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Old November 30, 2010, 05:39 AM
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Default BSOD / ATIKMDAG.SYS error on boot / Win7 64bit with dual 4870s attempting crossfire

I've been having trouble with running my crossfire 4870s under Windows 7 Pro 64 bit. As I work through this problem I'm posting my updates. Hopefully someone else going through the same problem will spend less time than I did on this issue.

This is my setup:

Windows 7 Pro 64 bit
Intel SSD 40gb
Kingston SSD 64gb
4x1gb RAM
4870 512mb HIS
4870 1gb Diamond

Upon installation of the catalyst drivers (tried versions 9.11, 10.4, 10.9 10.10, 10.11) after reboot the Windows 7 logo appears, then I hear the starting Windows sound. However, instead of seeing the login screen, I get a BSOD with STOP 116 and atikmdag.sys as the culprit. The only way to get into Windows is by going into safe mode and disabling one of the cards. Then, I can reboot and go into regular mode and game just fine - even access the CCC. I have read mounds of literature on the net about this error but it seems strange to me that people would still be experiencing this since 2009 without a fix from ATI - hence, me posting here in vain hope that someone smarted than I has defeated this problem and knows how to fix it.

I would like to add that I am not crashing out of games with any errors - I do not believe this to be related to the common issue plaguing Vista users where atikmdag.sys dies because Windows thinks the graphics card has stopped responding. This is also known as the TDR timeout. If you have more questions or want to see my dump file just post. Thanks for your help in advance.

Procedure to avoid BSOD on boot

1. I uninstalled all ATI software
2. cleaned up drivers
3. flashed the bios to latest
4. took out both cards
5. seated the first card
6. started windows and installed latest drivers
7. rebooted, then rebooted again
8. seated 2nd card
9. rebooted, then rebooted again
10. I now have both cards enabled in windows 7 regular mode - however, as soon as I click "enable crossfire" I get BSOD

Seriously ATI - This is BS. How long has Windows 7 been around for? I had Crossfire running perfectly with these two cards under Vista 64 Business just weeks ago. You can see my motherboard in my signature, which is most definitely crossfire compatible.


Conversation with ATI support

I spoke with ATI today as they are closed on the weekend. 1st tier was an idiot. Responses circled around scripted suggestions:

1. Try using a new bridge
2. Try upgrading your power supply

After explaining once again that these issues did not exist under Vista with the same hardware he escalated me to tier 2 support: Guy was in Toronto, pretty helpful and identified the issue pretty quickly. Was very surprised to hear that the 10.04 drivers did not work for me. Pointed me to these links - which I had already read. I explained that

1. I have a crossfire-enabled motherboard (http://sites.amd.com/us/game/product...herboards.aspx)
2. The hardware is functional and was working previously (not dead, proof of concept, etc...)

...but was suggested to try these anyhow.

TDR Timeout

Article detailing the issue - has existed for 3 years across multiple manufacturers of display adapters.
http://support.amd.com/us/kbarticles...rmessages.aspx

Microsoft's explanation
http://www.microsoft.com/whdc/device...m_timeout.mspx

No go. Altering my registry to 8 seconds instead of default 2, or disabling the timeout completely yielded no errors or progress.

New driver install process suggested by another forum member:

uninstall drivers and catalyst install manger.
download and install driver sweeper.
download latest drivers from game.amd.com
download latest crossfire profiles from game.amd.com
reboot into safe mode.
run driver sweeper selecting ati as sweeper filter and hit clean.
reboot into normal windows.
install new drivers.
install new crossfire profiles.
reboot into normal windows.
enable crossfire.


I Will try this procedure tonight. I don't think the driver sweeper was letting me analyze under safe mode, but I'll double-check. Interestingly, your post doesn't mention adding the 2nd card at any point, so I'll assume that all of this is to be done while BOTH cards are in place.

Last edited by attonbitusira; November 30, 2010 at 05:45 AM.
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Old November 30, 2010, 10:23 AM
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From your BST thread I only see three sticks of ram. Three sticks confuses the heck out of the dual channel memory board.

As for installing Cat
Before rebooting
Fix rams
Install both cards w/CF bridge
Clear CMOS(as per the manual)

Start in Safe Mode with networking
run Drive Sweeper( you might have do it a few times)
download CCleaner(www.ccleaner.com)
on the lefthand side choose Registry, then at bottom Scan for issues, then Fix selected(also might have to do it multiple times)

Then restart and intsall Cat.
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Old November 30, 2010, 10:25 AM
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When I took the picture I was in the middle of troubleshooting memory to see if a bad module was causing the issue - hence only 3GB ;)

Thanks for the process however. I will try that order of things tonight.
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Old November 30, 2010, 11:08 AM
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I hate to say this, but try reversing your crossfire bridge. We had someone have an issue a couple weeks ago where the bridge was on backwards.
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Old November 30, 2010, 11:13 AM
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I'll gladly take the embarassment if that will solve the problem. Will try tonight and post back. What was the other user's symptoms?
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Old November 30, 2010, 11:42 AM
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Yes Sugar....sometimes its the simplest things....check XF Bridge is installed correctly.
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Old December 1, 2010, 07:38 AM
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Managed to get crossfire working - but very unstable.

I followed suggested steps and coupled with 3 extra reboots in there and some follow up steps (cards started up in disabled state - had to enable in Device Manager, then reboot again twice)

Also, cannot get any games to run in full screen. Windowed mode works fine - full screen CS:Source, Batman, and New Vegas all crash to BSOD - same message as before. No artifacts or color disruption at any point.

The crossfire bridge does not need to be installed in one way or ther other - documentation online suggests it does not matter. Personal experience shows it does not matter.
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Old December 1, 2010, 10:33 AM
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Are they all Steam downloads?

Best bet is to delete local content
find where the Saved Games files are and delete the whole folder
run CCleaner-registry cleaner
then reinstall games.
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Old December 1, 2010, 10:39 AM
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Batman and CS are.
New Vegas is regular install.

I feel like part of the ATI QA team at this point. Where's my cheque?
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Old December 2, 2010, 03:59 PM
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I managed to get crossfire "enabled".

By that I mean I can actually have the box checked, but I cannot run any full screen 3d applications. Doing so begins to make use of the crossfire and crashes the system with the same BSOD as before. I am able to run Fallout: New Vegas in a windowed mode (1920x1080) without any problems with either card.

I have made the decision to sell these cards as crossfire is no longer for me and I do not want to spend any more time on this problem. If you are interested in a 4870 (512 or 1gb) please PM me. I will consider all reasonable offers.

ATI, you lost a customer.
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4870 , bsod , catalyst , crossfire , windows7

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