How to troubleshoot "Bad Pool Header" Windows errors ?
A "Bad Pool Header" BSOD (blue screen of death) error indicates an issue with Windows memory allocation. Device driver issues are very common, but it can also include bad sectors or other disk writing issues, software issues, even problems with some routers. The first suspect is memory pool issues. Bellow are some common steps you should take to pinpoint the cause of the problem:
1. Run a memory check - click the start button -> type "memory" -> click on "Windows Memory Diagnostic". Alternatively, memtest86 is a good software that you can use to check memory using a bootable CD)
2. Run a disk check - Click on "Computer" -> right-click on your C: drive -> select "Tools" -> check now" -> tick "Scan for and attempt recovery of bad sectors". Windows may indicate this needs to be performed on next reboot.
3. Check error specifics. Write down the hex address codes that appear on the blue screen and research them online. Alternatively, run a Windows Debugger, see: Windows Debugging Tools, or MS Windows SDK for Windows 7 (you can tick only Debugging Tools). Windows 7 saves crash dump files in C:\Windows\Minidump by default.
4. Perform a clean boot (or reduce number of items that start with Windows) - open Start menu -> type msconfig -> in the general tab, choose "selective startup" -> uncheck "Load Startup Items". In the "Services" tab, choose "Hide all Microsoft Services", then "Disable All" button. After the computer restarts, determine if you're still having the issue.
5. Check for Viruses/Malware. Run Antivirus / Anti-malware scanners - ESET online scanner, MS Essentials, MalwareBytes Antimalware, etc.
Other steps that may also help identify the problem:
- Disconnect external devices connected to the computer (other than the mouse and keyboard) and see if problem persists.
- Run computer in safe mode to see if problem persists
- Have you installed any new devices/software lately that may have caused the issue (by interfering with other software on your PC). This could include seemingly harmless software, like running AVG Antivirus together with MS Security Essentials.