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Drivers & Software

Adept I

16.9.1 messed up my system completely and utterly, possible hardware damage

So, I installed Crimson 16.9.1 and it completely messed up my system. This is how everything went:


OS - Windows 10 Home 64-bit 1607 (Build 14393)

CPU - i5 6600K - running stock

GPU - XFX Radeon 480 with 8 gigs (the double fan one, not reference card) - running stock

RAM - 32 Gigs of Patriot Viper - running stock

SSD: Samsung Evo 850 500 gig

Mobo: Asus Maximus VIII Ranger - latest BIOS and Drivers - running stock

This is how I uninstalled my previous drivers:

1. Set all AMD Crimson to defaults, set mobo BIOS to defaults, booted up and ran CPU-Z and HW Monitor to confirm and make sure everything is at stock values.

2. Ran Windows update, just to make sure there are no patches missing, it was already up to date.

3. Uninstalled AMD Crimson 16.8.3 via regular means

4. Ran CCleaner

5. Ran DDU from safe mode

6. Rebooted - hard boot with pause in between

7. Ran AMD Crimson 16.9.1 installer, the drivers installed and when I restarted the system, that was it. System became completely and utterly unusable from that point onward.

Upon System reboot, as soon as Windows started to come up within about 1 second my screen turned into what you see in the 1st image (corru1.jpg). This is right at the start, before the login screen even comes up, when there is the little wheel spinning for a couple secs.

Needless to say, with that, at that point I can't even login or get to safe mode to uninstall the freagin drivers or do anything for that matter. I have tried everything under the sun to get into the safe mode. Booted of the Media Creation Tool went to repair, command prompt, tried the bcdedit diplaybootmenu and bootmenupolicy commands as applicable, tried system / windows repairs, tried restoring previous, tried restoring from back up, everything, and I do mean everything. Nothing worked, as soon as I get into any graphics screen past POST or past the screens from the Win 10 Installation USB stick, thats it. What you see on that screenshot is what I get. only exception was after trying those command prompt options, in which case I got what you see on the screenshot #2 (corru2.jpg), and as soon as I rebooted its back to the 1st one.

Not only was I unable to get back into safe mode with this to uninstall the drivers,  I couldn't even re-install a fresh windows OS now because it refused to install anything over the old installs and I was unable  to delete the partition(s) or reformat the drive so that I can actually perform a brand new clean installation. Not to mention my data, games, etc. all just gone.

I finally got my system to work again as follows:

1. Unplugged all hard drives and the USB

2. Plugged in Old Hard Drive with my original Windows 7 to Windows 10 upgrade on it

3. Powered down, plugged in my SSD with the messed up Crimson install on it

4. Opened command prompt and deleted all partitions on the SSD

5. Powered down, unplugged the old HD and reinstalled completely fresh / clean of off the USB

I can't even imagine how frustrating this would be for people with only 1 hard drive or those that already repurposed their old HDs for data / media storage or alike due to previous drivers working and something like this happening suddenly. You can't even reformat your HD or reinstall the OS.

What is happening now:

After reinstalling the OS, all drivers, updates etc. I now have some issues. I am running Crimson 16.8.3 BTW, and I am not touching any AMD hotfixes until I see some mention of fixing stuff of this nature. My hardware, specifically the video, may be damaged and I am very concerned about this.

What is happening now is 2 things, mind you, I do not have any games up yet or any of the old drivers or old DX or old VC redist, etc. This is just pure, clean install OS + drivers + some misc up to date, known reliable apps for testing and CPU-Z and HW Monitor.

The 2 things are as follows:

1. As the system is coming of off POST (BIOS) and switching to the OS while booting, I get a stripe on my monitor. This is very fast, lasts around half a second to 1 second, its appearance is consistent with screenshots that other people have posted once their hardware has been permamently damaged. Unfortunately I can't take a picture due to how fast it is happening, though I suppose I could make a video clip if anyone wants to actually go that far. It disappears and the system proceeds as normal. This was not there prior to this whole thing happening. This is now also happening when I switch hard drives, and switch to my old, reliable HD.

