What is the Blue Screen of Death?
If you’ve been hit with the iconic Windows error screen, you may be looking for how to fix “the blue screen of death.” Typically, this error message indicates that something is critically wrong with your computer. One of the positives of the blue screen is that within all the jumbled words, there is valuable information; the screen does actually state the errors that are occurring, even if you do not understand them. The blue screen can be the result of an array of issues that may be handled at home or may take more advanced efforts to combat. Below are some ways to troubleshoot the issue at home before bringing your machine into iKURE.
Typically if a computer is blue screening, you must enter safe mode to troubleshoot because the blue screen blocks access to your desktop and control panel. To attempt any part of the following list, you must turn the computer’s power off. Restart the computer, while simultaneously pressing the F8 key, before the Windows screen appears. This will bring up the computer’s advanced options screen. Scroll through the options list until you reach “safe mode with networking” and enable that option. If you are unable to connect to the Internet or you think a virus from the web may be causing your issues, choose “safe mode” instead.
Steps to Fix the Blue Screen of Death
Once in safe mode, you can try the following tasks to find a solution to the blue screen of death:
- Scan for Malware: Use your antivirus application to scan for malware and remove it. Some malware can only be removed in safe mode because in normal mode there are background tasks that can interfere with the antivirus program. Even if you do not have an antivirus program installed, you should be able to download one through safe mode.
- Uninstall Any Recently Installed Software: Faulty software could be the cause of your blue screen. A recently installed software can be uninstalled from the control panel in safe mode. Once removed, the computer should reboot automatically. If this was the underlying issue, then the computer should turn on normally and the blue screen will be gone.
- Update Drivers: If hardware drivers were causing system issues, downloading updated drivers from the manufacturer’s website can be an easy fix. Oftentimes a blue screen will make a computer unstable, which is why this hardware must be downloaded in safe mood.
- Look for Unordinary Downloads: Reboot the computer again and press F8, this time selecting “enable boot logging” from the options list. This will log every detail of the boot-up into a text file called “ntbtlog.txt”. Open this text file and look through what is loading and at what times. There is a possibility something will appear out of the ordinary. If there is something you do not want downloading, uninstall it to see if that fixes the issue.
- Whether A Crash Occurs: If your computer works fine in safe mode, it’s likely there is a software issue causing crashes. If the computer continues crashing in safe mode, this can signal a hardware issue. This information can be valuable in detecting the underlying issue.
- Run System Restore: In the options list choose “system restore.” A system restore will restore your computer to an earlier state, hopefully, one where the computer was running properly and at its best. It will give you a list of dates and times to restore back to. One of the dates should be when the computer was first set up.
If your computer is able to function at all when the blue screen appears, the first action you take should be backing up any documents, pictures, and applications you have saved on your computer. Afterward, it is highly recommended that you bring your computer to a professional to completely eliminate the source cause of the critical error.
For most people, the blue screen error marks the end of a computer’s life, but don’t give up! If you are unable to solve the issue, bring your computer into to iKURE and we’ll be able to take a look in order to professionally fix the blue screen of death on your PC. Just bring you and let one of our three convenient locations, in Hewlett, Oceanside, and Massapequa and our tech gurus will be happy to help you remediate your computer issue.