Microsoft is adding the PC equivalent of a flight data recorder to the next version of Windows, in an effort to better understand and prevent computer crashes. The tool will build on the existing Watson error-reporting tool in Windows but will provide Microsoft with much deeper information, including what programs were running at the time of the error and even the contents of documents that were being created. For consumers, the choice of whether to send the data, and how much information to share, will be up to the individual. Microsoft also plans to step up the amount of information Windows users get when they send an error report to the company.

Microsoft is adding the PC equivalent of a flight data recorder to the next version of Windows, in an effort to better understand and prevent computer crashes. The tool will build on the existing Watson error-reporting tool in Windows but will provide Microsoft with much deeper information, including what programs were running at the time of the error and even the contents of documents that were being created. For consumers, the choice of whether to send the data, and how much information to share, will be up to the individual. Microsoft also plans to step up the amount of information Windows users get when they send an error report to the company.