Dr. HardwareBlog

or: How I Learned to Stop Blaming Windows and Love the BSOD

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  • Blog Post: SMIs Are EEEEVIL (Part 1)

    As a quick introduction, SMIs were introduced to the x86 world by the 386SL. It was created to allowed systems designers to have access to the CPU while unspecified software of any type was running. The reasons for this are obvious when you look at the market the 386SL was aimed it. It was Intel's first...
  • Blog Post: Favorite Hardware Bugs <CENSORED>

    Want to know why I started posting again just now? Adi Oltean posted a great entry about his favorite hardware bug . This prompted Larry Osterman to post his favorite , and I started feeling left out. I have a ton to choose from, after all I deal with new bleeding edge hardware on a daily basis. I...
  • Blog Post: Self-Monitoring and Diagnosing Hardware

    This is something that most people in the mainframe business have taken fom granted for decades now. To the PC world, it’s relatively new…and to the PC OS world, even newer. Starting with the Pentium and Pentium Pro, Intel introduced the Machine Check Architecture (MCA), which...
  • Blog Post: How a Bluescreen Button (NMI) can Save Your Bacon

    I know, another title that seems ridiculous. Why in the world would anyone want a button that intentionally bluescreens your system?! When you’re confronted with a hard hang though, (no mouse or keyboard) you’re in for a heck of a time trying to figure out what’s wrong without one....
  • Blog Post: If you can’t stand the heat…

    You should get out of the PC kitchen. This is another silent system killer that most people don’t want to acknowledge. (Though I will admit it’s gotten easier the last 2-3 years, as Intel, AMD, nVidia, and ATI have cranked up the wattage to the point where even the most stubborn have to recognize...
  • Blog Post: THE Killer Server App for x64

    IMO, it's not what anyone else might think. SQL, Exchange, and Web Services get all the hype, but I think Terminal Services will get the most immediate benefit from the backwards-compatible nature of the x64 architecture. Let's look at some of the benefits that the platform provides over x86 and IA-64...
  • Blog Post: Bad RAM is Not Good

    I know that title must seem silly, but it’s the title of a mock KB article that floated around inside of product support here for a number of years. You’d be amazed by the number of blue screens we see where the culprit is bad or failing RAM. It can be very hard to convince people that...
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