HomeHow-To10 Quick Ways to Fix It IRQL_NOT_LESS_OR_EQUAL Error in Windows 10

10 Quick Ways to Fix It IRQL_NOT_LESS_OR_EQUAL Error in Windows 10

Not able to understand IRQL_NOT_LESS_OR_EQUAL error in your Windows system? Well, do not worry, this guide will help you to fix IRQL_NOT_LESS_OR_EQUAL error in Windows 10.

BSODs are a Windows user’s worst fear, and while these serious failures are uncommon, some do happen on a regular basis. The IRQL_not_less_or_equal (error code: 0x0000000A) error is one of them.

Disruption from third-party applications, driver difficulties, and modifications in hardware are all possible causes of this error.

Related: How to Fix ERR_NETWORK_CHANGED Error?

Luckily, the IRQL_not_less_or_equal problem is rather simple to solve, one of the ways given below will help you. 

Before we dive into the solutions that will help you fix IRQL_not_less_or_equal in Windows 10, let’s discuss the error in detail. This will help you to find the possible cause and its solutions pretty easily rather than going for the try and hit method. 

What Does IRQL_not_less_or_equal Error mean?

The error on Windows 10 is a Windows hardware error notice. It frequently occurs when the hard disk refuses to start for any reason, or when the system shuts down unexpectedly in the middle of a task. Unfortunately, there might be a wide range of factors that causes this error. This error might also occur during the installation of Windows which is a serious problem

On the other hand, the BSOD error driver “IRQL not less or equal” is common, particularly when gaming or when maximum performance is required. A conflict between two or more hardware devices in the current driver is usually indicated by this stop code. This dispute to access a memory address unit may be caused by a driver seeking to access/write to a read-only RAM allocation or a location not assigned to the computer, or a memory allocation being accessed by several drivers at the same time (RAM). It will force your PC to “panic” and empty all of its memory, culminating in a BSOD and a reboot.

Related: Fix Media Creation Tool Error 0x80042405 – 0xa001b in Windows

A conflict between defective, outdated, or corrupt/faulty drivers causes the BSOD IRQL_not_less_or_equal error. In most games, the GPU drivers, as well as the drivers for the mouse, keyboard, gamepad, and other gaming controllers, are to fault.

This error is produced by these drivers refusing to allow another driver to participate in activities or changing comments from other drivers. If you’re playing an online game, it might be due to malfunctioning Ethernet or wireless drivers. 


What are the Causes of IRQL_not_less_or_equal Error?

There are many factors that could lead to IRQL_not_less_or_equal error. Some of the possible causes are mentioned below: 

1. Some App is Not Installed Correctly 

A misconfigured Windows service might sometimes create this error.

2. Device Drivers that are Incompatible

A recently installed defective device driver is another typical reason. In such a scenario, returning to an older driver version would be the best course of action.

3. Corrupted System Files

A corrupted system file, which is necessary to boot the system, is the most typical source of this error. Virus assaults, power outages, and disc write failures can all cause this.

4. Defective hardware

A faulty motherboard or a defective RAM module might also produce this issue.

5. A Windows Installation Older than the One Installed on System

Installing an older version of Windows on top of a newer one is the least prevalent source of this issue. If the system files are not changed properly, the user should back up the files and do a clean install to ensure that there are no conflicts between various versions of Windows.

Related: Why is My Computer Running So Slow?


What Happens When the IRQL_NOT_LESS_OR_EQUAL Error Occurs? 

This problem causes the operating system to shut down, causing Windows to crash and resulting in a Blue Screen of Death, or BSOD.

How to Fix IRQL_NOT_LESS_OR_EQUAL Error In Windows 10

Now, you know everything about IRQL_NOT_LESS_OR_EQUAL error, it would be easier for you to fix it.

There are many solutions that will help you to fix IRQL_NOT_LESS_OR_EQUAL error in Windows 10. Try these ones by one until the issue is not resolved. 

Related: 9 Best Registry Cleaners for Windows

1. Keep your System’s Drive Update

BSOD failures, including the IRQL_NOT_LESS_OR_EQUAL stop code, are caused by obsolete and incompatible drivers on Windows PCs. This may be remedied, though, by checking and updating your drivers.

To update or replace your system’s drivers, follow the procedures below.

  1. Right-click on Start button (Windows icon) that you find on the left-hand bottom corner of the screen. Choose Device Manager from the drop-down menu. 
    Open Device Manager
  2. Right-click a device in the list and select Uninstall device from the menu. Follow the on-screen directions to uninstall the device driver.
    Uninstall Graphics Drivers
  3. Restart your computer once the uninstall process is complete. Windows will automatically reinstall the correct driver after a reboot. 
  4. Once again, open Device Manager, right-click on the earlier device, and select Update Driver this time.
    Update the Driver
  5. On the next screen, choose Search automatically for drivers.
    Find Drivers
  6. Once the search is complete and if you see the message “The best drivers for your machine are already installed”, go to Windows Update and look for new drivers.

