Find out the meaning of a blue screen of death

All Windows users, at some point of their lives, have experienced a BSOD. The first time you see one it’s kind of terrifying, but as you get used to the system’s up and downs you realize it’s not that terrible. In fact, the worst thing about blue screens of death is actually understanding what they mean and using that information – on Google, mainly – to find a solution.

Find out the meaning of a blue screen of death

Here’s when BlueScreenView comes in handy. This little standalone app recovers the dump file generated by any BSOD you’ve had lately and displays it again, so that you can take a deeper look at the displayed message, look it up on Google and hopefully find out what’s wrong with your computer. BlueScreenView can display the blue screen as it appears, or simply as a list of failed drivers, which is probably easier to manage.

Oh, and in case you’re wondering how I tested this program: no, I didn’t wait for the BSOD to happen. I managed to provoke it myself with a quick Registry hack. So if you ever want to have a blue screen on demand (I wonder why, but hey, that’s your business) this is what you have to do:

1. Open the Registry editor (Start menu > Run > regedit.exe)
2. Browse to HKEY_LOCAL_MACHINE\SYSTEM\CurrentControlSet\Services\i8042prt\Parameters
3. Now go to Edit > New > DWORD Value and name this new value ‘CrashOnCtrlScroll’
4. Double click the newly created value and enter ‘1’ in the Value Data field. Click OK.
5. Close the Registry editor and restart Windows
6. When the system has restarted, press and hold the Ctrl key on the right side of your keyboard and then press the ScrollLock key twice. Tada! Your BSOD is ready.

Note: As fas as I know, this Registry hack works only on Windowx XP.

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