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Re: a harmless notebook crashes Windows 7: who else had it?

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  • Subject: [mg107232] Re: [mg107220] a harmless notebook crashes Windows 7: who else had it?
  • From: John Fultz <jfultz at>
  • Date: Sat, 6 Feb 2010 03:24:05 -0500 (EST)
  • Reply-to: jfultz at

If Windows is blue-screening, which seems to be what you're saying, then it's 
not Mathematica's least not directly.  No regular application has the 
privilege to do anything that would cause Windows to blue-screen.  A blue-screen 
happens when privileged code running in core parts of the operating system 
fails, and the operating system is unable to contain the crash.  Typically, it's 
a result of a bug in Windows itself, or a bug in a device driver which Windows 
is using.  It could also, as you've already speculated, be the result of 

That being said, I can toss out one speculation.  We've seen a very small number 
of cases where the presence of the Mathematica5 fonts on the system can cause 
certain applications (not just Mathematica) to trigger a blue-screen.  We 
haven't gotten to the bottom of this, yet...and it's only been reported to us by 
three users.  I personally suspect that there's a flaky video driver behind the 
problem, but I don't have the evidence to back up such an assertion, yet.

On the off-chance that the problem you're seeing is the same problem, try 
following this procedure...

* Quit all copies of Mathematica.
* Open the Fonts control panel.  Make copies of all of the Mathematica5 fonts, 
then remove them from the Fonts list.
* Reboot.  Open the Fonts control panel again and verify that no Mathematica5 
fonts are there.
* Launch Mathematica and perform the procedure which reproduces the blue-screen.
* You may see some characters which display incorrectly on the screen. That's 

If this makes the problem go away, then I'd really like to get some more 
information from you, and I can offer you some practical advice for working
around the problem.  Feel free to email me directly with the results of your

If that doesn't help, then you should reinstall the Mathematica5 fonts. They 
can be found in the installation directory in 
SystemFiles\FrontEnd\Fonts\Windows.  Send me a copy of the crash report that
Windows creates, and I may be able to suggest other things you can try.


On Fri, 5 Feb 2010 07:13:30 -0500 (EST), Alexei Boulbitch wrote:
> *Dear Community,
> I have recently installed Mathematica  (the Premier Service -
> related Home Edition) on my laptop (ASER Aspire 4810TG with Windows 7
> Home Edition). I faced a problem that started to show up right after the
> installation of Mathematica:
> Windows crashes always, if I open a certain notebook and scroll it for
> few seconds. The notebook in question is a draft of my lecture and
> contains mainly a text (e.g. text cells) and some short and very
> primitive pieces of code. To give few examples of the code from that
> notebook look here:
> *1 - 3 \[Nu] /. \[Nu] -> 3/5
> *or here:
> *f = (T*c)/\[CapitalNu]*Log[c/(\[CapitalNu]*E)] +
> B*c^2 + \[DoubleStruckCapitalC]*c^3;
> \[Mu]p = \[CapitalNu]*\!\(
> \*SubscriptBox[\(\[PartialD]\), \(c\)]\ f\) // FunctionExpand // Expand
> Posm = c*\!\(
> \*SubscriptBox[\(\[PartialD]\), \(c\)]\ f\) - f // Expand
> *or here
> *Panel@Style[
> "Some text to be highlighted", 16, Blue, Bold]
> *There are some other pieces of a code of the same type in that
> notebook. The code seems to be quite harmless. However, Windows crashes
> and restarts. Another thing that crashes Windows in the same manner is
> launching the Outlook Express. This also started to happen first after
> the installation of Mathematica.
> Other notebooks as well as other applications seem to work well. I
> checked for viruses with NOD32, seems to be no of them. The same
> "criminal" notebook is running fine on another machine with Windows XP
> and the same Mathematica version.  On this machine I did not face any
> problem with this version of Mathemactica (at least, not yet).
> My question:
> Did somebody of you already experience things of this type, and what did
> you do in this case?
> Best regards, Alexei
> *

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