Feeds

Nvidia drivers named as lead Vista crash cause in 2007

Lawsuit documents spill beans

Business security measures using SSL

Nvidia, not Microsoft, is apparently responsible for the drivers that caused the most Windows Vista crashes last year. That's if documents posted as part of a lawsuit probing PCs' ability to run the new OS are anything to go by.

The files in question are a batch of Microsoft emails, available to read in a single PDF here. Website Ars Technica had a look and discovered one - number 131 on page 47 - that claims Nvidia drivers were recorded as causing Vista crashes in 479,326 of the 1,663,327 crash logs filed with Microsoft.

That's 28.8 per cent of the total - over ten per cent more than the 17.9 per cent of Vista crashes that could be laid at the door of Microsoft's own software. AMD comes fourth, with its ATI drivers causing 9.3 per cent of the logged crashes. Intel follows in fifth place with 8.8 per cent.

Vista Crashes by Organisation, 2007

Vista Crashes by Organisation

Source: Microsoft

No, we haven't ignored the third biggest contributor, accounting for 17 per cent of crashes, but it's a collective entity combining all the incidents for which Microsoft doesn't know whose drivers caused the new OS to hang.

Pretty much everyone who writes driver software is present on the list but after Intel, the percentages very rapidly tail off to below one percentage point.

The data was collected in 2007, and so far as anyone can tell from the document's PDF form, it aggregates data taken throughout the year. Later, more stable drivers might well be masked by the effect of early, bug-ridden drivers, and, as Ars points out, it's not known whether incidents from the same machine count as one data point or have all been included on the list.

These are presumably not all of the incidents of this kind that took place in 2007, only the ones where the users submitted the information to Microsoft. Nvidia user may be more keen to do so than owners of ATI-branded cards.

Whatever, the data does suggest that the many complaints aired in online forums by frustrated users about Nvidia's drivers - and, let's not forget, other vendors' products too - were not without justification.

Unlike many organisations, Nvidia - AMD too - regularly update their drivers, so it's unlikely the early glitches persist into more recent driver releases. But the data makes for a fascinating glimpse into the history of the OS' roll-out.

Secure remote control for conventional and virtual desktops

More from The Register

next story
Oi, Tim Cook. Apple Watch. I DARE you to tell me, IN PERSON, that it's secure
State attorney demands Apple CEO bows the knee to him
4K-ing excellent TV is on its way ... in its own sweet time, natch
For decades Hollywood actually binned its 4K files. Doh!
Phones 4u website DIES as wounded mobe retailer struggles to stay above water
Founder blames 'ruthless network partners' for implosion
DARPA-backed jetpack prototype built to make soldiers run faster
4 Minute Mile project hatched to speed up tired troops
Hey, Mac fanbois. HGST wants you drooling over its HUGE desktop RACK
What vast digital media repository could possibly need 64 TERABYTES?
Apple Pay is a tidy payday for Apple with 0.15% cut, sources say
Cupertino slurps 15 cents from every $100 purchase
Apple's ONE LESS THING: the iPod Classic disappears
RIP 2001 – 2014. MP3 player beloved of millions. Killed by cloud
prev story

Whitepapers

Providing a secure and efficient Helpdesk
A single remote control platform for user support is be key to providing an efficient helpdesk. Retain full control over the way in which screen and keystroke data is transmitted.
WIN a very cool portable ZX Spectrum
Win a one-off portable Spectrum built by legendary hardware hacker Ben Heck
Saudi Petroleum chooses Tegile storage solution
A storage solution that addresses company growth and performance for business-critical applications of caseware archive and search along with other key operational systems.
Protecting users from Firesheep and other Sidejacking attacks with SSL
Discussing the vulnerabilities inherent in Wi-Fi networks, and how using TLS/SSL for your entire site will assure security.
Security for virtualized datacentres
Legacy security solutions are inefficient due to the architectural differences between physical and virtual environments.