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Firefox freezes

Winston Gutkowski
Bartender

Joined: Mar 17, 2011
Posts: 7716
    
  20

Not sure whether anyone else has had this problem, but I recently wiped Windows off my system and loaded Linux Mint (Olivia) instead.

Now, although the system is much more stable generally than it was on Vista; I get periodic freezes when running JavaRanch on FireFox. It only occurs when I'm on JR, so I'm assuming that the problem is site-related. If I wait long enough (several minutes), the system eventually gives me an error and shuts down; unfortunately, the message I get flashes past so fast that I haven't worked out what it's telling me. If I find anything in the syslogs I'll let you know.

A hard shutdown followed by a reboot always fixes the problem and, as yet, the OS hasn't told me I need to fsck, so I doubt whether anything is accessing the filesystem. However, I don't like having to do hard shutdowns, so if anyone has had similar problems, I'd love to know.

System details: Dell Inspiron tower (7 years old), 3Gb memory.
OS: Linux Mint Olivia running Cinnamon desktop.
3Gb swap space.

Thanks

Winston

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Jeanne Boyarsky
internet detective
Marshal

Joined: May 26, 2003
Posts: 30392
    
150

Winson,
Do you know which pages it is occurring on? Example: forum list, a specific thread, the search page.


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Winston Gutkowski
Bartender

Joined: Mar 17, 2011
Posts: 7716
    
  20

Jeanne Boyarsky wrote:Do you know which pages it is occurring on? Example: forum list, a specific thread, the search page.

I certainly haven't noticed any specific pattern yet, but it seems to occur when I click on a link; either from the forums page, or from a specific forum one. It occurred to me that it might have something to do with maintenance at your end - ie, when I'd normally get an "Aaagh" message - because I don't remember having seen one of those since I changed systems.

Unfortunately, I haven't found anything useful in the logs either; probably because I've shut down hard the last few times it's happened. Next time, I'll wait for the system to crash on its own and see if I get anything useful.

Winston
Maneesh Godbole
Saloon Keeper

Joined: Jul 26, 2007
Posts: 10269
    
    8

You might want to enable crash reporter and health reporter. (Edit-Preferences-Advanced-Data Choices) It might throw up some clues.
Till then you always got https://www.google.com/intl/en/chrome/browser/


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Winston Gutkowski
Bartender

Joined: Mar 17, 2011
Posts: 7716
    
  20

Maneesh Godbole wrote:You might want to enable crash reporter and health reporter. (Edit-Preferences-Advanced-Data Choices) It might throw up some clues.

Both were already. Unfortunately, the screen simply freezes, so I never get that far.




Update: Today, for the first time, I saw a GUI "Cannot connect to server" message that I've never seen before; and that was when I was submitting a post.

As I say, will send more info if/when it happens again.

Thanks all.

Winston
Winston Gutkowski
Bartender

Joined: Mar 17, 2011
Posts: 7716
    
  20

Winston Gutkowski wrote:As I say, will send more info if/when it happens again.

And it did. Today @ 21:02 WEDT (= GMT+2) ± 1 minute (for ref. my post time for this post is 21:21:28). Checked syslogs as soon as I rebooted...not a sausage.

It happened when I clicked this post from the Beginners forum screen. Not unsurprisingly, it works just fine now.

HIH

Winston
Martin Vajsar
Sheriff

Joined: Aug 22, 2010
Posts: 3610
    
  60

I believe I've found your entry in the access log (your IP address and requested URL both match). Apparently there was no error on the server, the logged response is HTTP 200 (OK). Also, no exception is logged around the time of your request.
Winston Gutkowski
Bartender

Joined: Mar 17, 2011
Posts: 7716
    
  20

Martin Vajsar wrote:I believe I've found your entry in the access log (your IP address and requested URL both match). Apparently there was no error on the server, the logged response is HTTP 200 (OK). Also, no exception is logged around the time of your request.

Weird. And no messages at my end either. The machine just freezes (or all but; mouse movements register minimally about every 10 seconds or so). And it only occurs on JavaRanch.

BTW, was there any site maintenance going on at that time?

