BSOD with wireless USB adapter

kemical

Windows Forum Admin
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Basically the bios has been upgraded to a system called UEFI.

What's probably confusing is that we still call it the bios but almost every new or recent motherboard will be using a UEFI bios. Now there are settings within some UEFI Bioses which allow you to run in a legacy mode (needed for some operating systems which don't support UEFI).
The following link has a guide which breaks it down pretty well.
What Is UEFI, and How Is It Different from BIOS?
 

usasma

Fantastic Member
Microsoft Community Contributor
Just FYI - if you disable a device in Device Manager, the drivers still load at boot. Then, later on in the logon process, they are disabled - but they remain loaded in memory.
I took me years to figure this out, but I finally found evidence of disabled drivers being involved in a BSOD crash (about a year ago).
Never did get to follow up on it - as the user was happy with the fix and stopped posting.

So, the most effective test of a device is to either uninstall it's software and physically remove it from the system - or (if it's not removeable) to disable it in the BIOS or UEFI and uninstall it's software.
 
First off, I wonder about a few things:
- why are you using a wireless USB wifi adapter on a system that has built in wifi? (I saw that you answered this earlier)
this may be significant if the built in adapter has problems (and those problems may interfere with the USB adapter also)
- You've tried different USB adapters - so that tends to rule out the adapters themselves as a cause of the problem.
If it's their drivers, I wonder if you've: uninstalled the driver package from Settings...Apps and Features (or from appwiz.cpl), then rebooted, then installed a freshly downloaded copy? It could be that, when you install and updated package, it doesn't overwrite everything - and maybe one fo the files not overwritten may be corrupted.
- I also wondered about trying different USB ports. In most cases USB ports on different sides of the laptop are connected to different points on the motherboard (maybe even different controllers). As such, this tends to help rule out the USB ports as a cause of the problem.
- you stated that the BSOD happens when plugging the device in. Most often (IME) this happens with a hardware problem (if ti's a driver, it'll take longer to BSOD).

So, my thoughts are that this is most likely a hardware problem - and is either related to the old wifi card or is a problem with the motherboard. Is there a place in the UEFI where you can disable the old wifi card? If not, can you physically remove the old wifi card from the system?

Here's my suggestion for troubleshooting hardware problems (3 steps). At this point it's likely that you only need to do the first step and let us know the results (you can skip the MemTest as you've already run it).:


Even more to follow after this.........
Taking a shower while the dumps are running) :0)

Hi Guys,

Sorry for not being in touch early, I had a busy week and must say I really don't like that idea of that being an hardware issue haha. What's the point of spending a grand in a laptop if it's sh** as any cheap laptop. Ha!

So Usasma following the Step 1 (your 12.02 am Wed msg), this is what I have done:

1-Scan for malware: A full Avast virus scan yielded no results.

2-SSD Diagnostic: Ran the CrystalDiskMark test. Seems all good to me, no issues during the scan.

3-GPU : FurMark ran for 15 mins for GPU1 (NVIDIA) until stabilized at 70 degrees c. Couldn't figure how to test GPU2.

4-CPU testing : ran OCCT for 15 mins. Results attached. Seems ok.

5-Power supply: ran OCCT power supply test until it reached max Core temp value of 85 degrees c after 8 minutes. Is that an issue? May be due to succession of tests? Results attached.


Well I may now run Prime 95 or Step 2 or anything else you advise since I need that laptop to work, it's just 2 yo!

Thanks again.
 

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kemical

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Well I may now run Prime 95 or Step 2 or anything else you advise since I need that laptop to work, it's just 2 yo!
Hi Steph,
to be honest after the batch of tests you can probably hold off on the prime95 as all seems ok.

One thing we did ask is can you go into the uefi bios and disable the LAN/Network component. I think you'll find it under the Peripherals heading..

As your using another device you should still be fine in accessing the net.

What we are interested in is will the machine still bsod with the component shut down?

