2.6 Windows 10 BlueScreen - fixed

  • 3
  • Problem
  • Updated 7 months ago
  • (Edited)
Installing 2.6 has blue screened my laptop and prevents it from booting! BEWARE!
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David Vernier

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  • Really unhappy

Posted 7 months ago

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Michael Walker, Employee

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Hi David

I am going to open a support case for you on this.  

Are you still not able to reboot your laptop?  Can you provide messages or a picture of what messages you are getting while trying to reboot?

Mike
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Ken Wells, Employee

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There have been a few cases where this has happened ONE time after the initial install and reboot. 

Press and hold the laptop power button to force a close of the computer.
The blue screen may return, offering you the choice of [RECOVERY OPTIONS]   and   [REBOOT].

Select the [REBOOT] option.  That has cleared it up in the few cases we have seen, and after a successful reboot has not returned.

A very small number have had to repeat the reboot process to get the reboot to stick.




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Dan Quigley N7HQ, 4O7HQ, Service/Support Manager

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Hi David, in the release notes we addressed the stop errors encountered during our alpha testing (see below).  This is different behavior, so in addition to the information Mike is asking for, can you please provide the Version and Build of Windows you are using and the version of SSDR you upgraded from. 
  • During alpha testing, after an initial installation of the updated DAX drivers, a handful of users reported a Windows "stop error" (colloquially known as the Blue Screen of Death or BSoD).  The error occurred once and in every reported case, after a subsequent PC reboot, the error did not occur again or impact proper DAX operations.  We are working to identify the cause and resolve the behavior.
Best,
Dan, N7HQ
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Andy M5ZAP

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Dan
I have exactly the same blue screen issue (portcls.sys) with the previous version of V3.0.27 (not the new release). Same symptoms and uninstalling SmartSDR resolved the issue.
I sometimes have to boot 10 times to successfully get my PC to boot.
I think portcls.sys is part of the virtual audio device (audio DAX)?

See my post
https://community.flexradio.com/flexr...

Hopefully now other people are having the issue it will be resolved.

Unfortunately I am away from my station so can’t supply any other info apart from what’s in my original post
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Dan Quigley N7HQ, 4O7HQ, Service/Support Manager

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Hi Andy, 

portcls.sys is an audio port-class driver that Microsoft includes as part of the operating system.  When DAX installs it becomes a part of the audio system on a PC.  Other drivers/software performs similar things - for example, Virtual Audio Cable (VAC), or just about anything that involves audio. 

Best,
Dan 
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Andy M5ZAP

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How come reverting back to an older version of smartSDR Cured the issue.
Has the version of portcls.sys that you supply with the installation changed?
If you read my post when I installed 3.0.27 on a new clean PC I had the issue. Reverting back to 2.5.1 and issue was resolved. Reinstalling 3.0.27 and the issue returned.

I have just had to live with having multiple attempts to boot my PC each day.
(Edited)
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Burt Fisher

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Why didn't you rectify it BEFORE you released it?
(Edited)
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David Vernier

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This is getting complicated...

Initially, it blue screened 3 consecutive times after the install. Then it booted, but blue SCREENED after 15 to 20 seconds. Now it's back to blue screening continuously..
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David Vernier

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If I can get it to boot, I'm uninstalling it!
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David Vernier

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I always uninstall the previous version (2.5.1) before installing new software.
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David Vernier

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I have successfully uninstalled it and the blue screens have stopped...
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Ken Wells, Employee

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A couple of quick questions:

If you uninstalled the previous version before you installed the new version did you tell it to uninstall the DAX Drivers?  (NOT Recommended) 

If you did, that may have contributed to the situation. 

Did you reboot your computer after any software was uninstalled, and before attempting to install the new version?

These issues are also covered in the Release Notes.

There is also an excellent chance that after you finally got the computer to reboot that it would have maintained proper operation and the blue screen would not have returned.  
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Andy M5ZAP

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Ken
If you see my reply to Dan Quigley’s post above. This is not a new issue and happens to me with 3.0.17
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David Vernier

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Of course the computer was rebooted after the uninstall. And if the software upgrade fails on a "clean" computer, you have serious issues you need to deal with!

If you read my entire post you would see that the computer did eventually boot and would blue screen after 15 to 20 seconds, then started blue screening continuously again. 

