BlueScreen of Death Screen Saver 3.2

Who says Microsoft can't laugh at itself? The company just released BlueScreen version 3.2 -- the latest version of a screen saver that mimics Windows' dreaded "Blue Screen of Death."

It not only authentically mimics a BSOD, but will simulate startup screens seen during a system boot, according to posts on the site.

"BlueScreen cycles between different Blue Screens and simulated boots every 15 seconds or so. Virtually all the information shown on BlueScreen's BSOD and system start screen is obtained from your system configuration -- its accuracy will fool even advanced...developers," the site says.

The screen saver runs on Windows XP, Windows Server 2003, Windows NT 4.0, Windows 2000 and Windows 9x (it requires DirectX). On Windows XP and Windows Server 2003, it presents the XP/Server 2003 startup splash screen with progress bar.

On NT 4.0, it simulates chkdsk reports of disk drives with errors, while on Win2K and Windows 9x it presents the Win2K startup splash screen, complete with rotating progress band and progress control updates.

The latest version of BlueScreen is available on Microsoft's Sysinternals site on TechNet here.

About the Author

Stuart J. Johnston has covered technology, especially Microsoft, since February 1988 for InfoWorld, Computerworld, Information Week, and PC World, as well as for Enterprise Developer, XML & Web Services, and .NET magazines.