Kernel Panic Screensaver! | Doomlaser

Kernel Panic Screensaver!

So awhile back I was thinking, “You know what would be funny? A screensaver that fakes a kernel panic!”

For those of you who might never have seen one, a kernel panic is basically the most shocking crash that you can get on a Mac. It’s Apple’s equivalent to the famed Blue Screen of Death.

What a great way to play a prank on someone, or frighten yourself.



So here is the end result, a harmless screensaver that faithfully emulates the horrifying experience of a kernel panic. It comes complete with a misleading Quartz Composer Preview so that the effect is all the more terrifying.

Update: KPSaver is now 64-bit and compatible with Mac OS X 10.6 and above. Legacy users can download the old version here.

If you enjoy KPSaver, please consider supporting it with a PayPal donation.

Download KPSaver

Say hi to @Doomlaser on Twitter

89 Responses to “Kernel Panic Screensaver!”

  1. A Prank Kernel Panic Screen Saver for Mac OS X – IOS FRIEND Says:

    […] Grab KP Screensaver from the developer home […]

  2. Stage a Fiasco with a Prank Kernel Panic Screen Saver for Mac OS X Says:

    […] Grab KP Screensaver from the developer home […]

  3. How to BLOW UP YOUTUBE !!! - Up All Knight # 5 - Skeptic.live | Skeptic.live Says:

    […] Kernel Panic Screensaver: http://doomlaser.com/kernel-panic-screensaver/ […]

  4. utah Says:

    <3

  5. utah Says:

    awesome it made me think that i had the black screen of DEATH!!!! 😛

  6. Doomlaser’s Kernal Panic Screensaver | MacRiot Says:

    […] to the folks at Doomlaser, you can now add a prank Kernal Panic screensaver to your collection of screensavers. If you’ve been fortunate enough never to […]

  7. Gertrudis Brewbaker Says:

    Ok WOW, great preview image! That really had me fooled for a second, i tried redownloading 😛

  8. Degru Says:

    My ENTIRE school has macs. You can see where this is going.

  9. Dr. Awesome Says:

    thank you, thank you, thank you! Where do I send a bottle of scotch!?!?

  10. Peter Says:

    Thanks for updating this for 10.6 onwards! 😉

  11. April Fools Fun | Heftel Family Says:

    […] If you’re interested downloading the screensaver, it can be found here. […]

  12. Tobias Says:

    I want it for Snow Leopard too. Please.

  13. AMY Says:

    en mi compu no agarra se bloquea i es mac ox

  14. emmanuelvq Says:

    Snow Leopard version please!!!!!!!!!!!!

  15. Spitzen Mac Freeware: Kernel Panic Screensaver : EinGrafikbüro Says:

    […] das war eigentlich auch nur eine Frage der Zeit: ‘Kernel Panic Screensaver‘ ist ein Bildschirmschoner der den Absturz eines Macs unter OS X simuliert. Ganz nett und […]

  16. David Says:

    Hey, I was wondering if you could release a version for Snow Leopard (10.6). I loved this screen saver on leopard, an I want to keep using it. Thanks!

  17. john hart Says:

    Okay, so bribery time. What would it take to get you to recompile this little beauty to be Mac OS 10.6 compatible? I find that the world just isnt quite as awesome now that this gem isnt compatible.

  18. Para los maquer@s aburrid@s « Says:

    […] Emula un Kernel Panic (nunca vi uno real, quizás esta sea la forma de poder verlo) […]

  19. Para los maquer@s aburrid@s « topemac Says:

    […] Emula un Kernel Panic (nunca vi uno real, quizás esta sea la forma de poder verlo) […]

  20. computerprogramer325 Says:

    haha! this fooled the apple store!it was insane!!!!

  21. computerprogramer1 Says:

    haha! this fooled the apple store!