Winston

PS: Thanks for the check. We will track down the nefarious culprit ere long, Watson.
Jaikiran Pai
Marshal

Joined: Jul 20, 2005
Posts: 10069
    
163

Cases like these are almost always related to the software (browser in this case) or some driver issue in the OS.

A few things that I can think of:

1) You were perhaps viewing a page which had some kind of "video" embedded or flash plugin or some such thing. But that doesn't explain why you ran into problem with the thread had you have linked in this topic.
2) A genuine issue with the version of Firefox browser and the OS version combination. Which version is it?

I looked around to see if there are any reported issues with Linuxmint Olivia (I am on Linuxmint 14 and Firefox 16 and haven't seen this problem), didn't find anything in particular except for a few similar sounding problems. The suggestions in this thread looked like something that you could try http://forums.linuxmint.com/viewtopic.php?f=47&t=141376 especially this one:

Also, if that didn't help, I have (on older computers) unticked "Use hardware accesleration.." on the Advanced > General tab.


since it matches with what you say about your system.


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Martin Vajsar
Sheriff

Joined: Aug 22, 2010
Posts: 3610
    
  60

Perhaps your browser dislikes some particular banner (but that would be strange, since - I believe - we have pretty reasonable banners here). That is, if I'm not mistaken, the only part of page that changes between different fetches. Or you've caught a Schrödinbug.
Winston Gutkowski
Bartender

Joined: Mar 17, 2011
Posts: 7716
    
  20

Jaikiran Pai wrote:The suggestions in this thread looked like something that you could try http://forums.linuxmint.com/viewtopic.php?f=47&t=141376 especially this one:
Also, if that didn't help, I have (on older computers) unticked "Use hardware accesleration.." on the Advanced > General tab.
since it matches with what you say about your system.

OK. Thanks a lot Jaikiran. My system is old (a bit like me ).

I've turned it off, and will see how things go. You guys don't use a lot of Flash though, do you? I use several other sites that seem to be virtually nothing but Flash (nfl.com and mlb.com, to name but two), and none of them freeze on me.

I'll also have a hunt through the Mint forums myself and see if anything else pops out at me. Should have thought of it myself, but the problem seemed to be so specific to this site - which, of course, is my fave.

I should probably have mentioned that I run the NoScript and WOT add-ons, but this problem actually occurred before I downloaded them, so I don't think it's related.

Thanks again.

Winston
Winston Gutkowski
Bartender

Joined: Mar 17, 2011
Posts: 7716
    
  20

Winston Gutkowski wrote:I've turned it off, and will see how things go.

And it happened again @ 16:29 (my time; see above), accessing this post.

Annoying little b*gger, this. Like I say, I don't really like doing hard shutdowns. One of these days, if the timing is right, I may go shopping or take a shower when this happens to see if the system eventually shuts down of its own accord, and I get some syslog messages.

About the only other thing I can tell you is that, unlike the numerous freezes I used to get on Vista before I changed, this one doesn't involve any disk hammering. Disk activity is virtually nil. It also seems to be specifically this site (Vista used to just freeze any time it felt like it).

I'll post any log messages for this incident if I see them; but don't hold your breath.

Winston
Winston Gutkowski
Bartender

Joined: Mar 17, 2011
Posts: 7716
    
  20

Martin Vajsar wrote:Perhaps your browser dislikes some particular banner (but that would be strange, since - I believe - we have pretty reasonable banners here). That is, if I'm not mistaken, the only part of page that changes between different fetches. Or you've caught a Schrödinbug.

Arf. Missed this post earlier. I have to admit, I like the idea of a Schrödingbug, but I fear it's much more mundane than quantum anomalies.

It has to be said, it's an annoyance more than anything, particularly as the rest of the time the system works so beautifully, and problem seems so targeted. I also worry about the effects of many hard shutdowns; I've been a sysadmin for long enough to know what they can do.

Winston
Richard Tookey
Ranch Hand

Joined: Aug 27, 2012
Posts: 1050
    
  10

Jeanne Boyarsky wrote:Winson,
Do you know which pages it is occurring on? Example: forum list, a specific thread, the search page.


