Last Updated on October 6, 2016
I have talked about BSOD errors in the past, and CLOCK_WATCHDOG_TIMEOUT is one of them. Just like the DRIVER_IRQL_NOT_LESS_OR_EQUAL, or DROVER_POWER_SATE_FAILURE, these kinds of errors are generally caused by some driver or hardware failure.
These can, for the most part, be solved by removing a new hardware component or some driver that you may have recently installed.
Check the Device manager for any device listed with a yellow triangle as shown in the image below.
If yours looks something like this, then fixing the CLOCK_WATCHDOG_TIMEOUT error can be fixed by simply installing the device driver for the component that it is missing.
To do that, right-click on the device with a yellow triangle and select Update Driver Software and let Windows do its job of finding the correct driver automatically. This is, of course, for those of you who are getting a yellow triangle on a listed device.
If you don’t have the problem mentioned above, maybe the four I have listed below are the culprits.
Reasons for CLOCK_WATCHDOG_TIMEOUT error
- Unstable overclock
- Faulty BIOS settings, or
- Hardware fault
- Outdated BIOS
These three are all based on your hardware configurations. To fix the CLOCK_WATCHDOG_TIMEOUT error, you can try solving them one by one.
Unstable GPU Overclock
If you have overclocked, there are pretty good chances that it is not stable because you are getting this error. Though you may not be getting graphical artifacts, or other crashed in your games, it is quite known that setting the CPU or GPU clock to the default fixes this problem.
Fixing the unstable overclock is quite simple as moving a few sliders. Turning down the GPU core and memory clock will most probably fix this. To do that, you will need an overclocking utility that will allow you to manipulate the values of the GPU. The one I use is MSI Afterburner.
- Download and install the MSI Afterburner.
- In the main window, on the bottom, click on the Reset button. This will set the core clock, voltage and memory clock to the factory settings for the GPU you are using.
- Now, click on Apply and minimize the MSI Afterburner.
After following the above steps, restart your PC and hope that the CLOCK_WATCHDOG_TIMEOUT error won’t show up again.
Faulty BIOS settings
Once you have set the GPU clock to its default, it’s time for you to do the same thing with your CPU. The CPU’s voltage and core clock settings are present in the BIOS. Now, every manufacturer has it’s own BIOS, so listing a generalized guide here is not possible. You can use the video listed below for the steps to reset the BIOS.
Since we are talking about hardware and drivers, chances are, that it is the RAM or the CPU that is faulty. Its good to take a look at them. You can verify the integrity of the RAM installed on your PC with the help of memtest86. The memtest86 guide at Wikihow is really great, so I won’t rehash everything there.
For the CPU, try doing a small stress test using something like prime95.
Test the CPU with Prime95
- Download prime95 on your PC and extract it to a folder on the Desktop.
- Open prime95.exe.
- On the menu bar, go to Options and then Benchmark.
- Let that run for at least 15 minutes. Open the Windows Task manager. You will see the CPU usage spike to 100%. That is normal when Prime95 is benchmarking.
- After 15 minutes, if you don’t get any blue screen or crashes, this means that your PC is now stable.
Though it is quite unlikely, there are still some chances that an outdated BIOS is causing the blue screen on your PC. To fix this, you can try updating the BIOS by using the official firmware from the motherboard manufacturer.
Now, every manufacturer has its own process for updating the BIOS on their hardware, I can’t give you a generalized guide on this site. To counter that problem, I’m linking the official support pages of the five major motherboard manufacturers available on the market. Check their guides and if you find trouble in anything, hit the comments section below.
That’s it, folks. If you face any problem in following any guides listed here, or have any other problem, use the comments section to let me know.