Windows users from novices to veterans all twitch at the mere mention of Blue Screen of Death (BSOD). For most of the time, BSOD is a tell-tale sign of serious issues and unless people take action, it would come back. Nowadays, it’s possible to deduce the root cause of BSOD in many ways and Event Viewer is one of them. Check out this article if BSOD gives you a hard time and your only lead is an entry about Kernel-Power, Event ID 41, Task Category (63) in Event Viewer.
A List Of Possibilities
Generally speaking, BSOD and Kernel-Power, Event ID 41, Task Category (63) may be the result of computers using more power than it is capable of. That is usually the case when Windows users run demanding programs or resource-intensive games.
Another possible cause is that one or more drivers on your PC are outdated or corrupted. Since drivers play a key role in communication between computers and devices, driver issues tend to cause many hassles. Hence, if you keep running into BSOD, you should pay attention to drivers.
Kernel-Power, Event ID 41, Task Category (63) is known to be related to BIOS. Certain BIOS settings regarding power management can lead to BSOD. That is more likely if your version of BIOS is outdated.
If BSOD pops up at random times, it’s a good idea to think about hardware. There have been reports of BSOD being caused by power supply units, motherboards and RAMs. If one of the devices is not working as expected, BSOD is one of the consequences.
What You Could Do
Apply Changes To Power Options
In the beginning, it is wise to treat power as a prime suspect as there is a chance that the computer is using more power than it should. While you may not have much control over the matter, you can set a maximum percentage of power to be used.
- Step 1. Type Control Panel into the Search bar and press Enter.
- Step 2. Go to Hardware and Sound > Power Options
- Step 3. Select the power plan that you are currently using (either Balanced or Power saver) then choose Change plan settings.
- Step 4. Click Change advanced power settings.
- Step 5. On the next window, expand Processor power management and then Maximum processor state.
- Step 6. Lower the Settings value by about 10-20%. If your PC is a laptop, do so for both On battery and Plugged in values.
- Step 7. Choose Apply and select OK.
- Step 8. Now expand Hard disk > Turn off hard disk after and make sure the value next to Settings (Minutes) is 0.
- Step 9. For good measure, repeat steps 4 to 8 for all of the other power plans on your computer. Computers sometimes swap between different plans so you should be thorough. After you finish, try running some processor-intensive programs or games and see how things turn out.
Give Drivers Some Thought
As mentioned above, Kernel-Power, Event ID 41, Task Category (63) could be caused by driver issues. Based on the reports of Windows users, the audio driver is the culprit in most of the cases.
- Step 1. Type Device Manager into the Search bar and hit Enter to open it.
- Step 2. Expand Audio inputs and outputs.
- Step 3. Right-click an audio device and then Update driver.
- Step 4. Select Search automatically for drivers and wait for the process to complete.
- Step 5. Repeat steps 3 and 4 for all other devices in the Audio inputs and outputs section.
Note: While looking at Audio inputs and outputs section in Device Manager, you may find duplicate entries of the same device. These entries should be removed as they have been known to cause Kernel power error. To do so, simply right-click them and click Disable device.
If the problem persists afterward, that means the audio drivers were not the culprit. However, there is still the possibility of the BSOD being caused by other drivers. As it is difficult to identify the driver at fault, it is recommended to use driver managers. Those programs can search for, download and install driver updates for all of your devices with a single click.
Take BIOS Into Account
Aside from the Power Options that Windows provide, the BIOS itself contains power settings related to sleep mode as well. That being said, changing BIOS options can be difficult if you are unfamiliar with the process. BIOS is a sensitive part of the system as well and it should be used with extreme caution.
- Step 1. Boot up your computer (or perform a reboot if it is currently active).
- Step 2. On the first boot screen, you will see a text that says “Press [BIOS key] to enter Setup”. Quickly press that button on your keyboard and you will enter the BIOS setup menu. If it goes away too fast and takes you back to Windows, reboot and try again.
- Step 3. (Note: from this point onward, navigation will be different for each user as different manufacturers have different BIOS UI designs) On the BIOS setup menu, locate and enter the Power Options or something similar, usually named ACPI Settings.
- Step 4. Find the Enable Hibernation/ACPI Function option and make sure it is set to Enabled.
- Step 5. Below that, you should find the ACPI Sleep State/ACPI Standby State. Set them to S3.
- Step 6. Go back to the main menu and choose Exit Saving Changes. The computer will reboot back to Windows so you can see how things turn out.
Check Out The Hardware
Assessing the hardware is no walk in the park as it requires a great deal of computer knowledge. Hence, if you suspect one of your hardware may be causing the BSOD to appear, you might want to get expert help. If your computer is still under warranty, it is wise to contact the place you purchased it from and have it checked. Many users have reported that replacing the motherboard, the RAM or the power supply unit have fixed their problem with BSOD.
What Should I Do If I See The Message That Says “The Best Driver For Your Device Is Already Installed” While Updating Driver?
Taking the message at face value, your device should already be using the latest driver available. Since up-to-date drivers contain everything you need, you can continue using your PC as usual. Do note that sometimes there might be a newer driver version on the manufacturer’s website that Device Manager fails to notice. If you have reasons to suspect your current driver version is obsolete and wish to get the latest one, download and install it from the manufacturer’s website.
How Exactly Do I Navigate The BIOS Setup Screen?
The navigation of BIOS setup screen is tricky as it is different from brand to brand. For example, the layout of the BIOS setup UI of Dell can be completely different from that of Acer. Because of this, there is no precise way to go about it. The best thing you can do is to look up your BIOS brand’s UI design on the Internet and watch some clips.
Should I Replace Computer Hardware By Myself?
If you have the skills and tools, feel free to perform hardware replacement on your own. It’s noteworthy that the slightest scratch can permanently damage or even brick your device though. Therefore, if you lack confidence, it is best to get in touch with a professional.
Michael Kan has been with Ginno Security Lab since October 2017, covering a wide range of topics, including consumer electronics, cybersecurity, social media, networking, and gaming. Prior to working at Ginno Security Lab he was a foreign correspondent in Beijing for over five years, covering the tech scene in Asia.
Areas of Expertise: Michael Kan has been working as a journalist for about 15 years— He start as a schools and cities reporter in Kansas City. Amazingly he is still here. Lately, he has been following SpaceX’s Starlink network, emerging online cyber threats, and the PC graphics card market (which led him to camp out in front of a Best Buy to get an RTX 3000). He is always eager to learn more, so please jump in the comments with feedback and send he tips.
The Best Tech he has Had:
- First video game console: a Nintendo Famicom
- Sega Saturn despite PlayStation’s popularity.
- The iPod Video received as a gift in college
- Xbox 360 FTW
- The Galaxy Nexus was the first smartphone he was proud to own.
- The PC desktop he built in 2013, which still works to this day.