Recently (last month or so)I have experienced long periods (hours) when this site does not seem to be available but assumed this was a site problem and not browser specific since it happens on both Firefox and on Crome. Also, it does not seem to be a DNS problem since the IP address is resolved correctly.
Jaikiran Pai
Marshal

Joined: Jul 20, 2005
Posts: 10069
    
163

Richard Tookey wrote:
Recently (last month or so)I have experienced long periods (hours) when this site does not seem to be available but assumed this was a site problem and not browser specific since it happens on both Firefox and on Crome.


Please do report such occurrences in this forum. Although a few minutes of glitches are sometimes common, repeated and consistent glitches over a period of time will need investigation.
Richard Tookey
Ranch Hand

Joined: Aug 27, 2012
Posts: 1050
    
  10

Jaikiran Pai wrote:
Richard Tookey wrote:
Recently (last month or so)I have experienced long periods (hours) when this site does not seem to be available but assumed this was a site problem and not browser specific since it happens on both Firefox and on Crome.


Please do report such occurrences in this forum. Although a few minutes of glitches are sometimes common, repeated and consistent glitches over a period of time will need investigation.


Will do so in future but of course I can only report a problem when I can once more access the site by which time the problem has gone away! If it is a site problem then I would expect a simple log file analysis to reveal long periods of little or no activity.
Jaikiran Pai
Marshal

Joined: Jul 20, 2005
Posts: 10069
    
163

Richard Tookey wrote:
If it is a site problem then I would expect a simple log file analysis to reveal long periods of little or no activity.


In a specific few cases in the recent past, we have seen only a certain few users having problems with connectivity to the site. So for others the site worked fine and the logs weren't of much help. We were able to fix the issue (at least those users were able to access the site) once we were made aware of it.


Winston Gutkowski
Bartender

Joined: Mar 17, 2011
Posts: 7716
    
  20

Jaikiran Pai wrote:Please do report such occurrences in this forum. Although a few minutes of glitches are sometimes common, repeated and consistent glitches over a period of time will need investigation.

As you can see from my post above, your suggestion didn't work. I'm going to leave hardware acceleration switched off though, and thanks for the tip.

Will report back if I have another "incident", or I find something that works on the Mint blogs.

Winston
Jaikiran Pai
Marshal

Joined: Jul 20, 2005
Posts: 10069
    
163

I thought I had asked this, but apparently not - which exact version of Firefox is this and did you install it from the package manager or manually downloaded it? Also as a workaround to preventing those hard reboots, is it an option to use Chrome or any other browser while browsing coderanch, till the time we find a solution to this?
Winston Gutkowski
Bartender

Joined: Mar 17, 2011
Posts: 7716
    
  20

Jaikiran Pai wrote:I thought I had asked this, but apparently not - which exact version of Firefox is this and did you install it from the package manager or manually downloaded it?

Version 23.0, and it was pre-loaded with the Mint distro. All packages were up-to-date as of about a week ago; will be loading new ones today (which looks like it includes version 24.0).

Also as a workaround to preventing those hard reboots, is it an option to use Chrome or any other browser while browsing coderanch, till the time we find a solution to this?

Sure. Only thing is I have about 8 years worth of bookmarks . Will Chrome accept the .json file I get when I dump them?

Winston
Jaikiran Pai
Marshal

Joined: Jul 20, 2005
Posts: 10069
    
163

Winston Gutkowski wrote:
Jaikiran Pai wrote:I thought I had asked this, but apparently not - which exact version of Firefox is this and did you install it from the package manager or manually downloaded it?

Version 23.0, and it was pre-loaded with the Mint distro. All packages were up-to-date as of about a week ago; will be loading new ones today (which looks like it includes version 24.0).

Let us know if 24.0 works better. If not, I'll see if I can arrange for a LinuxMint 15 VM (I don't want to upgrade from my LinuxMint 14 just yet ) to try and reproduce this. I suspect I won't be able to reproduce it since I think it has to do with your system's hardware.
Winston Gutkowski
Bartender

Joined: Mar 17, 2011
Posts: 7716
    
  20

Jaikiran Pai wrote:Let us know if 24.0 works better. If not, I'll see if I can arrange for a LinuxMint 15 VM (I don't want to upgrade from my LinuxMint 14 just yet ) to try and reproduce this.

