The Machine SID Duplication Myth (and Why Sysprep Matters)

On November 3 2009, Sysinternals retired NewSID, a utility that changes a computers machine Security Identifier (machine SID). I wrote NewSID in 1997 (its original name was NTSID) because the only tool available at the time for changing machine SIDs was the Microsoft Sysprep tool, and Sysprep doesn’t support changing the SIDs of computers that…


Channel 9: Inside Windows 7 Redux

Windows 7 hit general availability today, putting it in stores and on new PC’s. There are plenty of beneath-the-surface changes that make Windows 7 more power efficient, scalable, secure and responsive (and of course, there are lots of user-visible features like user-interface enhancements like Aero Snap and Aero Peek; to easier file sharing and streaming…


Recent and Upcoming Speaking Engagements

I wanted to update you on my recent and upcoming speaking engagements. First, I’ve been hosting a series of virtual roundtables for the Springboard Series program. Springboard’s purpose is to provide a one-stop resource for IT Pros evaluating, deploying and managing Windows. The most recent roundtable, which took place at the end of September, focused…


Pushing the Limits of Windows: Handles

This is the fifth post in my Pushing the Limits of Windows series where I explore the upper bound on the number and size of resources that Windows manages, such as physical memory, virtual memory, processes and threads. Here’s the index of the entire Pushing the Limits series. While they can stand on their own,…


The Case of the Temporary Registry Profiles

Microsoft Customer Support Services (CSS) is one of the biggest customers of the Sysinternals tools and they often send me interesting cases they’ve solved with them. This particular case is especially interesting because it affected a large number of users and the troubleshooting process made use of one of Process Monitor’s lesser-known features. The case…


Windows Internals 5th Edition is Available!

I’m proud to announce that Windows Internals, 5th Edition is now available. It’s been a long road, but a writing a book of this scope is an incredibly detailed endeavor. This new edition covers Windows Vista and Windows Server 2008 (32-bit and 64-bit) and besides revisions and enhancements to existing content, adds an additional 250…


Pushing the Limits of Windows: Processes and Threads

This is the fourth post in my Pushing the Limits of Windows series that explores the boundaries of fundamental resources in Windows. This time, I’m going to discuss the limits on the maximum number of threads and processes supported on Windows. I’ll briefly describe the difference between a thread and a process, survey thread limits…


The Case of the Slow Keynote Demo

A couple of weeks ago I participated for the first time in the keynote at Microsoft’s Teched US conference to a room of over 5,000 attendees. Bill Veghte, the Senior Vice President of Windows marketing, led the keynote and gave a tour of the user-focused features of Windows 7, Iain McDonald, General Manager for Windows…


Pushing the Limits of Windows: Paged and Nonpaged Pool

In previous Pushing the Limits posts, I described the two most basic system resources, physical memory and virtual memory. This time I’m going to describe two fundamental kernel resources, paged pool and nonpaged pool, that are based on those, and that are directly responsible for many other system resource limits including the maximum number of…