I tend to launch most programs on my Windows 10 laptop by typing the <Win> key, then a few letters of the program name, and then hitting enter. On my powerful laptop (SSD and 32 GB of RAM) this process usually takes as long as it takes me to type these characters, just a fraction of a second.
Sometimes, however, it takes longer. A lot longer. As in, tens of seconds. The slowdowns are unpredictable but recently I was able to record an Event Tracing for Windows (ETW) trace of one of these delays. With a bit of help from people on twitter I was able to analyze the trace and understand why it took about a minute to launch notepad.
I loved reading every bit of this post. Even for someone not versed in programming, it’s quite easy to follow along and understand what is happening deep in the bowels of Windows when this bug occurs. I’ll spoil the surprise:
This deserves reiterating. My start menu was hung due to the combination of heap corruption and WerFault.exe deciding that it needed to upload the crash dump before releasing the old process so that a new one could be started.
And uploading the crash dump ran into issues, causing the delay. The tools to watch for bugs is causing more bugs. Who watches the watchers?
typing in the full name of the program (notepad.exe, winword.exe etc) seems to bypass the “searching” it does.
Exactly this kind of problem makes me mocking any professional asking me if “Windows was supported too”. Who in his right mind would run services on that platform. Its a poorly designed game station, nothing else.
From time to time I am forced to start Windows in a VM because clients enforce proprietary Checkpoint VPN clients. All I need is the powershell for SSH portfowarding and the Checkpoint Client. Though it takes ages to get that started for no reason.
The same functionality in a Linux VM comes up in 1 second and at 384 MB Ram only and I did not even care on optimizing anything.
What a sad state of affairs and people keep consuming this crap since they were fed with it since child hood.