Will do. One other thing I noticed is that I think it tends to happen when I come back to the site after a little while away from it; but I can't be absolutely sure. So I'm trying to remember to close the tab (or Firefox) if I'm not likely to be using it for a spell.

I should add that when Mint 16 (the next "long-term" release) comes out, I shall be switching to that; but it won't be until about March 2014 - or so they say at the moment.

I suspect I won't be able to reproduce it since I think it has to do with your system's hardware.

Highly likely . I bought it back in 2007, and it's been on for ≈15 hours a day ever since. I'm just surprised that the problem seems to be so targeted.

Kudos to Dell for making such a hardy old machine though.

Winston
Winston Gutkowski
Bartender

Joined: Mar 17, 2011
Posts: 7716
    
  20

Winston Gutkowski wrote:One other thing I noticed is that I think it tends to happen when I come back to the site after a little while away from it; but I can't be absolutely sure.

Well, you can forget that, because it just happened again, at 16:24 my time.

This time, however, I was playing another app, which (after a minute or so) caused my session to kick back to the login screen. When I tried to log back in, it froze completely (as before). I also got some diagnostics in syslog (see below). I'm pretty sure that most of them are symptomatic - I was NOT running the 'pulseaudio' app (and so, presumably also-util.c) most of the times this has happened - but the last messages (starting at 16:24:57) may be of use. The next 50 seconds or so reflect the time it took to kick back out to the login screen, and the ones starting at 16:26:18 are (I think) when I tried to log back in.

Sorry for the volume of messages, but hope it helps. And thanks very much for your help so far.

Winston


Here goes:

