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Steve Ballmer Authored the Windows 3.1 Ctrl-Alt-Del Screen

timothy posted about a month and a half ago | from the and-he-approved-this-message dept.

Bug 169

Nerval's Lobster writes According to Microsoft developer Raymond Chen, Steve Ballmer didn't like the original text that accompanied the Ctrl-Alt-Del screen in Windows 3.1, so he wrote up a new version. If you used Windows at any point in the past two decades, you can thank him for that infuriatingly passive 'This Windows application has stopped responding to the system' message, accompanied by the offer to hit Ctrl+Alt+Delete again to restart the PC (and lose all your unsaved data). Update: 09/09 15:30 GMT by S : Changed headline and summary to reflect that Ballmer authored the Ctrl-Alt-Del screen, not the BSoD, as originally stated.

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"Stuff that matters" (4, Funny)

Nimey (114278) | about a month and a half ago | (#47828385)

This story belongs in idle.

Re:"Stuff that matters" (3, Insightful)

sexconker (1179573) | about a month and a half ago | (#47828405)

Seriously. There's nothing to discuss.
Ballmer wrote the message. So what?

Re:"Stuff that matters" (4, Informative)

Killer Instinct (851436) | about a month and a half ago | (#47828495)

Its a "advert" to drive hits to DICE.COM :/

Re:"Stuff that matters" (2, Insightful)

Anonymous Coward | about a month and a half ago | (#47828557)

Since Ballmer wrote the message, and the message was quite good, Ballmer is a developer.........

From TFA

"Okay, Steve. If you think you can do a better job, then go for it." Unlike some other executive, Steve took up the challenge, and a few days later, he emailed what he thought the Ctrl+Alt+Del screen should say.

The text he came up with was actually quite good, and it went into the product pretty much word for word.

Re:"Stuff that matters" (5, Funny)

OzPeter (195038) | about a month and a half ago | (#47828603)

Seriously. There's nothing to discuss.
Ballmer wrote the message. So what?

Bet you wouldn't say that if Bennet had posted this story. But the again it would have been a philosophical piece about how while he likes the color blue, its not his favorite color blue, and how he wished that all error display screens should be *his* favorite blue color, and how dare the manufacturers of all the different OS's not consult him and get *his* opinion on what makes for a really nice blue color, even though each of those OS manufactures have their own ideas as to how things should be done and they have most likely done their own research into colors, but anyway that should all be scrapped and re-implemented Bennett's way (at their own expense of course) and while their at it could they also make it so every program works exactly the same on every different combination of computer and OS as it's a major hassle having to learn how to do things differently whenever you site down at an unfamiliar computer, but then again why should computers be unfamiliar in the first place, maybe it would be better if they all had a dedicated "Bennet" login so that he would just be able to sit down at any computer and just use it the way he wanted to, in fact what would be even better if all that research into melding telepathy and machines was finally completed so that he wouldn't even have to sit down at a computer as it would simply recognize him from a distance and would then fire up its 3D holographic welcome display (which BTW is fully detailed 3D model of Bennett himself - on a pedestal) so that he can instantly get down to his .. Oh look! Squirrel!!

Re:"Stuff that matters" (3, Insightful)

vux984 (928602) | about a month and a half ago | (#47828865)

Bet you wouldn't say that if Bennet had posted this story. But the again it would have been a philosophical piece about how while he likes the color blue, its not his favorite color blue, and how he wished that all error display screens should be *his* favorite blue color...

Awesome. Thanks for that. It almost makes having to suffer through Bennet's use of slashdot as his personal blog worth it, just to see it satirized like this. :)

Re:"Stuff that matters" (2)

gstoddart (321705) | about a month and a half ago | (#47829093)

LOL ... that's it ... Bennet is essentially Gilderoy Lockhart!!

You, sir, are brilliant!

Re:"Stuff that matters" (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a month and a half ago | (#47829205)

Seriously. There's nothing to discuss.
Ballmer wrote the message. So what?

Bet you wouldn't say that if Bennet had posted this story.

Of course not, we'd have been saying "tl;dr".

