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Windows Protection Error: VMPOLL

Posted on 2002-07-29
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Last Modified: 2013-12-29
Win 98 machine, afte Win 98 logo comes up the folling error message appears:

While initializing device VMPOLL: windows protection error.

Can anyone assist, me I will provide more info if needed.

SFC finds no alter files. no virus.  This happened loading Wndows media player 7.1.

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Question by:Stardotstar
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17 Comments
 
LVL 59

Accepted Solution

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LeeTutor earned 1400 total points
ID: 7186765
This page gives a very good list of Microsoft Knowledge Base articles concerning Windows Protection Errors:

http://www.aumha.org/kbewpez.htm

This is a quotation at the top of the page, summarizing what causes the errors:

Windows Protection Errors can occur due to many different causes, including: virtual driver (VxD) problems, including conflicts between real-mode and protected-mode drivers, or when a protected-mode driver already initialized is loaded from SYSTEM.INI, or when a VxD file is damaged; a damaged Registry; a virus; a damaged WIN.COM or COMMAND.COM file; CMOS settings errors; Plug-and-Play malfunction; and hardware problems, including a malfunctioning cache, malfunctioning RAM, or a damaged motherboard. The articles and other links below should be quite helpful in identifying and resolving these problems.



Below is a very good site for giving information on what causes the Windows Protection error, how to troubleshoot it, and how to eliminate the problem:


http://www.geocities.com/budallen98_98/windows_protection_error.html 
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LVL 2

Expert Comment

by:Griffon
ID: 7187372
VMPOLL: The virtual machine polling device is responsible for detecting when a virtual machine is idle waiting for keyboard input.
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LVL 23

Expert Comment

by:slink9
ID: 7187654
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Author Comment

by:Stardotstar
ID: 7187708
Rather extensive process.  Bootlog has not indicated any failures.

Would it be easier and quiker, easy way out, just to reinstall WIndows over itself?

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LVL 27

Expert Comment

by:Asta Cu
ID: 7187964
Similar error seen before and resulted from a virus infection, which the slink9 link also mentions.  Have you done a through viruscan of all your files on all your hardrives, with an updated Virus Definition File?  If you haven't yet eradicated the intrusion and do a reinstall, etc., it'll be a waste of time, in my opinion.  At least in our situation like this, following the step-by-step process mentioned in the article by slink9 (Q263466) and then doing a clean boot, as follows helped resolve this.
http://support.microsoft.com/default.aspx?scid=kb;[LN];Q192926

You may check your system as well to search for any bootlog.txt or bootlog.prv files, edit in Notepad and search for any loads that showed as failed.  Perhaps you'll luck out with a shortcut, but we sure didn't.

Asta

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LVL 27

Expert Comment

by:Asta Cu
ID: 7187976
You'll also note in the above link that the vmpoll is a critical file, and that the MS article recommends that if you need to do a reinstall of Windows, try to do so in a new folder; for test purposes, which means that the current configuration, programs, etc., would need to be reinstalled.  

You're in good hands here, so wish you the best of luck.  

Asta
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Expert Comment

by:Asta Cu
ID: 7187983
Can you boot in SAFE MODE without problems?
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Author Comment

by:Stardotstar
ID: 7188000
Can boot in safe mode without issue.  Also if you do a line by line boot you start up but have no network support and do not get the error.  If you let it boot on it's own, you get the error and then you/it tells your to reboot in safe mode.
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LVL 27

Expert Comment

by:Asta Cu
ID: 7188107
Have you tried restoring a prior registry (one that worked previously?)
http://support.microsoft.com/default.aspx?scid=kb;[LN];Q221512

When in SAFE MODE, does device manager show any problems, errors, ghost ports or erroneous/multiple devices or unknwon devices?

Also, the same way you'd do scanreg/restore after a reboot from the MS Dos Prompt, from the windows\command directly, you may benefit by trying the scanreg/fix process.

The articles listed earlier give some specific guidance on the vmpoll problem and the diagnostics using the bootlog.txt file to track initialization errors and failures.

Scanning with an updated virus program and updated virus definition files to rule out intrusions is also key, in case there's an infection that has messed your registry.

Off to work, but will check back when I can.

Troubleshooting Windows 98 start up problems.
http://support.microsoft.com/default.aspx?scid=kb;[LN];Q188867
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LVL 63

Expert Comment

by:SysExpert
ID: 7188843
Besides all the great advice given,
I would look into new drivers for your NIC and other hardware.

I hope this helps !
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LVL 41

Expert Comment

by:stevenlewis
ID: 7189409
In addition to the good advice above, try this, boot to safe mode, and then go to start --> run and type msconfig, go to the startup tab, and uncheck all but systray and explorer, reboot and check
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Author Comment

by:Stardotstar
ID: 7189421
Too much good advice takes a while to try all.  Thanks will get back soon with results.

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LVL 16

Expert Comment

by:Kyle Schroeder
ID: 7191416
Here is a very interesting article discussing the VMM32.VXD file, the rebuilding instructions at the bottom may be of use to you...

http://www.windows-help.net/techfiles/vmm32.html

-dog*
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Author Comment

by:Stardotstar
ID: 7195240
Gentleman, had to defaut to the old format C: and reinstall.

Will be awarding some points to all for assistance, but give me a day or so to sort it out.

Thanks
 
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LVL 27

Expert Comment

by:Asta Cu
ID: 7195815
Make sure that you get WindowsUpdate patches and fixes installed after the resinstall.  Listening further when I can, if more is needed.
":0) Asta
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Author Comment

by:Stardotstar
ID: 7196235
All, please accept my apoligies for my earlier post.  I am now accepting this answer for the following reason:

After formating the drive and reinstalling the machine began to act irradic when installing NAV.  Upon further inspection from an online virus checker, the hard drive was infected with Klez and another virus.  It would appear that the first respone from LeeTutor included this.  

Probably should have repartitioned the drive and would not have had the virus issue again, but also would not have found the real issue.

Apparently Klez and the other culprit destroyed the network/nic and would not let NAV clean the machine.

I appreciate all of your suggestions, and further hope you understand my awarding this to LeeTutor.

See ya next time!

Many Thanks!!!!!
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LVL 27

Expert Comment

by:Asta Cu
ID: 7196316
Happy all is well.
":0) Asta
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