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What causes STOP 0xF4 errors?


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12 replies to this topic

#1 lti

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Posted 09 August 2011 - 08:19 PM

My computer just crashed with this error:
STOP: 0x000000F4 (0x00000003, 0x8378B0E0, 0x8378B254, 0x805FB1D6)

The message says "A process or thread crucial to system operation has unexpectedly exited or been terminated."

When I restarted, the computer took an extremely long time to start up. When Windows finally started, I discovered that the hard drive has more bad sectors than it did before the crash. Is that the reason why it crashed?

The computer is running Windows XP Home Edition SP3. It is fully updated.

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#2 Broni

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Posted 09 August 2011 - 08:51 PM

Is that the reason why it crashed?

Very possible.

Run hard drive diagnostics: http://www.tacktech.com/display.cfm?ttid=287 (or http://www.bleepingcomputer.com/forums/index.php?showtopic=28744&hl=hard+drive+diagnostic)
Make sure, you select tool, which is appropriate for the brand of your hard drive.
Depending on the program, it'll create bootable floppy, or bootable CD.
If downloaded file is of .iso type, use ImgBurn: http://www.imgburn.com/ to burn .iso file to a CD (select "Write image file to disc" option), to make the CD bootable.
For Toshiba hard drives, see here: http://sdd.toshiba.com/main.aspx?Path=ServicesSupport/FujitsuDrivesUSandCanada/SoftwareUtilities#diagnostic

Note : If you do not know how to set your computer to boot from CD follow the steps HERE

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#3 lti

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Posted 09 August 2011 - 09:08 PM

The hard drive is a Toshiba MK6034GAX. Would the "Fujitsu branded Toshiba" diagnostic tools work? Should I use the DOS version or the Windows version?

#4 Broni

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Posted 09 August 2011 - 09:21 PM

For Toshiba hard drives, see here: http://sdd.toshiba.com/main.aspx?Path=ServicesSupport/FujitsuDrivesUSandCanada/SoftwareUtilities#diagnostic


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#5 lti

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Posted 09 August 2011 - 10:00 PM

The download links on that page are linked directly to the Toshiba Storage Device Division home page. I can't download the files.

#6 Broni

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Posted 09 August 2011 - 10:36 PM

This is strange.
Those downloads used to work.

Try to contact Toshiba then: http://sdd.toshiba.com/main.aspx?Path=ServicesSupport/TechnicalSupport/TechnicalSupportContacts

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#7 lti

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Posted 09 August 2011 - 10:38 PM

I found a floppy disk with HDAT2 on it. Can I use that to test the drive?

I started a test that reads the drive to search for bad sectors. It lasted about ten seconds before reporting an error. :o The error is always listed as a controller failure. The test has been running for almost ten minutes and is still 0% complete with 30 read errors and is on sector 694,944.

Edited by lti, 09 August 2011 - 10:48 PM.


#8 Broni

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Posted 09 August 2011 - 10:40 PM

It won't hurt to try.

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#9 lti

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Posted 10 August 2011 - 03:06 PM

The test completed and reported 301 bad sectors. When I restarted, Windows would not load. I just get a solid black screen after the BIOS splash screen. A couple minutes later, this message appears:

Windows could not start because the following file is missing or corrupt:
<Windows root>\system32\ntoskrnl.exe.
Please re-install a copy of the above file.

The computer won't boot from a CD, even with a working optical drive. I need to look for a new computer.

Edited by lti, 10 August 2011 - 03:26 PM.


#10 lti

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Posted 10 August 2011 - 07:10 PM

I replaced ntoskrnl.exe and the registry files (C:\Windows\System32\config\system had become corrupt) and Windows now boots. I should be able to use this until I get a new computer.

#11 Broni

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Posted 10 August 2011 - 08:22 PM

Good news but keep your data backed up all the time as I think this drive may fail at any time.

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#12 lti

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Posted 11 August 2011 - 12:07 PM

The drive has been failing for a year. I am looking for a new computer.

#13 Broni

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Posted 11 August 2011 - 05:42 PM

Good luck then :)

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