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Using Driver Verifier

About Driver Verifier

Driver Verifier is a Windows utility which performs sanity checks, verifications and provocations on running kernel drivers as a means to find bugs and errors. It performs a wide range of checks by injecting faults and simulating edge conditions in the system. Driver Verifier monitors Windows kernel-mode drivers and graphics drivers to detect illegal function calls or actions that might corrupt the system. Driver Verifier can subject Windows drivers to a variety of stresses and tests to find improper behavior.

All drivers running in the system are expected to be able to handle such faults and conditions. If a driver fails to pass the conditions imposed by Driver Verifier, a bugcheck report with detailed information of the problem will be written out. This bugcheck report will be picked up by WhoCrashed, the next time it is run after the system has crashed and rebooted. Driver Verifier is included with all recent versions of Microsoft Windows. All drivers which have passed the Windows Logo program must have passed Driver Verifier checks.

When to use Driver Verifier

Driver Verifier can be used to find offending drivers in case no responsbible drivers have been detected after a system crash analysis. If there is a system bug which is hard to reproduce, then Driver Verifier comes in handy because it triggers edge conditions. WhoCrashed is equipped to report bugchecks under Driver Verifier conditions.

How to start Driver Verifier

Click Start then Run and type verifier.exe. Unless you have knowledge of the Windows kernel, it is suggested that you run verifier with standard settings and enable it on all suspected third party drivers. The system needs to be restarted after settings have been applied.

Using Driver Verifier

After restarting your system with verifier enabled, it will probably crash earlier than before. The system might crash already during the boot phase. After you have experienced one or several system crashes with Driver Verifier, run WhoCrashed again. WhoCrashed will likely provide you with more useful information about the root cause of the system crash and give you better suggestions on how to solve it. Switch off Driver Verifier as soon as your problem is solved. Due to the many sanity checks and fault injections it dramatically impacts system performance so it's not suggested to normally operate your computer while verifier is running.

If your system crashes all the time

If you cannot get access to your system because it crashes all the time or even during the boot phase with verifier enabled, you may need to boot your system into safe-mode to switch off verifier.

More information on using Driver Verifier

MSDN article on Driver Verifier: Driver Verifier.

WhoCrashed documentation and articles

· Introduction

· Supported Operating Systems

· Professional Edition

· What's new in v7 ?

· Upgrade Policy


· Using WhoCrashed

· General Recommendations and Tips

· Unexpected Resets and Shutdowns

· Enabling Crash Dumps

· If Crash Dumps are not written out

· Thermal Issues

· Memory Corruption

· Symbol Resolution

· Using Driver Verifier

· Remote System Configuration

· Crash Dump Test

· Tools

· Advanced Options

· Command-line Options

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