told me that I need a new disc player. A money grab on his part? Ignorance? If the BIOS is detecting the player, than it has to be a registry error.
Instead I thanked him for his time and told him I would call back to book an appointment (like, never). I then went to the nearest over-priced store that I could find with the poorest selection of CD-ROMs. At least I found two employees who knew what they were talking about. The first guy I spoke to knew about brands and features, the second guy knew about installation and repair and confirmed to me that the CD-ROM issue was likely in the registry. He did tell me to buy the player and said to just return it if I get mine working.
Blue Boob Screen of Death
Back to the Driver IRQL error. Several sources on the intergoogle provided several different possibilities. Some claim it is a hardware issue (RAM), some claim it is a driver issue (Nvidia).
While I have been able to stabilize the system from continuous rebooting, and I do have my CD-ROM working, a few more steps may be required. Most importantly, I CAN POST AGAIN! First, I will have to check for any conflicts or errors with my drives, specifically the nvidia driver. This could be done through Hardware Properties in System category in the Control Panel. Next I will run Memtest. Memtest is an open source program that is designed to test and stress test RAM for errors. To use it you must create a bootable disc so that you can run it at restart. Ultimately my goal is to backup my hard drive so that I can reinstall my operating system.


  1. Boot with that ubuntu disk and see if your system is stable. If it is, it's probably software related.

    An automatic windows driver update could be the cause too.

  2. Thanks Mike. Didn't think of that. I should have consulted with you earlier.