IRQL_NOT_LESS_OR_EQUAL is the biggest fear of every Windows PC user. This is the error code which appears on the screen with a blue screen.
There are many reasons behind the IRQL_NOT_LESS_OR_EQUAL issue and therefore to resolve it first you have to pinpoint the problem. If you are unable to find the problem behind it, you can also run through all the possible solutions.
IRQL_NOT_LESS_OR_EQUAL: 7 Possible Reasons
1. If your PC is attacked by a virus or malware and it infects any Windows OS related file and system files, you might face this error.
2. Many hardware come with their driver or software. If this problem arises after installing it, then your Windows version might not be compatible with the specific hardware.
3. If somehow your CPU gets overheated, Windows automatically shut down the PC via BSOD to ensure no permanent damage. The next time you will turn on the PC the blue screen will arise.
4. While downgrading or upgrading Windows, there is a chance that some files get misplaced. In those circumstances, you will face IRQL_NOT_LESS_OR_EQUAL.
5. In case your internal hardware gets damaged, like the motherboard or RAM, it will show the blue screen error.
6. If the registry gets corrupted the same problem will arise. The registry might get corrupted while installing or uninstalling any software or if you fiddle with registry editor without proper knowledge.
7. If you shut down your PC while installing Windows or any software, the blue screen might appear.
7 Possible Solutions to fix IRQL_NOT_LESS_OR_EQUAL
1. Remove Malware
If you installed a new piece of software, and you face the issue, the program might have been infected with malware. In that case, you should uninstall the program and download it from a reputed source.
To uninstall any program Start > Settings > Apps & features > Find the newly installed software > Left Click > Uninstall
2. Cool Your Computer
While working with powerful software or playing games for a long session, your computer will generate a lot of heat. If the heat does not get dissipated outside, your PC will stop working.
To resolve it you can upgrade the CPU fan, get some extra case fans or use a water cooling system. All of these will combat the situation, but if you go for the water cooling system, you should be very careful while installing it for the first time or take a hand from a professional.
3. Run Windows Memory Diagnostic Tool
By running Windows Memory Diagnostic Tool you can check if your RAM is working properly or not.
To do that head over to the search box and type ‘Windows Memory Diagnostic’ and click on it. Then click on ‘Restart now and check for problems (recommended)’. Now your PC will take a few minutes to restart and will show if there are any issues. If yes, then you have to upgrade your RAM. If you are using dual-channel memory you can also switch the RAM slots or try using single RAM to resolve the issue.
4. Update Driver
Most of the Windows drivers get updated automatically after the first installation. But if for some reason some drivers are not getting updated you might need to do it manually.
To do that open ‘File Explorer’ and right-click on ‘This PC’. From the drop-down menu select ‘Manage’. Then select ‘Device Manager’ under ‘System Tools’ option to continue. Finally right-click on the disk device under ‘Disk Drives’ and choose Update driver.
If there is any update available it will do it then you should restart your PC and see if the problem persists.
5. Run Hardware Troubleshooter
Hardware errors can also cause IRQL_NOT_LESS_OR_EQUAL error, so you can try running the Troubleshooter to check if there is a problem with your hardware.
To do that Start > Settings > Update & security > Troubleshoot > Hardware and Devices > Run the troubleshooter.
Your PC will do a scan and show you if there is any problem with your hardware.
6. Run Driver Verifier
When the IRQL_NOT_LESS_OR_EQUAL error occurs you might be able to solve it with driver verifier but this is a way for professionals. If you are new to Windows you might face more problems than solving the blue screen error.
First, create a System Restore Point to avoid unrecoverable operations.
Then search for ‘cmd’ and right-click on it. Select ‘Run as administrator’. Then enter ‘verifier’ in the Command Prompt window and press Enter to continue. On the new window select ‘Create standard settings’ and press next. After that select what drivers to verify and then click next again. Then select drivers to verify at first and then click Finish.
Finally, you have to restart the PC and Windows will try harder to fix any issue if found.
7. Reset Window
If none of the solutions works for you the final trick is to reset your PC. None of your files will get affected, but you will have to install all the programs after the resetting process ends.
To do that Recovery > Get Started > Keep my files > Reset
It will take a long time but your problem should be resolved now. Remember to try this method if all the previous methods fail.
So these were all the solutions for the IRQL_NOT_LESS_OR_EQUAL error and hopefully, your computer is fixed now. If the problem persists, you should ask for help from your provider or service centre.