  22. ΒΑΡΙΕΣΤΕ ΕΔΩ Η ΛΥΣΗ | MacUse.net Says:

    […] Fake a Kernel Panic […]

  23. nevyn Says:

    Aww, it’s broken on Snow Leopard 🙁

  24. Tim Says:

    Any chance to compile this in 64 bit so it will work on 10.6.4?

  25. Joey Says:

    Can you update this for Mac OS X Snow Leopard? It won’t run. Thanks!

  26. Charlie P. Says:

    Dude make a version for snow leopard! I want to freak out my parents XD

  27. Seinfeldfan7898 Says:

    It wont work on my computer for some reason.

  28. EnUfor Says:

    won’t allow me to install

  29. WillyG78 Says:

    In reply to Tony
    *What exactly causes a kernel to panic?*

    When someone steals his secret recipe and sells it on ebay 😉

    Finger Lickin Good!!!!

  30. WillyG78 Says:

    >

    >
    >

    When someone steals his secret recipe and sells it on ebay 😉

    Finger Lickin Good!!!!

  31. ITSGOODBUTNOTGOOD Says:

    This thing is awesome but I got fired by my boss when I put this on his computer. That’s too bad for me….

  32. MacBug.de » OT: Kernel Panic hausgemacht Says:

    […] kostenlosen Download gibt es hier. Bookmark ablegen Diese Icons verzweigen auf soziale Netzwerke bei denen Nutzer neue Inhalte […]

  33. Spitzen Mac Freeware: Kernel Panic Screensaver » RANDPOP Spitzen Mac Freeware: Kernel Panic Screensaver Says:

    […] das war eigentlich auch nur eine Frage der Zeit: ‚Kernel Panic Screensaver‚ ist ein Bildschirmschoner der den Absturz eines Macs unter OS X simuliert. Ganz nett und […]

  34. [Mac] Screensaver ala Kernel Panic » Blog Archive » [Mac] Screensaver ala Kernel Panic Says:

    […] als lustig, deshalb rate ich gerade Mac-Usern mit Herz-Problemen: Bitte nicht diesen Screensaver: Kernel Panic Screensaver! installieren […]

  35. otheroom Says:

    This reminds me of an application that was floating around in OS 9. When it was run you’d get the little restart dialog window with the bomb making you think your computer crashed. When you rolled the mouse over the dialog to click on the restart button the window would jump away form the mouse. Great fun to put in someone’s startup items 😉

  36. peter thomsen Says:

    let the games begin! nice workthanks.

  37. Tony Says:

    What exactly causes a kernel to panic?

  38. El hombre de Visuelle Kommunikation Says:

    Gefllt mir! Muss ich mir mal bei Gelenheit runterladen.

  39. Jenny Says:

    I downloaded this on both my machines, but then I noticed something. When my iMac actually does KP, the screen goes grayscale. With this screensaver, it just gets like a gray haze, but you can still see all the colors. Just thought I’d mention that. Also, maybe that’s the difference between a KP on OSX Tiger and OSX Leopard. I run both.

  40. Kernel Panic screensaver Says:

    […] amico mi segnala un simpatico screensaver per OS X: Kernel Panic! Si scarica da qui. Aggiungi a del.icio.us 1 Views ZN utilizza WordPress Revolution v4.1 basato su iTheme di […]

  41. Alessandro Says:

    Funny!

  42. DAlton White Says:

    Can You make one just like that one for windows? Preferribly Vista
    Or Does anyone know of a file conversion program so I can change it?

  43. David Says:

    How do I install this screensaver?

