Cure for "Illegal Operations" Sydrome

By: Mike Smith

"You have performed an ILLEGAL OPERATION,
the program will be shut down!" But I didn't do anything!
Really, I was just sitting here. :-(

You did update Windows, right?
And have the current drivers for all of your other hardware and
software, don't you? How important is it? Well if you are
experiencing a lot of crashes this may just be the cure. Very
few people understand what happens in Windows when you install
new software and hardware. Since Bill Gates wants to be the
boss, obviously he put everything into Windows to make it work
with Microsoft products.

Now all the other companies that sell you things have to make
theirs for the Gates configuration. Some are not too good at it
and some are just careless. For those you get the Blue Screen of
Death. Ever see this one?

"You have performed an ILLEGAL OPERATION, the program will be
shut down!"? Then a whole bunch of numbers and stuff even a
Geek may not understand.

Well it is really a simple matter of shared files not getting
along in your Puter. One says "I am going to decide how this
operation is done" and the other one says "no you're not!"
So the one with the newest info may win but you get blamed for
it because the program didn't do it the "Gates Way" and the
result is that the program could not start.

Now you get a new program out of the box, put it on your Puter
and guess what? The program probably has a whole ton of updates
available to make it get along with Windows. Windows has a whole
bunch of new updates to screw with the other companies but "You
performed an ILLEGAL OPERATION". Feel a little insulted? I do.
Then there are some companies that really don't want your Puter
to cooperate with Windows. They want a piece of the Giant and
guess who pays for it? Yup, we do.

I won't mention any names but AOL and Netscape are 2 of the
biggest offenders.

After that comes Real Player and a list a
mile long. But let's not make the problem too simple. Several
companies are out to get each other and at your expense. Yeah,
right. They tell you it is someone else that is the cause and
that company swears that it is another one. So here you are
caught in the middle and nobody has bothered to tell you that
something as simple as downloading the latest updates and
drivers just might solve the problems they are busy blaming each
other for.

Here are a couple of solutions for you. First try and find out
what all your hardware is. Printers are easy, the name and model
are on the front. But what about your CD ROM, Audio System, and
monitor? A lot of times, they just don't have that information
available. Yup even keyboards can have updated drivers. Drivers?
Updates? Hardware? Software?.

All of your Hardware runs with Drivers. You can find out the
model information and a lot more about them from the "Control
Panel". From your START button find SETTINGS, click on that then
CONTOL PANEL. Once in the CONTROL PANEL scroll down to
SYSTEM and double click. The first window will give you the
information on the maker of the Puter and Processor plus how
much Memory you have installed and the version of Windows
you have.

Next click on the DEVICE MANAGER tab. You will see a listing of
the DEVICES in your Puter. By clicking the + beside each item you
can see what you need to find out what the product is. You don't
need to open the SYSTEM DEVICES unless you are just curious. Now
you get to play detective. Go get em, Columbo!

In most cases you can just do a search for the manufacturer and
go straight to their site. Drivers will usually be found under
SUPPORT and should have download and installation instructions.
You should check for updates at least every 6 to 8 weeks if not
more often. Software updates are not as hard. Most of the
programs have a link in the Help menu to go to their site and
some even have an update link.

But before you start updating 3rd party software
(Not Microsoft), you should get the latest updates for your
version of Windows. Hey, guess what? Gates made this one easy!

Click on the START button then go up near the top of the column
and you will see Windows Update. Sheer genius! Just click it.
You will have to be connected to the Internet first. When the
browser opens just click on the Products Updates and your Puter
will be searched for what needs to be updated. From there it is
only a matter of following pretty simple instructions (simple?
from Microsoft?). It really is pretty easy to do.

One more little thing before I leave you with all this
confusion. I use a program for all my Software that isn't
Microsoft from ZDNet called, you guessed it, Updates.
There is a small download and then it will search your hard '
drive and give you a report of all available updates for your
software then the option to download the updates. Best of all
it is FREE! Subscribe, download the program, get your
updates and they will e-mail you a reminder to keep up with

Your life will be a lot easier and maybe you won't see so many of
"The Blue Screen of Death" or "You have performed an ILLEGAL
OPERATIONFind Article, the program will be shut down!" Cause ya didn't. It
ain't your fault.


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