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Windows NT Crashes, Leaving U.S.S. Yorktown Dead in the Water



Windows NT Crashes, Leaving U.S.S. Yorktown Dead in the Water

http://www.gcn.com/gcn/1998/July13/cov2.htm

Excerpt:

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he Navy's Smart Ship technology may not be as smart as the service contends.

Although PCs have reduced workloads for sailors aboard the Aegis missile
cruiser USS Yorktown, software glitches resulted in system failures and
crippled ship operations, according to Navy officials.

Navy brass have called the Yorktown Smart Ship pilot a success in reducing
manpower, maintenance and costs. The Navy began running shipboard
applications under Microsoft Windows NT so that fewer sailors would be
needed to control key ship functions.

But the Navy last fall learned a difficult lesson about automation: The
very information technology on which the ships depend also makes them
vulnerable. The Yorktown last September suffered a systems failure when bad
data was fed into its computers during maneuvers off the coast of Cape
Charles, Va.

The ship had to be towed into the Naval base at Norfolk, Va., because a
database overflow caused its propulsion system to fail, according to
Anthony DiGiorgio, a civilian engineer with the Atlantic Fleet Technical
Support Center in Norfolk.

"We are putting equipment in the engine room that we cannot maintain and,
when it fails, results in a critical failure," DiGiorgio said. It took two
days of pierside maintenance to fix the problem.

The Yorktown has been towed into port after other systems failures, he said.
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--
Eric Bennett (http://www.pobox.com/~ericb/), Cornell Biochemistry Department

Windows 98 is not the first product Microsoft has botched, nor will it be
the last.  But it is the last straw. . . . Users who do install it do so at
their own risk, and IS departments are not offering support.
- Scot Petersen, PC Week Magazine


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