The Elusive Search for Stability: A Gamer’s Tale of Random PC Restarts


I’m experiencing intermittent restarts with my gaming PC, which is equipped with a Corsair 650W power supply, an i7-8700k processor, 16GB of Corsair RAM at 2133MHz configured in a 4x4GB setup, an RTX 2080 SUPER graphics card, and an ASUS Prime Z390-P motherboard. The issue began about a week and a half ago, initially suspected to be Windows-related, but was temporarily resolved by swapping out the RAM. The problem resurfaced mid-week, coinciding with unusually high GPU temperatures, which I addressed by reapplying thermal paste. Despite this fix, the random crashes persisted.

After using DDU for a clean driver install and updating the BIOS, the issue seemed to be resolved until another restart occurred. The Event Viewer indicated an ‘nvlddmkm.sys’ error, for which I attempted a recommended fix, yet the restarts continue. Memtest results were error-free, and stress tests on both GPU and CPU did not trigger any restarts. Another Event Viewer error, ‘0x8000400000000002’, led me to disable fast startup and reinstall drivers, but to no avail.

I’m seeking any advice or potential solutions to this problem. Testing with another PSU has not been possible as I don’t have access to a spare unit. Is there a way to resolve this without replacing the power supply?”


Intermittent restarts can be one of the most frustrating issues to diagnose and resolve in a gaming PC setup. The complexity arises from the multitude of potential culprits, ranging from hardware failures to software conflicts. In the case of your system, which boasts a robust configuration with a Corsair 650W power supply, an i7-8700k processor, 16GB of Corsair RAM, an RTX 2080 SUPER graphics card, and an ASUS Prime Z390-P motherboard, the issue is particularly perplexing given the steps you’ve already taken to identify and fix the problem.

The initial suspicion of a Windows-related issue leading to a RAM replacement was a logical first step. However, the recurrence of the problem, accompanied by high GPU temperatures, suggests that there may be multiple factors at play. Reapplying thermal paste was a wise move to address thermal issues, but the persistence of the restarts indicates that overheating is not the sole cause.

Your proactive approach to troubleshooting is commendable. Using Display Driver Uninstaller (DDU) to remove and reinstall graphics drivers, updating the BIOS, and running Memtest are all appropriate measures. The ‘nvlddmkm.sys’ error points towards a graphics driver issue, which you’ve addressed, yet the problem persists. The Event Viewer error ‘0x8000400000000002’ is more cryptic but could be related to power settings or system files.

Given the steps you’ve already taken, here are some additional suggestions to consider:

: While you haven’t been able to test with a spare PSU, it’s worth considering that a failing PSU can cause random restarts. If possible, borrow a PSU from a friend or visit a local computer shop to test your system with a different unit.


System File Checker (SFC)

: Run the SFC scan to check for corrupted system files that might be causing instability. You can do this by opening Command Prompt as an administrator and typing `sfc /scannow`.


Check for Overclocking

: If your system is overclocked, try resetting to default clock speeds. Overclocking can cause instability, especially if the system is not adequately cooled or the settings are too aggressive.


Hardware Diagnostics

: Run hardware diagnostic tests provided by your motherboard manufacturer. These tests can sometimes identify issues that other software-based tools miss.


Clean Boot

: Perform a clean boot to start Windows with a minimal set of drivers and startup programs. This can help you determine if background programs are causing the system to restart.


Check for Electrical Issues

: Ensure that your power outlet and surge protector (if used) are functioning correctly. An unstable electrical supply can cause similar issues.


Inspect Hardware Connections

: Check all internal connections, including power cables to the motherboard and components, to ensure they are secure and not damaged.

If all else fails, it may be necessary to systematically replace components, starting with the most likely suspects based on the symptoms. However, it’s always best to exhaust all other diagnostic avenues before incurring the expense of new hardware.

In conclusion, your situation requires a methodical approach to eliminate each potential cause one by one. It’s a process that can be time-consuming but is necessary to pinpoint the exact source of the problem. Good luck, and may your gaming PC return to its optimal performance soon.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

Privacy Terms Contacts About Us