More about nvlddmkm driver error…

I want to share a little about what I’ve learn from this driver error. The main culprit for me was the Fusion HDTV 5 TV tuner which had a “Power Up” cable that I plugged onto the motherboard. After installing that TV tuner, I’ve started receiving errors while watching movies, but never during games. Once I pulled the “Power Up” cable out, everything was back to normal. Compare this with what others are experiencing, most people get the error while playing WoW (World of Warcraft) or other heavy graphical games. It’s obviously something different that’s causing the problem. My point I’m trying to make is that the nvlddmkm error isn’t a specific error. It’s a generic error message that applies to most display problems. It’s basically saying “Something caused your video card to crash…” whether it’s ram issues, overheating issues, or simply a bad video card… So there isn’t a single permanent fix, just many fixes for many different causes. Also, it isn’t just a nVidia problem, ATI receives the same error in the form “atikmdag stopped responding and has recovered.” Some people have reported that switching over to ATI seemed to have worked for them. From what I’ve seen, it doesn’t matter if you have ATI or nVidia. It worked for them mainly because they had a bad video card and got a new one.
Also, you might be asking: When I install XP, everything is fine, but in Vista, I get this error. This is a sign that the problem most likely doesn’t lie in the hardware, but the software. Your first step is to increase the timeout in the registry for the error and then disable nVidia’s PowerMizer setting in control panel (read my solutions below for more information).
Hopefully that explains a lot. I’ll keep you posted.

34 Responses to “More about nvlddmkm driver error…”

  1. Bane Says:

    I used to get this error several times an hour. I went into the BIOS and changed the RAM voltage and timings from the automatic settings to those that match my RAM’s specifications. In my case I increased the voltage and lowered the timings. Since then I’ve gone several hours without getting the error.

  2. Bane Says:

    Just an update: I haven’t had a single nvlddmkm driver error since my last comment nine days ago. Adjusting the RAM settings in the BIOS definitely fixed the error for me.

  3. Anytime Says:

    Today i’ve update my 8800GT, to nvidia’s latest driver 182.50 for x64 users. After i install the driver and after i’ve deleted the previous driver folders in C:NVIDIA, the problem didn’t appear anymore (yet so far)…

    Try to update and leave feedback.

  4. cchinlf2 Says:

    I’ve tried plenty of methods and searched many web-site for solutions but none of them works. Finally borrow my friend’s 9600GT to replace my 9600gso then the problem has gone. His computer with my 9600gso works well. Therefore I think my PSU is not good enough to supply power to 9600gso which consumes much more power than 9600gt. Or maybe there are conflicts between some of my component with 9600gso. Sorry that I don’t have enough money to replace all of my components in order to find out the source of the error, but I suggest all of you to consider changing another card with lower power consuming.

  5. FujiFilm Says:

    Had this problem. Used a Geforce 7600gt on a stock Dell Inspiron 531 with 300W psu, and it worked fine for over a year then out of nowhere the error about a month ago. I still haven’t figured out the cause but here are some things I observed : 1) Switching from Vista32 to XP32 helped extend the time between errors mainly on TeamFortress2 which is what I play most the time; from happening every 20-30 sec to a few minutes, so it was manageable for short term, but the problem was still there. 2) Some of the Vista screen savers also caused the error to occur, I think it was the more 3D intensive ones. 3)Rollback/uninstall/cleaning/updating drivers didn’t work. I ended up getting frustrated and gambled on a cheap 9800gt and a 585W psu to fix it and it did. So it must have been one of those two. And I used the same Geforce drivers on both cards.

  6. Country Steaks Says:

    I began experiencing this problem just several hours ago; completely and utterly out of the blue. First instance of the error occurred during a map change in a game of Counter-Strike: Source. Now whenever I boot up my system, I typically crash within 30 seconds of loading the OS, regardless of what I may be doing or whether I’ve even moved my pointer. I’ve treated my system well for two years. The only significant installment I’ve made over the past week is the latest driver update from Nvidia for the 8800GTX.

    Given that my system crashes within 30 secs of loading the OS, would that narrow down which of the suggested solutions is most plausible for me? There’s quite a list of things to try out, and I’m obviously limited in which ones I can try before I’m greeted by the ever irritating blue screen.

  7. Country Steaks Says:

    Well the problem seems to be solved for now. Booting up in safe mode allowed me to navigate to the Device Manager where I uninstalled and deleted my video driver. I used a driver cleaner to ensure there were no potentially troublesome files left behind in the process, then went on to reinstall a fresh copy of the video driver. Goodness knows how it became corrupt in the first place.

