Odd intermittent freezing

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  1. Posts : 16
    Windows 10 Professional 64-bit

    Odd intermittent freezing


    About a month ago I started suffering from BSODs (CRITICAL_PROCESS_DIED, MEMORY_MANAGEMENT, UNEXPECTED_STORE_EXCEPTION) whilst using Prepar3d v5 (Flight Simulator). These occurred within 2-30 minutes of starting a flight and seemed to only affect one particular aircraft. The BSODs would not create a dump file so it was a bit tricky to narrow down, but I did manage to induce a crash that finally created a dump file using driver verifier that pointed towards semav6msr64.sys. This is associated with 'Intel Computing Improvement Program,' that had somehow wormed it's way onto my PC a few days earlier. After uninstalling it, no more BSODs occurred.

    Whilst trying to solve the BSOD issue I updated all the drivers I could, as well as my BIOS. I also removed my overclocks (except XMP). I also installed the Samsung NVMe Driver as I had been using the generic Windows NVMe Driver. This may or may not be relevant given the problem I'm now having:

    GTA V
    After all that, I started replaying GTA V. I had no issues for about 50 hours but then I experienced the first hard freeze I've had for years. The image froze but the sound carried on playing. I noticed that the game was trying to do an autosave at the time. I restarted my PC and shrugged it off as a one off and stopped playing.

    The next day I played for about 6 hours, again, no issues. I then went to do a manual save. Usually the game lists all of your saves but the loading wheel just kept spinning as if it couldn't find them. After clicking my mouse the PC locked up again.

    Assassin's Creed Brotherhood
    After finishing GTA V, I started replaying Assassin's Creed II. I managed to complete the entire game (~30 hours) without a crash.

    I'm now on Brotherhood and I'm nearly at the end (~30 hours). Last night I noticed that during a mission the game was autosaving. However, the save icon stayed on the screen and didn't go away. I then carried on playing for 5 minutes before deciding to restart the game. When attempting to exit to Windows, the screen froze and the sound carried on playing. Upon restarting the PC, I discovered that the game hadn't saved.

    To me this looks like a storage problem at it seems to occur when a game is trying to save. The two games are on different SSDs so I'm thinking my C: drive is the culprit:

    GTA is run off my D: drive (860 EVO 2TB)
    ACB is run off my E: drive (850 EVO 1TB)
    Save games are on my C: drive (970 EVO Plus NVMe)

    Things I've tried:

    - Run diagnostics on all drives using Samsung Magician, HD Sentinel, SeaTools, HD Tune...no problems
    - CrystalDiskInfo reports 100% health on all drives
    - Run CHKDSK on all drives...no problems
    - Run MemTest86 (4 passes), Karhu RAM Test (10 hours), HCI Memtest (1000%)...no errors
    - Removed an old 2TB storage HDD with bad blocks, but otherwise works fine...no change
    - Reseated all physical hardware and cables
    - Uninstalling and reinstalling IRST and Samsung NVMe drivers
    - The usual sfc scannow, DISM etc.
    - Nothing enlightening in Event Viewer, Reliability Monitor

    I just wondered if anyone has any other ideas or avenues to explore.

    Windows 1909

    Many thanks in advance!
    Last edited by PilotGW; 12 Jun 2020 at 09:00.
      My Computer

  2. Posts : 16
    Windows 10 Professional 64-bit
    Thread Starter

    Okay, I really don't know what's going on right now.

    I've had several more freezes and another blue screen over the past week. All whilst gaming.

    Yesterday I had a freeze playing Assassin's Creed 3, followed by CRITICAL_PROCESS_DIED...which left no dump. Nothing of note in Event Viewer.

    Today I've just had another freeze in Assassin's Creed 3, remarkably similar to the others. I was playing and I noticed that the save icon remained on screen. I managed to alt-tab back to the desktop this time, however, when I tried to open Windows Explorer nothing happened and it slowed down to a complete freeze. No blue screen and once again, nothing of note in Event viewer.

    One curious thing I noted was that when I tried to unplug my USB mouse and I can still hear the connect/disconnect sound. The disk activity light is still going while it's frozen and my components are still warm to the touch as if they are still rendering, but Windows is completely dead.

