I am using Windows 8 Pro 32-bit, with a 2 TB hard drive and 3 GB of RAM. I installed Win8 the day it was released in October, and it has been operating flawlessly since installation.

**** BACKGROUND **** Yesterday morning (Jan. 30th) a blue screen appeared with a message that Windows had found an error and was collecting information. At the bottom it suggested the I look up BAD_POOL_HEADER on the Internet to learn more. The computer shut down after a few minutes and rebooted. It took about 15-minutes to regain full operating status. It also apparently downloaded and installed an update. Internet information about BAD_POOL_HEADER stated that it could be caused by a flawed antivirus program. So, I uninstall my AGV antivirus completely and activated Windows Defender, followed by data file updates of same. I also ran a full scan, which found two minor errors that it automatically repaired.

Subsequent to all of that I find that occasionally the screen will, while idle, turn blue for 4-seconds, and then revert to whatever was showing before that. If I try to close Skype, again, the screen turns blue for 4-seconds and Skype remains open. If I click on the File Explorer icon at the bottom left, same thing happens. There are a couple of programs that won't run now, in the sense that I click the icon, it seems to be starting to run, then the screen goes blue, and 4-seconds later returns to my desktop view, and the program I was trying to open is again closed. This does not happen with most of my programs, but it seems only a random few. BUT, it is extremely annoying!

Anybody have an suggestions? I tried System Restore to January 25th, which runs for a while and then tells me it didn't restore anything.

  • upload all dmp files from C:\Windows\Minidump (as 1 zip) so that we can look at them with WinDbg. – magicandre1981 Feb 1 '13 at 4:51

Sounds like a bad video driver. Check for a graphics card driver update.

Also, do you have crash dumps enabled? I don't know where they're located within Windows 8, but they may provide more insight as to why the crash happened. Check out Control Panel -> Administrative Tools -> Event Viewer -> Windows Logs -> System which should also be able to provide even more information.

  • I downloaded a full graphics card driver update on the 28th. The card itself was installed about 2-3 weeks ago. I do not show System Log in that location, and a search doesn't provide me with a location. – Himself Feb 1 '13 at 2:28
  • @Himself My bad...check edit. – Kruug Feb 1 '13 at 2:31
  • @Himself Also, the new driver may be an issue. Maybe try a rollback on the driver. – Kruug Feb 1 '13 at 2:31

The answer depends entirely on whether or not you consistently get the same bug-check code. That's the hexadecimal number shown to you as the first one along with a symbolic name corresponding to the code. Followed by four arguments providing details to the person who understands them (and/or can read the WDK docs).

I strongly recommend to use the eventvwr (comes with Windows, run via Win+ReventvwrENTER) or the BSOD viewer here to check out whether you consistently get the same bug-check code. If so, it depends on which driver is mentioned. Often ntoskrnl can make a good guess about which driver (or module) is the culprit. However, in case of bad or outright malicious drivers, sometimes the "finger" points to the wrong driver.

As the other answer already pointed out: make sure all software is up-to-date. This applies to the OS components itself (Windows Update) and to the drivers you run. Keep in mind that a lot of software requiring admin privileges to install might install a driver alongside the user mode application. Good candidates for this are antivirus programs - they usually will install a kernel mode driver of some kind.

The whole screen issue could point to a crashing video driver or even a hardware failure. But it could be something completely unrelated as well.

Also make sure to run autoruns from Microsoft, available here, and pay special attention to the "Image Hijacks" tab. The symptom with the screen sounds spurious, but also too consistent to be a video driver failure. That usually results in black screen and a notification in the TNA ("system tray") stating that the video driver just recovered. Also, there would be an event logged for this in the System log (eventvwr again, see above).

I would also suggest you run an offline (meaning from a write-protected media such as CD/DVD) scan for malware on that system. It's a pure guess, but the details you provide are too few to say for sure as of yet.

  • When the 4-second blue screen appeared, it was just a full screen of blue with a slightly different blue task bar at the bottom. No text or message at any time, other than yesterday morning's reboot. I did finally manage a System Restore and now all is well. There was an error 0X80070005 generated, so I downloaded Microsoft Safety Scanner for Win8. It did not find any errors. Anyway, everything appears to be working as it should. Skype closed when I clicked on it, and File Explorer opened. Hopefully the next Update won't change this. Thanks a lot for your input. – Himself Feb 1 '13 at 4:10

I restored to a few days before the problem developed, and now all is well. There are no log files, and all software and drivers are up to date. I did a full system scan with zero problems showing. Ergo, all is well. Thank you very much for your input. By the way, there were no error message numbers other than that one time.


Diagnose RAM issues with Windows Memory Diagnostic:

  1. Open your Start Screen, type "Windows Memory Diagnostic".
  2. Open the tool, choose "Restart now and check for problems".

Disable DEP:

  1. Open your Start Screen, type "Command Prompt".
  2. Open it as an administrator only.
  3. Type the following command in the window: bcdedit.exe /set {current} nx AlwaysOff

More diagnostic solutions visit here.

  • This is why you need to summarize linked content. Links can and do go down with time. – bwDraco Oct 3 '15 at 0:07

Your Answer

By clicking “Post Your Answer”, you agree to our terms of service, privacy policy and cookie policy

Not the answer you're looking for? Browse other questions tagged or ask your own question.