Friday, February 5, 2010

Blue Screen of Death BSOD on Dell Latitude D630 and others Solved AVG, Norton, MCAfee, Dxec01.sys

Note that this solution is ONLY going to help you if the Dxec01.sys is the faulting module. You will see this listed under Technical Information on the blue screen error.
All other errors are your own lookout. You have been warned. I describe the correction in the 4th paragraph, feel free to skip to there if you don't wish to read my ramblings.. Don't worry, It wont hurt my feelings.

For the past few months our user base has been experiencing sporadic BSOD's on many of our Dell Latitudes -- Mostly on the D630's. Basically the user is working away when suddenly the terrifying blue screen pops up with the message "A problem has been detected and Windows has been shut down to prevent damage to your computer". Unfortunately it does not prevent the loss of the documents the poor user was working on.

Unfortunately things on the server admin side of the job has been keeping me busy, so I did not really have time to focus on figuring out what the problem was. Fortunately, I got lucky. One of my users came down with this problem yesterday and I had a good hour to beat on it. I rebooted a few times, browsed the 'net, opened some random Office files, sent and received emails and finally just yelled at the thing. Nothing. Solid as a brick. Finally I called up the user and asked if anything new had been installed in the last month that she would miss. Nope. OK, time for the hack-technician's secret weapon: System Restore. Fail. Hmmph. OK, log in as Admin. Fail. Hmmm how 'bout from safe mode? Fail. Well. OK, Often restores will be blocked by a virus or rootkit. AV is always on and I had been scanned so, rootkit scan sounded like a great idea. Instant BSOD. Hmmmmmmmm. Fluke? Reboot! Try again. BSOD. Well, maybe AVG is the culprit. But... I figured I better actually READ the error and see what the faulting module was. It was Dxec01.sys. Now, A search with AVG and Dxec01.sys brought up alot. Many users uninstalled AVG and the fault went away, but a little more digging found the same fault with Norton AV and MCAffee. A lot of reports stated that installing CLAM AV or Comodo. Well... I pondered. What's the difference between the first 3 products and the last 2? Pretty easy answer for the educated (yet still stupid) network security admin.. AVG, Norton, And MCAffee all have integrated root kit scanners. CLAM and Comodo do not. So... back to the faulting module -- what the heck does Dxec01.sys belong to? A quick Google search found that Dxec01.sys belongs to the Knowles Acoustics Intellisonic Speech Enhancement Driver. A quick check in the Device Manager showed no such beast... Hmmm.. How's about Add/Remove Programs? Oh yeah baybeee! Jackpot. Uninstall... run Rootkit scan..... no BSOD. Since then I have run into 3 more. Same issue, same resolution.

KILL BILL: How to remove the Speech Enhancement Driver.
First confirm that you indeed are running the darn thing.
1) Click Start and Select the Control Panel
2) Ensure that you are in "Classic View". If the Control Panel has the title "Pick a Category" you will need to select "Switch to Classic View" from the left hand side of the window.
3) If you see the Intellisonic icon below within the Control Panel, You have the Speech Enhancement Driver.

The good news is that if you followed the first 3 steps you are in the right place to remove it.
1) While in the Control Panel select Add or Remove Programs and wait for the list to populate.
2) Click on the entry entitled "IntelliSonic Speech Enhancement".
3) Click the Remove button.

After a reboot you shall Blue Screen no more. I have noticed that after uninstallation the sound is often set to "mute". Click on the volume control icon in your system tray and uncheck the "Mute All" checkbox to restore sound.

Some of our laptops had this problem, others did not. Why? It goes back to following good security procedures. The laptops that blue-screened had NOT been formatted and the OS re-installed with the minimum driver set required to make the laptop work. I have said it before, and I will surely say it again. Format and rebuild that laptop when you buy it - for home or ESPECIALLY business. Getting the circusware off the system will save you time and money in the long run.


Anonymous said...

I had this problem, used your solution, works like a charm, tnx :)

Anonymous said...

Perfect, Saved me a lot of time that i would've spent beating my head against my desk!

Anonymous said...

Thank you so much for your post. Helped me to solve dxec01.sys BSOD within 15 minutes of 1st occurrence.

Anonymous said...

Delicious Man; Thank you; Think how helpful tyour post has been; Great jobb:-)