Windows Explorer Hangs

I have been fighting this for over a week now. I have some fairly large hard drives. They have multiple partitions. The partitions vary from 250gig to 600gig and the larger partitions are NTFS. I use windows explorer to move files on a regular basis running XP+SP2.

I also have a SATA PCI add-on card to support my two larger SATA drives. My motherboard is older than SATA and only provides for IDE drives.

A couple of weeks ago I noticed that the hardware display under the systems icon of the classic control panel display was showing a question mark for the RAID controller. The only raid capable controller card I have is the SATA add-on card. It can provide a RAID environment but since I do not use RAID, I never loaded the RAID driver. The card supports the SATA drives just fine without the RAID driver being loaded.

I should know enough to leave well enough alone but that question mark was disturbing. I suspected that it might cause problems later on. I was right. It did cause problems later on because after I got rid of it by installing the RAID driver the windows explorer began to hang. This is NOT the Internet explorer. This is the silly thing that pops up and shows your drives when you double click the ‘My Computer’ label.

I would open a hard drive display window. Move down into the file system, and when I tried to back out by clicking the left arrow, windows explorer quit responding. After hitting the ‘X’ several times I got the unresponsive software window and an offer to end it now. Which I did. All the icons on the desktop disappeared, then came back, and I could use explorer again until I got into the same situation as before.

Turns out that this was being caused by the RAID driver. Perhaps because it did not have a valid digital signature. Whatever the hell that means. No I am not interested in goolilng that. I already knew it had something to do with the way the Microsoft rigged XP. The on-line help was close to worthless because they had no information to resolve the problem. In fact, the help from Microsoft implied that I had a hardware problem when in fact I had software that would not work. (The same hardware runs just fine under Debian.)

So I will remove the RAID driver and settle for the question mark in the control panel display. I will do that as soon as I figure out how to remove the driver. You see, XP reinstalls it everytime I boot up even after I do an uninstall.

I am sure there is way to get rid of that feature without having to re-install XP, but I may not need to do that in any case. There are other problems that annoy me with XP. Debian has its own annoyances but none as disturbing as the nonsense I have had to put up with using XP. I am about an inch and a half away from going to Debian ‘Lenny’ exclusively.

Debian does not treat me like a moron, popping up stupid baloons all over the screen announcing conditions that don’t matter. Debian does most everything I need done. Everything except decent movie editing but that problem is being addressed. I would say that the things that Debian does do, it does well. Sort of like using an Apple Mac. No bull shit, just results. It might be the software that causes PCs to be problematic.

So very soon I may be able to ‘hang’ the entire XP operating system and toss windows out the door.

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