A better way to see trends

An old joke says that there are three kinds of lies; black lies, white lies and the internal polling data of political parties. The latter example is typically statistics, and while statistics can be presented in such a way as to prove almost anything, raw, unprocessed statistics are a great tool.
One of my habits when troubleshooting troubles is to have a look at the event viewer. While event viewer allows you to see specific events, it can sometimes be difficult to see trends. In Windows XP, we don’t really have a choice, we’ll have to look through the data, and parse it ourselves.
Enter Windows Vista, and Windows Reliability Monitor. As the screendump below shows, it will show you, as a graph, when things have started to deteriorate. You can look through the history, and see on what days there have been many errors. It also gives you a reliability index rating, from 10 to 1 (Ten being very good, 1 being exceedingly bad. Coupled with event viewer logs, Reliability Monitor makes it that much easier to read logs, and solve problems.

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