Just like I'm doing with your post. ;)

Re:"Stuff that matters" (3, Insightful)

the_B0fh (208483) | about a month and a half ago | (#47828609)

Oh, how I wish I have mod points right now. The article itself and this article are both worthless.

Re:"Stuff that matters" (1)

Anrego (830717) | about a month and a half ago | (#47828915)

Even as a long term Linux user who hasn't done much windows related since XP SP2 was news, I do still read and actually enjoy Raymond Chen's blog, and even bought his book.

The dice article is pretty pointless though as it just mirrors Raymond Chen's post.

Re:"Stuff that matters" (1)

Anonymous Coward | about a month and a half ago | (#47828699)

Seriously. There's nothing to discuss.
Ballmer wrote the message. So what?

I thought the same thing about someone getting mad enough to physically throw shit, but somehow his was the chair heard 'round the fucking world.

He's relevant in the same way strippers find him sexy. He's got money.

Re:"Stuff that matters" (2)

mobby_6kl (668092) | about a month and a half ago | (#47828989)

It's a minor piece of trivia that was certainly not worth posting on slashdot in lieu of another Raymond post, but it's something I would've enjoyed reading when going through his blog. Check it out, there's tons of interesting technical and historical information there.

Re:"Stuff that matters" (1)

Anrego (830717) | about a month and a half ago | (#47829061)

Agree.

Even as a long time Linux user, I still enjoy his blog (and even bought a copy of his book). It's interesting, easily digestible, and well presented tidbits from someone who actually works with the stuff.

Probably doesn't belong on slashdot any more than his other posts though as you said, however I would have been ok with it if they'd linked directly to his post rather than linking to the dice article which is pretty much just a mirror of it.

Re:"Stuff that matters" (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a month and a half ago | (#47829241)

NO dice!

Re:"Stuff that matters" (2)

TWX (665546) | about a month and a half ago | (#47829523)

Ballmer wrote the message. So what?

So now we know who to send the counseling bills to...

Amiga (5, Funny)

Pheran (104478) | about a month and a half ago | (#47828391)

Nothing will ever top "Guru Meditation" :)

Re:Amiga (5, Insightful)

marcello_dl (667940) | about a month and a half ago | (#47828447)

If a system can display an error message, it is not messed up enough.

Re:Amiga (0)

Richard Dick Head (803293) | about a month and a half ago | (#47829383)

Rather, it is capable of recovering, it just won't bother.

At least Windows 3.x would let you TRY to continue. Half the time the system would be stable enough to save work. NT-based windows? Hah. Sorry. Baleeted. That project you were working on all day and forgot to save? Yep, we at Microsoft are just in the way. its all still there, good luck keeping the RAM powered while you transfer it to a breakout board. Oh, and good luck finding your data, we made sure to fragment the hell out it, because a scrambling allocator is obviously better than actual security.

Re:Amiga (2)

operagost (62405) | about a month and a half ago | (#47829549)

I really think you are confused. This "blue screen" is the one that DOS-based Windows displayed when a program had stopped responding. If you were lucky, you could kill the program and save your work before memory was totally corrupted. In NT-based Windows, the system remains stable when one application hangs because of separate memory spaces. You can keep working after you kill the bad app. In either case, you lose whatever you were doing in the bad app, but in the latter, at least the system remains stable.

Re:Amiga (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a month and a half ago | (#47828841)

Agreed. I miss my Amiga computer. Now you have got me feeling all nostalgic.

Re:Amiga (1)

mister_playboy (1474163) | about a month and a half ago | (#47828945)

This error message appears at /. as well. :)

Re:Amiga (1)

RKThoadan (89437) | about a month and a half ago | (#47828949)

That's good if you want to really weird people out. I prefer the pure panic-inducing power of lp0 on Fire!

Re:Amiga (1)

gstoddart (321705) | about a month and a half ago | (#47829107)

Oh, I don't know ... Slashdot's "varnish cache server" is up there. :-P

old message (2)

alphatel (1450715) | about a month and a half ago | (#47828467)

I prefer the Windows 3.1 BSoD [deviantart.net]

Re:old message (1)

gnupun (752725) | about a month and a half ago | (#47828509)

Ballmer's version is short and clear. I hate dialog boxes with long messages followed by "Yes/No" buttons.

