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Author Topic: Cause of Vista crashes  (Read 7019 times)

PhilB66

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Cause of Vista crashes
« on: March 28, 2008, 10:37:34 AM »

Rover

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Re: Cause of Vista crashes
« Reply #1 on: March 28, 2008, 02:50:53 PM »
Gee, weren't they blaming Intel last month?

Microsoft execs saw problems with early Vista

Quote
Microsoft and PC makers used "Windows Vista Capable" stickers in an attempt to maintain sales of Windows XP machines during the 2006 holiday shopping season, after Windows Vista's retail release was delayed to early 2007. The internal e-mails reveal an extensive debate inside Microsoft over the hardware specifications needed to qualify.

One message points to chip maker Intel Corp., a key Microsoft partner, to explain the decision to lower the requirements a piece of hardware needed to qualify for the "Windows Vista Capable" designation.

Maybe they should follow Apple's lead and use their own hardware.  :P
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Deozaan

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Re: Cause of Vista crashes
« Reply #2 on: March 28, 2008, 03:56:06 PM »
I didn't read any of the linked articles, but my guess is that the chart just shows what programs/drivers/services were running when Vista crashed (or caused the crash). It makes sense that most of them would be Microsoft applications or drivers, or video drivers, since those are probably the primary things the average Vista user will be running at any given time.

My quick little guess here is obviously not studied or thought out well enough to have any significant meaning, but hey, it makes me feel smart by thinking I've got it all figured out! :Thmbsup:


allen

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Re: Cause of Vista crashes
« Reply #3 on: March 28, 2008, 05:24:45 PM »
Plus these are very integral drivers/resources. The only time I've managed to crash vista, it was display related. What really pisses me off is that, with laptops, you have to wait for the manufacturer to resign the drivers before you can use them--mandating that I use outdated drivers indefinitely. The issue may be fixed, but only for desktops.

f0dder

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Re: Cause of Vista crashes
« Reply #4 on: March 28, 2008, 07:00:15 PM »
allen: drivers have to be signed, generally... especially for x64 systems.

Since has a lot of new code, I guess 17.9% crashes caused by MS's own code isn't that bad... it'll obviously take some time before it's as mature & stable as XP SP2. I wish software development didn't work that way, but unfortunately it does.

Also, considering that the graphics driver model has changed radically with Vista, it's no surprise that graphics drivers take such a big pie slice. I would have expected ATI to be worse than nvidia, though.
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Carol Haynes

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Re: Cause of Vista crashes
« Reply #5 on: March 28, 2008, 07:33:06 PM »
Maybe they should follow Apple's lead and use their own hardware.

Don't Apple use nVidia and ATi cards? Until recently they used nVidia 7300 and now they use ATi Radeo 2600HD XT or NVIDIA Quadro FX 5600.

See http://www.apple.com...nology/graphics.html

It is interesting to see that Apple consistently stay at least one generation behind cutting edge graphics (however they present their graphics capability). Given that most high end cards are really aimed at gamers I suppose it makes no sense for Apple to be at the bleeding edge since they don't really do games.

Lashiec

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Re: Cause of Vista crashes
« Reply #6 on: March 28, 2008, 08:43:23 PM »
Well, that chart is only numbers, and there are quite a few variables at play to explain those percentages, most of them are pinpointed in the Ars' article linked at DownloadSquad.

It's well known, though, that nVidia had a rough time updating the ForceWare package of drivers to work with Vista and, at the same time, to properly support its new 8xxx generation of graphic cards (DX 10), which were released more or less at the same time than the new Windows. ATI didn't had those problems, as the current generation at the time was the Radeon 1xxx (DX 9), which already had its share of development by then, and the newer 2xxx parts (DX 10) were released in May of 2007. Maybe ATI adapted itself to Vista better than nVidia (in general, Catalyst got better under the umbrella of AMD than before), but this is something to be considered as well. Essentially, they got lost in the translation :)

Don't Apple use nVidia and ATi cards? Until recently they used nVidia 7300 and now they use ATi Radeo 2600HD XT or NVIDIA Quadro FX 5600.

Well, OS X uses OpenGL, and those cards are compliant with the latest spec, so there's no much hurry to use the latest and greatest card. Besides, I think the most graphic-hungry game available for the Mac is Enemy Territory: Quake Wars, which although a demanding game, it's not Crysis by any stretch. Still, the GeForce 8800 GTS is available at the Apple shop.

Deozaan

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Re: Cause of Vista crashes
« Reply #7 on: March 29, 2008, 01:43:57 AM »
allen: drivers have to be signed, generally... especially for x64 systems.