So, no, the computer did not "maintain proper operation" after a successful boot...
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Robert Lonn

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I would NOT uninstall the old software, just install the new software. I dont believe Flex recommends to uninstall old versions before loading new versions... In a way it is an UPDATE not a all new version.. 
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Andy M5ZAP

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If it were only an update, how would a new user be able to install it.
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David Vernier

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You're incorrect.  Each release is a stand-alone version, which is what allows you to return to a previous versions simply by selecting them when you start SDR....
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Pat N6PAT

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Dave, Do you use windows restore points? if not you may want to consider using it for future changes. Here's a link on how to enable it for auto restore points and also how to manually create restore points

https://www.windowscentral.com/how-use-system-restore-windows-10


Good luck
(Edited)
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John - AI4FR

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The "stand alone" comment above may not be entirely accurate according to Ken at Flex. It appears that an updated version of "DAX" can be used for an older version of SSDR.

Please see: https://community.flexradio.com/flexradio/topics/is-the-auto-save-feature-still-in-ver-3-1-7-and-2-6...

Which states:
The new releases for V.2 & V.3 still have the Auto-save feature.

If you wish to maintain the use of the previous version that does NOT have this function, your can still benefit from the upgrade and the fixes for DAX by following this procedure:

1) Download and install the new version to your COMPUTER and reboot the computer.  This will install the new DAX Drivers to your computer.

2) Do NOT RUN it, and do not install (Upgrade) it to your radio.

3) Hide the shortcut to the new version of SmartSDR.

4) Open and run your favorite version of SmartSDR.

5) Enjoy the new Dax Drivers with your previous version of SmartSDR.




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Dan Quigley N7HQ, 4O7HQ, Service/Support Manager

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David, the software that runs above the driver level on a PC is installed as "stand-alone" or side by side.  DAX and other common components are shared across versions.  DAX operates at a much lower level in the Windows architecture.  While you can uninstall DAX when you switch versions we don't recommend doing so.  

We're not sure what is happening in your case and we'd like to help out.  Mike Walker created a ticket for you in our helpdesk system, can you please respond there and we'll get on it. 

73,
Dan
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David Vernier

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Since DAX/VSP etc, are separate from SDR, I consider them standalone unto themselves. SDR is a stand-alone application, which allows you to select different versions at will.

I personally do not care to keep older versions of the software on my computer and will continue to uninstall previous versions when new ones are released.... To each his own...
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Tim - W4TME, Customer Experience Manager

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David,  You have an open HelpDesk ticket on this issue.  I believe I can resolve this issue for you.  If you want to move forward with v3.1.7, just update the HelpDesk ticket with your desire to get this resolved and I'll see what I can do.  

For anyone else having repetitive Blue Screen crashes, please open a HelPDesk ticket.
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Andy M5ZAP

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Tim.
I was having this issue on 3.0.27 I am unable to access my station for 6 weeks. Is it worth opening a ticket to provide you information to help resolve as I did quite s lot of tests to try and understand the problem. Or do you fully understand and the next release will contain a fix which will probably beat me home.
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Michael Walker, Employee

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Andy

If you need help with this, yes, always open a ticket to ensure it gets tracked correctly.

Mike
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David Vernier

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Tim,

Thanks, but that won't be necessary...

I attempted a second install on the laptop and had another interesting experience....

I downloaded a fresh 2.6 install file and while the install went without incident, starting  SDR for the first time resulted in some odd behavior.  The SDR window popped up and seemed to be normal, but then completely disappeared from the screen after 10 seconds. I noticed the DAX window was hung (had a "not responding" error in it). So I manually closed DAX and CAT windows and tried to restart SDR.  Same issue.  Then I rebooted the laptop and, at the moment anyway, SDR, DAX and CAT seem to be working fine.

This has been the oddest install of SDR I've ever experienced by a long shot!

Something to consider:  Since the second install went without a single blue screen incident, it might indicate the blue screen issue is related to the install process itself and not necessarily the code that's being installed...
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Mark NS9N

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I had the exact same issue with the 2.6 update. The install seemed to work fine but when I booted the computer later, I got the Recovery Screen. I followed the recovery process and that even failed a number of times. But on the 4th reboot the recovery error message did not appear and the computer booted fine. Then I uninstalled 2.6.0 (see my other post "Ver 2.6.0 Update DAX Driver Error). Again I received the recovery error after manually uninstalling and reinstalling the DAX Drivers. Again it took a number of reboots before Windows seems to have recovered. But now per my other post, I get the DAX driver error every time I open SDR. I have opened a help ticket but this sure seems to be something wrong with the DAX update file??? Windows 10 and a 6600.
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Burt Fisher

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I am staying miles away from that update. Laptop? Desktop?
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FISHULA X

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 I downloaded and now using Smart SDR 2.6 with my Flex 6300 with no issues.
 I just updated to 2.6 from the installer. I did not delete 2.51.
 With this new 2.6 version it fixed my Dax error I used to have with 2.51.   The new version 2.6 is running smooth as silk.
                              Thank you Flex.
(Edited)
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Jon - KF2E

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Mine blue screened three times consecutively. On the fourth reboot it stayed running and has been stable since.

