Eve Online Trinity breaks PCs

Expansion pack for online sci-fi game deletes boot.ini file of Windows XP users who upgrade; developer pulls update, profusely apologizes.

As expected, the latest upgrade for CCP's massively multiplayer online role-playing game Eve Online went live yesterday. The expansion, Eve Online Trinity, overhauled the game's graphics engine, and added new ships, stations, and stargates as well. For some users, it also deleted a crucial file on their computers, preventing them from booting up.

According to a CCP developer posting on the game's official forums, Trinity was deleting the boot.ini files of many Windows XP users who upgraded from the game's old client to its new client. The boot.ini file determines Windows' operating system options during startup, and the computer cannot start normally without it. A computer with a missing or corrupted boot.ini file is not permanently broken, but it does require some proficiency to repair or replace it.

"We apologize profusely for this error and are working on offering more extensive help [to] those that have a non-working Windows PC, so please stay tuned," CCP said on its official Eve Online Web site.

Windows Vista users were not affected by the issue, nor were those who installed the full Trinity and Eve Online game from scratch, instead of updating an existing copy of Eve Online.

[UPDATE]: This afternoon, CCP announced that it fixed the issue with the update and released a version it said is safe to download for all users. The company also posted instructions affected users can follow to repair their systems.

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Discussion

119 comments
barne1dr
barne1dr

a major bummer considering this mmo is very unique and deserves more attention imo (though not this kind of attention). I don't play it considering my inability/refusal to put $15 a month into any game currently on the market, but I have played it in the past and find it refreshing and beautiful (the imagery is unrivaled), if a little slow and boring at times....most times really. I'm interested to see the changes. And for those that question it, this game is as good a game as WoW, in its own way. It's a very different game and comparing them doesn't make a great deal of sense to me. I personally can't stand WoW - and I certainly gave it a try being an MMO addict. I find it a limiting and rather dull game that succeeds largely by being so mediocre (not pandering to any particular sect of the gaming market but being so bland as to cause minimal grief for all sectors - a tactic first popularized by the television industry).

Geowil
Geowil

well i never had an issue with this, then again, i hardly ever turn my system off (dell ftl, home built ftw). anyway, really all you would have to do to fixe the issue is pull out the HD hook it up to another working compiuter as a slave drive then copy the boot file from the working hd to the non-working hd and your fixed. and if you dont understand how to do that you shouldnt be on a gaming computer xD but as i said, you were only effected if you restarted and only if you dled the game with int he first few hours, if you were up at 2 to 5 in the morning during the week to play trinity, you deserved that, jebus' way of saying get a life xD (jebus = god of the internet). and i concur with who ever said it, GS needs to re-review Eve (and every MMO they have reveiwed) for each new expansion, as its not always going to be the same rating as they add new material. anyway with some last parting words i will most likely get flamed for by fan bois EvE > WoW

Pdwaiter
Pdwaiter

does this mean macs will be affected also? or... what?

Jazzism
Jazzism

with the expansion, it is still the most boring mmo on the market, the only way to add excitement is to botch up users computers. Go jumpgate if you want an exciting mmo space sim or play WoW for the most interesting mmo. Eve is really evil imo.

QBS216
QBS216

LMAO! how lucky am i, i just decided before the new stuff was to come to delete the game and stop playing it....HAHAHAHA! man i pulled a fast one on eve, cant catch me suckas =p. oh and yea sucks for those that got files deleted >_>

Excall
Excall

"Perhaps I am the only one, though the upgrade did affect my system and I am running Windows Vista. It altered or removed the ntoskrnl.exe (which affects the boot.ini and other key files) file which later prevented Windows Vista from functioning normally, viz., programs failing to function, loss of drivers, inability to remove programs from control panel. I attempted to fix and, after it failed copy, reinstalled Windows Vista only to find out that this error persisted, which resulted in the complete inability to install Vista back to my hard drive. I swapped hard drives and it appears that it was written into the motherboard, because it still came up with this same error even though my entire hard drive was fdisked." Written into the motherboard? lol

Micaelis13
Micaelis13

Perhaps I am the only one, though the upgrade did affect my system and I am running Windows Vista. It altered or removed the ntoskrnl.exe (which affects the boot.ini and other key files) file which later prevented Windows Vista from functioning normally, viz., programs failing to function, loss of drivers, inability to remove programs from control panel. I attempted to fix and, after it failed copy, reinstalled Windows Vista only to find out that this error persisted, which resulted in the complete inability to install Vista back to my hard drive. I swapped hard drives and it appears that it was written into the motherboard, because it still came up with this same error even though my entire hard drive was fdisked. The support offered on EvE website is a joke. How could they let such a stupid blunder pass and then offer absolutely zero recompensation to those who have serious problems because of it and have to shell out bucks to replace equipment that was damaged from it? What an embarrassment. Anyway, has any one else running Vista experienced a problem because of this?

