The ‘Blue Screen of Death’, or BSoD, is a Windows error screen that appears when the OS encounters a fatal error, such as a system crash, stop error, kernel error, or bug check.
‘Page Fault in Nonpaged Area 0x50’ is a Windows system error message for the 0x50 stop error. It is known to occur when a page of memory required for the PC to continue processing isn’t available. This causes Windows to crash, displaying the BSoD, on which the following message is visible:
This error is prevalent in nearly all versions of Windows, including Windows XP, Vista, 7, 8, and 8.1. In the following lines, we shall learn more about this error, and the means to get rid of it, starting with a discussion on what a nonpaged area means.
What is the Nonpaged Area?
The Windows OS uses RAM to store the information that it needs to execute a current process or task. The RAM in turn uses a location on the local hard disk to store pages of the memory that are needed, but aren’t actively used. As the processing continues, pages of memory are swapped between the RAM and the page file as and when required.
However, certain data is constantly required for the working of the operating system. As such, instead of swapping this data between the RAM and the page file, it is kept constantly active by being stored in a separate section of the RAM. This section is known as the nonpage area of the RAM.
What Causes the ‘Page Fault in Nonpaged Area’ Error?
As discussed above, the nonpaged area of the RAM is reserved for the critical data needed by Windows. Though most software are designed to prevent using this area, some might store data in this area, causing this error message to show up. This is a rather rare occurrence, but it cannot be completely ruled out.
In most cases, however, the Page Fault error results due to some fault in the RAM, level 1 or level 2 cache memory, or due to the presence of corrupt sectors in the hard disk.
This error is also known to occur when one or more of the existing hardware in the computer system is upgraded or replaced without installing the respective supporting device drivers.
How to Solve this Error
When this error occurs and the system crashes, the first thing you should try to do is reboot your PC and logging in again. There are chances that your system will restart and you will be able to log in normally without the crash reoccurring. If this happens, you don’t need to take any further action, as Windows has probably already resolved this issue.
If however, the BSoD occurs again before you can log in, you will need to run the following series of checks to get rid of the problem:
Checking the Software
1) Restart the system, and in the initial stages of the booting process repeatedly press the F8 key to enter the ‘Windows Advanced Options’ menu.
2) In this menu, locate the option ‘Last Known Good Configuration (your most recent settings that worked)’ by using the up and down arrow keys, and hit ‘Enter’.
3) If this fails in letting you log back in, and the BSoD reoccurs, again restart the system, and from the ‘Windows Advanced Options’ menu, select the option ‘Safe Mode’.
4) Once the system restarts in the ‘Safe Mode’, try restoring your system settings using the System Restore utility, which can be found using the path: ‘Start –> Accessories –> System Tools’.
Checking the Hard Disk
If after performing the check detailed above, you are still unable to log in, you should try checking for bad sectors on the hard disk. Use the following procedure for this:
1) Restart the computer, and log in using the ‘Safe Mode’ as described in the previous section.
2) In the start menu, type ‘run’. In the new pop-up window, type ‘cmd’, and press the Enter key. This will open up command prompt.
3) In command prompt, type ‘chkdsk’, and hit Enter. This will tell Windows to run a check for the status of the drive, by scanning through all the sectors of the hard disk. Windows may probably restart in order to be able to scan files that are otherwise locked and in use by the OS, by running ‘chkdsk’ prior to the loading of the OS.
4) If ‘chkdsk’ finds errors, you will have to run the command once again. Only this time, you need to type ‘chkdsk /F’ in order to tell it to perform a fix on the errors that were found. Note that this process can take some time to complete.
Checking the RAM
A faulty RAM is the most probable cause of the Page Fault error. To fix it, shut off your PC, and unplug the power cord.
Open up your PC and locate the RAM chip within it. Once you find the RAM, disconnect it and reconnect it back into its socket.
Try restarting your PC. If your PC has more than one RAM chip, try removing and putting them back into their sockets individually, before trying to restart the system. This should resolve the Page Fault error.
Checking for Hardware Error
If this error message is the result of a hardware upgrade without appropriate driver installation, use the following procedure to rectify it.
1) Log in using the ‘Safe Mode’, and go to Start –> Control Panel –> Device Manager.
2) From there, locate the problematic driver (the one marked with a yellow exclamation), and uninstall it. This will signal Windows to update and reinstall it properly.
In most cases, following the checks and procedures described above will lead you to a solution, and enable you to start and use your PC normally once again. If however, you still face the ‘Page Fault in Nonpaged Area’ error, then it is indicative of a much more serious problem, which might require professional inspection.