Quite reliably, about every 1-2 days Windows XP (v. 5_1_2600 SP: 3) crashes. Network goes down, absolutely no applications can be started ("The application failed to initialize properly (0xc0000142).") and the only option is to reboot.

During shutdown a blue screen comes up (referring to rdbss.sys and STOP code 0X000000D4).

Any ideas about the cause and how to fix it?

It seems to be a problem other people experience as well, but so far I couldn't find a fix for it (see for example http://www.annoyances.org/exec/forum/winxp/1159333610).

The computer worked fine with Windows Vista and the problems started only after a fresh XP installation. I guess it could be a hardware problem but, at least to me, it really doesn't look like it at the moment. Update virus scanner etc...

  • rdbss.sys seems to be a disk-related driver. Do you have any special disk configurations? – Hello71 Jul 23 '10 at 0:08
  • It is a standard, unmodified lenovo thinkpad. So no, not really. – maschka Jul 23 '10 at 13:01


This indicates that a driver did not cancel pending operations before unloading.

They also note the following:

If the driver responsible for the error can be identified, its name is printed on the blue screen and stored in memory at the location (PUNICODE_STRING) KiBugCheckDriver.

which most likely refers to the rdbss.sys file. That file is apparently the "Redirected Drive Buffering SubSystem Driver", which is part of Windows. This MSDN page suggests it's only loaded for use with network (SMB) shares.

All of this put together suggests that it's happening because XP is trying to use the network (the pending operations), but the network goes down and for some reason those pending operations are not canceled. That may be related to the "unable to start any programs" issue.

I would probably start by running sfc /scannow to verify that you don't have any corrupted system files. If that doesn't help, try updating the drivers (if possible); especially those for your network card and hard drives. If that doesn't work either, do a hardware check using memtest and a thorough chkdsk.

  • Thanks, that's some valuable information. Do you think that I can somehow avoid the use of the "Redirected Drive Buffering SubSystem Driver"? I can see no reason why I would need (or use) SMB. sfc /scannow does not report any problems. I am trying to update the network card drivers now (starting with WIFI). Let's see how it goes... – maschka Jul 23 '10 at 13:29
  • @Maschka: If you use any sort of network drives, you're using SMB, and I suspect the driver for that is kept in memory anyway. If there aren't any other computers on the network, though, I can't quite see a reason why you would get problems with that driver... – Michael Madsen Jul 28 '10 at 11:40
  • I don't use any network drives. Whenever I see this error, I only have a connection to a standard home wifi router. The only thing I noticed is that Windows Media Player offers me "Media Sharing" with some other computers I don't know. I don't know what that is or how to switch it off. I update all the drivers now but the problem still persists. The only thing I haven't done so far is to update the bios. – maschka Jul 28 '10 at 21:11
  • @maschka: If you see computers you don't know, that suggests someone is piggybacking on your network (or, that YOU are piggybacking on someone elses network) - and that might have something to do with your problem. Is your wifi network encrypted using WPA or better? If not, you probably want to enable encryption - or, at least, add MAC filtering so not everyone can get in. – Michael Madsen Jul 29 '10 at 11:23
  • Interesting (and scary). The network uses WPA-PSK TKIP. I will try to investigate further. Thanks so far! – maschka Jul 29 '10 at 12:24

Well, are you sure it is not a hardware related problem? I would check my RAM (using memtest86) and my hard disk's condition (using chkdsk for example) if I were you...

  • Good suggestion, but I think @Michael's answer is better – TheLQ Jul 23 '10 at 4:29
  • As sure as one can be. memtest and chkdsk do not report any problems. – maschka Jul 23 '10 at 12:59

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