Infuriating 'bug' finally squished....


For the last 6 months or so I have been struggling with a very serious but
seemingly random and hard to reproduce 'bug' in Idea. I would be happily
coding away and then after some time - moving between Idea and other apps -
the code completion feature using + would completely stop
working. Re-starting Idea wouldn't help and the only way to fix it was to
re-boot my machine.

I wanted to submit a bug report but, as I have said, it seemed to be random
and I couldn't reproduce it on my colleagues machines. This was a
show-stopper for me as I have become unbelievably lazy since discovering
Idea and it meant that I had the choice either to reboot or actually type
the WHOLE words in my code!!! I know, it terrified me too! :) But being
lazy I always rebooted until it broke and then rebooted again.

Well, today I had some spare time so I started to investigate this more
closely. I narrowed it down to something related to IE or MSN Messenger.
After some carefully controlled experiments I discovered that it always
broke after opening MSN Messenger!? This baffled me until I looked closer.
It seems that an unremarkable plugin for MSN Messenger - called Messenger
Plus - has an option called Boss Protect that uses a key combination to
quickly close down all messenger windows when the boss comes by. The keymap
was, of course, +... Changing this has, indeed, finally put the
'bug' to rest.

I wouldn't have expected a minimised application to 'steal' the keymap from
Idea while Idea has the focus? Maybe something in the messenger plugin
allows it's Boss Protect keymap to have 'global permissions', so that it
doesn't matter which apps also share the same keymap, the messenger plugin
always wins, while messenger is running?

Anyway, I am once again Developing With Pleasure.

- scott

Please sign in to leave a comment.