How to check the event viewer for bsod

Updated February 21, 2017

The "Blue Screen of Death" or "BSOD" is a blue error screen that appears on Windows PCs when the system encounters a critical error that forces the computer to restart to prevent possible damage to the system. Windows PCs are set to restart automatically when encountering a BSOD, which means there may be inadequate time to record error information. The Event Viewer is a tool built into Windows PCs that creates logs of significant events such as system errors.

Click "Start," type "Event Viewer" into the search box and then click "Event Viewer" in the search results. The Event Viewer will open.

Double-click "Windows Logs" in the pane on the left and click "Application," "System" or "Security." Microsoft provides information on what types of logs appear in each category (see Resources). If you have see a folder in the left pane called "Custom Views," double-click it and then click "Administrative Events."

Double-click any event in the pane on the right to view details about the event. Blue screen errors will be listed as "Error."


The Event Viewer creates logs of many system events that are not necessarily related to blue screen errors. If you experience a blue screen error you should check the Event Viewer immediately after restarting so that the event is at the top of the event logs. Otherwise the event might become "buried" by other logs, making it more difficult to locate.

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Gregory Hamel has been a writer since September 2008 and has also authored three novels. He has a Bachelor of Arts in economics from St. Olaf College. Hamel maintains a blog focused on massive open online courses and computer programming.