Windows stop DRIVER_IRQL_NOT_LESS_OR_EQUAL error

Updated: 11/13/2018 by Computer Hope

Note: The solutions on this page require you to be able to access Windows Safe Mode or Normal Mode. If you cannot get into Windows at all, you need to run the Windows installation process to run a Windows Repair installation or a full Windows re-installation.

Recover Windows to an earlier copy

If you're unable to boot into Windows because of this error, boot into Windows Safe Mode and restore Windows to an earlier copy before proceeding with the following suggestions.

Install the latest service packs

Hardware drivers that are installed by third-party programs commonly cause this issue. Many of the errors will not be encountered if you have the latest Microsoft Windows Service Pack installed on the computer.

Get the latest hardware drivers

Install the latest drivers for any newly installed hardware device. If no new hardware has been installed, make sure you have the latest drivers for the below devices.

  • Video card
  • Network card or router (if present)
  • Any removable or external disk drive

For a list of computer drivers, and links to driver downloads on manufacturer websites, see our drivers section.

Bad hardware

This issue is commonly caused by memory related issues. If you've recently installed any new memory into the computer, it's recommended that it be removed to verify it's not the cause of the issue. If after removing the memory this issue no longer occurs, you have either bad memory or it's mismatched with memory currently installed in the computer.

If you have not installed any new memory into the computer recently, it's also possible that the memory currently installed in the computer is bad.

Corrupt or bad Virtual Memory page file

If you've followed the above steps and are continuing to experience issues, this error can also be caused by a bad virtual memory page file. To correct this issue, follow the steps below.

  1. Open the Control Panel.
  2. Click or double-click the System icon.
  3. In the System Properties window, click the Advanced tab.
  4. Click the Settings button in the Performance section.
  5. Click the Advanced tab.
  6. Click the Change button in the Virtual Memory section.
  7. Select the No paging file option and then click each of the Ok buttons until all windows are closed.

Note: In Windows 8 and Windows 10, you will need to uncheck the box for Automatically manage paging file size for all drives. You will then be able to select the No paging file option.

  1. Restart Windows.
  2. Open the Control Panel.
  3. Click or double-click System icon.
  4. In the System Properties window, click the Advanced tab.
  5. Click the Settings button in the Performance section.
  6. Click the Advanced tab.
  7. Click the Change button in the Virtual Memory section.
  8. Select the System managed size option and then click each of the Ok buttons until all windows are closed.
  9. Restart the computer.

Additional information