Musings of a PC

Thoughts about Windows, TV and technology in general

Troubleshooting in Windows 7

Last week, I installed Windows 7 onto a Dell Hybrid Studio for a friend. The process took the usual pattern – about 30 minutes to install Windows 7 and then the rest of the day installing all of the applications! The process, though, was relatively painless until near the end of the day when Windows reported a problem with the optical drive.

Essentially, it said the driver was corrupt.

I was tired by then and not in a particularly good place to try to troubleshoot the problem so I left it as my friend said he didn’t need to use the drive immediately.

He followed up with me by email yesterday to see if I had any ideas as to what the problem was. I asked him to send me a screenshot from the Device Manager so that I had the precise message:

Windows cannot load the device driver. The driver may be missing or corrupted (Error code 39).

Searching for that message – using Bing, of course – produced this page as the first result. That then led me to this KB article. There were two interesting aspects of this KB article:

  1. It has a Fix It button for users of XP and Vista. It is good to see Microsoft rolling this functionality out across more known problems.
  2. For Windows 7 … the solution is to use the built-in troubleshooter!

Yep – if I had had my head screwed on correctly from the start, I might have remembered the amount of work that Microsoft have put into Windows 7 to help the end-user resolve more problems there and then. Indeed, running the troubleshooter in Windows 7 did correct the problem so my friend now has a working DVD drive again.

Kudos to Microsoft for this new feature!

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