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  • Runaway Kernel/NT and Odd HDD Events

    Posted on Nibbled To Death By Ducks Comment on the AskWoody Lounge

    Home Forums AskWoody support Windows Windows 7 Questions: Windows 7 Runaway Kernel/NT and Odd HDD Events

    Topic Resolution: Resolved
    • This topic has 27 replies, 9 voices, and was last updated 10 months ago.
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      • #1984341 Reply

        OK, this is actually two issues that MAY be related.

        #1: Been getting a “runaway kernel/NT” event chewing up 25% of my processor when it goes nuts. WHEN this happens is totally at random. I can go two days without it, and then it’ll happen three times or more in one day. Shutting it down via Task Manager solves the immediate issue, but then she won’t reboot, and I have to go to a power-off state, and then start the system.

        The only major change I can think of since this started is I started using Firefox….and it always seems to happen when using Firefox.

        Wound up on https://helpdeskgeek.com/how-to/fix-nt-kernel-system-process-high-cpu-usage-in-windows/ and followed the instructions, but the link pointed to the tool for XP/win2000 . (grrrrr.)

        I should have come here first.

        #2: I also have been getting some system errors that indicate that the HDD is not responding “in the specified time”. This, also, is random, and I can’t swear it started happening after Firefox’s install.

        I booted into the PC’s UEFI Dell diagnostics, and ran thorough tests on the HDD, System Management, and a “quick” test on the memory, as I know a thorough test can take 24 hours. All came back fine save the battery, which is at 55% of it’s useful life…but that can’t cause any of this, as these things happen plugged in or not. (Can it?). Did Malwarebytes and an thorough AV scan with MSE, nothing.

        Screen dumps below. Anyone have an idea where to look, or if I should do an extended mem test overnight? A link to the proper diagnostic tools would be good, too.

        BTW, this had been happening BEFORE I applied October’s patches…so they can’t be to blame. (for once).

        Oh, and I got a runaway process several months ago on a PIM (Above and Beyond) that’s always in the background running. Seems like the issue has just changed programs/routines it runs away with?

        I have Steve Gibson’s Meltdown patch running….I wonder if I should turn it off?

        I hate intermittent issues (I have several with my car), but at least she’s running, as this is my only PC!

        Thanks in advance!!

        Win7 Pro SP1 64-bit ESU, Dell Latitude E6330, Intel CORE i5 "Ivy Bridge", Group "Patch List", Multiple Air-Gapped backup drives in different locations, "Don't auto-check for updates-Full Manual Mode." Linux Mint Greenhorn
        --
        "A committee is the only known form of life that has at least four legs and no brain."

        -Robert Heinlein

        Attachments:
      • #1984352 Reply
        PKCano
        Da Boss

        Asking the obvious:
        If you uninstall Firefox, does it go away?

        • #1984492 Reply
          PaulK
          AskWoody Lounger

          Before uninstalling Firefox, maybe just not use it. Use IE, or Chrome, or some other browser. If Bookmarks/Favorites are a problem they can be Export/Import-ed.

          Some of the JPGs indicate iaStor. Are you using a Raid array? (Speculative question: Could a ‘hung’ disk in an array cause a CPU to time out? Where perhaps hung=missing R/W_complete post/interrupt; therefore indicating either a hardware or a driver problem. This is way beyond my knowledge level.)

          • #1984493 Reply
            Kirsty
            Da Boss

            Use IE

            Quelle horreur! 😉

            Bears repeating: Don’t use Internet Explorer

            2 users thanked author for this post.
            • #1984504 Reply

              Wouldn’t touch IE with a grounded ten-foot pole in a Faraday cage.

              Win7 Pro SP1 64-bit ESU, Dell Latitude E6330, Intel CORE i5 "Ivy Bridge", Group "Patch List", Multiple Air-Gapped backup drives in different locations, "Don't auto-check for updates-Full Manual Mode." Linux Mint Greenhorn
              --
              "A committee is the only known form of life that has at least four legs and no brain."

              -Robert Heinlein

          • #1984503 Reply

            No RAID, just one HDD, which I ran a full diagnostic on.

