Windows 8 and 8.1 Forums

Random Explorer.exe APPCRASH??

  1. #11

    San Jose - California
    Posts : 2,847
    8.1x64PWMC Ubuntu14.04x64 MintMate17x64

    Hi John,
    Explorer.exe is a core file in Windows and also a tough one to debug as you said, The reason is lot of times when explorer crashes, it is not because explorer itself but something else causes it to crash. For example:
    1. If you install a 3rd party software and it put an incompatible shell extension for the context menu. It will cause explorer to freeze or crash. I experienced this problem with Acronis True Image 2013.
    2. If you open a folder which contains corrupted Video file in thumbnail view and explorer tries to build a thumbnail for it, it will freeze.
    3. If you have an add-on to Internet Explorer and explorer cannot resolve it. It will freeze or crash.
    4. etc...... ????

    We sometimes don't realize important role of explorer in Windows but it is. Explorer is constantly sitting the background monitoring all the activities we are doing with Windows, Constantly update Registry Values, in some case it also creates files etc....

    You can download: Process Monitor and run as Administrator, Click on Filter and set it to: "Process Name is Explorer" then try to run something: Firefox, IE10, switch screen etc.... then you'll see how explorer works in the background.

    You also want to download: Autoruns for Windows and run as Administrator, click on the explorer Tab and temporarily disable all the non microsoft shell extensions and also on Internet Explorer Tab and temporarily disable the non Microsoft Add-ons.

    EDIT: BTW, did you have the latest Video Driver Installed for your Geforce GTX 660Ti ???
    Last edited by topgundcp; 18 Jan 2013 at 22:43.

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  2. #12

    Posts : 651
    Windows 8.1 x64

    Quote Originally Posted by JohnnyGui View Post
    So I guess there's no fix for this other than contacting MSDN/Technet support...
    Well, if you can get a dump of the crash occurring, I can try to figure out what's at fault here. However, someone who is not Microsoft blaming Microsoft for a bug isn't necessarily wrong, but it would be wise to dig deeper. If it was Microsoft themselves saying so, there'd usually be an explanation or article documenting what the bug is and how to avoid it, so I think it'd be worthwhile to gather and analyze some dump data first.
      My System SpecsSystem Spec

  3. #13

    Posts : 191
    Windows 8.1 (Update 1) Pro 64 bit

    Quote Originally Posted by cluberti View Post
    Quote Originally Posted by JohnnyGui View Post
    So I guess there's no fix for this other than contacting MSDN/Technet support...
    Well, if you can get a dump of the crash occurring, I can try to figure out what's at fault here. However, someone who is not Microsoft blaming Microsoft for a bug isn't necessarily wrong, but it would be wise to dig deeper. If it was Microsoft themselves saying so, there'd usually be an explanation or article documenting what the bug is and how to avoid it, so I think it'd be worthwhile to gather and analyze some dump data first.
    Hey, sorry for the late reply. Seems I didn't get any notifications when someone replied in my thread. Anyway, in the mean time I have reformatted my PC and the problem still occurs although much less often. Here's the crashdump I found in the users folder. Thanks for your help!
    Random Explorer.exe APPCRASH?? Attached Files
      My System SpecsSystem Spec

