How to Fix SYSTEM_THREAD_EXCEPTION_NOT_HANDLED in Windows 10

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System thread exception not handled errors usually happen when you boot your computer and will usually result in a Blue Screen of Death. From there, your computer will usually enter a reboot loop where it does it over and over. While irritating, it’s nothing to worry about as I’m going to show you how to fix it.

System thread exception not handled errors in Windows 10 are predominantly caused by drivers, usually graphics drivers. They are either old and incompatible or corrupted in some way, causing Windows to not recognize parts of them. As it recognizes parts of the file and not others, it causes this error. So while it might seem like something catastrophic has gone wrong with your computer, it isn’t true!

If you’re lucky, the error will include the file causing the issue at the end, such as ‘SYSTEM_THREAD_EXCEPTION_NOT_HANDLED (nvlddmkm.sys)’. The file in brackets is the one causing the problem, in this example, an NVIDIA graphics driver. If your error gives you a filename, this is where you begin your troubleshooting.

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Fix ‘system thread exception not handled’ errors in Windows 10

To be able to break the reboot cycle, we need to interrupt it and boot into Safe Mode.

  1. Insert your Windows 10 installation media and get your computer to boot from it.
  2. Select Repair this computer instead of Install when the loader has finished.
  3. Select Troubleshoot, Advanced options and Startup Settings.
  4. Select F5 for Safe Mode with Networking and let the computer reboot.

We will need to do all of our troubleshooting in Safe Mode so keep these steps handy for future use.

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Once in the Windows Desktop, it’s time to update your drivers. If the error lets you know what driver is causing the problem, update that first. Chances are that it will be graphics but it isn’t always the case. So this process includes updating all drivers on your system.

  1. Right click the Windows Start Button and select Device Manager.
  2. Right click your graphics card and select Update Driver Software.
  3. Select automatic and let Windows find an updated version. Alternatively, go to the manufacturer’s website and download and install manually.
  4. Do not reboot your machine when prompted.
  5. Right click your audio card, network card and any peripherals you have installed and select Update Driver Software for each. Let Windows update them all where possible.
  6. Click the Windows Start button and select Settings and then Update & security.
  7. Click Windows Update and let that process complete.
  8. Remove the Windows installation media and reboot your computer normally.

You should no longer see system thread exception not handled errors when you boot into Windows 10.

Sometimes, Windows cannot find updated drivers. If this happens, check the manufacturer’s website for the hardware in question and manually download each driver. As file corruption can cause system thread exception not handled errors, it is important to update all drivers regardless of whether Windows can find them or not.

Posted by Jamie on December 7, 2016

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