Re:old message (4, Funny)

Opportunist (166417) | about a month and a half ago | (#47828665)

So this [techsupportforum.com] is something you'd prefer?

Re:old message (1)

LookIntoTheFuture (3480731) | about a month and a half ago | (#47829359)

So this [techsupportforum.com] is something you'd prefer?

That looks like something the BOFH would do. Yes, No, close button - they would all be devastating.

Re:old message (1)

Anonymous Coward | about a month and a half ago | (#47829725)

I like this one [theteamw.com] .

Bastard! (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a month and a half ago | (#47828479)

Instead of pressing his engineers to their shit together he came up with silly excuse. Such a original idea, great work!

Re:Bastard! (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a month and a half ago | (#47828671)

pressing his engineers to their shit

All the while shouting BAD DEVELOPER, BAAAAAD DEVELOPER.

how about "Stack Crap, We Goofed Again..." (1)

swschrad (312009) | about a month and a half ago | (#47828887)

that screenshot was the Microsoft company song.

Re:Bastard! (2)

Richy_T (111409) | about a month and a half ago | (#47828973)

I'd rather know who wrote that stupid message that implied the user was responsible for Windows not being shut down properly when it was the festering pile of crap itself that fell over so I could drive all the way across the country and give them a slap.

I am sure many here will have a brief seething relapse when they see these words:

Because Windows was not properly shut down, one or more of your disk drives may have errors on it. To avoid seeing this message again, always shut down your computer by selecting Shut Down from the Start menu.

Re:Bastard! (1)

dfsmith (960400) | about a month and a half ago | (#47829221)

... always shut down your computer by selecting Shut Down from the Start menu.

You've got to admit, the advice is sound. "I see you tried to run a program. Sheesh. Remember ALWAYS shut down your computer...".

I miss the BSOD (5, Insightful)

Barlo_Mung_42 (411228) | about a month and a half ago | (#47828489)

I'd rather get some cryptic information about stop codes or an error message than a condescending sad face accompanied by a reboot request. At least I can look up the code and get a ballpark idea what the issue is without firing up windbg.

Re:I miss the BSOD (1)

flappinbooger (574405) | about a month and a half ago | (#47828857)

yeah at least it's something.

something is better than nothing.

not much better, but ...

Re:I miss the BSOD (-1)

Anonymous Coward | about a month and a half ago | (#47829531)

Yes, old BSOD was great tool for the IT crowd. The Windows 8.1 gives now just a page with awfully large text saying something like "sorry, something was wrong, we're rebooting." Good luck with finding the reason for the crash and most importantly, fixing the problem. This dumbing down of software is just disgusting. Stupid software for stupid people. Even the Visual Studio 2013 is designed for the tablet users, I wonder why they still support programming at all, as it is is assumed to be too hard for their customers.

Re:I miss the BSOD (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a month and a half ago | (#47829765)

I see that neither you nor the GP have ever heard of the Windows Error Console. It's not just for scam artists to use when preying upon the inexperienced.

If you look at it right after the reboot from a BSOD, you'll find the exact same error messages that would have been displayed in that pre-Windows-8 BSOD, all timestamped and organized for you.

Re:I miss the BSOD (2, Informative)

DarkProphet (114727) | about a month and a half ago | (#47829795)

That only works if you're able get to the machine to boot again :-(

slow news day, eh? (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a month and a half ago | (#47828525)

slow news day, eh?

Windows 8 (3, Insightful)

LookIntoTheFuture (3480731) | about a month and a half ago | (#47828533)

Well, at least it doesn't have a childish sad-face imoticon like the Windows 8 version.

Re:Windows 8 (1)

Megol (3135005) | about a month and a half ago | (#47828749)

How the frog do you trigger a BSOD in Windows 8? Seriously, I've had driver failures but those triggered restart of the driver and no BSOD...

