DRIVER_IRQL_NOT_LESS_OR_EQUAL bluescreen error

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artchik

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I have a Dell Inspiron 5150 laptop running WinXP Pro. I received the above bluescreen error, coincidentally or not, after Dell automatically downloaded their new support software onto my computer. After a few tries with System Restore and removing the new Dell software, I was at least able to get the system booted up without crashing. But I couldn't get online. I have AOL and the software would just hang. After many hours online with both Dell tech support (who walked me through a repair install of XP) and AOL who manually configured my modem so I could at least get online, I thought I had the problem solved. The AOL tech told me I needed to update my modem driver. Well, that presented a whole new nest of problems, because I kept getting disconnected from the server everytime I tried to download the driver from the Dell website. I finally went to my other computer, downloaded the driver, installed it on the laptop, and the laptop promptly crashed with the IRQL_NOT_LESS_OR_EQUAL bluescreen again. So, I did a system restore to revert it to the time before I updated the driver, so at least I am not getting the bluescreen, but I still am having problems staying connected. I receive errors such as "AOL service was interrupted" the minute I try to access the Symantec website to bring my antivirus up to date, and I get an error that says "the connection with the server was reset" when I tried to re-download the Dell support software in hopes that maybe it could help me troubleshoot my problem after all. I feel like a rat in a maze and don't know what else to try at this point.
 
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There may be some driver conflicts going on. Try removing the modem driver. Look in Add/Remove to see if it is listed and remove it (or them) that way. After that, go to Device Manager and remove the modem if it is there. Reboot. If a message pops up about a new device being found, cancel and continue booting. Have the new driver installer on your desktop and reinstall it. You may also need to reinstall AOL in order for the changes to be recognized by the AOL connection software.
 

artchik

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Thank you Elvandil for your quick reply. I went to add/remove and as soon as I selected on the modem and hit the button to change/remove, I got the bluescreen. This is a sticky problem. I just rebooted and will try again...I will keep my fingers crossed.
 
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Try Safe Mode (F8 on boot) if you can't remove in regular mode. It certainly looks like we got the right driver. Clean out those driver remnants and start fresh and you should be OK.
 

artchik

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Well, the second try ended the same as the first. Got the BSOD as soon as I clicked on the button to remove my Conextant modem in add/remove. I just want to fling this thing out the window.
 

artchik

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LOL Elvandil. You'll have to run pretty fast to make it here in time. I am poised and ready. Tried safe mode, and was able to uninstall the modem driver. It did not show up in Device Manager after that, so I just went ahead and rebooted. I did not receive a notice about a new device found, if that makes any difference. As soon as I unzipped the file that held the new drivers...BANG! Bluescreen city again.
 
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This happened as soon as you unzipped the file and before you did anything else? Did you start the installation or anything?

If that is the case, we may be dealing with another problem. But for starters, try installing the modem driver in Safe Mode, too, to see if that succeeds. Are you positive that you have the correct driver for XP?
 

artchik

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Well, I should have been a bit more clear. I unzipped the file and installed it. Then the bluescreen came up.

I am pretty sure this is the correct driver for my modem...I went to the Dell site and had to sign in with my service tag number, and was given all available downloads relevant to my machine. I will try installing in safe mode and see if that makes a difference. Thanks for your patience.
 
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No problem. Modems seem to present problems like this all too often.

Another thing to try--------
Go to Device Manager and find the details about what files are part of the modem driver. Write down the names and then remove the driver again. This time, do a search for the files in your list and if they are found, delete them manually. Occasionally, files remain when the driver is removed.

Clear out your temp files before installing again. A corrupted file placed there during the installation may not be updated when the new installation begins.
 
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It also may simply be using your old drivers.

You can try opening the Device Manager
Go to your Modem
Click on the Driver tab
Click on the Update Driver button
Don't search
Install from a specific location
Browse to where you unzipped the drivers.

Sometimes this more manual method also helps to overwrite any corrupted files.
 

artchik

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Thanks Elvandil and Bob for trying to help me with this issue. Unfortunately I am so frustrated that I am going to go to bed and deal with this tomorrow. I tried Bob's suggestion of manually updating the drivers through Device Manager, but received the alarming message box notifying me that some of the new files were in another language, and did I want them to overwrite the English files? I clicked "no", knowing that the installation would be screwed up. I specifically remember seeing English listed as the default language in a drop-down menu on the Dell webpage when I downloaded the drivers. How I could have ended up with drivers that had some files written in another language is hard to fathom. When I tried the modem after installing these "updated" driver files, I could hear kind of like an echo while it dialed the number, and I connected at 2800 kbps. That is not a typo. When I tried to rollback the drivers again, I got the bluescreen. That was it for me. I need some sleep. Thanks to you all, and I will try it again tomorrow.
 
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Whatever the reason for that language message, you might want to try again and allow the installation of those files. A complete installation will be necessary and they can be uninstalled.

Check the modem itself, too. Be sure it hasn't slipped partway out of its slot. Check all other cards in other slots, too.

You wouldn't happen to have another modem around, would you?
 
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That's one reason I like to add drivers that way. I helps determine if there is going to be a problem with them.

If that's all you connected at, and if you can't find the correct drivers from Dell, you might see if you can find the drivers from the actual manufacturer of the modem (assuming it isn't Dell itself).

If you can't find good drivers, modems are just not that expensive.
 

artchik

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Nov 5, 2001
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66
I wanted to follow up and let you know that I am posting this followup from my laptop that I was ready to throw out the window a few days ago. I manually loaded the drivers through device manager, ignored the warnings about it being in a different language, received a notice after everything loaded that the attempt to load new drivers failed. After that, I was so frustrated that I shut down the machine and left it for a few days. Today when I fired it up, I was able to get online, download my antivirus updates, and do everything I couldn't do before. I'm not sure why it suddenly started working after receiving all those notices about problems loading the new driver, but something must have clicked back in place during that process because my machine is just like new again. Thanks to Elvandil and Bob Cerelli for walking me through the whole process.
 
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