2. I now have a mouse corruption bug. The same exact bug you find in other peoples posts about it, where the cursor turns to almost invisible line with some tiny dots on it and you basically can't do anything. In my case, there is also another mouse oddity. The "busy" or "active" mouse cursor icon, the little spinning wheel, has been reverted on my system to the hourglass from the days of Windows XP. I did not make any changes, this is all stock, brand new install.

3. There is some buginess and some issues that I have not managed to quite pin down yet with the AMD  High Definition Audio. My motherboard comes with built in RealTek High Definition Audio and the 2 are conflicting. While I do understand the potential there because 2 HD Audio devices, I would like to point out that I have not had any of these issues on prior installs, these are brand new and seem to be a part of lingering aftereffects from the Crimson 16.9.1 install fiasco.

To sum things up. At this point I am seriously considering just returning this GPU and if I can going with a 1070 board if I can get any money back for this one ( going to check into it), simply due to the issues I am experiencing with this combination of utterly borked drivers + the new Win OS under which I can't even reformat a drive to reinstall + signs of hardware damage due to these drivers. No new tech is without flaws and bugs are going to happen, but this ...... it just took the cake in all my years of building PCs for as long as custom build PCs have been around (yes, mid 80s). Seriously.

19 Replies

Re: 16.9.1 messed up my system completely and utterly, possible hardware damage

Have you tried the card in a completely different system? If yes, and it exhibits the same symptom, then just RMA it.

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Re: 16.9.1 messed up my system completely and utterly, possible hardware damage

""I can't even imagine how frustrating this would be for people with only 1 hard drive""

It's extremely simple. People haven't messed around with it.

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Journeyman III

Re: 16.9.1 messed up my system completely and utterly, possible hardware damage

The only way I can imagine for faulty drivers to damage your card is by setting an absurdly high voltage.  I think you might have to RMA your card, but I doubt 16.9.1 killed it.  I suggest you make an image of your system (with Acronis True Image or something like that), and see if installing 16.9.1 consistently hoops Windows.  Do games still work OK in 16.8.3?  The stripe you see when booting is pretty worrying though.  I'd probably RMA based on that alone.

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Re: 16.9.1 messed up my system completely and utterly, possible hardware damage


When you encountered the screen of 1st image, did you try to remove RX480 temporary and use iGPU instead?

By this way I believe you still have the chance to boot into Windows desktop without cleanup/safeboot your system. Although you said you tried everything,  sorry if you already tried that and not work(usually it should work).

As for the Windows 10 refuse to install/perform delete partition, there is a new act from Windows 7. If you do not set the HDD/SSD that you want to install OS on it as a boot device option in BIOS, Windows will refuse to install on it.

Usually we will only set USB as the only one boot device in BIOS boot option setting menu to install a new OS in the past , but after Windows 7 things changed. You can choose USB as 1st boot option, 2nd is the HDD/SSD to perform a USB booting to avoid this act.

If you already set the HDD/SSD into 2nd boot option but still can not perform install/delete partition on Windows USB install process, well I never encounter that scenario.

As for some issue you have now:

1st issue : I see the same thing while booting into UBUNTU 16.04 USB. But I do not see that on my Windows 10 with RX460.

2nd issue : it is listed in 16.9.1 Known Issues. Hope AMD fix it asap. I got it too sometimes on my RX460, but very rare.

Mouse cursor corruption may be experienced very intermittently on the Radeon RX 480.

3rd issue : I do not know how they conflicting though. I have a latency PCI (not pic-e) sound card on my system and it works fine with my RX460. But I know there is a issue on AMD High Definition Audio, if monitor go into sleep and wake up , the device sometimes have no response whatever on HDMI or not, my display is on DVI and still the issue occurs. When it occurs , it take very long time to open Windows Audio option. Disable and re-enable AMD HD fix it.

Hope this helps.

