One of the worst things that could happen to your PC is to get the dreaded blue screen of death (BSOD). This problem can be pretty annoying and worrying since there is a good chance that it will prevent you from even reaching your desktop screen.
Sometimes the blue screen of death won’t even tell you enough information about why such an error occurred. Fortunately, it’s easy to narrow down the cause of BSOD and, in most cases, fix it even if you have little experience with computer troubleshooting.
What Causes the Blue Screen of Death?
The blue screen of death typically occurs when your screen suddenly gets a blue background, a sad face drawing, and several stop code lines. But, what could have caused this error in the Windows Operating System?
Below are some of the common causes of BSOD:
1. Hardware Glitches
2. Incorrect Windows Update or an Outdated Operating System
3. Damaged or Corrupted Setup Files
4. Device Driver Issues
In some cases, if you incorrectly put new hardware, especially the RAM, into your PC or laptop, it can also result in a blue screen of death. The easy fix is to attach them properly and make sure the RAM card is firmly seated on the motherboard before trying to boot your PC again.
How to Fix the Blue Screen of Death
Encountering a blue screen of death is not a death sentence for your PC or laptop. Most of the time, it can easily be fixed, and you still will be able to access your data. However, some conditions can be a little problematic.
Below are some simple steps on how to fix the blue screen of death issue:
Restart Your Computer
Most of the time, your computer reboots itself whenever it encounters a BSOD.
However, there are cases that it won’t restart itself. If you experience the latter, try the power reset cycle by manually pressing and holding your PC or laptop’s power button until it shuts down. Then, please switch it on again. Hopefully, you can boot normally, or you would have to try other options if the BSOD shows up again.
Disconnect Non-Essential Peripherals
If you have a newly installed device connected to your computer before the black screen of death occurred, try unplugging them. In some cases, these devices might not be compatible with Windows 10.
Consequently, you might want to remove other non-essential peripherals such as the Micro SD, USB disk, external hard drives, printer, and other USB devices. Then, reinstall the drivers. Try rebooting the computer again and see if it solved the problem. Note that you can only do this fix if you can log in to your desktop after the BSOD incident.
Uninstall Incompatible App or Program
One of the common reasons why the blue screen of death occurs is that you may have recently installed an incompatible Program or App. If after getting the blue screen of death and you can reboot into your desktop, here is what you should do:
- On your computer’s desktop, click the Windows Start button at the lower left part of your screen. Then open Settings before clicking Apps.
- Next, go to Apps and Features. Then, select the app that you think might have caused the problem or the most recent one you have installed.
- After which, click the Uninstall button.
If more than one App or Program is causing the problem, you might have to repeat the process.
Activate Windows Automatic Repair
If the blue screen of death persists after several restarts and you’re stuck on a loop, then it’s time to bring in Windows Automatic Repair. To activate this built-in recovery feature, you need to power reset your PC thrice until the splash screen turns into a blue screen with the text Automatic Repair.
You can see from the screen that you have two options: Restart and Advanced Options. We will use the latter conducta BSOD repair. Next, follow these instructions:
1. Select the Advanced Options, then choose Troubleshoot.
2. Next, select Advanced Options before going into the Startup Settings. The page will then tell you the changes that Windows will implement, such as entering Safe Mode and enabling boot logging.
3. Click the Restart button, and Windows will restart. However, you will not get the usual starting routine and instead will be taken into a screen with a few Startup Settings.
4. There are nine options in the Startup Settings. Choose the sixth one, which says Enable Safe Mode with Command Prompt. You can also press the number 6 on your keyboard to execute the command.
5. It will then bring you to a Windows environment but in a Safe Mode. In the Command Prompt window, type “sfc/scannow” (without the quotation marks). Windows will then scan your computer’s system files for any corrupted data before fixing it.
6. After Windows finished scanning and repairing the files, select the Windows button and click Restart. There’s a good chance that everything will be fixed; if not, proceed to the next step.
7. If you are still getting the BSOD, repeat steps 1-4. On the command prompt window, try inputting “chkdsk C: /f/r/x” (without the quotation marks). This command will tell Windows to check the disk for any corrupted data.
8. Wait until the computer finishes repairing your disk. Once it reaches 100-percent completion, restart your computer.
By far, this is one of the most straightforward fixes you can do to get out of the blue screen of death loop.
BONUS: Turn Off Automatic Restart
Whenever your computer encounters a BSOD problem, it usually restarts as a default troubleshooting option. However, once you reboot, you will never see the error code, which is crucial in fixing the problem since it tells you the exact cause of the error.
Hence, we must turn off the automatic restart option to better cope with a blue screen of death occurring in the future. The following steps will show you how to prevent the blue screen of death rebooting your PC automatically:
1. At your computer’s Home Screen, locate the Search Bar and type in “Control Panel.” Click the first result. Then, head over to System.
2. Next, select Advanced System Settings. Click the Startup and Recovery tab.
3. Uncheck the Automatically Restart Option before clicking OK to confirm.
These steps will allow you to better diagnose the actual cause of the blue screen and take the necessary actions instead of guessing.
Extra Steps to Deal With Blue Screen of Death
If, after reading this guide and you still haven’t fixed the issue, you need to take note of the error message that flashes during the blue screen of death. Next, contact your manufacturer or computer repair centers and let them fix the issue for you. Hopefully, an update or a simple workaround can fix the problem.