            Win7 Pro SP1 64-bit ESU, Dell Latitude E6330, Intel CORE i5 "Ivy Bridge", Group "Patch List", Multiple Air-Gapped backup drives in different locations, "Don't auto-check for updates-Full Manual Mode." Linux Mint Greenhorn
            --
            "A committee is the only known form of life that has at least four legs and no brain."

            -Robert Heinlein

        • #1984502 Reply

          I feel like I’m in a Monty Python flick…you said “it”, but I wrote of two issues…in any case, no, I have not, as re-installing it is a major pain (or it was some years ag0).

          But I did flip the switch on Gibson’s Inspectre/Meltdown machine language program to “off”…and it hasn’t done either of the two things yet, but it’s only been a matter of hours. (BTW the PC performance went ‘way up.)

          The reason I did was that the system event log also contained:

          Kernel-processor power-event 37-“The speed of processor 1 in group 0 is being limited by system firmware. The processor has been in this reduced performance state for 20 seconds since the last report.” This, though, has been in the log regularly since at least April of this year, so it may be a red herring. (I could use a lesson in using the Event Viewer. 53K events are hard to plow through.)

          …Same warning for processors 0, 2 and 3 at the same instant of time. Maybe a recent patch doesn’t play nice with InSpectre…???)

          …and , like I said above, it’s done this “runaway” bit with my PIM (Personal Info Manager) Above and Beyond in the past.

          (Poking in the dark…This IS as bad as my car. :/ )

           

          Win7 Pro SP1 64-bit ESU, Dell Latitude E6330, Intel CORE i5 "Ivy Bridge", Group "Patch List", Multiple Air-Gapped backup drives in different locations, "Don't auto-check for updates-Full Manual Mode." Linux Mint Greenhorn
          --
          "A committee is the only known form of life that has at least four legs and no brain."

          -Robert Heinlein

          • #1984507 Reply
            satrow
            AskWoody MVP

            Kernel-processor power-event 37-“The speed of processor 1 in group 0 is being limited by system firmware. The processor has been in this reduced performance state for 20 seconds since the last report.” This, though, has been in the log regularly since at least April of this year, so it may be a red herring. (I could use a lesson in using the Event Viewer. 53K events are hard to plow through.)

            …Same warning for processors 0, 2 and 3 at the same instant of time. Maybe a recent patch doesn’t play nice with InSpectre…???)

            I’d guess at a Dell Bios update.
            Dell Latitude E6330 System BIOS Urgent BIOS 09 Jan 2019

            1 user thanked author for this post.
            • #1984526 Reply

              Aye, downloaded and stored.If she continues down this path, will seriously consider it. As this is the one with the Meltdown fixes that slows your system down, I’ll wait for further misbehavior.

              Questions:

              1. Flashing your BIOS used to be fraught with the real possibility of bricking your machine. Still true? This is my ONLY machine.

              2. How do you verify the checksums? Never done it.

              Many Thanks!

              Win7 Pro SP1 64-bit ESU, Dell Latitude E6330, Intel CORE i5 "Ivy Bridge", Group "Patch List", Multiple Air-Gapped backup drives in different locations, "Don't auto-check for updates-Full Manual Mode." Linux Mint Greenhorn
              --
              "A committee is the only known form of life that has at least four legs and no brain."

              -Robert Heinlein

              • #1984527 Reply
                Kirsty
                Da Boss

                How do you verify the checksums?

                See AKB 1000006

                1 user thanked author for this post.
              • #1985962 Reply
                anonymous
                Guest

                Flashing your BIOS used to be fraught with the real possibility of bricking your machine. Still true?

                There is always a risk of failure. If you must update firmware just make sure the battery is fully charged and do it with the AC adapter connected to the laptop.

      • #1984578 Reply
        GoneToPlaid
        AskWoody Lounger

        Both issues appear to be related to installed drivers. The CPU issue could also be caused by cooling issues such as lots of dust on the cooling fins or cooling fan for the CPU. I think that you are here in the US and not the UK? If so, here is the Dell US page for your laptop’s drivers:

        https://www.dell.com/support/home/us/en/04/product-support/product/latitude-e6330/drivers

        Check out this page for how to potentially resolve your issues:

        Fix Speed Of Processor in Group is being limited by System Firmware – Event ID 37 (Solved)

         

        1 user thanked author for this post.
        • #1985039 Reply

          The CPU issue could also be caused by cooling issues such as lots of dust on the cooling fins or cooling fan for the CPU.

