Change the color of Blue Screen of Death (BSOD)

If visually impaired, then the Blue Screen of Death (BSOD) can be difficult to read with its white text on blue background. It is possible to change the color of the BSOD by adding these lines to the 386enh-section of the System.ini-file in the Windows-folder:

[386enh]
;COMMENT The following 2 lines makes the screen black and the text white
MessageBackColor=0
MessageTextColor=7

Color codes available:
Code (Hex)Color
0black
1blue
2green
3cyan
4red
5magenta
6yellow/brown
7white
8gray
9bright blue
Abright green
Bbright cyan
Cbright red
Dbright magenta
Ebright yellow
Fwhite
More Info MS KB90740

Updated: 24 September 2007

Comments:

  1. Comp9 says:

    Does not seem to work with Windows XP and above.

  2. Benjamin B says:

    Sad face :(

    I wanted orange background, so I could have an OSOD (oh, sod).

    Bugger!

  3. EP says:

    this tip only works under Win95/98/ME. the tip never worked on an NT-based Windows OS because the pre-defined BSOD colors are "hard coded" into the NT OS Kernel files (ntoskrnl.exe, ntkrnlpa.exe, etc.) and would require some editing or modifying those NT OS Kernel files in order for NT-based Windows OSes to display different BSOD colors.

    see this interesting blog in japanese:
    http://blog.livedoor.jp/blackwingcat/archives/972493.html

    and check out these blogs by Mark Russinovich on changing BSOD colors on NT-based versions of Windows:
    http://blogs.technet.com/b/markrussinovich/archive/2011/01/11/3379158.aspx
    http://blogs.technet.com/b/markrussinovich/archive/2010/12/14/3374820.aspx
    there's a tool called NotMyFault which allows changing the BSOD color. the newest version of NotMyFault only works on Windows XP and newer and not older versions of Windows.

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