The Blue Screen of Death (BSoD), also known as the stop error, is a system crash error that appears on your Windows 10 PC. A Green Screen of Death will appear on Windows Insiders’ PCs running Preview builds of Windows 10. (GSoD). A BSoD is obviously not something you want to see on your Windows 10 PC, as it usually means bad news for you. You might want to see how well your Windows 10 PC recovers after a BSoD, or you might want to see how an app handles a system crash if you’re a developer. Oddly enough, Microsoft has instructions on how to modify your Windows 10 PC’s Registry to enable a keyboard shortcut to force a BSoD.
In this guide, we’ll show you how to trigger a Windows 10 BSoD on-demand.
Before we begin, I must emphasize that editing your Registry can result in permanent and irreversible errors on your Windows 10 PC. Before attempting any of the following steps, make a backup of your computer. Additionally, this procedure will only work on Windows 10 PCs with a Scroll Lock key on a PS/2 or USB keyboard. Let’s get started now that that’s out of the way.
Related: How to Reduce Windows 10 Startup Delay to Speed Up the Computer
How to trigger a Windows 10 BSoD on-demand
Here are the ten steps you must take:
- Type in “Regedit” in the Windows 10 search bar
- Once you see the “Registry Editor” app pop up, click run as administrator.
- Go the following path: HKEY_LOCAL_MACHINESYSTEMCurrentControlSetServiceskbdhidParameters
- Right-click on the right panel, select New, and select “DWORD (32-bit) Value.”
- Name the new DWORD “CrashOnCtrlScroll” and press Enter.
- Double-click CrashOnCtrlScroll and change its hexadecimal value from 0 to 1.
- Click OK to confirm the new value.
- Go to the following path: HKEY_LOCAL_MACHINESYSTEMCurrentControlSetServicesi8042prtParameters
- Repeat Steps 4-7
- Restart your computer to apply the new Registry settings.
All you have to do now is repeat Steps 3 and 8 and delete the “CrashOnCtrlScroll” DWORD from both paths to remove the keyboard shortcut that causes a Windows 10 BSoD. Using the same steps in your Registry Editor, you can cause a BSoD in Windows 7 and Windows 8.1.
After completing these steps, hold down the right Ctrl key and press Scroll Lock twice on your keyboard to intentionally cause a Windows 10 BSoD crash. The keyboard shortcut sequence will force Windows 10 to run a KeBugCheck and generate a 0xE2 error, which will display the BSoD screen as well as the message “MANUALLY INITIATED CRASH.” Your Windows 10 PC will also create and save a crash dump, which can be used for debugging purposes in the future if necessary.
Using the Command Prompt
Alternatively, you can use the Command Prompt to cause a BSoD (or GSoD) on your Windows 10 computer. It’s a quicker method that doesn’t require you to change any registry settings. A Windows 10 BSoD (or GSoD) can be triggered in three steps:
- Open Command Prompt, and choose “Run as administrator”
- Type in the following command: TASKKILL /IM svchost.exe /F
- Press Enter
When you press Enter, the BSoD (or GSoD) error screen appears. The BSoD or GSoD you’re seeing means that the command line you typed forcibly killed a critical process required for Windows 10 to function properly. Please note that TASKKILL is not available in Windows 10 Home editions; instead, TSKILL is used. One might wonder why anyone would want to force the Windows 10 BSoD to appear on their computers.
For starters, some developers may use the BSoD to track down the source of a problem they’re having with their custom-built Windows 10 PC. Developers may also need to initiate a BSoD to test an application’s resiliency following an unexpected restart. Otherwise, it’s a fun way to prank a family member or friend.
Related: How to Disable Automatic Driver Update on Windows 10