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By kirchnet
#51441 I had the same problem with ESP12 and ESP1 and suspected a corrupt flash but changing the flash chip didn't eliminate exception loops after resets.
In the end I found that it has to do with reset and the USB to serial module. Somehow the reset pin doesn't fully reset the ESP module when the USB to serial adapter is connected, even when only you use only RX, TX and Gnd (and NOT Vcc) from the USB to serial adapter. When I disconnect the power from the Vcc pin of the ESP12 and then reconnect then I get a clean startup. Note that the Vcc pin of the USB to serial module is not connected to the ESP, so that is not the issue. Somehow power must creep through the RX/TX pins back into the ESP and and from there into the power supply.
Similarly when no USB to serial adapter is connected then the reset pin works as it should.