It’s conceivable that Windows Update won’t be able to discover and install updated driver versions. In that case, you’ll have to download them from the manufacturer’s website.

However, we recommend utilizing driver update programs like Auslogics or Drivefix if you want a more easy and secure method.

This sort of tool finds all drivers on your computer, even those that are obsolete, automatically. These apps look for newer versions on the internet and offer to download and install them on your machine. Pretty convenient, right?

Related: 10 Ways To Fix Win32kfull.sys BSOD Error


2. Turn Off or Remove Antivirus Program

The real-time engines of third-party antivirus products can interact with the Windows runtime and kernel picture, causing the IRQL_NOT_LESS_OR_EQUAL issue. To fix the problem, just turn off the real-time protection or turn off your antimalware application.

Multiple antivirus products, each with its own real-time engine, might cause system instability if they conflict.

It’s also a good idea to remove any unwanted antivirus software from your laptop. After that, restart your computer to see whether the dreaded BSOD problem warning reappears.

You’ll need to set up Windows Defender if you haven’t installed a third-party antivirus solution on Windows 10.

Related: 15 Ways to Fix 100% Disk Usage in Windows


3. Run a Scan Using Windows Defender

Now, you have turned off the Windows Antivirus program on your system. It is advisable to run a scan using a built-in Windows Defender. This will help you to find if there’s any malware that is causing the IRQL_NOT_LESS_OR_EQUAL error. 

  1. Type Windows Security into the Task Bar Menu search bar. Press Enter once you find it in search results. 
    Search Windows Security in Task bar
  2. Once the Windows Security home screen is open, select Virus and Threat Protection.
    Click on Virus and Threat Protection
  3. On the next screen, click on Scan options.
    Click on Scan Options
  4. Checkmark Full Scan and click on Scan Now button.
    Click on Full Scan
  5. Rerun a Windows Defender Offline scan if the scan did not reveal any harmful agents.

If there are harmful agents, Windows Defender will show you on-screen instructions to fix that. Follow those and restart your system. Check if the problem persists. 

Related: 10 Easy Ways to Fix Error 0x80004005 in Windows 10


4. Reinstall Intel Rapid Storage Technology Drivers

As we mentioned in the causes of error, one is obsolete or faulty drivers. It is advisable to resinstall Intel Rapid Storage Technology drivers to fix the error. 

To do so, follow the steps below: 

  1. Open Device Manager on your system. Check solution no.1 on how to open Device Manager. 
  2. Expand  IDE ATA/ATAPI controllers and right-click on SATA Controller. Select Uninstall from the drop-down menu. 
    Click on Sata Controller

Restart your computer to check whether the problem has been fixed. 

It’s conceivable that the drivers are faulty or incompatible with the operating system version you’re running if the Blue Screen of Death persists.

Get the latest update for your computer from the Driver OEM’s website and try overwriting it.

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5. Use Clean Boot to Diagnose the Issue

Clean Booting is a method of stopping all third-party programs and services in Windows. It is used to identify a variety of frequent faults. Follow these steps to do use clean boot: 

  1. Type MSConfig in the Task Bar Menu search bar, and then select System Configuration from the results.
    Open System Configuration
  2. Navigate to the Services tab in the new window that appears. Tickmark Hide all Microsoft services. Click on Apply and then OK.  
    Check Hide All Microsoft Services
  3. Next, right-click on Start button and select Task Manager from the menu.
    Select Task Manager
  4. Then go to the Startup tab in Task Manager. Select each service that has Enabled status from the list one by one, then click the Disable button in the lower right.
    Disable Startup Items

Once you are done disabling the startup programs, restart your computer

Only required Microsoft Windows services will be operating when the PC boots up now.

If the error isn’t there, it suggests the problem was caused by a third-party program or service. If the problem persists, it’s time to look into alternative possibilities to fix IRQL_NOT_LESS_OR_EQUAL error in Windows 10.

Related: 10 Best Driver Updater for Windows


6. Disable Memory Cache

If the cache is disabled or deleted then the computer performance linked to it will be hampered in some cases. It will return to the source of the data that would otherwise be stored on a disc or sent over the network. 

The driver IRQL_NOT_LESS_OR_EQUAL error is frequently triggered by write caching on your device. As a result, you’ll need to disable it to fix the problem.

