Vista Update Nvidia Driver nvlddmkm.sys BSOD



August 27th, Vista Ultimate 32bit, Nvidia 7600GT, 4Gb Ram

My Vista Ultimate system has an XFX NVidia 7600GT card in it. It has been
working fine since the day I put it in. My system is always on and I usually
let it update automatically via Windows Update as required.

The other day I came home from work and began to notice a degradation in
graphics quality. There were artefacts on the desktop and things were, well,
twitching… I became concerned and then I noticed that Vista was recovering a
crashed Display Driver repeatedly (first I had ever seen that) and then I was
really concerned. I had not updated or changed anything myself so I started
to check Windows Vista Update to see what it had updated in my absence. I
only managed to begin to see that Update had downloaded or started to
download, among other things, an updated NVidia driver..

I never got a chance to fault find any further since my system then became
so unstable the graphics went for a loop and I could not make anything out on
screen. Next thing it somersaulted into a BSOD blaming nvlddmkm.sys

Now my system will not boot up and immediately crashes with a BSOD every
time blaming nvlddmkm.sys – an nvidia display driver. The only way I can get
into my system is via safe mode and it has limited tools, particularly, it
does not allow access to Windows Update for me to check what Update did, what
it installed etc etc

I don’t know the version of the driver that was working fine previously. I
had never updated it since the card went in and it has worked fine ever
since, that is until this recent event. I don’t know what version Windows
Update tried to install because I can’t check it out.

What I’ve tried:
Installing a variety of updated drivers from NVidia Website including a
beta, from Safe Mode in Vista: no result, same BSOD
Rolling back driver to previous: no result, same BSOD
Using Sys Restore in Safe Mode to jump back to a previous known good
position: no result, same BSOD

Basically my system is trashed because Update downloaded some monster driver
that screwed up my system. Usually I’m pretty good troubleshooting and fixing
these kinds of things, I work in IT, but this one has me stumped. I have no
idea what Update did and feel I have exhausted my troubleshooting options.
Can anyone help me? Thanks.




Try again using Safe mode to install the drivers form the NVIDIA WebSite and
be sure you follow the NVIDIA procedures for removing any old drivers first.
Do NOT use WinUpdate to check on or obtain new drivers from MS for your
card. There have been several reports recently of WinUpdate installing new
NVIDIA drivers and causing problems like you one you are having.

Cal Bear '66

In Safe Mode, did you try to UNINSTALL the drivers ***including checking the
box to delete driver files*** before you installed the latest nVidia drivers.

You should set your Windows Update to notify you of new update availability and
let you choose when to download and install them?

Never let Windows Update automatically download and install device drivers. By
the time Microsoft gets them, especially video drivers, they are usually

When you check Windows Update again, right click on this driver, and select
"Hide" to prevent it from being offered again or installed.


Well now, how cool is that.... That got me out my hole!

If you were around I would buy you a few beers, or whatever your poison is!

Thank you for your timely, sanity inducing, assistance... So simple yet....


Cal Bear '66

Well, that sucks!

If I were you, I would give it one more shot.

In Safe Mode:

1. In Device Manager, UNINSTALL, the video adapter including checking the box to
delete driver files.

2. In Control Panel (Classic view) > Programs and Features, uninstall the
NVIDIA drivers.

3. In Windows Explorer, delete the NVIDIA folder.

4. Reboot into Safe Mode again.

5. Install new nVidia drivers

6. Cross fingers and boot normally.





Search for the bogus file, "nvlddmkm.sys ", probably in windows/system32
folder and delete it and try a reboot. Then re-install the last stable
version of the Nvidia drivers.

Worth a shot!


Hi I've tried that, and further fault finding too.. No success. My system has
now been totally screwed for about three weeks. Everytime I boot up it
immedialy dies in BSOD nvlddmkm.sys error 116

This all started 27th August when Windows Update downloaded and attempted to
install an 'UPDATED' NVidia driver for my 7600GT card. Trouble is it never
installed it properly and it killed my system. Took me three days to work out
what killed it and I have spent the next 3 weeks trying to fix it.

Uninstall, reinstall, registry clean, remove, clean, reinstall card,
Microsoft Driver, Nvidia driver, old driver, new driver, safe mode etc etc etc

No matter what I do nvlddmkm.sys kills my machine in BSOD. What bugs me very
much is that in the previous six months my system had been running fine until
Update killed it. Lesson, dont let Update do anything to your machine! DOnt
trust Microsoft to keep your machine working.

Now a malformed, broken, Windows update has totally screwed my system and I
cant fix it...

Come on microsoft pull the lead out and offer me some help here!


From safe mode can you uninstall the update using Control Panel/Program and
features/show all updates?


Hi. THanks for your input. I have tried these various ideas for resolving
this issue but I am still int he same situation.

Right now I have my machine running but it is without ANY installed driver
for my NVidia card. Therefore I only have very basic display functionality.
Whih at least allows me some more tools to troubleshoot the problem.

