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Origin of BSOD - Wallace B. McClure

Wallace B. McClure

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Origin of BSOD

Do you know the origin of term BSOD aka “Blue Screen of Death”?  Well, the term “Blue Screen of Death” was not the original acronym for BSOD.  The original term meant the “Black Screen of Death” and was seen when running under Windows 3.0.  A user would attempt to run a DOS application and instead of the DOS application running, the entire screen would turn black with a blinking cursor in the top left hand corner of the screen.  The system was hung and would need to be rebooted.  So, that is the what, what about the when and the where.  The term came from ..........are you ready.........Coca-Cola in Atlanta, GA.  Coca-Cola IT was trying to roll out Windows 3.0 within the Global Marketing group.  When the users would try and run WordPerfect, sometimes, the user would get the BSOD.  This occurred in the summer of 1991.  I went out to Novell in 1994, I think, and the Novell developers wanted to meet me because they wanted to know about my boss, a man named Ed Brown.  Well, the Novell developers asked me a lot of questions about Ed.  I finally asked why, and they said that they wanted to know about the guy that coined the term BSOD.  Apparently, he was famous within Novell because he would just scream about the BSOD and nobody at Novell knew what he was talking about for the longest time.....................

Wally

Comments

Lotas said:

Interesting. i love hearing about these little things that come up in windows all the time. like the fact that NT was originally named after a risc chip being developed by Intel, and then renamed to New Technology after the chip deid. anyway, interesting...
# February 22, 2004 6:23 PM

Cameron Reilly said:

nice anecdote! I always thought it sounded like an appropriate title from an episode of Dr WHO.
# March 7, 2004 7:00 AM

_NRN_R_Tora said:

How do you write the blue screen of death any way? Im a so called white hacker an this is the start of my training. This is my best program...

NOMAINWIN
NOTICE "You pc is dead"
KILL C:/Windows/explorer.exe
END
# May 1, 2004 7:33 PM

Marco U said:

I started saying it back in the early-mid 90s, I originally called it the ASCII Blue Screen of Death because of the character type that was on the screen. i'm not saying it caught on from Ottawa Ontario, but i had never heard anyone say it before. i'm not trying to lay claim to it, i just remember being REALLY surprised it seemed to be part of excepted vernacular a few years after i started saying it.

# August 16, 2010 2:58 PM

Craig LaMonte said:

Love these kinds of tidbits....great to read.

# November 16, 2010 5:01 AM