prioritymail
prioritymail

pwned!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

mashom
mashom

is it something like cracking, it should test before launch. lola

X-RS
X-RS

thats what you ge for 15 dollars a month?! apple should use it for an advertising campaign

SandwichPowder
SandwichPowder

tonymil - Good - we don't need you. It's kind of perplexes me that this error has stirred up the hive - it only applied to people who UPGRADED from classic to premium in the space of 4 hours from 1.a.m. to 4a.m... Other than a few small glitches and this error there haven't been any other problems - and the expansion drastically altered the game adding ships, missions, items, changing quest lines and includes a completely new game engine - new models and graphics card support. None of that warrants a review or any attention - in fact NONE of the eve expansions have official gamespot reviews. What is going on here? I know the game isn't for everyone but I think it deserves an updated review - the only official one on this site is dated 2003. Either Gamestop is biased towards other MMOs or somehow the game is just being drastically underrated.

linmukai
linmukai

How the "engineers" doing the install routine could be so profoundly stupid is beyond belief. How they could release an install routine without testing is a mystery. How they could expect hosed users to read emails or tips or helps online when thier PC won't boot up anymore I also find interesting. Of course, I would not want to miss this opportunity to thank Microsoft for shipping an operating system that can be completely disabled so easily. One file that some idiot writing an install script can delete and no booting up - Microsoft actually owns a piece of that action. Way to go. I don't know why MS doesn't just copy Apple yet again and graft thier interface such as it is on top of some UNIX variant like Apple did. Then you couldn't have issues like this. But no....

Opalance
Opalance

That's pretty amazing that they didn't test the update on the operating system that a vast majority of PC users still use and catch that problem.

londonrider
londonrider

>tonymilw The same issues I had in the past- till I noticed a tip section below each tutorial mission. It explained everything you needed to know to complete a mission

ZoolooMaster
ZoolooMaster

WoW, they made a HUGE error, but that is no reason to bash the game. EvE is easily one of the best PC games, let alone MMOs, of this decade. There is no other game like this out there. Jumpgate is old and no one plays it; I haven't heard of any other space MMO. EvE is a complicated game for sure, but just because you need to follow a three hour tutorial to do more than drift aimlessly in space doesn't mean it isn't worth it. If anything, the steep learning curve encourages players to seek help within the community and not hold back in the corner playing as a lone wolf. BTW, you can also play a 14 days free trial if you're sceptical, and I assure you, you can get quite a lot from the game with it.

tonymilw
tonymilw

and the game btw sorta sucks. 2 days to figure out that cargo holds have to be upgraded to get past mission 2, and lets not call them cargo holds so you can't find the info in the help files, lets call them civilian cargo upgrades, that way you'll really be confused while you sit there screwing with the cargo settings which are dramatically altered till you spend 10 days learning the game so you have to pay them when they hook you. I'd rather be lured into a alley by a crack head, least that way I know I'm bein suckered... ps their solution they give on their website is sorry you rebooted your pc and its screwed, try reinstalling windows... ... Ya sure, thanks for that tip EVE... you mother.

tonymilw
tonymilw

totally screwed my system dude, called them for support, they passed the buck to tech support and never got back to me. Apparently they're not sure how to handle the situation due to my system having 2 drives with the main os on the slave G drive and a older windows partition on the D drive that my system went searching for after the boot.ini was wiped so their apparent solution is "SORRY TO SCREW U" GOOD LUCK and ENJOY your Screwed up Dynamic Drive Overlay..,,oh btw you can download the new update and it wont screw your system.. Gee Thanks, wheres my lawyer..

TranClan
TranClan

I was going to ask how do you fix the problem if you can't start up your computer

BadAshJL
BadAshJL

FYI CCP sent an email to all users about the issue, so even if someone hasn't checked the eve site but has checked email they will know about it. I'd think that anyone affected would at least have a way to check email.

jviehe
jviehe

Any press is good press. This is not a big deal. Ill be happy to take the stuff of anyone who wants to quit.

XanderZane
XanderZane

Hhhmm.. how does these users get the instructions to repair their boot.ini file if they can't get on their computer and get the instructions? That's messed up though. I don't play Eve Online either, but I know someone who does. I've already e-mailed him this story. Imagine is something like this happened to WoW? Yikes, dread the thought.

quetzilla
quetzilla

How does Windows even let a program delete the boot.ini? Sounds like an MS problem more than a CCP problem. Not that I even play EVE.

Ol_skool_Gamer
Ol_skool_Gamer

I find it hard to believe that a person without enough resourcefulness to find another computer connected to the internet even exists. What were they supposed to do? Call all their users one by one and telling them?

Words_of_Ivory
Words_of_Ivory

"CCP seem to have not addressed the problem that if someone did reboot the PC and if that PC then would not start, how would they be able to get onto the website to read the instructions?" This is a fact that continues to make me chuckle. *laughs* That's hell of a serious bug. Lets hope this doesn't affect the popularity of what is a deservedly great title.

