How to Fix the Pink Screen of Death (with Pictures)

Pink Screen of Death

How to Fix the Pink Screen of Death (with Pictures)

The Blue Screen of Death (BSOD) is a relatively famous computer error for Windows Users. However, the screen of death can come in many colors, including an eye-catching pink! If you’ve recently started experiencing a Pink Screen of Death (PSOD), you might be wondering how to avoid it in the future. Let’s examine this error report and how to fix it.

What Is the Pink Screen of Death? What Does It Mean?

The PSOD isn’t as well-known as the BSOD because it’s a less common error. Blue Screens of Death occur when the computer encounters a STOP error, which is when it has a critical failure that requires it to stop all operations to protect its health and components.

Conversely, Pink Screens of Death occur when the computer encounters an error with the graphics card driver or the system overheats to the point where the CPU tells the system to shut down. They are not to be confused with a black screen, which could indicate the graphics card shutting down from overheating.

While the Blue Screen of Death is by far the most common, screens of death are actually color-coded and come in a variety of flashy shades that tell seasoned technicians what’s wrong by the hue alone. Colors besides blue are generally pretty rare. However, you may see screens of death in purple, brown, orange, and yellow, among other colors. Today, however, let’s examine how to fix the pink screen of death.

Step 1: Perform a Reboot

You want to start with an intentional, safe reboot. This process alone can clear up many issues with hardware or software compatibility. So, you may find that you don’t have to do more than restart your computer.

Open the start menu by pressing the Windows Key or navigating to the Start Menu button on your taskbar. 

pink screen of death
The Power Options button is in the bottom right-hand corner of the Windows 11 Start Menu.


Then select the Power Options in the bottom left-hand corner of the Start Menu.

Select Restart and let the computer do its thing. This process can take a few minutes if your computer has been experiencing errors. So, just give it time and be patient.

Step 2: Update Graphics Card and Display Drivers

Start by checking Windows Update to see if there are any necessary or recommended updates from Microsoft. You can do so by pressing Windows + I to open the settings window. Once you’re in the settings window, you want to search “Update” in the search bar.

Pink Screen of Death
The Windows Settings window is where you can change the configurations of your computer.


Open the update window and check for updates to see if your computer has any recommended updates from Microsoft. Then, just update your computer if necessary. However, if your computer isn’t showing any essential updates and you’re still getting a PSOD, you can try to update your device drivers manually.

Pink Screen of Death
Many people disable Windows Updates, which can cause hardware and software discrepancies.


To update your drivers manually, you’ll open your taskbar search menu and search “devices.” Open the Device Manager and find “Display Adapters.”

You can manually update drivers from the Device Manager window.


Right-click the device under “Display Adapters” and select “Update Driver.” Doing so will bring up this window.

The Windows 11 Device Manager.
Windows 11 uses the same device manager as previous versions of Windows.


Then, you just need to select “Search Automatically for Drivers.”

Step 3: Rollback Your Drivers

Suppose you’re still having problems with your computer throwing up Pink Screens of Death. In that case, ironically, the next step is to rollback your drivers, a fancy computer term for restoring your drivers to a previous version.

While it’s possible to rollback specific drivers, doing so can break other drivers you updated. So, it’s best to roll them all back together. You can do so using Windows Recovery. Open up your taskbar’s search feature and search for “Recovery.” Don’t select “Recovery Drive.” Choose “Recovery,” the recovery utility window in the Control Panel.

pink screen of death
Windows 11 has multiple options under “Recovery.”


Select “Open System Recovery” and follow those steps. Remember that System Recovery requires you to make regular images of the operating system from which you can recover. We recommend making a recovery image before you make any significant updates.

pink screen of death
Windows 11 System Recovery restores your Windows Operating System to a saved image.


Step 5: Observe System Heat

Using the Windows Task Manager, you can observe information like component utilization and heat records. Open your taskbar search and search for “Task Manager” to open it.

Then, navigate to the “Performance” tab. Here, you’ll see various statistics for different components, including the CPU, GPU, and RAM. If you have a discrete graphics card, it will monitor how hot it is running, making it easy to chart whether it’s overheating.

A good rule of thumb is that any temperature above 185°F (85°C) is too hot for your GPU. At this temperature, the card’s internal components and chipset are at risk of heat damage.

Step 4: Undo Any Overclocking

Pink Screens of Death can also indicate the system is overheating. If you’re the type to enjoy a little bit of friendly overclocking from time to time, it might be a sign you’ve pushed your system past its reasonable limits.

Use whatever method you used to overclock your components and revert them to their original state. You can even try underclocking them if your components are running too hot. After many years of use, a component may need to be underclocked even when it used to run smoothly at higher loads.

Step 5: Unplug Any Unnecessary Peripherals

You only need a keyboard, mouse, and monitor to run a computer. If you’re getting a consistent pink screen of death, you might want to try unplugging all your extra peripherals. Leave yourself with enough peripherals to operate the computer, but any dongles, headsets, speakers, and additional monitors must be unplugged. Start slowly adding them back and see if you can find one that triggers the PSOD.

Step 6: Clean Boot Windows

Clean Booting is a lot like starting Windows in Safe Mode, except it gives you agency over what programs you want to boot with. To Clean Boot, you’ll need to navigate to the System Configuration window. Open the taskbar search function and search for “msconfig.”

pink screen of death
Windows System Configuration allows you to change what services start when the computer boots.


Once you’re in the System Configuration window, you’ll want to navigate to the “Services” tab and check the “Hide All Windows Services” button in the bottom left-hand corner. Then select everything that’s left and hit “Disable All.” 

pink screen of death
Turning off non-Microsoft boot services is called a “Clean Boot.”


When you reboot with these settings, you’ll Clean Boot your computer. Once you’ve rebooted the computer in a Clean Boot state, you can start reactivating services individually to see if they trigger a PSOD.

Optional Step: Uninstall and Reinstall Software

You can try uninstalling and reinstalling the program if you get a Pink Screen of Death when using specific software, typically PC games and other graphically intensive tasks. Uninstalling and reinstalling the software can sometimes clear up hardware or software discrepancies.

Last Resort: Find a Technician

We can’t all be computer technicians. That would be terribly boring, honestly. If you’re not a computer technician, you probably don’t have the means to do the in-depth diagnostics needed to diagnose a persistent PSOD. If you haven’t been able to clear it up, there’s no shame in getting someone who knows better to do it for you.

Frequently Asked Questions

What is the Pink Screen of Death?

The Pink Screen of Death is a Windows and macOS error screen that appears similar to the famed Blue Screen of Death, except the background is a light pink with overlaid white typeface.

What is the Blue Screen of Death?

A Blue Screen of Death is a famous operating system-level error message that occurs when the operating system encounters a STOP error, which causes the computer to cease all operations instantly. It appears with a bright blue background overlaid with a white typeface.

What’s the difference between a Blue Screen of Death and a Pink Screen of Death?

A Blue Screen of Death is caused by a STOP error, while discrepancies in the graphics driver or overheating hardware cause a Pink Screen of Death.

How do you fix a Pink Screen of Death?

Pink Screens of Death can typically be remedied by updating or rolling back graphics drivers or lowering the clock speed on components. Just rebooting your computer can sometimes clear up the discrepancies causing a PSOD.

Are there different screens of death?

Yes! There are many different screens of death. These error screens are color-coded so technicians experienced with the errors being fixed can quickly identify the cause of a crash.

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