Re:Windows 8 (2)

war4peace (1628283) | about a month and a half ago | (#47828799)

People are resourceful.

Re:Windows 8 (3, Funny)

bobbied (2522392) | about a month and a half ago | (#47828833)

And here I thought Metro was the BSOD... Silly me..

Re:Windows 8 (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a month and a half ago | (#47828863)

How the frog do you trigger a BSOD in Windows 8?

Have you tried randomly killing System processes in task manager? That's the only way I'd been able to reliably kill 7 (well, except for that horrible SecuROM issue I had for a while, two different versions of the same dumb DRM that would conspire to kill Windows any time I tried to run a game for more than 15 minutes).

Re:Windows 8 (5, Informative)

just_another_sean (919159) | about a month and a half ago | (#47828951)

How the frog do you trigger a BSOD in Windows 8?

Apparently by installing updates [slashdot.org] .

Re:Windows 8 (1)

sandytaru (1158959) | about a month and a half ago | (#47829223)

Had some instability due to a too weak PSU when I rebuilt my Win8 system last winter. I was getting BSoD or worse - total unannounced shutdown - with annoying frequency. (Turns out the GTX 660 really did need that 1000 watt PSU I was too cheap to get at first.) Thankfully, no lasting damage, because the BSoD and system shutdowns worked as intended and protected the rest of the hardware.

It's very stable now. I think I've had to reboot the system once in the last month.

Re:Windows 8 (2)

reikae (80981) | about a month and a half ago | (#47829715)

What's the rest of your hardware like? GTX 660 doesn't need anywhere close to 1 kW, I'm doing fine with a 450 W PSU (also powering an i5-2500 CPU and one hard drive). Seems more likely that your previous PSU was just a very low quality one.

Greetings from the someone-might-be-wrong-on-the-internet dept. :-)

Re:Windows 8 (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a month and a half ago | (#47829347)

Massive hardware failure will do it. I've seen it when a videocard failed once. Nvidia drivers are good at it. Usually it will just restart straight up in that scenario though, but not always.

Re:Windows 8 (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a month and a half ago | (#47829609)

How the frog do you trigger a BSOD in Windows 8? Seriously, I've had driver failures but those triggered restart of the driver and no BSOD...

By pressing the windows key or the start button. *rimshot*

Re:Windows 8 (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a month and a half ago | (#47829785)

How the frog do you trigger a BSOD in Windows 8?

My Asus Transformer Book T100 has a removable keyboard and runs Windows 8.1.

Guess what happens when you plug/unplug the keyboard during the sign-in process... So, yeah, apparently WinLogon doesn't like USB host-creation interrupts going on during certain parts of the user authorization process and shits itself.

It falls squarely into the same category as "if it hurts when you do that, don't do that."

Re:Windows 8 (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a month and a half ago | (#47829821)

Or a kernel panic like OSX with a shade coming down, that people still tried to run programs from "look my mouse or keyboard don't work".

You'd think - (1)

Darth Snowshoe (1434515) | about a month and a half ago | (#47828563)

You'd think he'd have someone to do that for him!

Anthill Inside (4, Funny)

ackthpt (218170) | about a month and a half ago | (#47828569)

+++OUT OF CHEESE ERROR+++

That explains a lot (1)

Kohath (38547) | about a month and a half ago | (#47828595)

'RESTART! RESTART! RESTART!' would have been a lot better. Clear instructions are useful. Screenfulls of BS just confuse people. All they can do is restart anyway.

Re:That explains a lot (2)

just_another_sean (919159) | about a month and a half ago | (#47828985)

Screenfulls of BS just confuse people.

It's not just BS to everyone though. And even without understanding what it was telling me by googling the stop codes I've been able to fix things based on good search results, especially for very common problems like driver errors. As another poster mentioned it's sometimes possible and a hundred times easier to search for a stop code and get a fix for a problem than it is to fire up WinDBG.

Re:That explains a lot (1)

EvanED (569694) | about a month and a half ago | (#47828999)

This article is about the Win95 BSOD, not the NT one. The 95 BSOD showed up for plenty of application hangs when you didn't need to reboot the whole system and could use it to just kill that process -- or at least, delay rebooting long enough to save and close anything else open.

