The Blue Screen of Death: What Do I Do?
I have had a few people lately asking me (why do I get the blue screen of death? BSoD), so I thought I would do an article about this and share it with the rest of you.
The first thing I tell them is You don’t need to panic, no harm has come to your computer, and this is just Windows way of telling you that something has happened to disrupt the normal function of your Operating System. And in doing so, this will give you a chance to fix the problem before anything bad can happen.
The worst thing that could have happen to you is that if you where working on a document, or downloading some files or such, you more than likely lost that data. 🙁
So the first thing to do (if you haven’t already) is to reboot your system and say a little prayer that it won’t happen again. For most cases just by rebooting Windows will fix the error, but if it happens again you might want to find out what is causing this annoyance.
What the Blue Screen of Death has to say:
Reading the BSoD will give you some information as to what has happened and why, but when it comes to letting you know just what did it and how to fix the problem, no such luck unless you are real tech savvy, and can understand Kernel Code.
But before you go and call the computer repair shop, let’s take a look at the screen and see if it is a simple solution that you can fix. Now most cases of the BSoD are caused by malfunctioning device drivers and Kernel Modules, and in the instants of a Kernel error you won’t see a Blue Screen, your computer will just restart itself without any warning, and fix itself. But in the case of a device driver, this you will need to fix yourselves.
How to interpret the Blue Screen of Death
The first sentence tells you that the computer shut down due to a problem windows encountered, and then on the next sentence it will tell you to restart your computer if this is the first time, if it shows again after the restart it will you a description of what caused the failure, and then followed by another paragraph under the heading Technical Information, where it will give you the technical term of the problem and this is where it begins to make no sense at all.
Now if it is a piece of new hardware or software that is causing the problem, the drivers might be out of date or not compatible to your current Operating system. In this case uninstall it and see if that has fixed the problem. If it did then all you have to do is find the most current driver and install it, and you should be all set to go. You can find some free software like (Drive booster) that will help you to find and download the most current drives.
What do I do now?
Now if what was there makes no sense at all don’t panic yet, we still have some things to try. When Windows stops and gives you the BSoD it also stores the information about the problem into a file called the crash dump or mini-dump file, this is where you can get the most detailed information about the error so you know where to fix it. The only thing is it’s a little hard to decipher.
So what we are going to do is download a program called (BlueScreenView), which will help in deciphering the problem.
When you run this program it is going to scan your entire mini-dump files that where created by Windows when the problem accrued, from there it will display the mini-dump file name, the time and date of the crash, and the basic information from the BSoD. It is also going to give you the details of the driver or module that caused the crash such as (file name, product name, file version and description), which will give you a much better understanding of what caused this, and what to fix.
And if that didn’t help, whats next:
Now if that didn’t help we have one other method to try, before you call the repair shop, and that is another program to download called (WhoCrashed). This program will analyze your dump files and tell you what drivers are most likely to be causing the problem. It also will give you suggestions on how to proceed along with links to websites on the internet that will help you further in troubleshooting and fixing the problems.
Now if none of this has worked for you, I guess it might be time to call the repair shop. Or you can drop me a line explaining the problem and will be more than happy to look into finding the fix for you, so don’t hesitate to ask any questions that you have. You can do so in the comment box below.
If you have found this helpful, why not share it with your friends, and if you aren’t doing a regular maintenance program on your computer or other devices, you should, this will help to avoid problems like this from showing up, and it will also keep your computer running like new. So why not check out my article on Computer Maintenance and find out how easy it is, without costing you a dime.