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It's very helpful that browsers and various document readers remember their pre-crash states, but is there a way for ubuntu to do this? If I have a bunch of apps open, is that "app state" stored anywhere?

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Not sure but have a look at this: manpages.ubuntu.com/manpages/natty/man5/core.5.html I think those get created when there is a crash but I never got to play with these under Linux so I am not sure. –  Rinzwind Aug 24 '11 at 9:44

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No, the list of running apps/processes is stored on memory and lost with the shutdown.

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Does a core-dump not what he is asking? –  Rinzwind Aug 24 '11 at 9:42
    
No, a core dump will give you the memory content of one application when that application crashes (and only in some circumstances). An unexpected shutdown will just close all running applications. –  johanvdw Aug 24 '11 at 15:20

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