I keep getting a blue screen of death (memory parity check error) when trying to watch the olympics online at ctv.ca (silverlight player). I can watch for max 10mins then it goes down.

So to diagnose the problem I ran memtest86 and the test passed with no errors. Then I tried prime95 (blend) for an hour and had no problems. I tried using a couple different RAM modules and that didn't help.

What components are most likely causing the BSOD? What else can I do to figure out what the problem is/solve it? If I need to replace parts, what order should I do it in?

OS: Vista Business 64bit
MB: Asus p5n32e sli plus
RAM: Mushkin Silverline Frostbyte PC-6400 (996557)
CPU: Core 2 Duo E8400

  • What computer/OS/hardware are you using?
    – Babu
    Feb 24, 2010 at 17:24
  • 1
    Looks like you've alot of testing, if i were you, i'd blame silverlight.
    – Roy Rico
    Feb 24, 2010 at 17:50
  • Similar question: superuser.com/questions/213/…
    – Tom A
    Feb 24, 2010 at 18:23

6 Answers 6


Nowadays it happens mostly because of broken hardware or buggy video drivers.

  • 3
    I'd expand that to say buggy drivers in general
    – Babu
    Feb 24, 2010 at 17:23
  • haven't updated the video drivers in a while, ill give that a shot.
    – Kells
    Feb 24, 2010 at 17:34
  • 1
    I've seen wireless card drivers (specifically Intel Centrino) crash my system, causing BSOD.
    – Millhouse
    Feb 24, 2010 at 19:15

You could use Blue Screen Viewer to find the culprit software or driver


What browser version are you using with silverlight? Did you recently install a new version of silverlight player? You can also take a look in the silverlight forums and submit a bug if necessary http://forums.silverlight.net/forums/28.aspx. You should try ripping out silverlight and reinstalling it and see if it resolves your issue.


Make sure to choose the correct memory voltage setting in the BIOS, speaking of which, update the BIOS to the latest version if necessary.

  • BIOS is latest version, I tried increasing ram voltage from stock 1.8v to 1.9v that didnt help.
    – Kells
    Feb 24, 2010 at 17:35
  • @Kells - so the BSOD only occur with Silverlight?
    – Molly7244
    Feb 24, 2010 at 17:38
  • Ya, Silverlight is the only thing that consistently produces a BSOD.
    – Kells
    Feb 24, 2010 at 17:44
  • @Kells - then i doubt that the cause is faulty hardware. you have the latest video drivers/silverlight installed? just googled 'ATI Silverlight BSOD', there seem to be some issues indeed.
    – Molly7244
    Feb 24, 2010 at 17:46

A BSOD is definitely a crashing driver. Nothing else can actually stall the kernel. However, getting a BSOD actually is a good thing, since a BSOD means that the kernel actually cought the problem and stored a crashdump somewhere on your system that you can use to find the actual cause of the problem.

Note that while the BSOD was caused by a crashing driver this does not necessarily mean that the driver is faulty. Probably, some other software was just using the driver incorrectly and thereby made it crash. With some digging, this is usually recorded in the crashdump, too.

Reading the crashdump however is rather difficult. Sysinternals has some tool to read crashdumps but honestly, this is not something a non-programmer would want to use. Perhaps someone else can point you to some usable software to that end.


You can use tools to examine the MEMORY.DMP file to determine route cause of the crash dump. All you need are the tools & symbols.


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