The system detected an overrun of a stack-based buffer [FIX]

by Aleksandar Ognjanovic
Aleksandar Ognjanovic
Aleksandar Ognjanovic
Troubleshooting Expert
Aleksandar's main passion is technology. With a solid writing background, he is determined to bring the bleeding edge to the common user. With a keen eye, he always... read more
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The list of issues that can emerge on Windows 10 is incredibly long. However, even though there are a lot of them, the big majority is quite rare and chances are you’ll never see any of them.

One of these errors, the “System detected an overrun of a stack-based buffer in this application” is scarce but can go as far as preventing your PC to boot after a BSOD.

But, no worries, you can resolve it with some effort. The steps we provided below should be enough.

Fix ‘System detected an overrun of a stack-based buffer in this application’ error

  1. Scan for malware
  2. Run SFC/DISM
  3. Perform a clean boot sequence
  4. Repair with system resources
  5. Repair with a bootable drive
  6. Reinstall Windows 10

Solution 1 – Scan for malware

As you’re already aware, the full error prompt is “The system detected an overrun of a stack-based buffer in this application. This overrun could potentially allow a malicious user to gain control of this application“.

As you can see, Windows is suggesting that a certain application allows meddling with code (stack smashing) which allows injecting malicious code into your application.

That’s why we suggest scanning for malware. Of course, if you’re unable to boot, you can try with the Safe mode and utilize Windows Defender Offline scan to remove all threats.

Here’s what you need to do:

  1. Reboot your PC forcibly 3 times to summon the Advanced recovery menu.
  2. Choose Troubleshoot.
  3. Select Advanced Options and then Startup settings.
  4. Click Restart.
  5. Choose Safe Mode (or Safe Mode with Networking).
  6. Once the PC boots, open Windows Defender from the taskbar’s notification area.
  7. Choose Virus & threat protection.
  8. Select Scan options.
  9. Toggle Windows Defender Offline scan and click Scan defender offline scan

Also, consider uninstalling all suspicious applications from Control Panel while in the Safe mode.

Solution 2 – Run SFC/DISM

For this step, you’ll need the Safe Mode with Networking as Deployment Image Servicing and Management utility requires the internet connection.

Even though System File Checker doesn’t, we’ll need to run both tools to fix possible system corruption. They work best when combined and that’s why we’ll run them successively.

Follow these steps to run SFC and DISM:

  1. Enter Safe Mode with Networking.
  2. Open Command Prompt as admin.
  3. In the command line, copy-paste the following lines and press Enter after each:
    • sfc /scannowsfc
    • DISM /online /Cleanup-Image / ScanHealth
    • DISM /Online /Cleanup-Image /RestoreHealth
  4. After it’s done, reboot your PC.

Solution 3 – Perform a clean boot sequence

Another viable step to resolve issues invoked by a rogue application is a clean boot. It’s quite obvious that one of the applications which starts with the system is corrupted and thus causes the “System detected an overrun of a stack-based buffer…”.

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So, what we’ll need to do is prevent all third-party applications from starting with the system. If you can boot into the system without issues, even better. But if you can’t, then Safe Mode it is.

Follow these instructions to disable all background applications and services from starting with the system:

  1. In the Windows Search bar, search for msconfig and open System Configuration.
  2. Under the Services tab, check the “Hide all Microsoft services” box.
  3. Click “Disable all”.
  4. Now, select the Startup tab and go to Task Manager.
  5. Prevent all programs from starting with the system and confirm changes.
  6. Restart your PC.

Solution 4 – Repair with system resources

On the other hand, if you’re even unable to get into the Safe Mode, you can try with the system recovery options. Of course, the best available solution is System Restore, but the question is have you set a restore point.

An alternative solution is to try and repair the startup. We can’t say with certainty whether these will help, but you can always give them a try.

Here’s what you need to do:

  1. Access the Advanced Recovery menu and choose Troubleshoot.
  2. Choose Advanced options.
  3. Here, you can select System Restore or Startup repair.
  4. Try one then the other and hopefully, you’ll be able to boot.

Solution 5 – Repair with a bootable drive

If you’re completely unable to boot, this and the next step will require a bootable media drive. Obviously, you’ll need an alternative PC to download Media Creation Tool and create a bootable drive.

Once you’ve done that, there’s a way to repair the current system image by using the bootable drive.

Follow these steps to repair corrupt Windows 10 with a bootable media drive:

  1. Unplug everything from your PC apart from the mouse and keyboard.
  2. Insert the bootable media drive (USB or DVD) and boot with it.
  3. Once the drive boots, choose “Repair your computer“.
  4. Choose Troubleshoot.
  5. Select Advanced options.
  6. Choose Startup repair.

Solution 6 -Reinstall Windows 10

Finally, if none of the previous steps helped you address the problem, we encourage you to back up your data and reinstall Windows 10.

We’re probably looking into a large-scale problem and, although reinstallation can be a drag, it’s a definitive solution.

It’s not as time-consuming as it was on some previous iterations, the majority of drivers are automatically installed, and all you need to do is reinstall applications.

You can find out more about Windows 10 reinstallation by following the steps we provided in this article.

Also, don’t forget to tell us whether you find these steps helpful or not. In addition, please share alternative solutions. The comments section is just below.

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