Sep 24 16:24:18 winston-Inspiron-531 pulseaudio[2120]: [alsa-sink] alsa-util.c: snd_pcm_avail() returned a value that is exceptionally large: 1707708 bytes (3226 ms).
Sep 24 16:24:18 winston-Inspiron-531 pulseaudio[2120]: [alsa-sink] alsa-util.c: Most likely this is a bug in the ALSA driver 'snd_hda_intel'. Please report this issue to the ALSA developers.
Sep 24 16:24:18 winston-Inspiron-531 pulseaudio[2120]: [alsa-sink] alsa-util.c: snd_pcm_dump():
Sep 24 16:24:18 winston-Inspiron-531 pulseaudio[2120]: [alsa-sink] alsa-util.c: Soft volume PCM
Sep 24 16:24:18 winston-Inspiron-531 pulseaudio[2120]: [alsa-sink] alsa-util.c: Control: PCM Playback Volume
Sep 24 16:24:18 winston-Inspiron-531 pulseaudio[2120]: [alsa-sink] alsa-util.c: min_dB: -51
Sep 24 16:24:18 winston-Inspiron-531 pulseaudio[2120]: [alsa-sink] alsa-util.c: max_dB: 0
Sep 24 16:24:18 winston-Inspiron-531 pulseaudio[2120]: [alsa-sink] alsa-util.c: resolution: 256
Sep 24 16:24:18 winston-Inspiron-531 pulseaudio[2120]: [alsa-sink] alsa-util.c: Its setup is:
Sep 24 16:24:18 winston-Inspiron-531 pulseaudio[2120]: [alsa-sink] alsa-util.c: stream : PLAYBACK
Sep 24 16:24:18 winston-Inspiron-531 pulseaudio[2120]: [alsa-sink] alsa-util.c: access : MMAP_INTERLEAVED
Sep 24 16:24:18 winston-Inspiron-531 pulseaudio[2120]: [alsa-sink] alsa-util.c: format : S16_LE
Sep 24 16:24:18 winston-Inspiron-531 pulseaudio[2120]: [alsa-sink] alsa-util.c: subformat : STD
Sep 24 16:24:18 winston-Inspiron-531 pulseaudio[2120]: [alsa-sink] alsa-util.c: channels : 6
Sep 24 16:24:18 winston-Inspiron-531 pulseaudio[2120]: [alsa-sink] alsa-util.c: rate : 44100
Sep 24 16:24:18 winston-Inspiron-531 pulseaudio[2120]: [alsa-sink] alsa-util.c: exact rate : 44100 (44100/1)
Sep 24 16:24:18 winston-Inspiron-531 pulseaudio[2120]: [alsa-sink] alsa-util.c: msbits : 16
Sep 24 16:24:18 winston-Inspiron-531 pulseaudio[2120]: [alsa-sink] alsa-util.c: buffer_size : 5440
Sep 24 16:24:18 winston-Inspiron-531 pulseaudio[2120]: [alsa-sink] alsa-util.c: period_size : 2720
Sep 24 16:24:18 winston-Inspiron-531 pulseaudio[2120]: [alsa-sink] alsa-util.c: period_time : 61678
Sep 24 16:24:18 winston-Inspiron-531 pulseaudio[2120]: [alsa-sink] alsa-util.c: tstamp_mode : ENABLE
Sep 24 16:24:18 winston-Inspiron-531 pulseaudio[2120]: [alsa-sink] alsa-util.c: period_step : 1
Sep 24 16:24:18 winston-Inspiron-531 pulseaudio[2120]: [alsa-sink] alsa-util.c: avail_min : 4736
Sep 24 16:24:18 winston-Inspiron-531 pulseaudio[2120]: [alsa-sink] alsa-util.c: period_event : 0
Sep 24 16:24:18 winston-Inspiron-531 pulseaudio[2120]: [alsa-sink] alsa-util.c: start_threshold : -1
Sep 24 16:24:18 winston-Inspiron-531 pulseaudio[2120]: [alsa-sink] alsa-util.c: stop_threshold : 1426063360
Sep 24 16:24:18 winston-Inspiron-531 pulseaudio[2120]: [alsa-sink] alsa-util.c: silence_threshold: 0
Sep 24 16:24:18 winston-Inspiron-531 pulseaudio[2120]: [alsa-sink] alsa-util.c: silence_size : 0
Sep 24 16:24:18 winston-Inspiron-531 pulseaudio[2120]: [alsa-sink] alsa-util.c: boundary : 1426063360
Sep 24 16:24:18 winston-Inspiron-531 pulseaudio[2120]: [alsa-sink] alsa-util.c: Slave: Hardware PCM card 0 'HDA NVidia' device 0 subdevice 0
Sep 24 16:24:18 winston-Inspiron-531 pulseaudio[2120]: [alsa-sink] alsa-util.c: Its setup is:
Sep 24 16:24:18 winston-Inspiron-531 pulseaudio[2120]: [alsa-sink] alsa-util.c: stream : PLAYBACK