  8. Dhagon Says:

    Hey guys, I have had the problem over the years(normally it would occur about once a month in which I would simply reboot and not think much of it) but it has recently occurred so frequently that I have spent the last 3 months reading almost every single forum post for a definitive solution. After trying almost every single possible solution or fix to no avail, I have finally found my personal solution. I am not saying that this will work for everyone, but it is worth a shot. After grabbing the latest drivers(185.85) for my PNY 8800 GTX and installing them on Vista in Safe Mode, I proceeded to download and install the latest Nforce drivers(15.25) for my 590 Sli chipset on my Asus M2N32 board. I hadn’t updated the Nforce drivers in quite a while and I did so in Safe Mode with UAC turned off, just in case. However, I had noticed that my monitor had been slightly flickering a bit since I first started receiving the numerous Nvlddmkm errors. I normally always keep my monitor refresh rate at 60 Hertz, but for whatever reason, it was at 75 Hertz. I did not alter this at all and I can only assume that something changed it without my knowledge. I switched it back to 60Hz and not only does it not flicker, but I have not received a single Nvlddmkm error in any program at all for about two weeks now. I have tried as many games as I possibly could in an attempt to replicate the error, but I have not succeeded. I was almost in disbelief since every single “fix” I have tried so far from forums or this site has only been temporary, lasting a few days if at all. Unfortunately, I cannot clearly determine which of the steps was primarily responsible for my hopeful fix(185.85 drivers, Nforce drivers, Monitor Refresh Rate); however, after having little luck with almost all of Nvidia’s drivers, It would be reasonable to assume that they were not responsible(unless others have have experienced less errors with the new drivers). As for the Nforce drivers, I cannot make a judgement on them since I made all the changes in about 10 minutes and I did not manually test each solution to see which one was solely responsible for my fix. However I am fairly certain that decreasing my refresh rate was responsible(Control panel, display, advanced settings, monitor, refresh rate). If you are receiving numerous Nvl errors, try changing your refresh rates(I lowered to 60) as it is very simple and can be easily reversed if it does not work. If you have an Nvidia based chipset on your board, you may also want to grab the latest Nforce drivers as well. Good Luck Everyone.

  9. srward380 Says:

    I had this problem as well. It started in week one of my purchase of an EVGA Geforce 9600 GSO. This error would occur while doing anything. It happened often in games, but actually happened most watching while YouTube. Every time I watched a video, I had a 100% chance of the driver to stop responding before getting through a video. I spent about a month, every day, trying to find solutions. I’ve tried under/overclockin; new drivers, old drivers, beta driver, modified drivers; Windows Vista, Windows XP; one screen, two screen, black screen, blue screen; tried the card in my friends computer with the same result. As you can tell, this comment is written in past tense, which means I found a solution. I sent my card back to Newegg, they sent me a new one, and now it’s 100% problem free. All that time I wasted trying to fix it, was just that, a waste. So if all else fails, just send it back.

  10. szaty Says:

    Prog: anno1701
    Solve: Prop./Compatib./Settings/tick all box
    Cause: very few “nvlddmkm”
    Concluson: sure its not a specific error. Nvida cant do so much so stops for a reboot. (not enough memory, overheat…ect.) Solveing is always the same:reduce the work of the graphics card.

  11. cool70200 Says:

    Listen everyone please. This is a long post but its important about my revelations into this driver.

    The nvlddmkm problem is a driver conflict.

    I found out what happens, when I installed drivers in the past, the driver nvlddmkm was put into the harddrive(hdd) ok.
    But somehow or another, those nvlddmkm drivers got put into a memory address in the memory stick itself.
    As I got newer driver updates, those old drivers, (even though I uninstalled them from harddrive), where somehow copied to and sitting in memory addresses in the memory stick itself.

    Try this on your system, go to start -> computer -> double click your C: drive -> windows -> system32, now in search text box, type nvlddmkm.
    If you have multiple copies with different \date modified\ you got multiple copies of old and new nvlddmkm drivers, but thats not all.

    Check the locations(folders) where those multiple versions of nvlddmkm sit, the one at the top of the search list sits in hdd, the others have some sort of wierd number/letter like nv_disp.inf_df3f64cf(C:windowssystem32driverstore ilerepository)

    It has both a memory address and a hdd location, it in essence it is sitting in two seperate places, getting it uninstalled from both is the key and this is why reinstalling or updating drivers dont do anything to solve the problem.

