Windows NT BSOD "C" Variation (occurs on every single version of NT including 11)

theOneHAL9000

New Member
Hello,

After playing around in a Windows XP VM, I noticed a very peculiar type of BSOD that I like to call a CBSOD due to it only occuring with bugcheck codes that start with a C. From NT 3.1 all the way to Windows 7, it basically looked like this:
1641853700615.png

Unlike the normal XP-7 BSOD, this one is rather shorter, and doesn't contain any of the "user friendly" help tips. It is also rather different than the standard pre-XP NT BSOD, which had extra technical information. Occasionally, it would also display a paragraph of tips on Win2k and older.

When the BSOD was redesigned for Windows 8, this stop screen was changed to a more standard one, however still remained different by only displaying the "c" error code rather than the standard underscore error description, as seen below:

1641854130242.png

This continues to this day in the latest builds of Windows 11.

And despite attempting a lot of research, I cannot seem to find out what makes these "C" bugchecks different. They're included in the MSFT bugcheck reference as any other normal bugcheck. I just don't understand why the BSOD screens for them have historically been different ever since the first version of Windows NT. I'm guessing the C errors all have something in common internally, but I'm not sure why it warrants differences in BSOD. Here are all the "c" bugchecks:
1641854687833.png

From this, it looks like they are specifically related to corrupt/missing file issues. However there are other bugchecks that deal with file issues, such as "MISMATCHED_HAL", as well as the "SESSIONX_INITIALIZATION_FAILED" bugchecks. And they are rather standard.

So, I'm not sure exactly what is the difference between these bugchecks and others that warrants such a difference in every version of NT. If anyone here knows, I would appreciate it. Not sure why, but my curiosity is peaked over this little difference in BSOD design.
 
Last edited:

Josephur

Windows Forum Admin
Staff member
Premium Supporter
Microsoft Certified Professional
It's possible that if the system detects the 0xC000021A it doesn't bother trying to load any further resource strings to define the issue, as most likely the drive is not operating properly, or file system is corrupted. Trying to load further information or define it may cause even further instability that may hang the system before it can even display a proper blue screen. Therefore it just displays what it can and leaves it at that. Better some information than none. This is complete theory from me by the way :D
 
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