Full Fix: Unexpected Kernel Mode Trap [Windows 10]

by Ivan Jenic
Ivan Jenic
Ivan Jenic
Troubleshooting Expert
Passionate about all elements related to Windows and combined with his innate curiosity, Ivan has delved deep into understanding this operating system, with a specialization in drivers and... read more
Affiliate Disclosure
  • An UNEXPECTED_KERNEL_MODE_TRAP is a problem that appears in the BSoD, and it is mainly caused by a bad or outdated driver.
  • The logical consequence would be to update the drivers with a specialized tool that you can find below, and it should fix the problem.
  • You can also try using one of our recommended repair tools specifically for these problems if the error still gives you no peace of mind.
  • However, as a last resort you can perform certain operations in Command Prompt by following the steps below, so keep reading!
How to fix the UNEXPECTED KERNEL MODE_TRAP error in Windows 10

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Although many users remain loyal to Windows 10, it doesn’t mean that they are exempt from issues and the Unexpected Kernel Mode Trap error seems determined to plague the Microsoft OS.

Now, we already established that one of the issues users are experiencing on Windows 10 is the UNEXPECTED_KERNEL_MODE_TRAP error. But why does that happen in the first place?

What does the kernel do and where does it turn into a trap? To begin with, this is a Blue Screen of Death error that is caused by hardware failure or by an incompatible driver.

If you didn’t have any of these issues on previous versions of Windows, then the issue is probably the incompatible driver. But there is more to it, so let’s have a closer look at the potential Unexpected Kernel Mode Trap causes.

What causes Unexpected_kernel_mode_trap?

A trap basically alters your OS mode by driving it to a kernel-based routine. Thus, instead of matching control with the executed process, the OS sets a higher priority on the execution of that process compared to user code.

As expected, bad drivers are the most common reason behind the UNEXPECTED_KERNEL_MODE_TRAP error, but there can be other factors that trigger the kernel’s failure such as:

  • Faulty RAM modules
  • Malware or virus infections
  • Malfunctioning peripherals or hardware incompatibility
  • Unsupported, outdated, or incompatible software plugins, or SSD firmware
  • Poorly coded programs
  • Corrupted system files or other data files that are damaged or broken

In other words, any files that fail the kernel’s integrity or compatibility checks can trigger the Unexpected Kernel Mode Trap on any version of Windows, including Win 11.

In some cases, this error can be caused if your component connectors are covered in dust, so you’ll need to remove them and clean them properly before connecting them again.

If your PC is under warranty or you don’t know how to fix it, it’s best to hire an expert to do the job for you.

But if this issue started appearing after you’ve switched to Windows 10, it’s most likely a driver issue, so let’s see how to fix it.

UNEXPECTED_KERNEL_MODE_TRAP can be an annoying error, and users reported the following issues as well:

  • Unexpected Kernel Mode Trap wdf01000.sys, win32kfull.sys, usbxhci.sys, nvlddmkm.sys, ntfs.sys, ndu.sys, netio.sys – In most cases, this error comes followed by the name of the file that is causing it. The most common cause is a certain driver or third-party software.
  • Unexpected Kernel Mode Trap overclock – This error can also appear when overclocking your PC. To fix it, it’s advised to remove all overclock settings.
  • Unexpected Kernel Mode Trap ESET Smart Security, AVG, Avast, McAfee – According to users, this error can be caused by your security software. Many users reported this issue while using AVG, Avast, and McAfee.
  • Unexpected Kernel Mode Trap RAM – Hardware issues can also cause this problem to appear. In most cases, the cause for this error is your RAM.
  • Unexpected Kernel Mode Trap after Windows update – In several cases, users reported this problem after a Windows update. To fix this problem, you’ll need to uninstall the problematic update.
  • Virtualbox Unexpected Kernel Mode Trap – This issue can appear on your PC, but it can also appear while using virtualization software. Users reported this issue on both Virtualbox and VMWare.
  • Unexpected Kernel Mode Trap BSOD – This error is always followed by a Blue Screen of Death and a restart. Even though this is an annoying problem, you should be able to fix it with our solutions.


