What is gremlin? - Definition from WhatIs.com
Part of the Hardware glossary:

A gremlin is an imaginary creature that causes trouble in devices and systems of all kinds. During the Second World War, the term was used by British airmen to refer to ongoing trouble with aircraft in spite of mechanics' best efforts. Gremlins sometimes appear today in computer systems and networks.

Although gremlins never do their dirty work in plain sight, a gremlin is usually portrayed as a small troll-like creature. No one has ever seen one and caught it in the act of sabotaging an aircraft, radio transmitter, computer, robot, or other system. The instant any human looks for a gremlin, it vanishes, although evidence of its mischief may remain. Gremlins are particularly adept at causing intermittent malfunctions, which have been the bane of technicians and engineers for centuries.

This was last updated in September 2005
Posted by: Margaret Rouse

Related Terms

Definitions

  • cache memory

    - Cache memory, also called CPU memory, is random access memory (RAM) that a computer microprocessor can access more quickly than it can access regular RAM. (SearchStorage.com)

  • flash storage

    - Flash storage, based on flash memory, is used for data repositories, storage systems and consumer devices, such as USB drives, smartphones and solid-state drives. Flash-based storage is faster than... (WhatIs.com)

  • SSD (solid-state drive, solid-state disk, solid-state storage drive)

    - Definition: Learn what a solid-state drive (SSD) is, why SSDs are replacing electromechanical hard drives and which form factors are approved by the Solid State Storage Initiative (SSSI). (SearchStorage.com)

Glossaries

  • Hardware

    - Terms related to computer hardware, including definitions about cables, connectors and power supply units and words and phrases about computing peripheral devices including the keyboard, mouse, au...

  • Internet applications

    - This WhatIs.com glossary contains terms related to Internet applications, including definitions about Software as a Service (SaaS) delivery models and words and phrases about web sites, e-commerce ...

Ask a Question. Find an Answer.Powered by ITKnowledgeExchange.com

Ask An IT Question

Get answers from your peers on your most technical challenges

Ask Question

Tech TalkComment

Share
Comments

    Results

    Contribute to the conversation

    All fields are required. Comments will appear at the bottom of the article.