You may find the bsod stops with the faulty component disabled.

Why not try it and see?
 
Hi Kemical,

At the moment I am using ethernet cable connection but wifi doesn't work. Maybe I should try with a different brand / model of wifi dongle?

Anyway I did it before and just done it again to make sure. When I disable the LAN component in UEFI settings, I just have no internet connection since ethernet cable doesn't work. And when I try the dongle, immediate BSOD as usual.

Just to make sure, I've screened where I go in the UEFI after rebooting with "advanced start-up" from Windows settings.
 

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Btw I see that there are 7 rtwlanu.sys files on my laptop. Intriguing is that they don't all have the same "date modified". They are either 31/01/18 or 29/09/17. Wondering if that could cause conflict / bsod?
 

kemical

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Hi,
I wouldn't use that driver although you can try it if you wish (you never know). The reason I say this is because laptops are only supposed to use drivers from the manufacturer.

So you tried the dongle after the network was disabled and still a bsod. You may have a problem with the USB driver.
Btw I see that there are 7 rtwlanu.sys files on my laptop.
WOW 7? You only need one set of working drivers and when installing anything new you need to uninstall the previous driver.

If I was you I'd remove them all (make sure you have a copy of the driver first though) and then install a fresh version from the support page at Toshiba.
 
Haha, 7 in different locations! I believe there's something we haven't seen. When I installed the drivers you recommended to update or reinstall (from the Toshiba website for instance), I never saw the rtwlanu.sys file being changed. These ones I just downloaded are from the Realtek website, the device's manufacturer. But still I am not sure where I should put these 3 files as, as I said, there are 7 different rtwlanu.sys files on my laptop. Wondering which one causes the bsod?
 

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kemical

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But still I am not sure where I should put these 3 files as, as I said, there are 7 different rtwlanu.sys files on my laptop. Wondering which one causes the bsod?
I doubt you have 7 different copies as the screenshots are of the driver store and other folders where it's normal to see what seem like extra versions. They are not extra versions but some notification or what have you.

The place you only need to uninstall the driver from is found via Settings then apps (it used to be called Add and Remove programs.
 

kemical

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Rtwlanu.sys is not a driver per se
It is a driver but it's included in the Network driver that you download from Toshiba. (thats why we keep asking you to update the network drivers which in turn carry Rtwlanu.sys.
 
Right, so yeah it's one of the first thing I did after you advised that 10 days ago. Still nothing changed then. But looking at these different rtwlanu.sys versions on the laptop, I see they don't all have the same dates. But maybe it's not important as you said.
 

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kemical

Windows Forum Admin
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We keep assuming that it's the network component at fault but yet you use it everyday without issue.

It's only when you plug the dongle in that a bsod occurs so I would try updating your USB drivers.

Also when was the last time your machine had a clean install of Windows 10 or did you upgrade?
 
I never reinstalled Windows 10. I'd rather try all the other options before doing that! Checking in the device manager, USB drivers are up-to-date.
 

kemical

Windows Forum Admin
Staff member
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I'd rather try all the other options before doing that
Well basically you have.

Plus if your install was I assume an upgrade to Windows 10 then this can be a little buggy. It's a process most of us avoid using but I can understand you not wanting to format the machine. ( Also I notice Usama made the same suggestion in the post he made).

Try plugging something else in the USB and see if a bsod occurs.
 
The laptop was natively with Windows 10 when I bought it, and in the updates list I don't see any recent ones, just prior the first BSOD. I'll go and buy a wifi dongle from a different manufacturer and see what happens.
 
Well that works with a 5 yo Ralink wifi dongle! We'll probably never get to understand what's wrong with these TPLink dongles. I really tried with my old one and a brand new one, so it was unlikely that they were both faulty. That will stay a mystery for sure. Big thumbs up to both of you guys Kemical and Usasma, for your time looking at the dump files and giving advice. Really appreciate this dedicated help! :eagerness:
 
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