For a small while I've been encountering the BSOD 'system_service_exception', mostly when:

  • Switching between display resolutions
  • Switching between a full-screen game using DirectX and Windows Explorer
  • Resuming from standby/hibernate

The BSODs also had 'cdd.dll' displayed, I have no idea what this is.

I replaced the RAM under its warranty due to the old RAM being faulty, and also reinstalled Windows and changed the drive configuration.

I had the BSODs both before and after the reconfiguration, what's wrong? I suspect that it's my graphics card as I bought it second-hand off eBay a few months ago, but it's a 2011 GTX 285 and it shouldn't have this issue.


It wasn't the new configuration, well, almost.

My computer's base configuration when I built it was:

  • Motherboard: ASRock N68GS-FX
  • CPU: AMD 4100 @ 4.2GHZ (watercooled, temperature ever reaches more than 40 degrees centigrade)
  • RAM: 4GB DDR3 1366MHZ
  • Hard Drive: 1x60GB SATA3 SSD, 1x 320GB SATA2 HDD, 1x 80GB IDE HDD
  • Graphics Card: AMD Radeon HD 7700

Now, my new configuration is:

  • Motherboard: ASRock 685GS-FX
  • CPU: AMD 4100 @ 4.2GHZ (watercooled- changed position of radiator to the top of the case, rather than the side as it was before)
  • RAM: 4GB DDR3 1066MHZ
  • Hard Drive: 1x 2TB SATA2 HDD, 1x 60GB SATA3 SSD (upgraded and on a PCI SATA3 controller)
  • Graphics Card: Nividia GeForce GTX 285

The new configuration is completely fine, but only if I took out the PCI SATA3 card and put the SSD on the motherboard's own SATA controller! Luckily for me I only had Battlefield 3 and Call of Duty: Black Ops 2 installed onto the SSD and not Windows, otherwise it would've needed to be reinstalled (as the SATA3 card was AHCI, the motherboard forces me to use IDE as it doesn't support AHCI).

Turns out that Windows can't quite interface properly with a mixture of PCI (external) and motherboard (internal) SATA controllers, which meant that it got confused when it was busy and had to get the graphics card to switch to a different resolution.

The cdd.dll is the Windows component that is responsible for switching the display resolutions, and so it showed up as the 'problem component'.

The fix for this is:

  • Ensure all drivers are updated
  • Ensure you have system and program drives plugged in on the motherboard's I/O controller instead of a PCI controller (this is what did it for me)
  • That any faulty hardware is quickly repaired or replaced.
  • Here is my interupertation of your answer. the problem was solely the PCI SATA controller and had little to do with anything else. It could have been a driver problem, defect in the card, but lots of people use controller cards in addition to the SATA capabilities of their motherboard SATa controller – Ramhound Dec 15 '14 at 0:09

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