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Win16 critical section error

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i was reading about directx8, and something i think was called "win16 critical section err" was mentioned. basically, if you lock a surface and forget to unlock it, windows slowly degrades and eventually fusses atomically causing a massive explosion of energy; ending your gamming fun. what is this phenomena and why does it occur?

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its called a ''Win 16 global critical section lock''

"what this means is that if you dont unlock the surface, your machine will have a long and torterous death." ...
"windows 2000 and later will not die "... "but it will greatly slow until you turn off your machine"
- "the zen of direct3d game programming"- peter walsh

im wondering about why the machine slows down.

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