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Pat N6PAT

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Upgraded from 2.5.1 to 2.6.0 Windows 1803. Rebooted 6700 and PC. No blue screen but had an issue with DAX channel 5 for Slice E.  On DAX panel 5 would not go blue but was specified on E with band activity showing on pan. DAX 1 thru 4 worked but not 5.

Restarted DAX several times but that did not fix it. Same with SSDR. Had to power down the 6700 again and reboot PC again before 5 would start working properly

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Craig Williams

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Bit and installed v2.6 today. Followed instructions. One blue screen of death on first boot. Next boot no BSOD for 30 min. so far. DAX and CAT seem to be working fine with HRD and FRLogger.
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Henning - DL6DH

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Hi,

the install on my Laptop went fine, no blue screens at all. I uninstalled the previous version before.

Do you know the tool WhoCrashed? If you get your system up again and you enabled system dumps before, you will get more detailed information of the last blue screen. I would give it a try.

73 Henning
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K5VPQ

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@David Vernier - Do you happen to have other audio software installed.  Such as Virtual Audio Cable?

@Flex Support folks:

I have seen the BSOD issue as well with portcls.sys.  An analysis of the memory dump gives us:

Debugging Details:
------------------


BUGCHECK_CODE:  50

BUGCHECK_P1: ffffa38e89f12008

BUGCHECK_P2: 0

BUGCHECK_P3: fffff800805b3cb1

BUGCHECK_P4: 2

IMAGE_NAME:  portcls.sys

MODULE_NAME: portcls

PROCESS_NAME:  audiodg.exe

SYMBOL_NAME:  portcls!GetMaxMapRegisters+5

FAILURE_BUCKET_ID:  AV_R_INVALID_portcls!GetMaxMapRegisters

FAILURE_ID_HASH:  {349f0185-3933-3949-d141-0476525399d9}

Followup:     MachineOwner
---------
I have a feeling that it's a combination problem.  SmartDAX alone doesn't cause it.  SmartDAX along with other audio software that creates devices (such as VAC) causes Windows to run into some sort of limit.  Let's see where this goes.

Chris
K5VPQ
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Mark NS9N

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Here is what I have seen. The DAX drivers in the registry have been corrupted by the Windows updates. Renaming them in the past have fixed the DAX issue but have left a lot of bad lines in the registry. The more times you have renamed the drives the more bad lines exits. If you are very savvy with a number of registry cleaning tools you can clean out the mess then the latest update runs without any issues. If you have not cleaned the registry up, and believe me this should not be done by anyone that is not 100% knowing what they are doing., then the latest update makes the necessary changes to clean up the mess. But this causes Windows to go into recovery mode at each reboot until all the critical bad lines are cleaned up.

Yes scary when it is happening but what I can also see is now my computer now has a much cleaner registry.

At this point, time will tell if the latest changes to the DAX drivers are immune to the future Microsoft updates.

After all this is said and done, if you are still getting the DAX error make sure you don’t have a little red x at the bottom right of the computer screen over the speaker icon. If you do plug in another audio device to your computer like a headset and make sure the red x goes away. Then load SDR and the DAX driver error should go away.

Getting much closer to having a stable system. But well worth all the effort to keep getting new SW features without changing my HW.
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Burt Fisher

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Why didn't someone offer that great explanation earlier?
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Mark NS9N

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I spend a lot of time troubleshooting computer SW issues. And I would have posted it earlier but work gets in the way.
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Pat - WH6HI

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Is the Blue screen issue just being seen on Windows 10 OS?.
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Michael Walker, Employee

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Hi Pat

Yes, there are some users who have seen a driver issue causing a Blue Screen.  If you are having this issue still, please open a support case.  

This problem does not affect all users, just a small percentage.   We did mention it in the release notes (that no one reads, but you really should).

Mike
(Edited)
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Craig Williams

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I am an old IT Consultant from back when there was no IT. I always read and follow the instructions. Still got a BSOD after the install and another one this AM on boot up. Everything recovered fine. 
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Mark NS9N

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I am just curious are you getting the real blue screen of death or does the computer go to the blue recovery screen?
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Mark NS9N

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All my computers are Windows 10 so someone else will need to comment.