Hi There,

Previously a sevenforums member but recently made the transition to Windows 10.

This isn't technically a tutorial but it is a bit of information regarding the above issue which may well be of use to people so I thought this might be the most appropriate section to post it.

The summarised TL;DR version is: If you are noticing BSOD with CRITICAL_PROCESS_DIED and your shutdown, startups and sleep is effected this fix may work for you. This is based on an Intel platform (H170) with IRST drivers installed. You will notice in the IRST program that there is a setting called Link Power Management which is enabled by default. In my case this setting also exists in my motherboards BIOS settings (ASRock H170) under the storage settings as SATA Link Power Management, with the default setting as disabled. Setting this to enabled has solved my issues and may well solve yours. Hope it's of some assistance to someone else.

This is the full version for anyone who is interested:
It all began after I made some fairly major upgrades to a certain PC which was running Windows 7. Despite a few hiccups with the sysprep process (I put this down to drivers issues for the new hardware) I managed to get everything switched over to the new components with the existing W7 installation. Then after much faffing to try to get the GWX tool to reappraise my system for compatibility I finally had access to the W10 upgrade and a couple of weekends back I took the plunge.

That's when things started to go downhill. The first thing I noticed were a few issues with drivers (bluetooth) and a couple of programs but nothing too problematic but after the first few restarts and shutdowns I started to notice some very odd behaviour. Starting up and shutting down would take several minutes and at shutdown the fans and HDD would spin for a great deal of time afterwards. I also began to notice issues with sleep - with resuming also taking minutes or failing and requiring a forced shutdown with the power button.

With the sysprep and then the upgrade on top I decided to try a clean installation of Windows 10 (and considering I had been on 32-bit I decided to make use of the extra new RAM and step up to a 64-bit version). Something I had done at the sysprep stage was to set the installation under RAID in the BIOS to try to make use of a small SSD I had for Intel SRT (this never worked and still gives an unknown error every time I try to implement it so my BSOD fix unfortunately hasn't solved this issue). Long story short the clean installation had no effect on the startup/shutdown/sleep issues and now I began to see BSOD with CRITICAL_PROCESS_DIED when attempting to wake from sleep. The minidumps only pointed to ntdll.sys and ntkrnlmp.exe which just appeared to be standard system files and didn't appear to point to any specific drivers. Nonetheless I had my suspicions that it was something driver related and more specifically to do with the Intel RST drivers or Intel ME drivers.

I did some digging around and noticed a section under power and performance tab in the IRST program called Link Power Management. This reminded me of a section I noticed in my BIOS for SATA devices called Aggressive Link Power Management. I noticed that in IRST this was set to enabled by default whereas the default in the BIOS was disabled. Setting this to enabled in the BIOS has solved the BSODs, startup and shutdown are now mere seconds and resuming from sleep happens in an instant. This is quite an inconspicuous feature but it evidently causes issues telling the hard drives what to do during alternating between different power states. The IRST wants to use Link Power Management and if this isn't enabled in the BIOS (which is the default case for ASRock boards) this causes all kinds of issues whenever the OS changes the power state.

Now I just have to figure out what to do with this 50GB SSD that Intel RST doesn't want to use for SRT!