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Windows 8.1 + Network bridge + File sharing = memory leak


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I've recently come across a very nasty bug in Windows 8.1, specifically in its NDIS kernel driver (ndis.sys). Basically, when using network adapters in bridged mode and copying files from a file share, non-paged pool usage keeps rising with more files copied (Task Manager->Performance tab->Memory). Reboot is the only way to reclaim that memory.

I haven't seen anyone posting about this particular problem, the only known issue with similar symptoms occurs with outdated Ethernet Killer drivers.

I did find this: https://answers.microsoft.com/en-us/windows/forum/all/windows-10-memory-leak/4bbdd7a6-d6e1-46ab-8ea1-c2ee60361088
And this: https://support.microsoft.com/en-us/help/4025339/windows-10-update-kb4025339 (Addressed issue with memory leaks in the nonpaged pool with the "NDnd" tag, which causes the OS to crash.)

Windows Performance Toolkit confirmed that the leaks happen in ndis.sys and that the allocations have "NDnd" tag. The network adapter drivers can be ruled out since the only requirement is that the network adapters are part of the network bridge and the behavior can be consistently reproduced with different network adapters.

While I can't say with 100% certainty, it's likely the Windows 10 update article I linked speaks of the resolution of the same bug. It must have appeared in Windows 8.1 and was only later fixed in Windows 10. Latest cumulative update for Windows 8.1 does not address it.

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Great, Windows 10 1809 Build 17763.864 (haven't bothered with updates/upgrades on that machine) crashes as well when pulling large number of files from the share. I wonder if scenario involving network bridge and file shares at least works in Windows 7. Copy-pasting over Remote Desktop works either way, but it's silly to use that for file transfers.

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