7 Ways to Fix Clock Watchdog Timeout Error in Windows 11

Discover effective steps to recover from any BSoDs

by Matthew Adams
Matthew Adams
Matthew Adams
Windows & Software Expert
Matthew is a freelancer who has produced a variety of articles on various topics related to technology. His main focus is the Windows OS and all the things... read more
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  • The Clock Watchdog Timeout Windows 11 blue screen error can arise because of faulty RAM modules, corrupted hardware drivers, or an overclocked CPU.
  • Windows 11 includes a few built-in system maintenance tools that can fix the Clock Watchdog Timeout error.
  • You might also need to check for device driver errors to resolve the issue for good.
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The Clock Watchdog Timeout error is a dreaded BSOD issue that can arise in Windows 11 and other Microsoft desktop platforms, and Windows 10 users often experienced the same issue.

When that issue arises, a blue screen appears, including a Clock Watchdog Timeout error message. One of our readers complained about getting a bluescreen with the error code Clock Watchdog Timeout very frequently, even multiple times a day.

This usually happens in the middle of working, not immediately after booting his PC. However, as the Clock Watchdog Timeout error forces a system to restart, it can be a serious issue if it occurs with regularity.

What is a Clock Watchdog Timeout error?

A Clock Watchdog Timeout error refers to the hardware in your system, specifically pointing out a problem with how your system and processor speak to one another.

The operating system informs the CPU when you instruct your computer to perform a task, pausing the processor to explain what is happening.

The Clock Watchdog Timeout blue screen error results from a nonresponsive or deadlocked CPU (central processor unit). Consequently, the processor stops processing interrupts.

What causes Clock Watchdog Timeout?

The clock watchdog timeout Windows 11 problem may be caused by a variety of factors, including:

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  • Updated drivers – Driver upgrades can occasionally introduce bugs, leading to strange behavior from the device.
  • Outdated firmware – The device’s inefficient firmware prevents it from operating correctly. Additionally, if a device isn’t working properly, it won’t be able to finish the task before the deadline.
  • Overclocking of the CPU – Sometimes, users raise the CPU’s speed or overclocking using BIOS settings to get faster output; however, this error may occur if the system cannot reach the required clocking speed.
  • System file issues – The system files may have problems preventing the system from accessing them, which may cause the BSoD failures.
  • Virus or malware in the System – The system’s effectiveness can be impacted by malware or infected files since they can damage crucial files.

How do I fix the Clock Watchdog Timeout error in Windows 11?

In this article

Before you go into any complex fixes, we recommend that you unplug all superfluous USB peripherals connected to your PC, like storage or DVD drives.

If the Clock Watchdog Timeout error doesn’t arise after that, one of the previously connected devices might have been causing the issue.

1. Run an SFC scan

1. Open Windows 11’s search utility by pressing the Windows key.

2. Type cmd in the search box, then click the Command Prompt’s Run as administrator option.

cmd-admin windows 10 apps close when minimized

3. Before running a system file scan, input this command and press Enter: DISM.exe /Online /Cleanup-image /Restorehealth

DISM-RESTORE faulting application path

4. Next, type the following system file command in the Prompt’s window and hit Enter: sfc /scannow

sfc-scannow explorer.exe class not registered

5. Wait until the scan is 100 percent complete and displays an outcome message.

The first fix we recommend for the Clock Watchdog Timeout error in Windows 11 is running the SFC scan. It can be done very easily with the help of the built-in command-line tool on your PC.

The SFC scan will check your PC for issues and fix them in no time.

Third-party software can also be very helpful here because it can perform this task for you.

2. Update Windows 11

  1. To open Settings more quickly, press the Windows + I keyboard shortcut. Then click the Windows Update tab.windows-update kernel auto boost lock acquisition with raised irql
  2. Press the Check for updates button on that tab.check-updates-w11 kernel auto boost lock acquisition with raised irql

3. Undo PC overclocking

Have you done any system overclocking with a dedicated tool? If yes, that might be why you need to fix the Clock Watchdog Timeout error.

So, undo any overclocking by restoring the settings in your overclock software to their default values.

4. Check for yellow driver error indicators in the Device Manager

  1. Right-click Windows 11’s Start taskbar button. Select Device Manager on the menu.
    Device Manager shortcut clock watchdog timeout windows 11
  2. Now look for any devices with yellow exclamation marks that indicate device errors.
  3. Right-click a device with a yellow exclamation mark and select Update driver.
    Update driver option clock watchdog timeout windows 11
  4. After that, select the option Search automatically for drivers.
    Search automatically for drivers option clock watchdog timeout windows 11

Scanning your PC with reputable third-party driver updater software is also recommended. A third-party driver updater such as Outbyte Driver Updater will list all your PC’s devices with antiquated drivers and update them automatically.

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5. Run the Windows Memory Diagnostic Utility

  1. First, click the magnifying glass icon on the taskbar, type the keyword Windows Memory Diagnostic within the search tool’s text box, and click Windows Memory Diagnostic to open its window.
  2. Select Restart now and check for problems.
    The Windows Memory Diagnostic tool clock watchdog timeout windows 11
  3. After that, Windows will restart. Wait for the Windows Memory Diagnostic tool to do its stuff.
  4. When Windows restarts, a Windows Memory Diagnostic result should appear. If it doesn’t, however, right-click Start and select Event Viewer.
     Event Viewer option clock watchdog timeout windows 11
  5. Select Windows Logs and System on the Event Viewer window.
  6. Click the Find option on the right side of Event Viewer.
    Find option clock watchdog timeout windows 11
  7. Type MemoryDiagnostic within the Find What box.
  8. Click the Find Next button.
    Find Next button clock watchdog timeout windows 11
  9. After that, you can view the MemoryDiagnostic result on the General tab at the bottom of Event Viewer.

If Windows Memory Diagnostic highlights a RAM issue, you might need to replace a memory module on your PC.

6. Restore Windows 11 to an earlier date

Note icon NOTE
Restoring Windows 11 to a restore point will remove software installed after the selected date. So, consider checking what software you’ll need to reinstall for a selected restore point by clicking Scan for affected programs in System Restore.
  1. Firstly, press the Windows and R keys both at the same time. Next, type this text into the Open box and press Enter: rstrui
  2. Choose a different restore point radio button if that option is available.
     The Choose a different restore point radio button clock watchdog timeout windows 11
  3. Click Next to proceed.
  4. Select the Show more restore points checkbox if System Restore displays that option. 
  5. Choose a restore point that will roll Windows 11 back to a time that predates the Clock Watchdog Timeout error on your desktop or laptop. Alternatively, select the oldest restore point date you can.
     System Restore window clock watchdog timeout windows 11
  6. Press the Next button to go to the final step.
  7. Select the Finish option to roll Windows 11 back to the selected restore point.

7. Update your PC’s BIOS

A BIOS (Basic Input Output System) update might be needed to resolve the issue if you’re utilizing an older PC.

To update the BIOS, you’ll need to download its latest firmware. Then, with a few steps, you will easily update your BIOS.

As a last resort, you can try reinstalling the platform. You can reinstall the OS with a Windows 11 USB flash drive. Alternatively, you may reset the platform.

The support section of Microsoft’s website also includes an informative troubleshooter for blue screen errors.

Tell us about your experience and the solution that worked for you in the comments below.

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