    I had a xp system with a geforce 5900 back in like 2006, I updated drivers and stuff, ok.
    Last year I built a new system: motherboard, memory, powersupply, case, videocard: -BUT I KEPT THE OLD HARDRIVE, guess what, it worked ok for awhile, but now I get the crashes. BUT WAIT, WHERE COULD OLD NVLDDMKM FILES COME FROM IF IT WAS A NEW SYSTEM? From the old harddrive that I kept from the old system.

    Stay with me

    Now last week I got a brand new harddrive, installed a fresh new copy of vista on it, guess what, those old drivers showed up in my newly installed operating system on my new harddrive, THIS TELLS ME THAT NVLDDMKM SITS NOT ONLY IN THE HARDDRIVE, IT SITS IN THE MEMORY STICK ITSELF, and it can copy itself into any new harddrive or any new memory stick.
    When you get new video drivers they go to your drivers C:windowssystem32 BUT they also \might\ get copied into another place C:windowssystem32driverstore ilerepository from there they can be copied into your memory stick itself, is my guess.

    Once you got a corrupt nvlddmkm hdd, it cant get into your memory stick and vice versa, from memory stick right into a brand new harddrive and operating system.

    keep following,

    There is an online post about a fix where you run in safe mode, run Dos as administrator ( Go to windows/system32/drivers and rename nvlddmkm.sys to
    nvlddmkm.sys.old. Go to the nvidia directory and find the file nvlddmkm.sy_
    and copy it to windows/system32. Using the cmd window (DOS box) type
    EXPAND.EXE nvlddmkm.sy_ nvlddmkm.sys. When the expansion is complete, copy
    the new nvlddmkm.sys to windows/system32/drivers and restart the computer.
    I tried this and you know what, I restarted, went back in and deleted those old nvlddmkm files from safe mode. ok
    I restarted my computer and realized, I lost memory, I had 4 gigs, the system was now showing 2.75 gigs of memory, be forewarned! And copies of nvlddmkm still showed in my ilerepository, dont know if I did something wrong though, maybe it works for others.
    Now to the end, I’m going to buy a new hdd and new memory, install vista and see if I get a \clean- nvlddmkm-free\ system.
    This also might be the reason why nvidia hasnt dealt with this issue, its because of the liability to lots of people’s messed up memory and harddrives.

  12. optimus Says:

    I will ask the website owner to post this message as a temp resolvation of this problem.

    First of all, i have 2 x 2 Gb Corsair Dominator 1066 Mhz native. I have this problem because of this ram. I downclocked the memory at 800 Mhz and all is fine right now. For one of my friends, the resolvation was in raising the voltage to 2,2 V at this memory. So, who is running 1066 Mhz ram, you have 2 choices. One .. downclock the memory at 800 Mhz, or raise the voltage through bios at 2,1 or 2,2 V.

  13. falkinpro1 Says:

    After two days of battling this error I believe I have finally resolved it (crossing fingers). I have a newer system w/ Quad P, 4 Gigs High performance ram, Vista Ultimate, 9800 GTX+++, etc.

    What ended up working for me was loading in safe mode, going into windows/drivers and deleting the nvlddmkm.sys altogether. Then I went and uninstalled my nvidea drivers.

    Reboot, cancel the windows automatic drivers installation process, download the latest drivers for your GPU, install, restart, and success.

  14. kenetics Says:

    I recently installed windows 7 ultimate from using XP and I started getting this annoying nvlddmkm has stop responding and recovered problem every 5 ~ 20min. I have tried installing old drivers, new drivers, beta drivers, every step on this forum, reinstall windows, deleting nvlddmkm.sys from safe mode, almost every solution people posted on the internet, but my problem didn’t go away. After battling this error for few weeks I reinstalled windows again but with windows 7 pro not ultimate, stopped any windows updates and my problem is gone! Now I am going to try all the windows update and see how it goes, if my problem comes back then I know for sure that this is caused by one of the windows updates, and if it doesn’t come back then this problem came from ultimate version of windows.

  15. admin Says:

    if it comes back, you might want to send your video card back for repair.

  16. freakyoli Says:

    I get this error since i bought my pc a few month ago. i got a gtx 260. the error occurs in nearly every game, like need for speed pro street. sometimes i can play nearly 15 minutes without my screen turning black, then the error occurs frequently. finally the game crashes. but i can ply flatout for days without getting one of these errors. or GTA IV: i can play for hours on max settings without one error.
    i tried installing windows xp, but the error don’t disappear, it becomes even worse! the game stoppes for sometimes minutes, then the game maybe go on with big texture bugs, like a gray anything (i could’t identify what it was) printed on the whole screen.
    by the way, it doesn’t matter which driver is installed, whether old or new, the error will occur anyway…
    i don’t know where the f*cking error is…

  17. freakyoli Says:

    i forgot: i have windows 7 installed

  18. admin Says:

    freakyoli: is your card still under warranty? If you tried all of the solutions on this website, it’s most likely a hardware malfunction, so it is best to send it back to the manufacturer.