          Yes, living near (very near) L.A., we are now in “Fall”; the season here where the air turns brown and fails to the ground, so cleaning is a major task, all the time. The HVAC filter in the house here gets brown in one month. PM 2.5 always a major concern, we try to “keep it clean”, and the CPU fans included.

          Win7 Pro SP1 64-bit ESU, Dell Latitude E6330, Intel CORE i5 "Ivy Bridge", Group "Patch List", Multiple Air-Gapped backup drives in different locations, "Don't auto-check for updates-Full Manual Mode." Linux Mint Greenhorn
          --
          "A committee is the only known form of life that has at least four legs and no brain."

          -Robert Heinlein

      • #1984823 Reply

        Well, after reversing InSpectre.exe, we have been running for 23 hours here with no HDD or processor core issues/errors/or warnings. Could it be that hyperthreading, once turned off, causes issues on certain systems? One thing for sure, the “SLOW” gave way to “GOOD” after I turned InSpectre.exe off. And I do notice it. Also, the HDD LED now regularly flickers about once a second, where it did not always do so before.

        While Steve does write some of the very best and tightest code, it is impossible, given the great multiplicity of BIOS’s, UEFI’s and hardware configs out there to write one that won’t cause SOMEONE an issue. I may have gotten lucky. After all, I am Irish. (“‘Luck of the Irish’? Potato famine!”)

        The BIOS/UEFI and HDD all have to be on the same page. I always like to try one thing at a time instead of shotgunning it.

        I am also holding on to that new BIOS/UEFI update until Meltdown/Spectre (and all it’s cousins) appear in the wild. I still dread flashing a BIOS like I do the Plague. Call me old-fashioned. Like I said, this is my ONLY machine.

        Thanks to all who enlarged my understanding and chipped in. But I am keeping this thing “under observation” for another 48 hours. I’ll let everyone know.

        Win7 Pro SP1 64-bit ESU, Dell Latitude E6330, Intel CORE i5 "Ivy Bridge", Group "Patch List", Multiple Air-Gapped backup drives in different locations, "Don't auto-check for updates-Full Manual Mode." Linux Mint Greenhorn
        --
        "A committee is the only known form of life that has at least four legs and no brain."

        -Robert Heinlein

        • #1985524 Reply
          GoneToPlaid
          AskWoody Lounger

          Some Intel CPUs have known issues if hyperthreading is enabled. We had two computers at the office which had this issue, such that these computers would randomly blue screen and totally out of the blue. Thanks to this forum, I went into BIOS on these computers and disabled hyperthreading. After doing so, the blue screen issues were resolved.

          Note that disabling hyperthreading made very little difference in the performance of the two office computers.

          1 user thanked author for this post.
          • #1985787 Reply

            Note that disabling hyperthreading made very little difference in the performance of the two office computers.

            In this light, could hyperthreading cause a runaway Kernel/NT process? And we HAVE seen very infrequent BSOD’s on this machine in the 2 years I’ve had it…???

            Win7 Pro SP1 64-bit ESU, Dell Latitude E6330, Intel CORE i5 "Ivy Bridge", Group "Patch List", Multiple Air-Gapped backup drives in different locations, "Don't auto-check for updates-Full Manual Mode." Linux Mint Greenhorn
            --
            "A committee is the only known form of life that has at least four legs and no brain."

            -Robert Heinlein

        • #1985542 Reply
          GoneToPlaid
          AskWoody Lounger

          Uninstall Steve Gibson’s stuff. Most current AV programs have good techniques to detect Meltdown, and perhaps Spectre.

          Spectre? Well, you would have to actually download and install a program from online and from a questionable source.

          Meltdown? Well, the latest versions of the most popular web browsers include Meltdown protection. Meltdown protection was relatively easy for the web browser development teams to bake into their products, since timing was everything in terms of exploiting Meltdown.

          1 user thanked author for this post.
          • #1985768 Reply

            Uninstalled. See today’s latest commentary for another runaway Kernel/NT event.

            Win7 Pro SP1 64-bit ESU, Dell Latitude E6330, Intel CORE i5 "Ivy Bridge", Group "Patch List", Multiple Air-Gapped backup drives in different locations, "Don't auto-check for updates-Full Manual Mode." Linux Mint Greenhorn
            --
            "A committee is the only known form of life that has at least four legs and no brain."

