Archive for the ‘Fun with Debugging’ Category

A Bug in a Bag (Collections, Ex-hi-bit 1)

Monday, January 30th, 2012

- Dmitry Vostokov @ + -

A Bug Meets a Bug (The Clash of Civilizations)

Saturday, January 28th, 2012

- Dmitry Vostokov @ + -

A Bug Catcher

Monday, January 23rd, 2012

As always, if I’m asked to do something, I don’t stop there and apply all my accumulated knowledge to go beyond. Here is an example: after designing 2CARE2 trademark I imagined an organic creature that catches bugs:

If you compare it with a trademark you would recognize A, R and E as Phenyl, Methyl, and Ethyl groups.

- Dmitry Vostokov @ + -

Bugtation No.154

Sunday, January 22nd, 2012

3 bugtations in a column:

Every debugger I know has trouble debugging.
Talent is helpful in debugging, but guts are absolutely necessary.
With failure comes a dump.

Joseph Heller

- Dmitry Vostokov @ + -

Bugtation No.153

Tuesday, January 10th, 2012

An advice to succeed in Software Technical Support:

They said : The dump came from the wrong site
He’s a page from the end of the dump
I said : The dump came from the right site
Took me just one look
With a little debugging
You will survive
With a little debugging
You will get by
Do what you want
Go your own way
in Technical Support.

Modern Talking

- Dmitry Vostokov @ + -

New Year Eve Debugging

Saturday, December 31st, 2011

A WinDbg snippet from a multithreaded service:

0:2011> ~2012s

PS. Teaching WinDbg commands on the eve! :-)

- Dmitry Vostokov @ + -

Bugtation No.152

Friday, December 30th, 2011

The beginning of a debugging tale:

He was debugging for 7 years and when he stopped and looked around he saw only 2 people left from the team of 50 strong technical support engineers.


- Dmitry Vostokov @ + -

Bugtation No.150

Monday, December 19th, 2011

150 bugtations so far…

Program history has two sides, a computational and a human.

Philip Schaff

- Dmitry Vostokov @ + -

Bugtation No.148

Thursday, December 1st, 2011

Does God play keyboard?

Dmitry Vostokov, Memoriarch, Founder of Memory Religion (Memorianity)

- Dmitry Vostokov @ + -

LoL (Debugging Slang, Part 28)

Thursday, November 17th, 2011

LoL - Law of Large

Examples: Q. How did you resolve this support case? A. LoL number!

Explanation: The more support incidents you get, the larger their tracking numbers. So at some stage the law of large numbers comes into effect: there is always a similar incident in the past. Don’t confuse with LOL.

- Dmitry Vostokov @ + -

Bugtation No.147

Thursday, October 6th, 2011

The idea of this bugtation came to me when I bought the book in a local bookshop The Presence of the Past as interested in all things past:

The Presence of The Memory Dump: Code Resonance and the Habits of Debugging.

Rupert Sheldrake

- Dmitry Vostokov @ + -

Music for Debugging: Out of Memory and Losing My Data (Comment Impact)

Monday, September 19th, 2011

R.E.M. album Out of Time is a great joy to listen for Win32 API debugging veterans familiar with Visual Basic.

I put my own track title names here:

1. I Can’t Find It!
2. Losing My Data
4. Near A Wild Pointer (*pa, *pa, *ppa, …)
5. End Of Session
6. Happy Customers
7. Be LONG
8. Half A Word Away! (A Miracle)
9. Printer Driver (Can’t Spell Its Name)
10. Customer Feedback (One, Two, Three, …)
11. Found Me In Dumps

- Dmitry Vostokov @ + -

What is to be done?

Tuesday, August 9th, 2011

I showed this artwork to many people and they responded that they didn’t understand or hope one day they would understand. Only one guy (a professional manager) responded positively with understanding. What I think is that real art can be interpreted in many ways. So I kindly await your criticism.

PS. This Computicart (Computical Art) work was inspired by a pet parrot at home. I’ve been observing its behaviour for more than 6 months and tried to discern a few patterns. Its name is KiKi (not related to Ki* functions).

- Dmitry Vostokov @ + -

Second Eye (Debugging Slang, Part 25)

Wednesday, July 27th, 2011

Second Eye (or sometimes a stronger variant “second pair of eyes”) - another engineer you typically need when you don’t see anything useful in a memory dump, software trace or source code for problem resolution purposes. You are anxious to recommend something useful.

Examples: Don’t see anything in this huge trace. I need a second eye.

- Dmitry Vostokov @ + -

The First Evidence for Process Resurrection

Saturday, July 23rd, 2011

Recently analyzed a process memory dump and noticed that it (up and running) survived system reboot :-)

0:000> version
Windows Vista Version 6000 MP (2 procs) Free x64
Product: WinNt, suite: SingleUserTS Personal
kernel32.dll version: 6.0.6000.16386 (vista_rtm.061101-2205)
Machine Name:
Debug session time: Tue Jul 12 16:53:07.000 2011 (UTC + 1:00)
System Uptime: 0 days 1:27:04.516
Process Uptime: 1 days 4:05:35.000
  Kernel time: 0 days 0:00:13.000
  User time: 0 days 0:00:04.000

I have a hypothesis how this could have happened. Interested in knowing yours. I’ll write mine later on.

- Dmitry Vostokov @ + -

Airport Terminal Services Incident

Sunday, July 10th, 2011

A week ago I was flying from Dublin airport and observed “terminal services” incident first hand being the first in the registration queue for an hour while waiting for the problem resolution and “live debugging”. The system couldn’t print tickets. The following dialog phrases were very amusing to hear:

- Press F6 to initialize PE

- A message reads: “Can’t associate a printer with terminal session. Please enter the printer address.”

PS. The problem was resolved by booting the previous system version. It’s aways Mr. Upgrade who’s at fault…

- Dmitry Vostokov @ + -

Having Fun (Debugging Slang, Part 25)

Friday, June 24th, 2011

Having Fun - Having too many functions to analyze, reverse engineer, or simply having too many of them on a call stack.

Examples: We were having fun all night. A thread had fun culminating in a double fault. Why do I love debugging?

- Dmitry Vostokov @ + -

Adult Debugging (Debugging Slang, Part 24)

Friday, June 24th, 2011

Adult Debugging - The act of debugging when you are dealing with Functions you don’t know much about using public sources. Comes from famous xxx calls, for example:


Examples: We are doing adult debugging from time to time.

- Dmitry Vostokov @ + -

Bugtation No.144

Thursday, June 16th, 2011

“… further” applications “suffered from over-expansion owing to the exhaustion of their” computational “opportunities…”

Graeme Snooks, The Dynamic Society: The Sources of Global Change

- Dmitry Vostokov @ + -

On President’s Daily Briefs (PDBs)

Friday, June 3rd, 2011

Found it funny that President’s Daily Brief is abbreviated as PDB. For intelligence analysts who might be reading this post there are a few links explaining PDB files:

I also suggest to deabbreviate PDB files as Programmer’s Daily Briefs in the context of nightly builds on Windows platforms.

- Dmitry Vostokov @ + -