  19. freakyoli Says:

    yes it is, but if it’s a hardware malfunction, why can i play gta 4, gta san andreas or flatout without any problems? in january i try the card of a friend to find out if the problem only occurs with my card in my pc or with any card in my pc. if the first thing, i’ll send it back.
    by the way: thx for reply 🙂

  20. freakyoli Says:

    ok, seems that i solved the problem completly!
    after removing my card i noticed that it’s an zotac amp² edition and therefore overclocked. so i installed rivatuner and downclocked it to default clocks found on nvidias homepage. after playing nearly 4 hours without any error i guess it’s solved. may this is another solution you can add on the site.

  21. admin Says:

    good to hear that downclocking fixes it!

  22. lame2846 Says:

    i have this problem but i can still play games normally it doesn’t crash but when i exit the it pop up at the bottom say it nvlddmkm driver error…

    at first my games keep on crash and I though it was this problem but i decide to open up the case it turn out there was a wire clog my graphic card fan

    i unclog it and my games start working normally again but i still have this error

    so should i just leave this alone and ignore it or
    do something about it?

  23. admin Says:

    is your video card still in warranty? i would suggest sending it back in.

  24. lame2846 Says:

    I’m not sure a technician buy and replace the graphic card for me

    after a while now the only games that crash me is games portal and give me this error. It run well with cod4

    guess i just ignore it after all

  25. ihos Says:

    After all these this sounds like a power problem. But then if it was a power problem, the video card would not have worked. So then what??

  26. ihos Says:

    Here is what i think, power is probably too low. SO when trying to launch games and 3-D applications the video card uses more power and the power supply cannot handle that amount of power, so the video card fails and probably cause a crash. Tell me what you think.

  27. admin Says:

    Hi. Have you tried swapping out a power supply and trying a different one? Have you tried removing all non-essential cards (audio cards, tv tuners, even unplug all non-essential usb devices and hard drives)? Just try turning on your computer with the absolute bare minimum essentials.
    Also too, if it crashes while running 3-D applications, the video card may get hot, so be sure to clean your video card fans and make sure you have enough air flow (try leaving your case open).

  28. ihos Says:

    hi admin i tried that in the last hour. I had a 250 watt now i put a 305 watt psu. but i dont think its still not enough because the card requires 350 watt.

    One thing, i still cant get why did it work when i just installed it and my psu was 250 watt at the moment. But i have my case open. I just felt the card it feels like 80-90 degrees cecius. man im gonna put another fan ontop it. Probably its a heating problem. If it crashes after a while.

  29. ihos Says:

    hey admin look at this please, this is mines.

  30. admin Says:

    305 watt is definitely not enough, i would suggest getting at least a 450 just to avoid any problems. This is most likely the main problem.
    With regards to fans, stock fans should be sufficient. From experience, any additional custom fans may impair the airflor of the video card depending on the quality. I would suggest getting a 450 watt psu, remove the custom fan, and see if the problem goes away. make sure to get a good quality psu (antec or thermaltake psus are usually good).

  31. admin Says:

    also, if the case is closed and you installed the custom fan. it could be that the case isn’t providing enough airflow from outside the case. perhaps the only option is to leave the case open.

  32. ihos Says:

    well i went to the flea market, It had all these PSU’s. Alot of psu’s, like they are cheap and has like a high wattage. Do you think i should pick up one? I don’t have the kinda money for the good ones.

  33. ihos Says:

    But then the first day why did the card work? with a 250 watt psu, lol wtf

  34. Spankolli Says:

    I started having a problem with this error message on boot up a few weeks ago. I would get the blue screen of death stating that I had a problem with my nvlddmkm driver within about 10 seconds of turning on my computer. I then noticed that I always had a logitech usb gamepad plugged into the usb port every time the boot up error occurred. I would unplug the gamepad and the computer would boot up just fine with no errors. I then plugged in an xbox 360 controller and the same problem with booting up would occur. I then tried a little experiment. I unplugged my usb printer and plugged the xbox controller back in and the computer booted again just fine. This appears obvious to me now that it is not a driver problem but a voltage problem, at least in my situation. Please reply if anyone sees any problem with my logic. Thanks.

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