  1. Use a repair tool
  2. Run the BSOD Troubleshooter
  3. Remove the problematic driver
  4. Run the a scan
  5. Run DISM
  6. Disable uninstall your security software
  7. Install the latest updates
  8. Use chkdsk command
  9. Remove your graphics card driver
  10. Check if your cables are properly connected
  11. Check your RAM
  12. Reset Windows 10

1. Use a repair tool

When the UNEXPECTED_KERNEL_MODE_TRAP error occurs in Windows 10, the best solution is to use a specialized repair tool.

Restoro repair

Restoro is powered by an online database that features the latest functional system files for Windows 10 PCs, allowing you to easily replace any elements that can cause a BSoD error.

This software can also help you by creating a restore point before starting the repairs, enabling you to easily restore the previous version of your system if something goes wrong.

This is how you can fix registry errors using Restoro:

  1. Download and install Restoro.
  2. Launch the application.
  3. Wait for the software to identify stability issues and possible corrupted files.
  4. Press Start Repair.
  5. Restart your PC for all the changes to take effect.

As soon as the fixing process is completed, your PC should work without problems, and you will not have to worry about BSoD errors or slow response times ever again.

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Disclaimer: This program needs to be upgraded from the free version in order to perform some specific actions.

2. Run the BSOD Troubleshooter

  1. Open the Settings app, and go to the Update & Security section.
  2. Select Troubleshoot from the menu on the left.
  3. Select BSOD from the right pane, and click on Run the troubleshooter.
  4. Follow the on-screen instructions to complete the troubleshooter.

The Windows 10’s own troubleshooting tool can be used for dealing with various system problems, including BSOD issues. So, it might help with the UNEXPECTED_KERNEL_MODE_TRAP issue, as well.

3. Remove the problematic driver

  1. Go to the Start Menu, and click the Restart button while holding Shift on your keyboard.
  2. In Advanced Startup select Troubleshoot.
  3. Go to Advanced Options, and choose Startup Settings.
  4. You should see an option to enter Safe Mode.
  5. When you enter Safe Mode, go to Device Manager.
  6. Locate the problematic driver, right click and choose Uninstall.
    uninstall device driver manager

This issue can be caused by all sorts of drivers, but some users claim to uninstall your Bluetooth, Wireless, & Intel RST(Intel Rapid Storage Technology).

We have to warn you that this issue can be caused by another driver, it doesn’t have to be related to Bluetooth or Wireless drivers, but they are often the main causes of this issue.

Searching for drivers on your own can be time-consuming. So, we advise you to use a tool that will do this for you automatically.

Using an automatic driver updater will certainly save you from the hassle of searching for drivers manually, and it will always keep your system up to date with the latest drivers.

A professional tool will help you update drivers automatically and prevent PC damage caused by installing the wrong driver versions.

 Get DriverFix

4. Run a SFC scan

  1. Right-click the Start Menu button, and open Command Prompt (Admin).
  2. Enter the following line, and press Enter: sfc/scannowsfc
  3. Wait until the process is done (it may take a while).
  4. If the solution is found, it will automatically be applied.
  5. Now, close the Command Prompt and restart your PC.

The SFC scan is another troubleshooter we’re going to try here. This is a command-line tool that scans your system for potentially broken files and repairs them (if possible).

Repairing corrupt system files can resolve BSOD issues like the UNEXPECTED_KERNEL_MODE_TRAP error. So, running the SFC scan is definitely worth trying.

5. Run DISM

  • Standard way
  1. Right-click Start and open Command Prompt (Admin).
  2. Paste the following command and press Enter: DISM /Online /Cleanup-Image /RestoreHealthsfc
  3. Wait until the scan is finished.
  4. Restart your computer and try updating again.
  • With the Windows installation media
  1. Insert your Windows installation media.
  2. Right-click the Start menu, and choose Command Prompt (Admin).
  3. In the command line, type the following commands and press Enter after each: dism /online /cleanup-image /scanhealth dism /online /cleanup-image /restorehealth
  4. Now, type the following command and press Enter: DISM /Online /Cleanup-Image /RestoreHealth /source:WIM:X:SourcesInstall.wim:1 /LimitAccess
  5. Make sure to change an X value with the letter of the mounted drive with Windows 10 installation.
  6. After the procedure is finished, restart your PC.

Deployment Image Servicing and Management (DISM) is a tool that re-deploys the system image all over again. This can resolve various issues, including BSOD errors.