  44. Drew’s Blog » My Mac crashed on me, and I lived to tell about it. Says:

    […] blue screen of death. But I have now experienced it first hand. Some people even think this is a good joke (and it […]

  45. Funny Screensaver Says:

    I ran into several scary screen savers but this one tops them all. It scared the sh… out of my boss. And yes, I still have a job 🙂
    It is extremely funny screen saver after the victim recovers from the shock. As a matter of fact it is not that scary as it is funny, in a sick, very sick way 🙂

  46. dasfasdf Says:

    this is awesome!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

  47. » Screensavers - Best Of Says:

    […] BlueScreen Screen SaverBluescreen is a screen saver that not only authentically mimics a BSOD (Blue Screen of Death), but will simulate startup screens seen during a system boot. Available for all Windows versions except Vista. This could be extremely irritating, watch carefully. An analog solution for Mac OS X – Kernel Panic Screensaver. […]

  48. Screensavers - Best Of | Graphics Says:

    […] BlueScreen Screen SaverBluescreen is a screen saver that not only authentically mimics a BSOD (Blue Screen of Death), but will simulate startup screens seen during a system boot. Available for all Windows versions except Vista. This could be extremely irritating, watch carefully. An analog solution for Mac OS X – Kernel Panic Screensaver. […]

  49. Bildschirmschoner Says:

    Haha. Que lindo! Este salvapantalla se tiene que installar on los mac de los otros. Gracias por tu post!

  50. Confusing co-workers, family and friends for fun at DamienG Says:

    […] out Doomlaser’s Kernel Panic Screensaver although be prepared for genuine confusion at their first exposure to an operating system crash […]

  51. Fred Says:

    Your screensaver gave me a kernel panic.

  52. » Fake ad: iMacs are “Vista-capable” | The Apple Core | ZDNet.com Says:

    […] will look like on your Mac (or fool your friends and family), you can download Mark Johns’ Kernel Panic Screensaver, posted at his Doomlaser […]

  53. riley Says:

    Thanks! This works like a charm, just tried it on my co-worker – I added it to my list of mac pranks here,

    http://www.zaphu.com/2007/08/22/mac-os-x-pranks/

  54. Mac OS X Pranks : Zaphu Says:

    […] you really want to send someone into cardiac arrest download this kernel panic screensaver! For those of you who don’t know, this kernel panic indicator is like the “blue screen […]

  55. Alex Celeste Says:

    The screensaver works on my MacBook (I downloaded it when I had an iBook G4), but instead of showing the kernel panic animation over the screen it turns the screen white then shows the animation.

    Just thought you’d like to know about that bug in your very neat screensaver.

  56. violinist Says:

    Actually, if music is playing when u get a KP, u hear the music cut off, but repeat the last half-second constantly.

    For instance, if an audio file was playing while the machine KPs, you’d hear:

    “This is what happens when an audio file is playing during a kernel panic-ic-ic-ic-ic-ic-ic-ic-ic-ic-ic-ic…”

  57. Sam Says:

    I’ve been using this for several months and it still makes my heart race every single time I see it come on….

  58. lark Says:

    Please help. I am getting this message on my MacBook. How do I get rid of it? thanks much.

  59. ?????????????????? Says:

    […] Doomlaser Blog Archive Kernel Panic Screensaver! […]

  60. thinkdavid Back on the Mac! « Says:

    […] 6/2 – I installed the Kernel Panic screensaverfrom Doomlaser for fun. It emulates what happened to me perfectly! I already scared my sister […]

  61. KPSaver - Get Even With Someone (Only A Screen Saver) Says:

    […] […]

  62. Scott Says:

    Brilliant!

  63. Day by Day » Blog Archive » Kernel Panic Screensaver Says:

    […] for debugging instructions. As I was, I stumbled across this odd, and potentially shut down-causing screensaver. As the screensaver it will show the interface for a real kernel panic. Though I don’t want […]

  64. man Says:

    I love it

  65. Zib Redlektab Says:

    Awesome idea, wish the dual-screen thing worked properly. Also, I had a problem with the iTunes pausination. It didn’t pause, just lowered the volume to almost nothing, and when I awoke it it came back to normal for a second before dropping out again. I like the idea, but really wish it would actually pause the music before muting, and then restore the volume to the level it was before.

  66. pman Says:

    Maby Windows version? 🙂

    There is a BSOD screen saver taht u can download.

