How to Check the Event Viewer for BSoD

By Jacob Michael

The dreaded "Blue Screen of Death" has appeared and you’re at a loss to explain what’s causing your computer to crash. To help you pinpoint the cause of the BSoD, use Windows’ built-in logging tool, the Event Viewer, which automatically tracks everything that happens on the computer. Since it may be difficult to comb through hundreds of thousands of log entries, use the program’s custom view feature to narrow down your search.

Step 1

Press and hold “Windows-X” to open the Quick Links menu screen.

Step 2

Click “Event Viewer.” The Event Viewer window appears, displaying a lot of logged information about your computer's software and hardware.

Step 3

Click the “Create Custom View” link in the Actions pane.

Step 4

Select a time range from the Logged menu. You can also specify a time range by selecting “Custom Range” and selecting “Events On” in the From and To menus.

Step 5

Check the Error check box in the Event Level section.

Step 6

Click the “Event Logs” menu next to the By Log option, click the “Windows Logs” check box and then click the "OK" button.

Step 7

Enter a name for the custom view and click the “OK” button. The Event Viewer automatically loads the new filtered view.

Step 8

Click the “Date and Time” header to sort by date.

Step 9

Look at error events around the time of the BSoD. To further examine an event log, double-click on it and click the "Details" tab.

Tips & Warnings

  • Information in this article applies to Microsoft Windows 8.1. It may vary slightly or significantly with other versions or products.