What can cause a Blue Screen of Death?

Madalina Dinita
by Madalina Dinita
Former Managing Editor
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The Blue Screen of Death is one of, if not the most, dreaded and well-known errors that a Windows user can encounter. It has been with us for quite some time now, and not even upgrading to Windows 10 didn’t save us from it.

However popular the Blue Screen of Death (BSOD) may be, there are still plenty of users out there that don’t know what causes it.

The truth is there are many reasons why BSOD errors occur, but suffice it to say that it is caused by critical hardware and software issues.

What are the main causes of BSOD errors?

1. Outdated Operating SystemWindows banners

Sometimes, BSOD errors can be caused by issues with low-level software running in the Windows kernel. This is something that can be solved by updating your Windows with the latest features that Microsoft dishes out from time to time.

If you want to keep your OS updated to the latest version, but don’t know how, check out this detailed guide.

2. Outdated Drivers

This issue links somewhat to the one mentioned above. While old drivers don’t have an active role in causing BSOD error per se, their interactions with your OS do.

Whenever you do update your Windows OS, your old drivers can conflict with the new OS, and can even cause BSOD errors.

That is why keeping them updated is mandatory, and you can find out more on how you can do this by following this detailed guide.

3. Malware

Normal everyday apps and programs can usually encounter errors, but when they do, they will simply shut down without taking the entire system with them.

However, the same thing cannot be said about computer viruses. This malicious code can wreak havoc on your PCs registries, instantly causing BSOD errors, and even system wipes.

Fortunately, there are plenty of antivirus programs out there that are very good at getting rid of these threats. One perfect example of this statement is Bitdefender, rated the world’s Nr. 1 antivirus program.

4. Bad hard driveshard drive

One of the most popular causes of BSOD errors is having a bad hard drive. This means having your files written badly on the hard drive, but also having a hard drive that is visibly damaged.

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If you encounter plenty of reading and writing errors when copying or installing new programs, or you frequently see errors marked as cyclic redundancy checks, then you should know that a BSOD error is imminent.

If you want to avoid BSOD errors caused by faulty hard drives, your best bet is to buy a new one, especially if yours is already old or filled with bad sectors.

For a wide selection of the best hard drives that money can buy, check out this article.

5. Improper connections

The hard drive isn’t the only computer component that can cause BSOD errors. Improper cable management or misfitted slots of several other components can also cause these issues, especially the RAM.

Thus, it is a good idea to always check that everything is properly placed before booting your PC. This is especially the case when you’ve just changed a few components, or built a new PC from scratch.

6. Overclockingoverclock

While this may sound like a severe blow for gamers, overclocking your PC can also cause BSOD errors. You basically push your PC components to function beyond their designed limit on a constant basis.

So unless you are frequently gaming, or are doing it for a living, setting your PC back to its factory settings is the better option in the long run.

7. Overheating

The prime consequence of overclocking is the overheating of your PC components. Of course, other things can cause a rise in temperatures, such as high ambient temperature, a slow fan, an insufficient number of fans, and more.

Not only will cooling down your PC spare you from BSOD errors, but you will also increase the lifespan of your PC by quite a lot. If you’re having issues with your CPU fan, check out this detailed guide on how to fix the issue as soon as possible.

Closing thoughts

As you can see, there are quite a lot of things that can cause the dreaded BSOD errors. Of course, if you know what to do beforehand, you can greatly reduce the chance of them appearing.

And even if BSOD errors do occur, all is not lost since there are plenty of solutions that you can try to remediate the situation.

Did you find this article to be useful? Let us know in the comment section below.

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