The dreaded blue screen of death

I just turned on my computer today and got the BSOD while windows was loading up. I could only get into safe mode and a system restore did zip. I noticed that while I was getting this the temperature on my computer was higher then normal for booting up. After trying to boot up 5 times I finally got windows to load up normally.

So does anyone have any ideas or is this a geek squad call?

Sounds like something is overheating. Are you getting any odd video errors?

On Windows XP and Vista, the BSOD is almost always caused by either a bad driver or a hardware failure (usually RAM, in my experience, but it could be anything). Have you updated any drivers lately?

If you can boot into safe mode, you should start by reinstalling all your drivers. You should also look at the Event Viewer and note any errors it reports.

I haven’t updated anything myself in over a month, there was a windows update that ran automatically last week. I haven’t seen any kind of weird video issues yet. Where do I find the event viewer?

As for drivers, just video or do I need to run through everything?

Event Viewer can be found via Control Panel -> Administrative Tools -> Event Viewer.

You should look at all drivers, but from my experience the video card is the usual culprit.

You can test out your ram by testing each dimm individually.

This just happened to me this weekend. The second video card that World of Warcraft has destroyed, hehe. First it started as Bod every now and then with no effect on WoW, then WoW stopped working. I had to buy a new video card and replace the old one.

I looked at the event viewer and I see the service control manager and DCom were causing an error as I was trying to boot.

Any specific information in the description area?

the temperature on my computer was higher then normal

Sounds like something is overheating.

Case closed, Sherlock! ;)

The following boot-start or system-start driver(s) failed to load:

DCOM got error "This service cannot be started in Safe Mode " attempting to start the service EventSystem with arguments “” in order to run the server:

It may be from working at internet support at Comcast, but a lot of those drivers sound like they are related to the NIC or network drivers.

Seem to be the ones that show up everytime I boot up.

One other oddity , a family member was on the computer at least an hour and half before me and they said that it was working fine, even faster then normal.

Safemode will not load up any drivers. Did you only get the driver error eventd after running safemode?

What version of Windows are you running? When this happened to me in the past, I generally took the following steps:

  1. Uninstall your graphics card drivers from inside safe mode. Then try booting in normal mode. Typically if safe mode boots, it’s graphics-card related, because safe mode just uses the standard VGA driver. If this doesn’t work, it could also be related to networking/TCPIP conflicts – can you boot into “safe mode with networking”? If not, move on to the next step.

  2. Go into your BIOS before boot, reset to defaults. See if Windows boots. If it does, try changing any BIOS settings you had before to what you wanted them to be (one by one!), and figure out which of them is the cause. If this doesn’t do anything, move to #3.

  3. If it’s XP, boot to CD and do a repair install. If it’s Win7/Vista, you can do a dynamic update from inside safe mode, which is basically the same thing as the repair install in XP. All your settings, drivers, etc, will be maintained, but it will essentially replace all windows system files with vanilla ones. This is the easiest way out, honestly.

one last thing: If you have an internal network adapter that is not built into the motherboard, move it to a different PCI slot, if you’ve determined networking to be the cause. This may also fix a networking issue as it will force the BIOS to assign the network card a different resource address.

That’s a weird thing to say. Are they an aspiring overclocker who experimented with RAM/CPU speeds until the damn thing stopped booting? That would explain the heat.

Coming from a casual computer user, that could mean anything from “Facebook is loading faster because you installed Chrome” to “I stopped all your porn torrents to speed up the new WoW patch” to “the computer is more responsive because it is in Safe Mode following a sudden crash to bluescreen.”

Also guy, you can always try the “Last Known Good Configuration” option from the same menu that you pick Safe Mode from. It only works maybe ten percent of the time, but it also only takes a couple minutes to try.

I don’t think he has that option anymore, now that’s already done a system restore to no avail.

If you are on XP:

Go here.
Download and install Debugging Tools for Windows.
Run Windbg.
Set the Symbol File Path to:


*(It might just be the url, it’s been a while)

Open Crash Dump
Browse to c:\Windows\minidump
Open the file with the time stamp from the BSOD.
Wait a tick.
Click on !analyze.
Google the stuff that stands out.

It makes sense that you’d have that opinion, since you apparently read every post in this thread.

Also, the DCOM thing isn’t what’s causing it, so ignore it.

I did try running safe mode with networking and it caused the same thing. This is the second time I’m back up now so far at least. I’m on windows XP SP 3

I really hope this isn’t a video card issue as it’s the second one I’ve gotten from Newegg.

Re: family member no way it was them, they basically know the basics. I’ll run that debugging tool later, it’s starting to thunder pretty bad here and I don’t want to add fried computer to my list of problems.