Re:That explains a lot (1)

EvanED (569694) | about a month and a half ago | (#47829041)

Sorry, 3.1, not 95. Though a similar one was present in the 95 line.

It is the frequency not message (2)

140Mandak262Jamuna (970587) | about a month and a half ago | (#47828639)

Hung processes and the accompanying error messages are always iffy. Is it any worse than "core dumping" or "kernel mode panic"? What irritated most people was how often applications crashed.

Warning: Do Not Turn off this Jumbotron! (3, Funny)

Anonymous Coward | about a month and a half ago | (#47828653)

Applying critical patch 42 of 13,699,364...

I KNEW IT! (1)

dywolf (2673597) | about a month and a half ago | (#47828657)

I knew it I knew it I knew it!

Hexidecimal (3, Insightful)

tekrat (242117) | about a month and a half ago | (#47828681)

Did he also decide to produce the Hex output that is entirely useless and without merit? I understand that's for debugging purposes, but who decided that was a good idea to leave in for a consumer-level OS? Seriously.

Re:Hexidecimal (1)

pastafazou (648001) | about a month and a half ago | (#47828733)

He probably plagiarized it anyway

Re:Hexidecimal (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a month and a half ago | (#47828797)

It's fine the way it is.

Re:Hexidecimal (1)

gstoddart (321705) | about a month and a half ago | (#47828859)

You know, these are the same people who have put the meaningless error messages like "something bad happened, if this problem persists contact your administrator".

Gee, thanks, it's my fscking machine, I'm the admin ... how about you tell me something meaningful about the issue so I can try to find it?

Microsoft seems to be eternally stuck between dumbing something down so far as to make debugging impossible, and spitting out gibberish messages that you need a wizard level guru to decipher.

And, more on topic ... Big Fair Hairy Fscking Deal ... Ballmer re-wrote the text of the terrible error message, are we supposed to be impressed or something??? Now, if only they'd spent as much time in eliminating the terrible error in the first place.

If you're polishing your turd, you're doing it wrong. It should not be no no, when the system crashes completely, it should be in 17 point helvetica. At that point, it's like wall papering over the giant hole in your wall.

Re:Hexidecimal (1)

Ardyvee (2447206) | about a month and a half ago | (#47829039)

Why is it not a good idea to leave it there?

Re:Hexidecimal (1)

_xeno_ (155264) | about a month and a half ago | (#47829083)

Did he also decide to produce the Hex output that is entirely useless and without merit?

If you read the blog entry, this is talking about Windows 3.1's BSOD. A screen I honestly did not know existed, although Windows 3.1 is so old that I'd have been a kid, so maybe it popped up all the time if you used computers daily back then. I have no idea.

Windows only picked up preemptive multitasking in NT and later 95, so Windows 3.1 was cooperatively multitasked. Apparently if the running program didn't respond to incoming messages quickly enough (presumably a check in an interrupt handler?) a blue screen would appear, and Steve Balmer wrote the text for that blue screen.

Windows 95 and NT don't use that blue screen since the blue screen that appears in 95 is for driver faults (basically) and one in NT is for kernel panics.

Re:Hexidecimal (-1, Troll)

gstoddart (321705) | about a month and a half ago | (#47829299)

If you read the blog entry, this is talking about Windows 3.1's BSOD. A screen I honestly did not know existed

LOL, then I can only conclude you never actually used Windows 3.1.

Back in '92 or so, it took less than a week of using Windows on a newly purchased PC to cause my ex to ask me to install Linux on her machine for her.

so Windows 3.1 was cooperatively multitasked

I'm not sure what it's technically called, but it was more like "if you have three things running, they each get 1/3 of the CPU ... whether they need it or not at the moment". It was pretty terrible.

Meanwhile, some of us were running real multi-tasking Linux machines, running X. Ahh, good times.

Nothing like installing Slackware from 100+ floppies.

Re:Hexidecimal (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a month and a half ago | (#47829355)

"...cause my ex to ask me to install Linux on her machine for her."

