Windows 7 (and Windows Vista) include an application called the Reliability Monitor. This utility attempts to track and monitor events and installations within Windows. To access this program, access the Start Menu and type “reliability monitor” in the search box. Click on the returned result.
Once launched, the utility will display data via day or week. Any critical issues should be displayed with a red X. In the example below, Windows did not shut down properly on 9/19.
This application is also handy to determine when a particular application or plug-in was installed on your computer. In the example below, a plug-in for Internet Explorer was installed on 9/20.
If the line graph displays a sharp drop, you may wish to review any changes or installations near the date of the decline. Stability may return to your system if the application or plug-in in question is removed.