Random Color Screen Crash

Version 2.0.5, Windows 7 SP1.

I reinstalled windows 7 and all my drivers are up-to-date. Any time I launch audacity I get a random color screen and am forced to shut off the pc manually.


I moved your post. You probably didn’t mean to post in the Mac forum.

You can get system crashes if Audacity is trying to use old or outdated hardware drivers. Are you using a fancy external soundcard?


Anyways, problem started after reinstalling windows. I am using my integrated sound card and AFAIK it’s drivers are working fine. I am honestly lost on this matter.

Please see Why does the computer reboot or show a blue screen message when I launch Audacity or play or record? .

Did you reinstall the built-in sound device after reinstalling Windows? If not, that may be your answer.

Otherwise it is fairly simple to examine the memory dump to see the cause of the blue screen, as described in the link above.


I’ll try reinstalling my sound drivers again, and report back here.

Also, it’s not a BSOD, rather my entire screen becomes a random color. Does a dump file still appear in that case?

Deleted old drivers, reinstalled ones provided by Dell, now windows refuses to boot =C.

However, everything works perfectly fine in safe mode (and the only place i could reinstall the drivers without colored screen), even audacity works in safe mode.

Could it be the problem is related to Nvidia HD Audio?

Audacity works in normal windows 7 mode after disabling onboard hd audio in bios. I am seriously starting to think the problem is caused by interference with nvidia HD audio, will check that out later.

My GPU is actually a bit new, and I got it shortly before windows reinstallation. I am going to also note that my TB Z-Seven headset works perfectly fine with Nvidia HD Audio but that’s probably because it connects to an ACU which connects to my PC with USB.

Well I fixed the whole windows not booting properly by doing the following: Reinstall audio drivers on integrated gfx, then reinstalling gpu drivers. (as always, properly cleaned out old drivers first)

However, removing nvidia hd audio drivers and unticking it during driver reinstallation did not fix the problem of audacity giving colored screen crash, so these 2 problems were probably unrelated.

So are “audio drivers on integrated gfx” (do you mean “graphics”?) a separate audio device in Device Manager from the “Nvidia HD Audio”?

What happens if you include Nvidia HD during audio driver reinstallation, then reinstall the GPU drivers again?

Are you sure you are using Audacity 2.0.5 and not 2.0.4? 2.0.4 included support for Windows WDM-KS API which can cause crashes with some sound devices.

What is an ACU? If it’s a separate audio device that Windows sees, yes it’s not using Nvidia.


I normally disable my igfx, as it doesn’t like being turned on with my GPU (switchable graphics incompatibility)

Nvidia HD audio is included with the GPU drivers as optional, so I’m not sure what you mean.

I am using 2.0.5

ACU (stands for Audio Control Unit) is a USB sound processor that came with my headset . It is a separate audio device.

It makes it harder to understand if you use a lot of abbreviations.

I meant does the Audacity crash still occur if you reinstall the built-in motherboard audio, then reinstall the GPU drivers with the option to install Nvidia audio enabled? Or have you disabled motherboard audio in BIOS?

If you post a dxdiag report we might be able to see what devices you have.

I don’t understand what you mean by “random colour screen”. If this is like a BSOD with a displayed error message, but the screens are sometimes other colours, it is still a system crash, and you may be able to figure out the problem from the memory dump.


Nvidia HD Audio only has to do with HDMI audio output so turning off my motherboard audio would turn off my speakers regardless.

Random color screen crash means I get a completely blank screen of a random color.

Dxdiag is attached.
DxDiag.txt (35.2 KB)

bump, still need help.

You could try running a memory test, for example: http://www.memtest86.com/

… and look at the memory dump.


Ok I know the basics of running memtest86, but what is this about a memory dump?

See the link I gave earlier on: Audacity Manual.


Well the crash does seem to stop audio from running, but it doesn’t shut down my pc and doesnt make a crash dump.

Was running memtest86 and it seemed to restart my computer after some time.

Your first post said

I get a random color screen and am forced to shut off the pc manually.

Normally one gets a blue (or black) screen in that case and the memory is dumped. Have you turned off writing of diagnostic information? You can check at System Properties, “Advanced” tab, “Startup and Recovery” settings.


About memtest restarting, seems that was just because I moved my mouse, otherwise memtest finished fine.

Also dumps are turned on. I find it strange that audacity seems to be the only program I run that causes this problem. I tried wavepad and it worked fine, but I still prefer audacity.