Personal Computer Support From Marc Fowler

ByMarc Fowler

Fixing my own laptop: Bad_Pool_Header after disk clone

I had to repair my own laptop this morning. It loaded Windows XP with no problems, but the moment I clicked the ‘Start’ button, I received a ‘Blue Screen Of Death’ with the error BAD_POOL_HEADER – STOP 0x00000019. After restarting the Dell Latitude D610 I experienced the same thing again. These types of error messages stop you using the computer at all and usually suggest a problem with one the of computer parts (hardware) or a driver (the code that makes the hardware work)

Now, I must admit the problem was partially self inflicted. It only happened immediately after cloning my hard drive. This means making an exact copy to a brand new laptop hard drive, by hooking both up to another machine with the required software. Only after fitting the new hard drive to the laptop did I experience the problem.

I replace the hard drive in my work computer, regardless of how it is performing, every couple of years. I do this to reduce the chances of problems caused by an ageing hard drive. Even though I know all my data would be safe in at least two other places if my hard drive failed, it would still be very inconvient and more work to resolve. I usually find computers are a little quicker with a new drive as well.

The program I use to clone hard drives is Acronis Migrate Easy 7.0. It has saved quite a few failing drives since I’ve had it and avoided many more. This is the first time I have had a problem with it.

After investigating the error, I found other people have experienced the same BAD_POOL_HEADER error after making a hard drive clone. Many people only experience it when carrying out backups in future that rely on the Volume Shadow Copy Service. I didn’t get as far as that, with mine crashing as soon as I clicked ‘Start’.

I found many possible solutions to this Bad Pool Header error but after careful reading, decided which one was worth me trying. I cannot guarantee it will work for others experiencing this error and certainly would not recommend attempting it if you do not understand what you are doing. It is, however, something I would like to share with the world.

The solution I tried went on the assumption that Acronis had failed to copy certain drivers successfully. Other users had found the drivers for their hard drive or drives were corrupted on the new drive. The following article on the Acronis support site explains the issue, with step by step instructions: The steps could only be carried out in Safe Mode, as of course, the computer crashed every time ‘Start’ was clicked when running Windows normally.

Basically, the solution was to find the corrupted drivers within Windows XP’s Device Manager and remove them. By uninstalling the corrupted Storage Volumes drivers, Windows XP is forced to reinstall them on the next restart. The Storage Volumes drivers do not appear automatically, so a little work is required first, depending on the current settings in XP. Anyone attempting this fix may find the following article on the Microsoft support site helpful:

Having looked at the Storage Volumes drivers, I could tell they were affected as their names were not correct. After removing them and restarting, Windows XP proceeded to reinstall the required drivers. After a second restart, I found I could click ‘Start’ without any crashing. I’m pleased to say it solved my problem and my laptop is now running some hard drive checking tools, just in case there are any other issues.

About the author

Marc Fowler administrator

I am an independent computer expert working in the Woodbridge area of Suffolk. I mainly support home users but also help local small businesses. I have been trading as FowlerWeb Computer Support since May 2005.