6. Disable uninstall your security software

Sometimes third-party antivirus software can cause this problem to appear. Your antivirus can interfere with your Windows installation, and in order to fix the problem, you need to disable your antivirus.

If disabling the antivirus doesn’t fix the issue, you might have to uninstall it. To completely remove your antivirus, it’s recommended to download a dedicated removal tool for it from the developer’s website.

If removing the antivirus fixes the issue, you can reinstall your antivirus or switch to a different antivirus solution. You can also use Windows Defender instead of a third-party antivirus.

Several users reported that Avast was the problem on their PC, but keep in mind that almost any antivirus software can cause this problem to appear.

7. Install the latest updates

  1. Open the Settings app, and navigate to the Update & security section.
  2. Now click on Check for updates button.

Windows will now check for available updates. If updates are available, Windows will download them in the background and install them.

If you’re getting UNEXPECTED_KERNEL_MODE_TRAP error on your PC, you might be able to fix it by installing the latest updates, so be sure to try that.

8. Use chkdsk command

  1. Press the Windows Key + X, and choose Command Prompt (Admin), or PowerShell (Admin).
    cmd admin
  2. Type the following command, and press Enter: chkdsk /r c:chkdsk
  3. You’ll be asked to schedule disk checking the next time you restart your PC. Enter Y and press Enter.
  4. Restart your PC and your computer will automatically perform chkdsk scan.

Some users reported that the UNEXPECTED_KERNEL_MODE_TRAP error occurred while playing League of Legends.

According to then, you might be able to fix it on your PC simply by running a chkdsk scan. This error can occur due to corrupted files on your hard drive, but you should be able to fix it by following the above steps.

Keep in mind that you might have to scan other drives on your PC besides C in order to fix this problem, so be sure to perform the task when needed.

9. Remove your graphics card driver

According to users, your graphics card driver can be the cause of this error. Several users reported this issue with the latest Nvidia drivers, and according to them, the solution is to revert to the older drivers.

To do that, simply remove the Nvidia driver from Device Manager. If you want to remove all files associated with your graphics card, check out our tutorial on how to use Display Driver Uninstaller.

After removing the driver, Windows will install the default driver once you restart your PC. Now check if the issue reappears with the default driver.

Keep in mind that Windows 10 can sometimes update your driver automatically in the background causing the error to reappear.

However, you can easily prevent Windows from automatically updating certain drivers.

10. Check if your cables are properly connected

Some users also reported that the UNEXPECTED_KERNEL_MODE_TRAP error was caused by their hardware. Their connectors weren’t firmly in place, but after properly connecting loose cables, the issue was resolved.

In addition to cables, be sure to check if your RAM is firmly locked in its slot. Few users reported that RAM can be the problem so double check it to see if it’s properly seated.

11. Check your RAM

Faulty RAM is a common cause of Blue Screen errors. However, you can test your RAM to determine if it’s faulty.

The simplest way to do that is to remove all but one module from your PC and check if the issue reappears. Now you need to repeat this until you test all modules.

However, if you want to perform a detailed scan, you’ll need to use a tool such as Memtest86+ to test your RAM. Keep in mind that you need to test each module individually.

To perform a detailed scan, you need to keep the test running for an hour or so for each module.

12. Reset Windows 10

  1. Go to the Start Menu, and click the Restart button while holding Shift on your keyboard.
  2. In Advanced Startup select Troubleshoot.
  3. Click on Reset this PC, and choose Remove everything.
  4. You might be asked to insert your installation media to proceed to the next step, so be sure to have it ready.
  5. Choose your version of Windows.
  6. Select Only the drive where Windows is installed, and choose Just remove my files.
  7. Now you’ll see the list of changes that reset will perform. Once you’re ready to start, click on Reset.
  8. Follow the on-screen instructions to complete the reset.

After finishing the reset, you’ll have a fresh installation of Windows 10 and your problem should be resolved.

If the problem still appears, you might have to reset your PC. This process will delete all files from your system drive, so be sure to back them up.

In addition, you might need a Windows 10 installation media to complete this process, so create it with Media Creation Tool.

If you’re trying to upgrade to Windows 10, you can delete these drivers on your current operating system, and then upgrade in order to avoid these issues.

We hope we cleared the situation for you with this article, and you managed to solve your problem with the UNEXPECTED_KERNEL_MODE_TRAP error.

If you have any comments or questions, just reach to the comment section below.

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