Yeah, I think that's his complaint. He's saying that laptop drivers have to be issued by the laptop manufacturers, so they have to be re-signed, which means he has to run old drivers until his laptop manufacturer gets around to updating their version of the driver.

I would have expected ATI to be worse than nvidia, though.

I was thinking the same thing. ATI's drivers have had quite a poor reputation the past few years. Strange to see nVidia acting up so badly. Although, when I think of when I had Vista on my PC, the default ATI drivers that were installed using Windows Update crashed my system a couple times.


MrCrispy

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Re: Cause of Vista crashes
« Reply #8 on: March 29, 2008, 02:13:00 AM »
Device driver development at ATI and Nvidia are probably near the top of the most inept, mismanaged and plain old lousy software divisions in the entire IT industry. Microsoft makes driver specs available nearly 2 years in advance for Windows versions, as well as providing numerous certification mechanisms (such as WHQL) and giving guidance and support to the driver devs. Instead of doing their job, they instead are busy implementing crappy bloated control panels, cheats for graphic benchmarks and hacking things up. The avg user sees blue screens and does 2 things -

1- blame the OS
2 - upgrade to fancier (newer) gfx cards

Also, since 32-bit versions don't require signed drivers, everyone is used to simply clicking 'Continue' as they install the latest beta driver to try and fix their system. And sometimes the official drivers are unsigned as well. Oh and lest I forget, Creative also belongs in this illustrious club  :mad:

I had dinner today with one of the head device driver engineers from Nvidia and the tales of mismanagement would make your blood curdle. I can't divulge details but lets just say the no. of active bugs in their video drivers for Vista is north of 500k. ATI is #2 largely because of lower marketshare, not for lack of trying. But of the 2, ATI is the lesser evil.

As you can tell I'm a little bitter about the whole state of affairs.

Carol Haynes

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Re: Cause of Vista crashes
« Reply #9 on: March 29, 2008, 04:09:13 AM »
Don't Apple use nVidia and ATi cards? Until recently they used nVidia 7300 and now they use ATi Radeo 2600HD XT or NVIDIA Quadro FX 5600.

Well, OS X uses OpenGL, and those cards are compliant with the latest spec, so there's no much hurry to use the latest and greatest card. Besides, I think the most graphic-hungry game available for the Mac is Enemy Territory: Quake Wars, which although a demanding game, it's not Crysis by any stretch. Still, the GeForce 8800 GTS is available at the Apple shop.

Out of curiosity do NVIDIA and ATI provide the drivers on Mac systems or are they written by Apple or a third party?

allen

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Re: Cause of Vista crashes
« Reply #10 on: March 29, 2008, 09:22:21 AM »
allen: drivers have to be signed, generally... especially for x64 systems.
Yeah, I think that's his complaint. He's saying that laptop drivers have to be issued by the laptop manufacturers, so they have to be re-signed, which means he has to run old drivers until his laptop manufacturer gets around to updating their version of the driver.

Precisely.

Lashiec

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Re: Cause of Vista crashes
« Reply #11 on: March 29, 2008, 09:47:54 AM »
Out of curiosity do NVIDIA and ATI provide the drivers on Mac systems or are they written by Apple or a third party?

Good question. I ignore the answer :)

J-Mac

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Re: Cause of Vista crashes
« Reply #12 on: March 30, 2008, 01:18:10 PM »
I'm not at all surprised that nVidia drivers can cause a lot of crashes in any OS.  I have often had problems that track back to their drivers.

Plus, an inordinate number of programs state that their software will not run correctly if you have nVidia's Desktop Manager running. Results can be a real pain!

Two examples that quickly come to mind are Ultramon and Super Flexible File Synchronizer (SFFS).

Jim

iphigenie

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Re: Cause of Vista crashes
« Reply #13 on: March 31, 2008, 03:41:35 AM »
I have some of each. I never let either Nvidia or Ati's fancy desktop extensions run - never had anything but problems with them and never noticed they contributed anything useful

Although nvidia also does chipsets that are extremely common (that would cover sound and networking too) so that might explain some of the numbers of crashes (although I seek out the nvidia chipsets after so much grief with some of the via stuff) - i suspect there are at least twice as many machines with nvidia hardware than ati hardware, if not more.