To do so, follow the steps below: 

  1. Open Device Manager once again. 
  2. Expand Disk Drives to locate your hard drives. Right-click on Hard Drive and choose Properties from the context menu. 
    Expand Disk Drives
  3. A new window will open. Select Policies tab. To enable the disc to write caching on the computer, check “Enable Write Caching on the device” option. Click on Ok for changes to take effect. 
    If you like, you can turn off Windows write-cache buffer flushing on the PC. Keep in mind that this is a high-risk alternative that should only be used if you have a backup power supply in place, such as a UPS.
    Select Policies Tab

7. Modify or Reinstall the Network Adapter

Corrupted network adapter drivers may potentially be to blame for the blue screen of death in Windows 10. Uninstall the network drivers and then reinstall them to fix the IRQL_NOT_LESS_OR_EQUAL error.

  1. Right-click on the Start icon and select Device Manager from the list of choices.
  2. In the Device Manager window, expand Network Adapters, right-click Network Device Drivers, and select Uninstall Device from the drop-down menu. 
    Uninstall the Network Adapter

Once it is uninstalled, restart your computer. On the next login, Windows will automatically reinstall the device driver.

Alternatively, you can visit the website of the system manufacturer and download and install the most recent network adapter driver.

This method will help you to fix IRQL_NOT_LESS_OR_EQUAL error in Windows 10. If not, we suggest you to try another method. 

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8. Upgrade Windows Operating System

Microsoft releases cumulative updates on a regular basis that include various bug fixes and security upgrades. Install the most current Windows update to resolve the prior issues. To begin, follow the steps below to check and install the most recent Windows updates: 

  1. Open Settings by clicking on the Start button on the extreme bottom right-hand corner of the screen. 
    Click on Settings App
  2. Go to Update & Security option once the Settings app is opened. 
    Click on Update and Security
  3. On the left pane, click on Windows Update to enable the download and installation of Windows updates from the Microsoft server. Finally, press the Updates button to see if there are any new updates.

Restart your computer to apply the updates after you’ve finished. Hopefully, this will resolve the problem and you can use your computer properly.

Related: How to Debloat Windows 10


9. Using Memory Diagnostic tool

Memory-related issues can sometimes cause the IRQL_NOT_LESS_OR_EQUAL error, resulting in a Blue Screen of Death on your PC. As a result, using the Memory Diagnostic tool is a good idea and to check if there’s any problem. 

Follow the steps below to do so: 

  1. Type Windows Memory Diagnostic in Task Bar Search menu bar and press Enter once you find it to open. 
    Open Windows Memory Diagnostic Tool
  2. Once the Windows Memory Diagnostic tool is opened, click on Resart now and check for problems (recommended) option. 
    Click on 1st Option

Your computer will restart now. As soon as your computer restarts, it will do a full RAM check and display the current state.

If Windows Memory Diagnostic tool returns an error, it means the problem is with your RAM, and you’ll need to replace it.

Related: 12 Best Windows 11 Apps


10. Restore your System if Everything Fails

If nothing of the previous options work to fix IRQL_NOT_LESS_OR_EQUAL error in Windows 10, System Restore is the last one in our arsenal.

System Restore allows you to restore your computer to a previous date and time when it was in perfect working order.

All you have to do is select a proper restore point (date and time). It will start restoring your system to that point. Follow the steps below to check how you can do a system restore in Windows 10:  

  1. To start the System Restore process, open Run app. To open it, type Run in Task Bar Search menu bar. Once you find it in the list of results, click on it. 
    Open-Command-Command
  2. Type rstrui.exe in the Run dialog box and press Enter or click OK. 
    Run Command
  3. Click Next to begin the system restore wizard.
  4. Select Next once again after selecting a suitable day and time from the window.
  5. It’s worth noting that you may Scan for Affected Programs to get more restoration points.
  6. Finally, click Finish to begin the restoration process and leave your computer for a few minutes. It will reboot with a new Windows 10 display. 

And that’s how you can restore your Windows 10 system. Hopefully, doing this will get you rid of the IRQL_NOT_LESS_OR_EQUAL error in Windows 10.

Related: 6 Ways to Find Windows 10 Product Key


Which of These Solutions Worked for you?

With this, we come to the final part of the article where we discuss about which of these methods works for you. In this article, we have tried to feature all the possible solutions that will help you to fix IRQL_NOT_LESS_OR_EQUAL error in Windows 10 without giving you nightmares. 

Hopefully, the error will not scare you much after reading this article! If you face any confusion while following any of these solutions to fix IRQL_NOT_LESS_OR_EQUAL error in Windows 10, do let us in the comments section below. We will try to help as soon as we can.

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