If I try to install any driver whatsoever then I get the same nvlddmkm.sys
error on boot. I've tried about 7 different drivers. Each time same thing.

ANy more ideas people?


I have one copy of the problem file in one of my system folders and it
appears that it came with the original install of Vista. Have you tried
renaming or deleting any copies of it on your system?
Have you run check disk?




Which program file are you referring to? Can you be specific?

I tried a few more things:

Disabled UAC to see if driver was having problems with rights - no success,
same BSOD on boot

Downloaded and ran 'Driver Cleaner' from Guru3d which appeared to clean up a
few stray Nvidia registry entries (I REALLY thought that was it fixed)
however, upon reinstalling Nvidia driver it crashed again on boot with same

Downloaded and ran 'Nvidia - nasty file remover' again removed some known
nvidia files but again no success.

Each time I am booting into safe mode, uninstalling nvidia driver (deleting
files), rebooting to safe mode, scrubbing driver files and registry entries,
rebooting to Vista normal and cancelling auto attempt to install driver for
7600GT (never install driver for this device). Then rebooting again to
windows normal and attempting to install latest official Nvidia drivers. Same
BSOD nvlddmkm.sys at boot...

I must have tried almost every driver/fault finding/troubleshooting

This is driving (ha) me nuts!


It is a system file so be sure you have Show system files enabled.
Mine is in C:\Users\JW {591eae36-caf9-4999-be96-827b1bc00499}
and I found it using Windows Explorer Search
It was created on 5/10/2007 and modified on 4/272007 so it was not part of
my original install


I can confirm this is not a specific problem with Nvidia cards. I went out
and bought a new ATI graphics card because I could not afford to wait any

I immediately installed this card and my system immediately sprang into
life. And in the two hours it was working I managed to backup or otherwise
retrieve all my data.

The next I saw was a 'display driver stopped working' error in Vista, also
know as a TDR error, where timing between Vista and graphics card is lost
somehow. Basically this error appeared maybe 4 times then my system crashed
again with the same error BSOD 116 but with the ATI driver file instaed of
the nvidia driver.

THIS IS A VISTA UPDATE problem where my system has been corrupted by a
wayward Vista Update. SOmehow this is killing graphics systems...

I hope they fix it soon.... Vista is becoming unusable


Not to bring coals to Newcastle, I have an NVIDIA 6200 which came with my
system. I bought the system in May and until Friday, October 26 it worked
fine. On Friday my problems duplicated yours (strange graphic display,
display driver death, constant reboots, and eventually the MS-DOS BSOD).
Microsoft sent a notification that the problem was with NVIDIA, but I just
installed 3 drivers including a Beta. No luck. Rather than casting blame it
might be a good time to coordinate a solution. My system is effectively dead.
The only solution that I can think of is to scrub the partition and reload
the initial OS and software, and disable automatic update, although I just
might go out and get Windows XP which seems more reliable. If you get this,
maybe you can respond by telling if your problem is fixed and how you fixed.


hey you guys. i have the same problem (what's new) corrupted display on a
xfx geforce 7300gs and a MSI geforce 6100. i've tried everything. only i
don't get the BSOD. i just get corrupted display after some time.... never
had this problem till i switched to vista home premium.




Yes I too have the same problem. I have a GeForce 7600 GS card and Windows
Vista Home Premium that has been performing trouble free until yesterday. No
microsoft updates have been applied and I haven't done anything to my system.
I have tried all the 'fixes' (safe mode, etc) to no avail. I get the BSOD and
the only way I can stay in Windows was to delete the nvlddmkm.sys file. Is it
hardware or software?. There seems to be a fix but Microsoft wants you to pay
for it. I guess SP1 might fix it??


I just started to have this same issue when I got back on sunday. I installed
8gbs of Corsair XMS2 ram, and teh system started to give me the nvlddmkm.sys
error and then BSOD, etc. I did a memory test and everything checked out
fine. What I have found out is that if you have SLI enabled it will crash the
system. But when I disable it I will still get the error until I turn off
Windows Aero theme.

Then the system seems to run fine. Up until now I have had no issues. I have
even reinstalled the display drivers, moved the nvlddmkm.sys file to
different directories that people have said works, but still nothing.

I even updated my BIOS to version "FF"

Is there a fix for this, or have I just blow $2600 on a junk computer?


AMD Athlon 64 X2 Dual Core 6400+ BE
8 GB Corsair xms2 PC2-6400
Windows Vista Ultimate 64 bit
Dual EVGA 8800GTS 640 MB Graphic Cards
GIGABYTE M57SLI-S4 Motherboard
Antec 900 case with Antec 850watt

Colin Barnhorst

If it is pc6400 back off the dram speed to 667. This is all to common an
issue with a lot of mobos and pc6400 ram. It has to do with the fourth dimm
slot and not so much the amount of ram.




I don't think I can change my ram speedon my mobo. But I will look into the
BIOS and see. If I get the system to be stable with all 8gigs I will comment

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