A typical Windows XP stop
message, like the one above, is divided into four parts, and actually does
display some helpful clues as to what caused its appearance. Reading a BSOD is
not an everyday task, but if we take a moment to dissect it, you'll see it can
help us to resolve the conflict which is stopping Windows from operating
The bugcheck information shows
the number of the stop error (in hexadecimal format), information on why the
system has stopped and the friendly (text-based) name for the stop error, in
this case "DRIVER_IRQI_NOT_LESS_OR_EQUAL."
second section, 'recommended user action,' is pretty generic and contains advice for the
user on possible troubleshooting steps.
This tends to be the same for just about every stop
error, though the main advice 'try restarting your computer' is the best
possible first step to take.
The third section, 'driver
information,' may contain vital info. If an actual driver file is associated
with the blue screen, it will be listed here. This can give you something to
work on in the case of a reoccurring error. More on this later in the
The final part of the stop error screen is the 'debug port
and status information' section.
Windows XP will attempt to dump the contents of
system memory either to a file on the hard drive or to one of the COM ports in
the case of a stop error. This section shows information about the
procedure. Next up we look at what causes BSODs in the first place, and
how to fix them!