Big Boss

Re: 16.9.1 messed up my system completely and utterly, possible hardware damage

Display Driver Uninstaller (DDU) V17.0.1.1 Released. | WagnardMobile

Clean up all AMD drivers and try 16.9.1 again fresh

Adept I

Re: 16.9.1 messed up my system completely and utterly, possible hardware damage

I am so staying away from 16.9.1 its not even remotely funny. That crap is just not touching my system ever again. I am currently on 16.8.3

Right now its Saturday here, come Monday I will contact Newegg and see if I can just return this to get store credit and buy a GTX 1070 instead or at minimum RMA for same product replacement, just waiting for a regular workday and regular business hours, don't want to have to deal with any possible after hours or outsourced (due to timezones) issues on their part. I am just tired of all these bugs and really worn out by this, so far, I have had most of what can be termed as "regular bugs and issues" that can be found in all the other threads creeping up here and there in addition to what I posted and I have spent around one and a half to 2 workweeks worth of total time on trying to research, learn, fix, workaround all of these etc. which is just rediculous, I am just a product user and consumer not a dev, so I gotta draw the line somewhere.

The way I got my system back up and running, is that I plugged in my old GPU, Radeon HD 7870 and old hard drive with pre-anniversary Win 10 on it. RMA is going to suck big donkey balls cause I switched from a 1080p monitor to a 1440, and my old GPU just doesn't support / can't handle the high resolutions. So I will be stuck for a LONG time on a low end GPU trying to run on a system it can barely handle. Unfortunately I gave my old monitor for someone else to use already. I was able to copy most important stuff and game saves from my SSD before I wiped it.

I played some Guild Wars 2 so far, its nice and stable, but nothing that would run on DX 11 or DX 12 yet as I haven't fully reinstalled all my stuff and not sure I will until I have things somewhat finalized and I get a replacement GPU one way or the other. GW2 is nice because there is no need to reinstall, just copy the folder and you're done, other games have crap all over the place, especially from steam and origin.

This is the card I bought XFX Radeon RX 480 DirectX 12 RX-480P8DBA6 8GB 256-Bit GDDR5 PCI Express 3.0 CrossFireX Support GTR B...

While I ran it stock, it is factory OCed, the only things I ended up doing on it via Wattman were manual fan settings for obvious reasons found everywhere in many other posts, lowered the temps to 86 and 66 degrees and upped fan power limit by 20% (fans only, the bottom one in wattman) just to give them a bit more freedom and head room if they needed it. As far as the rest is concerned, I ran it stock for most part, actually, got good results underclocked a bit (1%) bringing it closer to reference clock speed from the factory OC, that was before 16.8.x drivers were out, it gave me more stability on all my games, since 16.8.x I have been running it stock except the fan settings. And of course I check my temperatures and get consistent readings via bios, HWMonitor and Asus utilities (from my mobo), temps are great so its not related to temps or heat.

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Adept I

Re: 16.9.1 messed up my system completely and utterly, possible hardware damage

LOL, just found another bug, don't know if this is GPU, this website, win 10, browser, whatever, at this point it matters very little to me.

Went to edit my post to add that perhaps there is something going on between the GPU clock fixes included in 16.9.1 and my factory OCed board, and I got this what you see on the attached screenshot !!! I mean, LOL, just LOL and FFS !!!!! Can anything from AMD and this whole RX 480 actually work and function fully ?


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Re: 16.9.1 messed up my system completely and utterly, possible hardware damage

Why did you reset your motherboard BIOS to defaults? Usually, you get your motherboard setup, and try to never touch it again unless troubleshooting or installing a new BIOS. Also, CCleaner can be a dangerous utility depending on how much you have enabled.

As far as AMD HD audio drivers, it's the same deal as with NVidia, if you do not want to use them, then go into windows sound panel after driver install, and disable the HDMI audio playback devices. There is no conflict. The only thing that might happen is sometimes the HD audio is set as default device.


Re: 16.9.1 messed up my system completely and utterly, possible hardware damage

In my experience, DDU and CCleaner aren't necessary. If you run into problems, running the AMD Clean Uninstall Utility before you reboot after uninstalling the drivers via the Control Panel should give you a clean slate. Reboot, then install the latest Crimsons.

I know you said you had the latest BIOS installed, but which version? They released a new version, 2001, as recently as September 2nd. If you don't have it installed, it might be worth a shot.