  67. KPsaver: Pranks are Fun | MacApper Says:

    […] just came across this little gem of a screensaver that basically emulates what a kernel panic looks like. For those that dont […]

  68. William Lower Says:

    Totally cruel.

    I love it!

  69. frozenflamestudios Says:

    Thanks for the tip, and good job on the screensaver.

  70. Chris Says:

    So dso you need a mac for this to work?

  71. Alex Peck Says:

    Markster, What’s a screensaver? See you Saturday night! U.A.

  72. danielpunt Says:

    Where can I download with al those lovely colors?

  73. Rusty Says:

    Thats a great prank, the only question is how do I install it remotely using ssh and then make it the default screen saver and then set the time to have it start in 3 minutes?

  74. axel s Says:

    a really great job, i love it and my friends will hate that kind of humour… you are on big ideas 😉

    get on with that ideas!

  75. Kernel Panic Screensaver at thomas fitzgerald.net Says:

    […] Best prank you could ever play on a mac user! A screensaver that mimics OSX’s hard crash. Superb. […]

  76. TechBlog Says:

    Don’t panic! It’s just a screensaver

    In November, I wrote about a screensaver for Windows PCs that emulates a Blue Screen of Death. And in a wonderful twist, it’s offered up by none other than Microsoft. Of course, the Macintosh has an equivalent to the BSoD…

  77. K@ Says:

    why do i only get the first part of scrrensaver?
    it doesnt change from the first bit asking u to turn power of?

  78. iStammtisch Says:

    Macs knnen auch mal abstrzen

    Martin vom Apfelblick hat einen coolen Bildschirmschoner gefunden: Er simuliert eine Kernel Panic. Selbst beim Abstrzen machen Macs noch eine elegantere Figur als Windows-PCs…

    Fun Fact: Bei Wikipedia hab ich ein animated gif einer Guru Meditat…

  79. hudsong Says:

    Wow… I even panicked a bit when I knew it was coming.. my music stopped playing and everything! 🙂

  80. Metaly Says:

    I’m adding you to my RSS based on the awesome domain name alone. Pure genius.

  81. Brian Says:

    Awesome!!!! But on dual screens, it does show on both— when it shouldn’t.

    Other than that, this is brillaint 😛

  82. sergej Says:

    yeah, creative idea, especially in view of the fact that Mark Russinovich’s famous Windows BSOD screensaver has been around for, what, over a decade? But nevertheless, kudos for getting the job done.

  83. Pachi Says:

    “Heh, that’s just my screensav-OH SHIT.”

  84. Macenstein » Macenstein Archive » The “Kernel Panic” Screensaver: Finally a use for Quartz Composer Says:

    […] maniacally geeky folks over at Doomlaser have created the single most awesome screensaver since Mr. Sparkle. The Kernel Panic Screensaver […]

  85. annon Says:

    Hi did you ever tryed with a dual screen mac? the main screen is copied to all other screens and the KP is shown on all screens. in real it is only shown on the first (or on laptops on the internal).
    anyway good work, but there is a little bit to improve 🙂

  86. OSXDaily Says:

    Very creative and highly entertaining, it’s been featured on OSXDaily.com!

    http://osxdaily.com/2007/04/10/prank-your-friends-with-a-fake-kernel-panic/

  87. Ha Ha!! Kernel Panic Screen[saver]! « Expat-Leo’s Wordpress Says:

    […] Doomlaser Blog Archive Kernel Panic Screensaver!: So awhile back I was thinking, You know what would be funny? A screensaver that fakes a kernel panic! […]

  88. sean Says:

    What a fantastic idea.
    Now if i can only sneak it onto my colleagues Macs at work 😉

  89. rudy Says:

    good job mark, it has fooled EVERYONE at work. One of my co-workers even ran out of the office as i was leaving for lunch to tell me that my machine KP’d.

Leave a Reply