  4. #14

    Posts : 651
    Windows 8.1 x64

    Of note, this isn't the issue that was pointed to in either of the links previously provided - this is very different, and it's specifically a directx call (inline, inside a TwinUI call to update mouse information):
    0:004> k
      *** Stack trace for last set context - .thread/.cxr resets it
    Child-SP          RetAddr           Call Site
    (Inline Function) --------`-------- twinui!CSafeElementPtrBase<DirectUI::Element>::operator class DirectUI::Element *
    (Inline Function) --------`-------- twinui!LayeredSubtreeState::_Layer+0x188
    00000000`03a2e620 000007fa`b17cf650 twinui!LayeredSubtreeState::Update+0xf6
    00000000`03a2e670 000007fa`b1697f0b twinui!CTileElement::_UpdateMouseVisuals+0x2c
    (Inline Function) --------`-------- twinui!CTileElement::OnPropertyChanged+0xffffffff`ffecc5e8
    00000000`03a2e6a0 000007fa`bafd3c5e twinui!CGridTileElement::OnPropertyChanged+0x151
    00000000`03a2e710 000007fa`bafd4978 dui70!DirectUI::Element::_PostSourceChange+0x347
    00000000`03a2e7b0 000007fa`ba5b1c2d dui70!DirectUI::Element::_DisplayNodeCallback+0x168
    00000000`03a2ebb0 000007fa`ba5b588f duser!GPCB::xwInvokeDirect+0x6d
    00000000`03a2ec50 000007fa`ba5c90a7 duser!GPCB::xwInvokeFull+0x19b
    00000000`03a2ed30 000007fa`ba5c9217 duser!BaseMsgQ::xwProcessNL+0x95
    00000000`03a2edb0 000007fa`ba5eb4c2 duser!DeferredMsgQueueLock::~DeferredMsgQueueLock+0xaf
    00000000`03a2ede0 000007fa`ba5b1a3d duser!HWndContainer::xdHandleMessage+0x1494
    00000000`03a2f4c0 000007fa`be4f171e duser!ExtraInfoWndProc+0x79
    00000000`03a2f510 000007fa`be4f432b user32!UserCallWinProcCheckWow+0x13a
    00000000`03a2f5d0 000007fa`ba67125d user32!CallWindowProcW+0x93
    00000000`03a2f630 000007fa`ba6711f6 comctl32!CallOriginalWndProc+0x1d
    00000000`03a2f670 000007fa`ba6713d7 comctl32!CallNextSubclassProc+0x82
    00000000`03a2f6d0 000007fa`b1653a2f comctl32!DefSubclassProc+0x77
    (Inline Function) --------`-------- twinui!DefSubclassProc+0x20
    (Inline Function) --------`-------- twinui!CHostElement::_SubclassWndProc+0x3b
    00000000`03a2f720 000007fa`ba6711f6 twinui!CHostElement::s_SubclassWndProc+0x43
    00000000`03a2f750 000007fa`ba6710f2 comctl32!CallNextSubclassProc+0x82
    00000000`03a2f7b0 000007fa`be4f171e comctl32!MasterSubclassProc+0xa2
    00000000`03a2f850 000007fa`be4f14d7 user32!UserCallWinProcCheckWow+0x13a
    00000000`03a2f910 000007fa`b1631264 user32!DispatchMessageWorker+0x1a7
    00000000`03a2f990 000007fa`b16335c0 windows_immersiveshell_serviceprovider!CImmersiveShellController::_ImmersiveShellComponentsThreadProcInternal+0x2a6
    00000000`03a2fa30 000007fa`bddd167e windows_immersiveshell_serviceprovider!CImmersiveShellController::s_ImmersiveShellComponentsThreadProc+0x75
    00000000`03a2fa60 000007fa`c00a3501 kernel32!BaseThreadInitThunk+0x1a
    00000000`03a2fa90 00000000`00000000 ntdll!RtlUserThreadStart+0x1d
    0:004> r
    Last set context:
    rax=000000000c0e4e30 rbx=0000000008f73040 rcx=0000000000000000
    rdx=0000000000000001 rsi=000000000af25460 rdi=000000000af25280
    rip=000007fab17cf6de rsp=0000000003a2e620 rbp=0000000000000000
     r8=0000000000000000  r9=0000000010000000 r10=00000000fffffffc
    r11=0000000000000000 r12=0000000000000000 r13=0000000008f72cc0
    r14=0000000000000000 r15=0000000000000001
    iopl=0         nv up ei pl nz na pe nc
    cs=0033  ss=002b  ds=002b  es=002b  fs=0053  gs=002b             efl=00010202
    twinui!CSafeElementPtrBase<DirectUI::Element>::operator class DirectUI::Element * [inlined in twinui!LayeredSubtreeState::Update+0xf6]:
    000007fa`b17cf6de 488b4908        mov     rcx,qword ptr [rcx+8] ds:00000000`00000008=????????????????
    I took apart the assembly and it looks like the box did something like this to set rcx (which is NULL, causing the crash):
    0:004> u 000007fa`b17cf6d1
    twinui!LayeredSubtreeState::_Layer+0x17b [inlined in twinui!LayeredSubtreeState::Update+0xe9]:
    000007fa`b17cf6d1 0f8688feffff    jbe     twinui!LayeredSubtreeState::Update+0x2f (000007fa`b17cf55f)
    000007fa`b17cf6d7 488b06          mov     rax,qword ptr [rsi]
    000007fa`b17cf6da 4a8b0cf0        mov     rcx,qword ptr [rax+r14*8]   // <- rcx gets set here to something
    000007fa`b17cf6de 488b4908        mov     rcx,qword ptr [rcx+8]
    000007fa`b17cf6e2 4885c9          test    rcx,rcx
    000007fa`b17cf6e5 740f            je      twinui!LayeredSubtreeState::Update+0x10e (000007fa`b17cf6f6)
    000007fa`b17cf6e7 ff1593863600    call    qword ptr [twinui!_imp_?GetDisplayNodeElementDirectUIQEAAPEAUHGADGET__XZ (000007fa`b1b37d80)]
    000007fa`b17cf6ed 488bc8          mov     rcx,rax
    From the crash, it could be a problem in the twinui code, but twinui is talking to DirectX for coordinates and GPU information, so making sure you've got the latest WHQL certified driver for your box under Windows 8 is always critical. I see that you have both Intel and NVidia driver sets loaded, so I'm curious if this is a switchable graphics machine? If so, best to test with the Intel graphics only if possible.... this sort of setup has had issues since Windows 7 with drivers causing these sorts of issues, so I'd be curious as to whether or not it reproduces with just one enabled in the BIOS, and not both.
      My System SpecsSystem Spec

  5. #15

    Posts : 191
    Windows 8.1 (Update 1) Pro 64 bit

    Thanks a lot for looking into this cluberti.

    I do have the latest drivers installed (314.07 WHQL) for my GTX 660Ti GPU. The crash did occur after updating these drivers from 306.97 to 314.07 after the reformat. However, before the reformat these crashes also occurred under 306.97 so I don't think it's a specific driver issue. Could it be a DirectX issue?

    I find it weird that both Intel and the nVidia driver sets are loaded. I checked in my UEFI settings and I can see I have only selected the PCI-Express (aka the GTX 660Ti) as the Primary Graphics Adapter, so I don't understand how the PC still loads both of them. Is there another option in the UEFI settings I should change to prevent it from loadig both drivers? Because I can't find any.

    Also, it's quite hard to check which of these drivers (Intel or the GTX 660Ti) are the cause of this since the crash is quite rare and very random. Maybe I have to select each of the GPUs individually and stay with it for a while until a crash eventually occurs.
      My System SpecsSystem Spec

  6. #16

    Posts : 651
    Windows 8.1 x64

    Yeah, I'd like to see this run (I know it might be a pain, but bear with me) without the Nvidia adapter installed/running - if you can uninstall and / or disable the NVidia card, uninstall their drivers, and run only the onboard Intel card for a bit, that would be most useful. NVidia's drivers are better than ATI's usually, but that doesn't mean they're "good" either.
      My System SpecsSystem Spec

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Random Explorer.exe APPCRASH??
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