Carry On Crashing: Windows 7 starts messing about

Last night, just 48 hours after I'd installed it, I had my very first Windows 7 Blue Screen Of Death.It may not have been the complete BSOD package, but the machine was thoroughly dead and the screen was blue: there was what may have been intended to be the traditional mystic hexadecimal runes of disaster on the screen, but they'd been scrambled into a cryptographic stew of white pixels.

Last night, just 48 hours after I'd installed it, I had my very first Windows 7 Blue Screen Of Death.

It may not have been the complete BSOD package, but the machine was thoroughly dead and the screen was blue: there was what may have been intended to be the traditional mystic hexadecimal runes of disaster on the screen, but they'd been scrambled into a cryptographic stew of white pixels. And it was making a most peculiar noise.

Just before this, I had been watching Carry On Spying on DVD - reaching the point where Kenneth Williams (in a fez) and Charles Hawtrey (as Beau Geste) were about to rush in on Barbara Windsor and Bernard Cribbins (both in belly-dancing outfits, both at imminent risk of violation from Eric Pohlmann, aka The Fat Man) in an Algerian bordello. A classic moment in British film, and Kenneth Williams was giving it his flared-nose hyper-camp all.

The exact point of silicon disaster hit as he was issuing a nasal vowel so elongated and swooping it fell from the sky like a roll of toilet paper thrown from the Kop. The screen blinked and went blue: the sound system locked into a death spasm, repeating 200 milliseconds of the audio ad infinitum. The death knell of Windows 7, I can report, sounds like this:

"OooOooOooOooOooOooOooOooOoo..."

I enjoyed the moment, then reset the computer. The laptop, a by now rather venerable Sony Vaio, recovered at length: I replayed the scene, but all was well.

I think it's safe to blame Windows 7. The laptop had previously been running Vista for a couple of years - I try and use whatever MS' latest OS is daily, even though I hadn't warmed to Vista after all that time - and I'd performed an in-place upgrade to Windows 7 Ultimate. (That took around four hours, but as I had the luck or foresight to kick that off on a Saturday morning before retiring back to bed for a long lie, I was as refreshed as the computer once it had completed.)

I was using the same application for DVD playback as I had for many DVDs before; there were no hardware changes or configuration fiddling beyond what had come in on the Windows 7 installation. I'd certainly never experienced a failure like that under Vista; although I had had a couple of catastrophic crashes, they happened when I was running beta software or messing around with peculiar hardware.

And so, pace Talbot Rothwell and the Pinewood posse, I fear we have to conclude that the longest running farce on the small screen has got some acts left to go before conclusion.

Newsletters

You have been successfully signed up. To sign up for more newsletters or to manage your account, visit the Newsletter Subscription Center.
See All
See All