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iTunes is not reliable

At least on my desktop PC, that is.

You may recall from my Firefox 3 vs. Windows Vista posts from a while back that I had been lamenting that bugginess in Mozilla's latest browser (later tied to particular add-ons) had been bringing down my PC's reliability index. What's weird is that the reliability index has never really recovered since then either, despite a few valiant attempts. This time around, it's not Firefox, however. (In fact, Firefox 3 has been notably reliable.) No, this time it's iTunes.

Here's a shot of the index:

The 30-day high point came on June 20, 2008, when my PC registered a reliability index score of 8.09. Since then, it's been up and down, mostly down, and mostly because of iTunes. In fact, of the 8 "bad days" seen above (and denoted by red X's), four of them were solely caused by iTunes and another, in outlook.exe, was caused when I had trouble syncing with iTunes. (I can't definitely blame that one on Apple, but I'll throw it out there, since this is the only reason I even use Outlook.)

In fact, over those 8 bad days, there were a total of 16 application failures. Here's how they break down:

iTunes.exe   5
WindowsMailSync.exe (for iTunes) 4
LVPrcSrv.exe (Logitech) 2
Outlook.exe 2
Communications_Helper.exe (Logitech) 1
wmplayer.exe 1
wlcrdpsystem.exe (unknown) 1

As you can see, iTunes and a related exe are responsible for 9 of the 16 application failures over the last 30 days. And probably 11, if you count Outlook.exe. Which I do, but I think you could make an argument otherwise.

Today, the index is at 7.30 thanks to two consecutive days of iTunes.exe crashes, which is what made me think to look.

For whatever it's worth, my Vista-based Macbook is considerably more reliable. Since coming online on June 16, there has been only one application failure (explorer.exe) and two "miscellaneous" failures (both disruptive shutdowns). The reliability index score on that machine is 9.33 and its always hovered right near a perfect 10.


I'm not sure if this is meaningful, but the desktop is running Vista x64 while the Macbook is running Vista x86 (32-bit).

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