Q.E.D.

Re:Hexidecimal (1)

Anonymous Coward | about a month and a half ago | (#47829419)

>Meanwhile, some of us were running real multi-tasking Linux machines, running X. Ahh, good times.

Good times? Linux was a pathetic joke back in '92. Even Windows NT 3.51 was better and that's a *real* insult.

SunOS for life (or at least until that boob McNealy ran his company into the ground)!

Re:Hexidecimal (1)

operagost (62405) | about a month and a half ago | (#47829703)

No, cooperative multitasking means what it sounds like: each application is responsible for turning control back to the system when it is time for it to do so. This means the system cannot determine priority, but the app can.

Re:Hexidecimal (1)

nmb3000 (741169) | about a month and a half ago | (#47829087)

Did he also decide to produce the Hex output that is entirely useless and without merit? I understand that's for debugging purposes, but who decided that was a good idea to leave in for a consumer-level OS? Seriously.

Ah yes. Everyone should have to set up a second machine, connect it to the other via a serial cable (having remembered to enable serial port debugging on the host prior to the crash), and then fire up their kernel debugger just to get the bugcheck code.

Putting a numeric error code (which usually comes with the symbolic name as well) on a consumer-facing fatal error is absolutely the correct thing to do. Once you've reached the kernel panic failure point there's not much most consumers can do anyway, so providing some diagnostic information can't hurt anything. If you don't then you may as well just restart the machine and not bothering to show an error at all. That sure sounds friendly.

Re:Hexidecimal (1)

dbc (135354) | about a month and a half ago | (#47829197)

???? Well, I guess you are proud to be an uneducated redneck. Just because it is useless to *you*, doesn't mean it is useless to everybody. To some of us, it is essential that the exception code be easily available. If it doesn't appear on the last screen the machine can put up before coming to a complete halt, where would you suggest it go? To a log file, when the file system might not be working? *sheesh*. Really, I'd like to hear where else you think it could be recorded in a manner that is both 100% reliable and easily accessible without specialized diagnostic equipment.

BTW -- 99% of the blue screens were 0E exceptions -- "invalid page fault". In other words, a page fault in the kernel. Page faults are only valid from user space code. In 99% of *those* cases, the cause was a driver bug where an I/O driver should have wired down a page so that it would not get swapped out while it was the I/O source or destination. Microsoft got tired of getting blamed for shitty third party drivers, thus we now have signed driver code.

Let me tell you, if you don't get an error code at a machine halt, the next step is to start hanging logic analyzer probes. Then when your bench tech is done hanging probes you get to come back and spend the next several hours staring at logic analyzer traces. Been there. Done that. Got the tee-shirt -- literally.

Re:Hexidecimal (1)

Anonymous Coward | about a month and a half ago | (#47829271)

The problem with the hex stuff is for most of NT/2000/etc's lifetime there was no way to capture the output without writing it down. Like adding insult to injury. The system crashed, so you can't copy/paste, save it, e-mail it, or anything. Later on when small digital cameras were ubiquitous, you could take a picture of it.

Re:Hexidecimal (1)

jader3rd (2222716) | about a month and a half ago | (#47829401)

Did he also decide to produce the Hex output that is entirely useless and without merit? I understand that's for debugging purposes, but who decided that was a good idea to leave in for a consumer-level OS? Seriously.

How is it a bad idea to present the information in a consumer-level OS? What would be better, not showing information?

Never seen it (1)

Svenne (117693) | about a month and a half ago | (#47828687)

I must be unique then in that I have used Windows for 15 years and I've never seen that particular blue screen before. Had to google it after reading the article, and still can't find any other mention of it. In what version of Windows was it used?

Re:Never seen it (1)

SternisheFan (2529412) | about a month and a half ago | (#47828753)

I must be unique then in that I have used Windows for 15 years and I've never seen that particular blue screen before. Had to google it after reading the article, and still can't find any other mention of it. In what version of Windows was it used?

Let me guess, you never used ME (Milennium Edition), huh?