            -Robert Heinlein

      • #1985512 Reply
        wavy
        AskWoody Plus

        Perhaps try running FF in safe mode to eliminate extension/plugin problems.

        🍻

        Just because you don't know where you are going doesn't mean any road will get you there.
        • #1985767 Reply

          Had this intermittent runaway Kernel/NT process issue long before I started running FF, like I said. (I think?) It used to be my Above and Beyond calendar .exe that got hijacked by the Runaway Kernel thing.   🙁

          Win7 Pro SP1 64-bit ESU, Dell Latitude E6330, Intel CORE i5 "Ivy Bridge", Group "Patch List", Multiple Air-Gapped backup drives in different locations, "Don't auto-check for updates-Full Manual Mode." Linux Mint Greenhorn
          --
          "A committee is the only known form of life that has at least four legs and no brain."

          -Robert Heinlein

      • #1985784 Reply

        OK, I think we might have the iaStor disk issue fixed, as per the “Another advise (sic) how to fix this error”:

        How to fix “The device, DeviceIdeiaStor0, did not respond within the timeout period.”

        Now, we still have the “runaway Kernet/NT process” which reared it’s ugly head again this afternoon. Read the page at:

        Fix NT Kernel & System Process High CPU Usage in Windows

        …but it’s dated, and “kernrate viewer” is not for Win 7. From what I read “Process Explorer” (which IS win 7 friendly) is OK, but won’t be of much use without “kernrate viewer”, of which there seems to be no Win 7 equivalent.

        As Amrvin would say, “Unbelievable.”

        Aaaaargh! And I have a full week tomorrow. Ideas? (SFX: Sobbing in background)

        Win7 Pro SP1 64-bit ESU, Dell Latitude E6330, Intel CORE i5 "Ivy Bridge", Group "Patch List", Multiple Air-Gapped backup drives in different locations, "Don't auto-check for updates-Full Manual Mode." Linux Mint Greenhorn
        --
        "A committee is the only known form of life that has at least four legs and no brain."

        -Robert Heinlein

      • #1985813 Reply

        Some Intel CPUs have known issues if hyperthreading is enabled. We had two computers at the office which had this issue, such that these computers would randomly blue screen and totally out of the blue. Thanks to this forum, I went into BIOS on these computers and disabled hyperthreading. After doing so, the blue screen issues were resolved.

        Note that disabling hyperthreading made very little difference in the performance of the two office computers.

        I just shut off hyperthreading, and now Task Manager shows TWO cores, as is expected. Did some reading on hyperthreading, and it seems to foul Kaby Lake and Skylake, but not “Ivy Bridge” processors.  Nonetheless, it has been switched off, so I am now running at two physical cores instead of four virtual.

        “We shall see what we shall see.”

        Win7 Pro SP1 64-bit ESU, Dell Latitude E6330, Intel CORE i5 "Ivy Bridge", Group "Patch List", Multiple Air-Gapped backup drives in different locations, "Don't auto-check for updates-Full Manual Mode." Linux Mint Greenhorn
        --
        "A committee is the only known form of life that has at least four legs and no brain."

        -Robert Heinlein

      • #1986756 Reply
        Microfix
        AskWoody MVP

        The only major change I can think of since this started is I started using Firefox….and it always seems to happen when using Firefox.

        Bit late to this but just curious: What version of Firefox are/were you running when this happened?

        Win8.1 Pro x64 + Linux Hybrids x86/x64 + Win7 Pro x86/64 O/L
        • #1987214 Reply

          The latest, 69.0.3, 64 bit.

          Win7 Pro SP1 64-bit ESU, Dell Latitude E6330, Intel CORE i5 "Ivy Bridge", Group "Patch List", Multiple Air-Gapped backup drives in different locations, "Don't auto-check for updates-Full Manual Mode." Linux Mint Greenhorn
          --
          "A committee is the only known form of life that has at least four legs and no brain."

          -Robert Heinlein

      • #1987265 Reply

        Well, the “Runaway Kernel/NT” thing has not resurfaced since turning off hyperthreading, but it looks like the “iaStor” is still with us.Been going on since 10/4, but hadn’t noticed it until I started running down the “Runaway Kernel/NT” system process bug. (Turning off hyperthreading seems to have fixed that.)