    Since last week I've:

    • Run MemTest again for 4+4 passes...no errors

    • Run all disk diagnostics on all drives again in SeaTools, Samsung Magician, HD Tune, CHKDSK...all pass

    • sfc /scannow...all fine

    • DISM...all fine

    • Been logging in HWInfo...only possibility is that is reading my PSU rails as being quite low, but I know that's not usually accurate

    • I've emailed Samsung as I've noticed that in SMART for my NVMe drive I have 1200 Error Information Log Entries and counting, but they say the drives are fine and advise me to reinstall Windows.

    I'm still convinced it's an SSD problem, but I can't prove it. Does this sound like a duff SSD?
      My Computer

  3. Posts : 13,934
    Windows 10 Pro X64 21H1 19043.1503

    I would try undoing the changes you made, like the Nvme driver and BIOS, one at a time and testing after each change.
    The Nvme driver you may be able to roll back from Device Manager.
    BIOS you would have to flash a down level version, preferably the same version you have previously.
      My Computers

  4. Posts : 16
    Windows 10 Professional 64-bit
    Thread Starter


    Thank you for your reply!

    I've no doubt taken a huge troubleshooting faux pas, but I took the nuclear option before your reply. I managed to get the NVMe replaced and I've reinstalled Windows fresh...now to wait and see.

    - - - Updated - - -

    Well that didn't last long.

    Brand new NVMe,
    Different M2 slot,
    Fresh Windows reinstall,
    Standard Microsoft NVMe drivers,
    BIOS settings at stock.

    Game froze, blue screen popped up for less that a second...looked like CRITICAL_PROCESS_DIED. No dump file.

    I can try going back to an older BIOS, but the one I was using was released back in 2018.
      My Computer

  5. Posts : 1,244
    Windows 10 Pro x64 21H2 (Build: 19044.1415)

    Hello, please generate DirectX diagnostic log by following bellow steps:

    1. Press: Windows key + R
    2. Type into run box: dxdiag hit Enter
    3. When asked to check for driver signature click "YES"
    4. Wait until check complete and click on "Export All" button
    5. Save the file, zip up, and attach here.
      My Computer

  6. Posts : 16
    Windows 10 Professional 64-bit
    Thread Starter


    Thanks for your reply! DXDiag attached.

    By the way, I ran driver verifier again, and I omitted to say that Logitech drivers cause it to freak out without fail although I've always had a Logitech mouse and I've never had these problems before.
      My Computer

  7. Posts : 1,244
    Windows 10 Pro x64 21H2 (Build: 19044.1415)

    Hello, please execute following commands in elevated command prompt or powershell:

    lis dis
    here select the disk where system is installed: (example assuming it's disk 1)

    sel dis 1
    detail disk
    same steps but this time for C partition
    lis vol
    sel vol C
    detail vol
    Select entry screen in command prompt, starting from beginning and drag down with mouse to select all, then press enter to copy.
    open notepad and paste contents, save file.

    Also please take screenshot from disk management.
    Post the screenshot and diskpart output.

    In the mean time bellow link explains how to increase virtual memory, (scroll down to the end)

    Optimal page file size for your system is:
    min: 16GB
    max: 32GB

    You said system was reinstalled, but it contains 300GB on it's C partition, it is possible that you installed/copied everything that what was installed on previous system, without testing new environment first? therefore making new install as if nothing new happened.
      My Computer

  8. Posts : 16
    Windows 10 Professional 64-bit
    Thread Starter


    No, it was a fresh install on a brand new replacement drive. I have used 76GB on C:. I only have Windows, Office, Steam, UPlay, Origin and few other miscellaneous programs. My games are installed on other drives.
      My Computer

  9. Posts : 1,244
    Windows 10 Pro x64 21H2 (Build: 19044.1415)

    The log looks fine, I'm not sure what exact troubleshooting steps to give you, but google search reveals other people experienced same problem with system freezing on 970 EVO Plus, for example:
    Freezing - Samsung 970 Pro | Tom's Hardware Forum

    If this would be my computer, I would test the hardware without this specific disk, just to isolate the problem.

    - - - Updated - - -
    According to above link:
    No more freezing, the windows driver did not work well for the 970 pro.
    And you seem to have microsoft driver:
    stornvme Microsoft Standard NVM Express Driver c:\windows\system32\drivers\stornvme.sys Kernel Driver
      My Computer

  10. Posts : 16
    Windows 10 Professional 64-bit
    Thread Starter


    I already had the Samsung Driver installed before reinstalling Windows and still experienced freezing and CRITICAL_PROCESS_DIED. I didn't reinstall it this time, so I don't think that's the issue.
      My Computer


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