Re:Never seen it (1)

Svenne (117693) | about a month and a half ago | (#47828803)

No, I think just missed that one. Good for me, it would seem.

Re:Never seen it (2)

wbo (1172247) | about a month and a half ago | (#47828787)

That particular screen was used in Windows 3.1 which used cooperative multitasking. The message was displayed when an application stopped responding to messages for a period of time (indicating that the application may be hung for some reason and could be preventing other applications from getting any CPU time.

The screen allows the user to kill the offending application, allowing any other applications to continue to run (that is as long as the hung application hadn't corrupted the contents of RAM in some way).

Re:Never seen it (1)

Svenne (117693) | about a month and a half ago | (#47828845)

Thank you. The article makes it sound as if it was used in versions after Windows 3.1, and specifically not in 3.1. I was lucky enough to not have a Windows PC in the old 3.1 days, so that would explain it.

Re:Never seen it (2)

HornWumpus (783565) | about a month and a half ago | (#47829807)

Windows 3.1 had protected memory, apps attempting to access memory the didn't own accounted for 90% of blue screens. Of those 90% were trying to access 0000:0000.

Also Windows 3.1 multitasking was more complicated then that. It had preemptive multitasking between DOS shells and Windows. But windows itself used MacOS style (cooperative) multitasking.

Also note: Windows 3.1 did way too much in kernel mode. So any driver could corrupt memory, but not apps in general.

BSOD (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a month and a half ago | (#47828761)

And the Clippers are out of the Playoffs Again!!!!

Why (-1)

Anonymous Coward | about a month and a half ago | (#47828839)

Why is this tagged as "bug"? Linux has kernel panics, too. For good reason. Just like Windows does when some system driver fails a bounds check or something. It's designed to, you know, keep the data on your hard disk from getting shit all over...

Do you freetard morons actually think that BSODs are a Windows bug?

Never liked the 'D' part of BSoD (1)

Pro923 (1447307) | about a month and a half ago | (#47828921)

I've done a lot of work in windows kernel development, and some linux kernel too. I understand that the system is in a bad state when the BSoD happens, but I've always thought that instead of the only option being to 'reboot' and lose what you're working on, things should be a little more choice based. Instead of just the BSoD, perhaps we could be given some information about the thread, call stack and call that initiated the KeBugCheck - then we could decide if we wanted to risk trying to go back in and save our work. Like - if the bugcheck occurs in the USB stack somewhere, maybe I'd elect to just suspend that thread and device stack, go back in and see if I could save my work. I'm tempted to think, "What's worse than a forced immediate reboot" - though I know that if some thread starts scribbling on memory in an out of control fashion that - yes - things could get a lot worse. But maybe not if that thread were immediately suspended.

Re:Never liked the 'D' part of BSoD (4, Informative)

benjymouse (756774) | about a month and a half ago | (#47829101)

BSOD happens when the kernel detects memory corruption. With a hybrid monolithic kernel like Windows that means all bets are off and continuing could very well case damage more damage.

Even if the memory corruption happens in an USB driver, it can overwrite critical kernel memory.

Incidentally, you *do* get more information. The kernel will initiate a kernel dump which can be investigated later.

Re:Never liked the 'D' part of BSoD (1)

bws111 (1216812) | about a month and a half ago | (#47829163)

What's worse than a forced reboot? A reboot that should have happened but was ignored, wiping out not only the last hours work, but your entire disk.

>99% of users would have absolutely no idea what choice to take. And no matter which they chose, they probably will wind up losing something. So why make it appear that it is the users fault if they lost data (by making the 'wrong' choice)?

Yeah, just suspend that thread that is in the USB stack. What could possibly go wrong? It's not like it could interefe with a filesystem o a USB device, right?

And remember, just because a certain piece of code DETECTED a problem does not mean that that piece of code CAUSED the problem. Thread 'A' craps all over storage, thread 'B' attempts to use storage and crashes, and you give the user to just let thread 'A' continue? Brilliant!

