Windows 95/98

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System Tools

Automatic Skip Driver Agent (ASD)

Filename

ASD.EXE

File Location

[rootdrive]\WINDOWS

INF File Associated

No

How To Launch

MSInfo or Start Run - ASD

What is ASD?

The Automatic Skip Driver Agent (ASD) identifies potentially dangerous failures that are known to cause Windows 98 systems to stop responding and marks the driver so they are bypassed on subsequent startups. This change came about from one of problems in Windows 95, lockup during the boot process. ASD also identifies hardware that fails to respond when tested by Windows 98 startup.

ASD can be launched two different ways:

  1. From within MSInfo
  2. Start Run ASD

How ASD Works

ASD is one of the more powerful tools in Windows 98 to see what is current wrong within the software. When Windows 98 boots, it attempts to load all device drivers required for the installed hardware. If a device failed to start ASD tracks the device load failure. ASD will make the driver as a problem device and give the user an opportunity to stop the driver from loading on the following reboots. The areas which ASD will watch are:

  • Setting a graphics device power state
  • Video BIOS POSTing
  • Video BIOS POSTing upon returning from Standby
  • Calling a VESA BIOS
  • Getting the PCI IRQ routing table
  • Enumerating a device
  • Starting a device
  • Calling a PnP BIOS
  • Calling a PCI BIOS
  • Mapping Address Space

ASD maintains a registry key which denotes whether a device is currently enabled. The key record value is set to 00 then the driver loaded properly. If the value is 01 then the device failed initialization and the driver load was halted.

Note: Remember, there is no reason to edit the registry. There are several more tools available in Windows 98 which will allow for you to modify the registry correctly, such as Scanreg. Again, registry editing is not an acceptable practice while troubleshooting Windows 98 issues.

How to use ASD

When a device appears disabled in MSInfo or Device Manager with a code of 11 then try using ASD to load the driver again. To do so try these steps:

  • Run ASD from within MSInfo or from Start Run
  • Add a check mark in the box next to the device or devices failing
  • Reboot the system

 

 

If the driver works then it will be enabled within the Device Manager and also will no longer show up in the Problem Devices area in MSInfo. You should be able to test the device in some manner to verify that the device is functioning properly.

If the reboot does not fix the problem then try these steps next:

  • Change or update the driver
  • Verify resources used. If incorrect then change the resources and reboot
  • Remove the device from Device Manager and reboot
  • Rerun ASD and read the details which appear for the device

Points to Remember

  • ASD is used to detect device drivers that fail to load on startup
  • You can launch AS two ways: from within MSInfo or Start Run
  • ASD tracks deice load failures by identifying the specific devices(s) that failed to enumerate when Windows 98 starts
  • It is possible that the customer will need to upgrade a driver which ASD continues to have a problem with