Sep 24 16:24:18 winston-Inspiron-531 pulseaudio[2120]: [alsa-sink] alsa-util.c: access : MMAP_INTERLEAVED
Sep 24 16:24:18 winston-Inspiron-531 pulseaudio[2120]: [alsa-sink] alsa-util.c: format : S16_LE
Sep 24 16:24:18 winston-Inspiron-531 pulseaudio[2120]: [alsa-sink] alsa-util.c: subformat : STD
Sep 24 16:24:18 winston-Inspiron-531 pulseaudio[2120]: [alsa-sink] alsa-util.c: channels : 6
Sep 24 16:24:18 winston-Inspiron-531 pulseaudio[2120]: [alsa-sink] alsa-util.c: rate : 44100
Sep 24 16:24:18 winston-Inspiron-531 pulseaudio[2120]: [alsa-sink] alsa-util.c: exact rate : 44100 (44100/1)
Sep 24 16:24:18 winston-Inspiron-531 pulseaudio[2120]: [alsa-sink] alsa-util.c: msbits : 16
Sep 24 16:24:18 winston-Inspiron-531 pulseaudio[2120]: [alsa-sink] alsa-util.c: buffer_size : 5440
Sep 24 16:24:18 winston-Inspiron-531 pulseaudio[2120]: [alsa-sink] alsa-util.c: period_size : 2720
Sep 24 16:24:18 winston-Inspiron-531 pulseaudio[2120]: [alsa-sink] alsa-util.c: period_time : 61678
Sep 24 16:24:18 winston-Inspiron-531 pulseaudio[2120]: [alsa-sink] alsa-util.c: tstamp_mode : ENABLE
Sep 24 16:24:18 winston-Inspiron-531 pulseaudio[2120]: [alsa-sink] alsa-util.c: period_step : 1
Sep 24 16:24:18 winston-Inspiron-531 pulseaudio[2120]: [alsa-sink] alsa-util.c: avail_min : 4736
Sep 24 16:24:18 winston-Inspiron-531 pulseaudio[2120]: [alsa-sink] alsa-util.c: period_event : 0
Sep 24 16:24:18 winston-Inspiron-531 pulseaudio[2120]: [alsa-sink] alsa-util.c: start_threshold : -1
Sep 24 16:24:18 winston-Inspiron-531 pulseaudio[2120]: [alsa-sink] alsa-util.c: stop_threshold : 1426063360
Sep 24 16:24:18 winston-Inspiron-531 pulseaudio[2120]: [alsa-sink] alsa-util.c: silence_threshold: 0
Sep 24 16:24:18 winston-Inspiron-531 pulseaudio[2120]: [alsa-sink] alsa-util.c: silence_size : 0
Sep 24 16:24:18 winston-Inspiron-531 pulseaudio[2120]: [alsa-sink] alsa-util.c: boundary : 1426063360
Sep 24 16:24:18 winston-Inspiron-531 pulseaudio[2120]: [alsa-sink] alsa-util.c: appl_ptr : 70571088
Sep 24 16:24:18 winston-Inspiron-531 pulseaudio[2120]: [alsa-sink] alsa-util.c: hw_ptr : 70707957
Sep 24 16:24:18 winston-Inspiron-531 pulseaudio[2120]: [alsa-sink] alsa-util.c: snd_pcm_delay() returned a value that is exceptionally large: -1505424 bytes (-2844 ms).
Sep 24 16:24:18 winston-Inspiron-531 pulseaudio[2120]: [alsa-sink] alsa-util.c: Most likely this is a bug in the ALSA driver 'snd_hda_intel'. Please report this issue to the ALSA developers.
Sep 24 16:24:18 winston-Inspiron-531 pulseaudio[2120]: [alsa-sink] alsa-util.c: snd_pcm_dump():
Sep 24 16:24:18 winston-Inspiron-531 pulseaudio[2120]: [alsa-sink] alsa-util.c: Soft volume PCM
Sep 24 16:24:18 winston-Inspiron-531 pulseaudio[2120]: [alsa-sink] alsa-util.c: Control: PCM Playback Volume
Sep 24 16:24:18 winston-Inspiron-531 pulseaudio[2120]: [alsa-sink] alsa-util.c: min_dB: -51
Sep 24 16:24:18 winston-Inspiron-531 pulseaudio[2120]: [alsa-sink] alsa-util.c: max_dB: 0
Sep 24 16:24:18 winston-Inspiron-531 pulseaudio[2120]: [alsa-sink] alsa-util.c: resolution: 256
Sep 24 16:24:18 winston-Inspiron-531 pulseaudio[2120]: [alsa-sink] alsa-util.c: Its setup is:
Sep 24 16:24:18 winston-Inspiron-531 pulseaudio[2120]: [alsa-sink] alsa-util.c: stream : PLAYBACK