D1rty_Dawg
D1rty_Dawg

CCP seem to have not addressed the problem that if someone did reboot the PC and if that PC then would not start, how would they be able to get onto the website to read the instructions? I imagine that most people wouldn't even link together that their computer has stopped booting and that they recently installed a game update. This is really basic stuff and pretty shoddy from whoever packaged the update up into an .msi

Kfoss
Kfoss

WHOA! talk about a slap to the face!...ouch yea to repair that that requires some know how of dos and the XP disk to get into the repair console...wonder why it would go after boot.ini thats just weird...

denter21
denter21

So much for bug testing... what is it CCP do again? OH YEAH. Make computer software. Pretty stupid mistake.

ShockerX01
ShockerX01

I love Eve-O and CCP, but I'm very embarassed to hear that CCP screwed up. Its a small, simple, YET deadly mistake. Despite of that and the PoS problems, this upgrade seems to be stable! Don't let this discourage you from trying Eve-Online! The reason of this problem is because Eve-O have its own boot.ini in their foldier and the one that wrote up the installer/patcher screwed up for the delete command line for root drive instead of Eve-O foldier! :( I was one of the infected user, but its a simple fix. Good thing I didn't reboot and checking forums often enough or I'd go "WTF moment!" There is a backup ini thankfully. Located in: C:\WINDOWS\pss Nevertheless, Eve rocks!

MackB835
MackB835

makes me wonder what kinda compensation is going to be offered, free subscription for life for those affected? lol does make me VERY leery about updating, especially those games now that have auto updaters.

PacoL250
PacoL250

How the heck did they manage to have their install program delete the boot.ini? Wow...

Merl57
Merl57

This is the first time I heard something like this happening. Imagine the damage if someone had to reinstall windows and couldn't find out how to get all their old data w/o formatting

Vikingfbm
Vikingfbm

We've (players) also had several reports of characters losing implants when cloning jumping. The equivalent of teleporting to another region & losing gems in your sockets for WOW. However I would agree with Gruug, it's a brilliant game and it's getting better. This was their biggest add on yet, but I don't think they expected this issue to crop up. They now have pop-up reminders in game to check your System, just in case you have ignored all the warnings on the way in. This is by no means the worse case. During the late 1990's I seem to remember one of the "Myth" RTS titles nuking peoples drives when the un-installed it under certain circumstances. I'm not sure of the full details.

Sonicgod
Sonicgod

and here is a basic boot.ini file just make it in note pad and add a .ini extention. [boot loader timeout= 30 default= multi(0)disk(0)rdisk(0)partition(1)\WINDOWS [operating systems] multi(0) disk(0)rdisk(0) partition(1)\WINDOWS="Microsoft Windows XP Home Edition" /noexecute=AlwaysOff /fastdetect add [ ] to boot loader

gonzalezj1
gonzalezj1

It's nice that they posted how to fix the problem on their website. Too bad the people with the deleted .ini files won't be able to boot up their computers so they can get to that website...

londonrider
londonrider

[This message was deleted at the request of the original poster]

Sonicgod
Sonicgod

That can result in Data loss, if a novice use is unable to reinstall the boot.ini file and simply formats the system during windows XP repair.. The method to fix the problem on that Website ups the danger of somebody overwriting there data or removing it. THough that can fixed easy, by using the wonders of the sweet OS known as linux wich would kill windows if It had more games on it. http://fedoraproject.org/get-fedora Or use Boot disk with DOS but all that typing is a hassle. the method on that web site to fix this problem is also a hassle and will take 6 times longer. with statements like "You must have at least 2 hard disks and the OS must be installed NOT on the primary, but the secondary hard disk. " this method is not needed it is faster to just find another computer and get a bootable OS disk and skip all this junk. Create the boot cd load the os into ram put replacement boot.ini file in the directory problem is fixed. simplely either extract the boot.ini file from windows xp disc or make your own thats it just put copy or drag it over. Always keep a linux boot CD on hand with a small diskette copy of critical windows files.

snipergimp
snipergimp

LoL, who's head is on the platter for that clusterf*ck

chibi-acer
chibi-acer

Wow. How do you even screw something like that up?

Feniks9174
Feniks9174

[This message was deleted at the request of a moderator or administrator]

MasterChief725
MasterChief725

it is great that they got the patch out so quick, but seriously, that is a really big problem. That CANNOT happen, under any circumstances! That is scary to think of, I hope no game I ever buy does that.

Gruug
Gruug

I have not been an EVE subscriber but have played the 14-day free trail some time back. From that breif experience I am confident that CCP will fix the problem and make things right for those with problems. I and serveral of my friends are hoping to actually get into EVE sometime around the first of the year. EVE is a very good MMO and their DEV team should not be underestimated.

DiscGuru101
DiscGuru101

I'm running Vista but all the same, this is scary stuff.

peeweeshift
peeweeshift

good news about the update fixing the problems with download