I’m Tired of Rebooting

Windows has detected that you have moved your mouse.  Please reboot to complete this change.

Today I installed an update to Outlook 2007 and was instructed to reboot my PC. I’ve pretty much had it with Windows and rebooting.

I can change freaking device drivers on my Linux boxes without a reboot. And that system was implemented by a loosely affiliated group of hairy communist volunteers (heh).

Can anyone explain the Windows behavior to me? I have some guesses, but nothing worth promulgating. If this behavior is some kind of tradeoff, what’s the upside? I’m missing it.

I can replace the binary of a running Linux executable — no problemo. Subsequent invocations of the program will read the new binary. Under the hood it’s all inodes and reference counting.

On my Vista box, a mere open CMD prompt can stop me in my tracks. I flail helplessly around, closing anything and everything which is open, clicking Retry, until the “in use” dialog goes away.

Update: It’s seems that a lot of pain is caused by Window’s read locks. Often times a file is kept open by some background process, preventing me from accomplishing some task. If you run into a problem that smells like a read lock, I recommend killing the following with extreme prejudice: anti-virus programs, desktop search programs, and mspdbsrv.exe

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1 Response to “I’m Tired of Rebooting”


  1. 1 mikee April 25, 2007 at 3:43 pm

    It’s a huge problem that *every* windows user hits eventually. As you’ve hinted, it’s at least partly a file system problem. Oddly, it has never been clear whether or not WinFS would resolve some of these long standing problems. When I have the dreaded file-in-use problems, I use ProcessExplorer (the former Sysinternals tool) to look for all procs that have files open — it works pretty well. Half the time it seems like Windows Explorer is the culprit. Ugh.


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