#FridayHacks: How to Fix Blue Screen of Death


One of the most upsetting moments is when you are busy on your Windows 10 PC, it turns the Blue screen of death on you.

If you get the Blue Screen Of Death when upgrading, the installer will take you back to the original operating system. From there, you have to run the upgrade installer again. You will not be stuck with a half installed Windows 10. But installation files will be there on your C: Drive that you’d need to clean before running the upgrade again. You will have to delete all files in Software Distribution folder under Windows folder. You will also have to remove Windows~BT folder from C Drive.

After deleting these files, go to the BIOS (press DEL while booting up) and enable UEFI Boot before trying to upgrade again. It would be better if you use the installation media provided by Microsoft to upgrade. The in-place upgrade takes too much time and might again cause a problem. Just go your original operating system.

Then run Setup.exe from the installation media you created. It should help you get around BSOD while upgrading to Windows 10.

Checking info on BSOD

Blue Screen of Death while Booting Windows 10

There are two scenarios when booting Windows 10. In the first scenario, you can access the desktop while in the second, the Blue Screen of Death won’t even let you reach the desktop and you are stuck in a loop of computer restarts.

The main reasons why BSOD appears are:

  1. Some Windows driver causing conflict or
  2. Some Windows Update gone wrong. If the latter is the reason, you have to remove and block the update that caused Blue Screen of Update.

Click on Advanced and then on View Installed Updates. See the date of the updates and remove the ones installed on the date after which, the BSOD is appearing. If removing the updates fixes the problem, block the update from reinstalling itself.

If the problem is a driver update, you need to see if any drivers were installed lately. The process is same as above. You will see driver updates in Installed Updates. But after removing the update, I suggest you block automatic driver updates from Microsoft. Using a third party tool that allows you to select the driver version is better. That way you will be playing it safer.

BSOD reboot loop prevents access to Desktop

If you are stuck in a Blue Screen of Death reboot loop, Windows 10 will automatically go into the Repair mode after a while. From there, use the System Restore facility to fix the issue. Click on System Restore and select a date/point before you started getting BSOD. System Restore will restore your computer to a prior time, removing any changes made to your computer by Windows Update. It will not affect your files.

Blue Screen of Death while working on Windows 10

The causes can again be a Windows Update, a device driver update or a recently installed hardware. To make sure the updates are the reason, use the method explained above to isolate problem update and then block it.

If you installed any hardware recently, shut down your computer and remove the hardware. Then boot and go to Device Manager (WinKey+Break). If the hardware is still listed there, uninstall it. Reboot to see if the issue is fixed.

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