Re:Never liked the 'D' part of BSoD (1)

Pro923 (1447307) | about a month and a half ago | (#47829533)

No. You'd be foolish to continue if you knew that the corruption was within the storage stack. But as an advanced user, I can assure you that there would be times that I would know it would be safe to proceed, simply because of what caused the BSoD. It's not always memory corruption. Back when MS first came out with intellisense for Visual Studio, I'd (about once a day) get a crash in dev studio that would usually come at a time that I was going to lose unsaved code. One time, I decided to hit 'cancel' - the option to debug the crashing application. Another instance of dev studio opened and I saw that it was the intellisense thread that was crashing. I'd suspend that thread and hit F5, then save my work. This saved me a lot of headache. I'm fully aware that there are significant differences in usermode crashes and kernel crashes. I'm simply saying, that as an experienced kernel developer, I personally could (upon occasion) benefit from the ability to suspend and continue. If that thread in the usb stack tried to write to NULL or 0x70000000, I'm pretty sure that it's not writing on my storage stack.

Re:Never liked the 'D' part of BSoD (1)

bws111 (1216812) | about a month and a half ago | (#47829719)

I would genuinely like to know how you, as an 'experienced kernel developer', know, using only the information you said (backtrace, etc), that the reason the USB stack is trying to write to NULL is NOT because something stomped all over storage, possibly including the storage stack.

Prevent damage to your computer (2)

inglorion_on_the_net (1965514) | about a month and a half ago | (#47828929)

Personally, I like the message that says "Windows has been shut down to prevent damage to your computer." I wonder who came up with that one.

Re:Prevent damage to your computer (1)

sandytaru (1158959) | about a month and a half ago | (#47829245)

Someone who experienced the registry getting chewed up during an unexpected burp once before.

Re:Prevent damage to your computer (1)

dfsmith (960400) | about a month and a half ago | (#47829251)

Maybe the engineer was anxiously looking around for flying chairs coming from Balmer's office?

Infuriatingly active (1)

eswierk (34642) | about a month and a half ago | (#47829071)

The BSOD message can't be more infuriating than what Macs say when they reboot after a kernel panic: "You shut down your computer because of a problem." It always makes me want to shout "YOU shut YOURSELF down due to a problem YOU caused!"

Not mine (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a month and a half ago | (#47829157)

Not mine, I run Linux.

another reason "why windows is better" (1)

NemoinSpace (1118137) | about a month and a half ago | (#47829287)

Back in my tech support days, I had the most popular blue screens memorized, With a fix ready to go. Even today, Linux fades to black and never comes back. Luckily with the speeds of SSD, almost any problem that isn't solved by a reboot, or blaming an ISP, is fixed by a reimage from backup. You guys keep you fsck commands around and Vi on a stick. I'll be done before you get lastlog open. Still Ballmer had no choice but to rewrite the message. Originally it read "WARNING! Windows has detected that you are running Windows on this computer. Your computer will be shutdown to prvent damage to your computer"
Are you sure?

"Keyboard Not Found" (1)

hduff (570443) | about a month and a half ago | (#47829291)

"Keyboard Not Found"
"Please press F1 or all your work will be lost."

Applebots (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a month and a half ago | (#47829313)

You all love this type of 'news' because it makes you feel better for spending two to three times as much as a sane person for a computer.

Flying chairs (2)

mendax (114116) | about a month and a half ago | (#47829345)

I think Windows 8, that perverse boot sector virus, ought to have updated the BSoD to show a video of Steve Ballmer throwing a chair across a room. No doubt he's done that a few times in his office as the BSoD popped up.

Run, Ballmer, run (1)

paiute (550198) | about a month and a half ago | (#47829583)

Ballmer always struck me as a Gump-like character who accumulated wealth and thus influence through no talent of his own. He stumbled into Microsoft with no more to offer the world than a guy off the street who pulls a slot machine arm and wins a billion dollar jackpot. At least Forrest was likable.

What he should have written is ... (1)

quax (19371) | about a month and a half ago | (#47829613)

... Exterminate! Exterminate! Exterminate!

original? (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a month and a half ago | (#47829801)

wouldn't the original bsod have been in windows 1.0?

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