ramblings of an aimless mind

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The “Memory cannot be read” error

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Often I have come across computing problems for which I have not found direct solutions on the net, but havs still solved somehow or the other. The bad part is that I have not published the solution anywhere on the net/forums, which means that the solution is pretty much lost to anyone else who faces the problem. Since I have recently become more of a “give and take” person, I thought I should post any new important snippets of information I find on my blog for others to find and use. Since I got this idea after I solved the problem, I do not remember the EXACT error message, but I think its enough to understand what is going on. Also, the intention was to have a separate page for the computing info, but that seems to put up some hurdles and may be a while.

So here goes my first one…

Problem: during bootup, we get an error with something to the effect “Rundll32.exe – Instruction at 0xaaaaa tried to reference memory 0xgggg which cannot be read.” The memory location changes everytime, so thats not something that can be reported. After this, none of the executables used to run, which means that the PC is pretty much useless, except for moving the mouse cursor around and using explorer. Funnily, when I tried to run Task Manager, two instances of Task Manager started up, with one hogging around 98% of the cpu. In this busy state, executables ran (or crawled) along, though its definitely not a long term solution.

Solution: This problem was solved when we learnt of a tool called the System File Checker(SFC) which basically checks integrity of all windows system executables and DLLs and replaces any which it thinks are problematic. This tool is included with win XP so there is no need to go around downloading anything. A good tutorial is available at here. Running this tool seemed to get rid of my problems.

I dont know what exactly the issue was with my pc, but SFC was something new I learnt today. Hope someone else benefits too!!!


Written by clueso

April 13, 2008 at 11:06 pm

Posted in Uncategorized

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