Stoic Joker

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Re: Cause of Vista crashes
« Reply #14 on: March 31, 2008, 06:26:51 PM »
nVidia was doing a mad dash during the Vista RC days trying to get their driver stabilized. I remember seeing tons of posts all over the web from people screaming about BSOD after BSOD with nVidia cards just trying to get to the desktop. The ATi EAX300 (I needed a cheap PCIe card) that I had in my test box through the Vista beta (and some of the alpha) phase testing never missed a beat. Being a long time nVidia user I switched to ATi and haven't looked back (or BSOD'ed) since. ...I do however always strip out the corny Uber control panels as bloated poop.

nVidia's nForce chipset SATA drivers still inanely add the hard drives to the eject USB device list. Sure there's a simple "fix" for this, but so what? It shouldn't need to be fixed in the first place. There has been sufficient public outcry, outrage, and gnashing of teeth that somebody in the nVidia development department should have said "Hay, that was a dumb-assed idea...we should make it go away".  But did they? hell no! I had to DL the latest version of a RAID driver just the other day, and sure as hell there was the "Hi would you like to eject USB device Drive C:" in the friggin system tray.

Now if they can't fix something that simple, I'm quite disinclined to trust anything they do. Which is why none of their stuff is in my current flawlessly stable machine. Frankly I think the 30% of the pie they have is a tad optimistic (it should be higher).

Lashiec

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Re: Cause of Vista crashes
« Reply #15 on: March 31, 2008, 06:29:54 PM »
Well, I do not approve nVidia's stance, but actually the SATA specification allows that. I do agree that it should be disabled by default.

f0dder

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Re: Cause of Vista crashes
« Reply #16 on: March 31, 2008, 06:34:21 PM »
Stoic Joker: remember that SATA supports hot-plug... that's why the drives are added there. Might not be the smartest thing in the world, but lots of stuff isn't :). I think intel drivers used to do it, too, but my drives aren't listed in the safely-remove list now, so perhaps I was wrong, or it has auto-"fixed" itself.
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Stoic Joker

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Re: Cause of Vista crashes
« Reply #17 on: March 31, 2008, 06:57:52 PM »
Stoic Joker: remember that SATA supports hot-plug... that's why the drives are added there. Might not be the smartest thing in the world, but lots of stuff isn't :). I think intel drivers used to do it, too, but my drives aren't listed in the safely-remove list now, so perhaps I was wrong, or it has auto-"fixed" itself.
Hm... I was under the impression it was more of a SCSI style hot swap-able type of affair. I hadn't realized they went the USB style hot plug route with it (Shit what a nightmare...).

Never the less, there's no right way to eject the C: drive while the machine is running. Unless you're trying to crash the machine for fun ... which I tried (successfully...) on some of the boxes that came through the shop.

I got an Intel ICH8 RAID5 controller on this board (Asus Commando) and I've never seen the eject the USB device Drive C: message on it. Or any other SATA RAID configuration except for the nForce stuff. Perhapps nVidia is just a bit to gadget-tastic for their own good?

f0dder

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Re: Cause of Vista crashes
« Reply #18 on: March 31, 2008, 06:59:49 PM »
Quote from: Stoic Joker
Never the less, there's no right way to eject the C: drive while the machine is running. Unless you're trying to crash the machine for fun ... which I tried (successfully...) on some of the boxes that came through the shop.
Hm, I was never allowed to eject the system drive... but back on nForce4, I was allowed to eject half of a RAID mirror, not a very fun experience.
- carpe noctem

wreckedcarzz

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Re: Cause of Vista crashes
« Reply #19 on: March 31, 2008, 07:35:08 PM »
I have had about 5 crashes on Vista since I got it. All related to ATI drivers. The drivers are good, but they update them so freaking much, and have this totally crap update system (word of mouth/luck). You never have the latest drivers!

Stoic Joker

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Re: Cause of Vista crashes
« Reply #20 on: March 31, 2008, 10:17:00 PM »
If you don't have any problems with your current WHQL Certified driver ... you don't need to update. Let the hard core gamer crowd play at the razor edge of frame rates and the like, I don't have time for that kind of silliness.

Lashiec

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Re: Cause of Vista crashes
« Reply #21 on: April 01, 2008, 05:41:54 PM »
I have had about 5 crashes on Vista since I got it. All related to ATI drivers. The drivers are good, but they update them so freaking much, and have this totally crap update system (word of mouth/luck). You never have the latest drivers!

The unwritten rule with Catalyst, and probably with most complex driver packages, is that once you find a release that looks stable, stick with it, unless the newer version addresses the problems of a certain game, improves general performance, or implements a nice new feature.

And since when does Catalyst have an update facility? :huh:

wreckedcarzz

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Re: Cause of Vista crashes
« Reply #22 on: April 03, 2008, 07:59:25 PM »
It doesn't have an updater - that was the point. You have to rely on someone to tell you, a program/game to require you to update, an updater to tell you (like the FileHippo Update Checker), or just check every couple weeks (my scenario). >:(

@Stoic Joker: I use this PC for gaming (~80% of the time) and the CPU is quite aged; I rely on the GPU to do most of the work during games. :-\