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Crash to desktop (CTD) is a computer program error that occurs when an application, normally a computer game, abruptly terminates without displaying a warning or error message and displays the desktop screen instead.
CTD is generally not associated with any action that causes the crash, but is mainly encountered when users are playing certain games.
When CTD occurs, the game being played suddenly freezes for some time and then closes by itself. In some situations, the game displays a black screen and then plays the last few seconds of the background music prior to the crash. In other situations, an application action (such as loading an area) can appear to cause CTD. CTD bugs create problems for users who cannot trace the problem associated with the crash, as the reason for the crash is not displayed and is unknown. One method adopted to tackle the error is to run the program in windowed mode. Operating systems such as Windows Vista and XP have built-in features that can help track the cause of a CTD.