Repeated Crashes and Boot Errors Apparently Caused by Driver Updates

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  1.    11 Aug 2017 #1

    Repeated Crashes and Boot Errors Apparently Caused by Driver Updates

    (Also posted yesterday on Tom's Hardware--no responses there so far.)

    I have an exactly one-year-old Asus notebook (X555DA) running Windows 10. A little more than a month ago my laptop after a restart was slow and certain pages and programs refused to launch, despite nothing abnormal appearing in Task Manager. I also started to have issues with booting. The problem went away after I reinstalled Windows.

    Then the other night, while my wife and I were watching Netflix, the machine abruptly froze up. It wasn't totally frozen, but it was functionally unresponsive. Eventually I forced a shutdown. It restarted okay but moved very slowly, much like had happened a month ago. I tried to update the display adapter drivers (AMD Radeon R6), and got an abrupt/quiet restart. Boot-up stuck, and startup repair failed to fix the issue. I was able to do a system restore back a number of days, and despite a slow start I had a lot of functionality back; but there was a bit of stuttering and Google Chrome completely refused to launch. I tried to update the graphics driver again, or uninstall it, and the same thing happened as before. It happened again when I tried to update an audio driver (Conexant), but not several others. Finally I reinstalled Windows. It came up quickly, and for a few minutes everything looked fine. Then presto, I got a black screen, and the cycle was started over again. Naturally, one of the first things Windows did after the reinstall was run drivers updates, so I'm not convinced it's a hardware issue; but I am not very experienced with computer repair, and have exhausted what I know to do.

    I did get a BSOD a few days ago (I forget the code), and I followed an online fix that involved making a change to the "Standard SATA AHCI Controller" driver. I have also run virus scans with Malwarebytes and Avast that turned up nothing. My system is currently slow but apparently stable--I seem to have staved off those sudden shutdowns after login by ending the automatic driver installation task and turning off automatic driver updates. It was most recently trying to install "Advanced Micro Devices, Inc. - Graphics Adapter WDDM1.1, Graphics Adapter WDDM1.3, Graphics Adapter WDDM2.0 - AMD Radeon(TM) R6 Graphics" (failed, because I stopped the process).

    I purchased the laptop through Amazon and I think it has a warranty, but I cannot find an expiration on the warranty card, the box, or the machine. If it has not expired, it will very soon. I am also an adjunct professor and have a class starting in a few weeks, so this problem comes at a very inconvenient time, and I'd greatly prefer not to have to buy another computer so soon. I spent all of yesterday working on the issue, and any help would be greatly appreciated.
      My ComputerSystem Spec

  2.    11 Aug 2017 #2

    Hi, I understand you've reinstalled Windows and the problems have not been resolved. You say
    A little more than a month ago my laptop after a restart was slow

    Does that possibly relate to upgrading to the Creator's build? (I appreciate that's just a leap in the dark at this point).

    What is your current Windows version?
    (Windows key + R, winver).

    What sort of disk drive do you have? (HDD, SSD, SSHD....).
    ASUS X555DA-WS11 - appears to be likely to be a 1Tb HDD

    Could you please download and run Hard Disk Sentinel (trial) to check your disk and post a screenshot of its GUI?
    To post a screenshot please use the Insert Image icon above your post to the left of the video icon. Thanks.

    Please also download and run Minitool Partition Wizard and post a screenshot of that, making sure all columns are expanded to reveal the text.
    This is significant to check your partition layout as you've clean installed.

    E.g. GPT/UEFI configuration for Windows partitions should look like
    Click image for larger version. 

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    (you can include any other partitions).

    Please post a screenshot of your task manager (Processes tab) organising any columns where there is significant activity high to low by clicking the column tab.

    Please also download and run Crystal DiskMark (wait for it to complete a test once you've clicked the button) then post a screenshot of its GUI. This checks disk throughput.

    Please provide a screenshot of your Update History.

    Thanks- that should provide some initial information.

    Note that reinstalling Windows will almost inevitably be followed by one or two significant updates.
      My ComputerSystem Spec

  3.    11 Aug 2017 #3

    Thank you for the quick response. Yes, that first episode was around the time of the Windows Creator update. I had not experienced similar problems prior, nor (since the reinstall) until the other day. There were other differences between the episodes besides the failure of the reinstall to solve matters--that time, there were no sudden restarts when updating drivers that I recall, and startup repair consistently worked.

    I will do as you recommend and post screenshots when I get the opportunity.
      My ComputerSystem Spec

  4.    11 Aug 2017 #4

    If you have Win 10 Pro, and you need your problem resolved quickly, it may be expedient to install the anniversary edition (which I still use). That's assuming the problem is related to installing the Creator's edition, and could take some time to identify.

    Meanwhile it would be worth enquiring of Asus, especially as it's under warranty. Also explore Asus's forum.

    Does this look similar?
    Windows 10 Pro Creators Update AMD A6 BSOD ASUS X555DA - YouTube

    [BSOD] Windows 10 Pro Creator's Update AMD A6 ASUS X555DA : Amd
      My ComputerSystem Spec

  5.    11 Aug 2017 #5

    Hmm. I don't get a BSOD, but the problem does look similar otherwise.
      My ComputerSystem Spec

  6.    11 Aug 2017 #6

    My Windows version is 1703 (OS Build 15063.0). I have a 1 Tb HDD.

    Here are your screenshots. Lately Task Manager has been noting high CPU or disk usage from Desktop Window Manager, Antimalware Service Executable, Windows Modules Installer, and wsappx.

    Click image for larger version. 

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ID:	148438Click image for larger version. 

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      My ComputerSystem Spec

  7.    12 Aug 2017 #7

    Thanks - disk and partitions look fine from those reports.

    The Crystal program was Diskmark- different function.
    However running it is only of interest if other disk usage is minimal. Perhaps try in Safe Mode?
    This is key, as 100% usage at that transfer rate looks very wrong.

    Please also download and run Crystal DiskMark (wait for it to complete a test once you've clicked the button) then post a screenshot of its GUI. This checks disk throughput. Here's mine for my SSHD:
    Click image for larger version. 

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    There's no successful Windows update listed.
    Try find the one that failed in the News section of the forum where there's a thread per update and downloading and installing that manually.

    You could also see if you can deal with the AMD updates by triggering an update from Device Manager.

    Your task man shows 54% usage of which some 35% is listed- I wonder what the other 20% or so is?
    Last edited by dalchina; 12 Aug 2017 at 05:16.
      My ComputerSystem Spec

  8.    13 Aug 2017 #8

    I am currently running the Windows Update Standalone Installer (I noticed by refreshing Update History that it again failed to install automatically Friday). Meanwhile, I did the check with Crystal Diskmark twice. I suddenly recalled that while troubleshooting a few days ago, stopping superfetch dramatically dropped disk usage, so I did that for the second test.
    Click image for larger version. 

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      My ComputerSystem Spec

  9.    14 Aug 2017 #9

    Those figures look fine. But the previous task man 100% disk usage at that transfer rate looks puzzling.

    Anyway, try the manual updates I mentioned and see how that goes.
      My ComputerSystem Spec

  10.    14 Aug 2017 #10

    Manually updating Windows does not appear to be working. I started it yesterday evening, and as of this morning it is still "copying packages to the Windows Update cache."

    EDIT: Also, the 100% at varying transfer rates was common long before I started having computer trouble.
      My ComputerSystem Spec

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