Freebsd 5.3 Performance
rwatson at freebsd.org
Sun Jan 9 08:28:27 PST 2005
On Sun, 9 Jan 2005, Anthony Atkielski wrote:
> Robert Watson writes:
> RW> All I know is that the XP bits don't crash every week, they crash every
> RW> three weeks. :-) My NT4 box crashed almost continuously.
> I have three machines, running FreeBSD, NT, and XP. All of them will
> run until I boot them. They don't crash, or at least I can't remember
> the last time I saw any of them crash (except for a hardware problem
> that was crashing FreeBSD until I replaced the hardware).
> All of these operating systems are rock stable when used and
> administered appropriately. I haven't had XP long enough to prove it,
> but NT and FreeBSD will run for years without a boot in many cases.
The problems I have on the Windows XP platform appear to come from a lack
of robustness in the face of nasty application failure. At work we use
Windows with the usual combination of Microsoft office and e-mail
products, as well as tools like Acrobat. It seems things go horribly
wrong in the interactions between the components (especially Acrobat
integration into IE), and this leaves the system in a poor state (often
wedged). Lower level OS bits keep responding to pings, but a hard boot is
required to get anywhere useful. NT4 appeared a lot less robust with
relatively frequent kernel crashes, whereas with XP my impression has been
that the kernel itself is quite robust but the user shell and interface
components are so tightly integrated with application behavior that
application failure leaves them dead in the water. This is not disimilar
to related failure modes on Mac OS X and using X11/KDE on BSD, and
suggests maybe part of the problem is in the architecture of how we layer
"system" applications over windowing mechanisms.
Robert N M Watson
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