Windows 10 Win10 creators update, GPU driver failure


New Member

I've got quite the issue with my craptop, it's quite the long story.

It all began with me wanting to get the Creators Update. I had downloaded the Windows update assistant, got all necessary files and began installation. Laptop froze at 32% and did not move for at least half an hour. I forced shut it down and then Windows was completely broken, obviously. Got a clean install of an older version of Windows 10. All was well until drivers had to be downloaded by the system. All drivers that were downloaded were installed and I was prompted to restart. After the reboot, windows logo passed and I was looking at a completely black screen with not back light at all, no mouse curse, no nothing.
Thought this was due to a fault driver for the Intel HD card however, I was mistaken. It came to be a faulty one for my Nvidia GeForce 635M on a Lenovo G580, Model No: 20150.

Got a new Windows on hand, latest build as far as I know. Running Windows 10, Version 1703, Build 15063.0
Issue is still the same. In order to boot into Windows and actually log on, I had to enter the BIOS and edit the Graphics card options. The only two I've got available are UMA Graphics and Switchable Graphics. Switched to the UMA one in order to actually use my laptop.

I had entered Safe Mode and removed the Nvidia driver that Windows had installed using Guru3D's driver remove tool, downloaded latest driver from Nvidia's website, installed it and then got my next issue.

Logging on, I was welcomed with an error message saying:

nvapi.dll is either not designed to run on Windows or it contains an error.

I do believe the rest of the message was somewhere between these lines:

Code 31: This device is not working properly because Windows cannot load the drivers required for this device. Error status 0xc00012f

Went searching here and there, had a suggestion using SFC scan through CMD, did that and the OS had found nothing. So I have again removed the Nvidia driver and sticking to UMA Graphics until I find a solution for this.
Error 0x012F is "The file cannot be opened because it's in the process of being deleted". Removal tools can easily screw up drivers. I'd either unistall the device from device manager and check the box to remove the drivers, uninstall the Nvidia drivers and software via "Programs and Features" > Uninstall or from a command prompt with the pnputil.exe utility.

  • Remove the drivers and all software associated with the GPU
  • Run CCleaner to removal left over registry entries and files
  • Clean install of the GPU driver from the computer manufacturer site
Good idea; but one other thing you should do is PHYSICALLY REMOVE the GPU card/chip if possible in that laptop prior to reinstalling all the drivers. Not many laptops have a GPU card/chip that is removable; I've personally never seen one. But, after 5 years of working these tech forums I've since learned that there are many high-performance laptops such as gaming laptops or engineering laptops that come with a built-in GPU chip AND a removable GPU mini-card the size of a WLAN card (wireless card) that can be changed out if they fail. Of course, the built-in GPU chips cannot be removed as they are physically hardwired into the Motherboard circuit board.:noway: You should check your laptop specs to see if you have one of these types of laptops. If so, you should remove the GPU mini-card and reset your BIOS settings to only run the built-in GPU chip. Then wipe your hard drive (after testing it first!) and reinstall your W10 via Clean Install media you now have in hand. Let W10 complete the upgrade to W10 CU. Once that's done, I'd make an Image backup file using a free utility such as Macrium Reflect, Acronis TrueImage, or EASEus TODO. We've tested all 3 of these on W10 including W10 CU and they work good.
From their, once you've got the W10 CU successfully installed and working on the Internet with the laptop, power it off AND the laptop battery unplugged and AC adapter removed, and reinsert the GPU Card. Make sure you boot into the BIOS and disable the built-in GPU chip, so both the BIOS and W10 will look to initialize the newly inserted GPU card and install the correct drivers. If errors return, then follow Neem's advice above in Post #2 and see if reinstalling the GPU card drivers from W10 will work. Hopefully, that produces a fix once your laptop is running the W10 CU. :up:
If that fails, you can then visit Lenovo's site and NVidia's site and download their GPU card drivers for W10 and see if that corrects the problem. Not sure if this scenario applies to your particular laptop, but even if it doesn't you now know about it, and so does anyone else looking at this thread with a similar GPU error.

Best of luck,:lightbulb:
Speaking of drivers, I did manage to completely remove the ones that Windows initially installed and then used the official ones from Nvidia's website, the very latest version - 382.05, as per my chip.
I had disassembled the laptop once some time ago and as far as I remember I was able to remove the chip partially from the motherboard, but not completely, found an image on Google of how the card looks.
At some point I was thinking that this would already be a hardware problem, coming from the chip itself however, that doesn't seem to be the case as GPU-Z did detect it even when I had no drivers installed for it. So I still believe that this may be due to drivers being somehow incompatible with the OS.

I will first try a fresh install of Windows, slightly older version, wont allow Internet access so it doesn't go ahead and download whatever it wants and install the latest Nvidia driver I've got downloaded. If that doesn't work, I am going with Neemobeer's suggestion.