The output from dmesg is often useful for determining which hardware is detected on a given system but it is also very useful for looking at hardware errors such as when wifi interface won't work or when a a hard drive is about to die.

I would very much like to learn about a Windows alternative to read kernel messages of that sort. I imagine It could be useful in determining the cause of the bsod in some cases.

2 Answers 2


There is the system error log ("eventvwr.msc"), but it's not as descriptive as dmesg. There's also C:\BOOT.LOG, where available.

  • I will have to look closer at that viewer thing. Doesn't look very useful right-off. Nov 11, 2012 at 5:19
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    Linux generally has better messages than windows because there is the possibility of the user hacking the source and fixing it. A lot of Windows stuff fails silently or opaquely. Having said that, eventvwr offers a link to the Knowledgebase for an error message which is often quite good.
    – pjc50
    Nov 12, 2012 at 9:33

see wevtutil and Sysinternals' psloglist

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    Specifically wevutil qe system /f:Text /rd | more is probably the closest command-line equivalent for the Windows System log. But the messages are not as informative.
    – LawrenceC
    Oct 2, 2015 at 15:19

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