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Re: Sending an interrupt to the frontend?

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  • Subject: [mg127357] Re: Sending an interrupt to the frontend?
  • From: Yves Klett <yves.klett at>
  • Date: Fri, 20 Jul 2012 03:48:12 -0400 (EDT)
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  • References: <jtj5ro$5ml$> <jttuv8$gtl$> <ju8ea9$99d$>


the subjective stability changed brutally between versions 5 and 6 with
the introduction of the whole dynamic frontend stuff. With version 6 and
all the very desirable interactivity the number of kernel kills rocketed
for me.

If you use this heavily there are often hangs/crashes that seem
difficult to reproduce. Sometimes it works, sometimes it does not. Which
can be quite vexing. Of course this may still be due to bad programming,
but in a rather non-deterministic fashion.


Am 19.07.2012 09:51, schrieb Michael Weyrauch:
> Ralph,
>     I really would like to understand your critical remarks somewhat
> better.
> It is clear that one can easily and quickly run the frontend irresponsive.
> However, in most cases I know, this is actually due to bad programming
> (from Mathematica's point of view) rather than an instable product.
> One typical reason is that a command returns symbolic results where the 
> programmer actually expected only numerical stuff, and quickly things get completely out of hand.  But how should Mathematica know that all this was not intended?
> It is the tremendous flexibility and the many possibilities which
> sometims get into the way, and as a consequence the frontend can not
> handle the output from the kernel any more.
> I really do not understand where you expect Wolfram to get "its act 
> together". My experience tells me: A good Mathematica program may run 
> for days without any instability. But my stupitidy and/or lasy 
> programming can run it against
> the wall within seconds. Mathematica as such is definitely not unstable.
> (of course, sometimes there are bugs as with any other major (and minor)
> software).
> Michael
> Am 15.07.2012 10:28, schrieb Ralph Dratman:
>> David,
>> "Troublesome" puts the matter rather tactfully.
>> Bluntly, there is no excuse for a major product to display such a
>> level of instability in 2012.
>> Since I personally like Mathematica so much, and because I use it
>> constantly, I find the crashes to be both an embarrassment and a
>> disappointment.
>> I can only hope Wolfram Research will soon get its act together on
>> this critically important issue.
>> Ralph
>> On Sat, Jul 14, 2012 at 1:28 AM, David Bailey <dave at> wrote:
>>> On 12/07/2012 10:00, Yves Klett wrote:
>>>> In earlier incarnations, the kernel would show up as a separate entry in
>>>> the taskbar (on Win XP, that was), which made it very convenient to
>>>> kill. I kind of miss that behaviour (when things go wrong repeatedly).
>>> I wrote a C program that executes the command
>>> c:\windows\System32\taskkill.exe /im MathKernel.exe /t /f
>>> This runs in the background all the time, and responds to a hot key!
>>> The fact that I took time to set this up, probably reflects just how
>>> troublesome kernel hangs can be!
>>> Perhaps at the very least Mathematica could spawn a program of this type.
>>> David Bailey

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