        One down, one to go.

        It’s not the drive, which has been put through three diagnostics an hour long each, and it’s not firefox, as I have been using IT since about 8/15. unless one version upgrade did something…

        PC-chokehold

        I’m over my head. Here’s as much data as I can muster for consideration of this annoying error:

        Log Name: System
        Source: iaStor
        Date: 10/21/2019 8:31:04 PM
        Event ID: 9
        Task Category: None
        Level: Error
        Keywords: Classic
        User: N/A
        Computer: (redacted)
        Description:
        The device, \Device\Ide\iaStor0, did not respond within the timeout period.
        Event Xml:
        <Event xmlns=”http://schemas.microsoft.com/win/2004/08/events/event”&gt;
        <System>
        <Provider Name=”iaStor” />
        <EventID Qualifiers=”49156″>9</EventID>
        <Level>2</Level>
        <Task>0</Task>
        <Keywords>0x80000000000000</Keywords>
        <TimeCreated SystemTime=”2019-10-22T03:31:04.942350800Z” />
        <EventRecordID>321232</EventRecordID>
        <Channel>System</Channel>
        <Computer>(redacted)</Computer>
        <Security />
        </System>
        <EventData>
        <Data>\Device\Ide\iaStor0</Data>
        <Binary>0F0005000100000000000000090004C00100000000000000000000000000000000000000000000000000000000</Binary>
        </EventData>
        </Event>

         

        Win7 Pro SP1 64-bit ESU, Dell Latitude E6330, Intel CORE i5 "Ivy Bridge", Group "Patch List", Multiple Air-Gapped backup drives in different locations, "Don't auto-check for updates-Full Manual Mode." Linux Mint Greenhorn
        --
        "A committee is the only known form of life that has at least four legs and no brain."

        -Robert Heinlein

        Attachments:
      • #1993247 Reply

        As of this writing, “Ivy Bridge” processors seem to have this bug too.  Hyper-threading off, no issues.  Hyper-threading on, and it’s only a matter of time before the Kernel/NT process runs away.

        Anyone out there with “Ivy Bridge” processors that see this issue, chime in.

        Win7 Pro SP1 64-bit ESU, Dell Latitude E6330, Intel CORE i5 "Ivy Bridge", Group "Patch List", Multiple Air-Gapped backup drives in different locations, "Don't auto-check for updates-Full Manual Mode." Linux Mint Greenhorn
        --
        "A committee is the only known form of life that has at least four legs and no brain."

        -Robert Heinlein

        • #1993514 Reply
          satrow
          AskWoody MVP

          “Ivy Bridge” processors seem to have this bug too. Hyper-threading off, no issues. Hyper-threading on, and it’s only a matter of time before the Kernel/NT process runs away.

          What bug?

          More likely a misconfiguration somewhere, else we’d have seen reports sooner.

          IaStorX and the Intel Rapid Storage Technology Raid/caching drivers aren’t required for most drive configurations, W7 > earlier W10 works fine on the standard MS storage drivers.

          For suspected heat-related CPU issues due to dust/poor airflow, a good clean is way better than disabling SpeedStep(/Cool’n’Quiet) – how would running the CPU at 100% frequency full time reduce heat buildup?

          What info can be found by drilling into the details in Windows Reliability Monitor?

          Do you have any minidumps or details from the BSODs?

      • #2008322 Reply

        Well, for what it’s worth, the PC has been running for three days now without this issue with hyperthreading re-enabled; seems I had a dead optical drive, and the BIOS is set to seek that out as a primary boot, THEN go to the HDD. Did that when I was testing some backup optical rescue disks, and never set it back.  Maybe I should.

        I don’t know HOW these two could be connected, but so far, so good. <shrug>

        Win7 Pro SP1 64-bit ESU, Dell Latitude E6330, Intel CORE i5 "Ivy Bridge", Group "Patch List", Multiple Air-Gapped backup drives in different locations, "Don't auto-check for updates-Full Manual Mode." Linux Mint Greenhorn
        --
        "A committee is the only known form of life that has at least four legs and no brain."

        -Robert Heinlein

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