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Windows 10’s blue screen of death is going green for testers

by Killian Bell | December 29, 2016December 29, 2016 4:15 am PDT


Windows’ dreaded blue screen of death will soon be no more for Windows Insiders. With the latest preview release (build 14997), the BSOD has turned green supposedly to distinguish it from errors that occur in public Windows releases.

This isn’t the end of the BSOD, then. If you only ever use public Windows builds, you’ll see that dreaded shade of blue when your PC gives up on you and you’re forced to restart it. But those who are in the Windows Insider program will be treated to a GSOD instead.

The change was teased on Twitter by Microsoft employee Matthijs Hoekstra, who wrote, “Cool to read all the new features people discover in the leaked builds, but they missed a big change! Huge change! Curious when its [sic] found.”

That change was eventually discovered by @Chris123NT on Twitter, who “tried to force a bug check” and was greeted by the new error screen.

It’s not totally clear why Microsoft made this change for insider releases only, but The Verge suggests it could be so that it can easily distinguish preview errors from those that occur in public Windows releases.

Screenshots of the BSOD are regularly posted on social networks or in online forums as users seek help for the problems they’ve encountered. Making preview errors a different color will make it easier to identify them during the test phase.

Microsoft’s last major change to the BSOD included the introduction of QR codes that users can scan with their smartphone to find help for their issue.

Other changes in Windows 10 build 14997 include the ability to enable Cortana during the initial PC setup process, a blue light filter similar to that offered by apps like F.lux, app folders for the Start menu, and improvements to Microsoft Edge.

Chris123NT The Verge

Killian Bell

Killian Bell is a 20-something technology journalist based in a tiny town in England. He has an obsession with that little company in Cupertino...