Sep 24 16:24:18 winston-Inspiron-531 pulseaudio[2120]: [alsa-sink] alsa-util.c: access : MMAP_INTERLEAVED
Sep 24 16:24:18 winston-Inspiron-531 pulseaudio[2120]: [alsa-sink] alsa-util.c: format : S16_LE
Sep 24 16:24:18 winston-Inspiron-531 pulseaudio[2120]: [alsa-sink] alsa-util.c: subformat : STD
Sep 24 16:24:18 winston-Inspiron-531 pulseaudio[2120]: [alsa-sink] alsa-util.c: channels : 6
Sep 24 16:24:18 winston-Inspiron-531 pulseaudio[2120]: [alsa-sink] alsa-util.c: rate : 44100
Sep 24 16:24:18 winston-Inspiron-531 pulseaudio[2120]: [alsa-sink] alsa-util.c: exact rate : 44100 (44100/1)
Sep 24 16:24:18 winston-Inspiron-531 pulseaudio[2120]: [alsa-sink] alsa-util.c: msbits : 16
Sep 24 16:24:18 winston-Inspiron-531 pulseaudio[2120]: [alsa-sink] alsa-util.c: buffer_size : 5440
Sep 24 16:24:18 winston-Inspiron-531 pulseaudio[2120]: [alsa-sink] alsa-util.c: period_size : 2720
Sep 24 16:24:18 winston-Inspiron-531 pulseaudio[2120]: [alsa-sink] alsa-util.c: period_time : 61678
Sep 24 16:24:18 winston-Inspiron-531 pulseaudio[2120]: [alsa-sink] alsa-util.c: tstamp_mode : ENABLE
Sep 24 16:24:18 winston-Inspiron-531 pulseaudio[2120]: [alsa-sink] alsa-util.c: period_step : 1
Sep 24 16:24:18 winston-Inspiron-531 pulseaudio[2120]: [alsa-sink] alsa-util.c: avail_min : 4736
Sep 24 16:24:18 winston-Inspiron-531 pulseaudio[2120]: [alsa-sink] alsa-util.c: period_event : 0
Sep 24 16:24:18 winston-Inspiron-531 pulseaudio[2120]: [alsa-sink] alsa-util.c: start_threshold : -1
Sep 24 16:24:18 winston-Inspiron-531 pulseaudio[2120]: [alsa-sink] alsa-util.c: stop_threshold : 1426063360
Sep 24 16:24:18 winston-Inspiron-531 pulseaudio[2120]: [alsa-sink] alsa-util.c: silence_threshold: 0
Sep 24 16:24:18 winston-Inspiron-531 pulseaudio[2120]: [alsa-sink] alsa-util.c: silence_size : 0
Sep 24 16:24:18 winston-Inspiron-531 pulseaudio[2120]: [alsa-sink] alsa-util.c: boundary : 1426063360
Sep 24 16:24:18 winston-Inspiron-531 pulseaudio[2120]: [alsa-sink] alsa-util.c: Slave: Hardware PCM card 0 'HDA NVidia' device 0 subdevice 0
Sep 24 16:24:18 winston-Inspiron-531 pulseaudio[2120]: [alsa-sink] alsa-util.c: Its setup is:
Sep 24 16:24:18 winston-Inspiron-531 pulseaudio[2120]: [alsa-sink] alsa-util.c: stream : PLAYBACK
Sep 24 16:24:18 winston-Inspiron-531 pulseaudio[2120]: [alsa-sink] alsa-util.c: access : MMAP_INTERLEAVED
Sep 24 16:24:18 winston-Inspiron-531 pulseaudio[2120]: [alsa-sink] alsa-util.c: format : S16_LE
Sep 24 16:24:18 winston-Inspiron-531 pulseaudio[2120]: [alsa-sink] alsa-util.c: subformat : STD
Sep 24 16:24:18 winston-Inspiron-531 pulseaudio[2120]: [alsa-sink] alsa-util.c: channels : 6
Sep 24 16:24:18 winston-Inspiron-531 pulseaudio[2120]: [alsa-sink] alsa-util.c: rate : 44100
Sep 24 16:24:18 winston-Inspiron-531 pulseaudio[2120]: [alsa-sink] alsa-util.c: exact rate : 44100 (44100/1)
Sep 24 16:24:18 winston-Inspiron-531 pulseaudio[2120]: [alsa-sink] alsa-util.c: msbits : 16
Sep 24 16:24:18 winston-Inspiron-531 pulseaudio[2120]: [alsa-sink] alsa-util.c: buffer_size : 5440
Sep 24 16:24:18 winston-Inspiron-531 pulseaudio[2120]: [alsa-sink] alsa-util.c: period_size : 2720
Sep 24 16:24:18 winston-Inspiron-531 pulseaudio[2120]: [alsa-sink] alsa-util.c: period_time : 61678
Sep 24 16:24:18 winston-Inspiron-531 pulseaudio[2120]: [alsa-sink] alsa-util.c: tstamp_mode : ENABLE
Sep 24 16:24:18 winston-Inspiron-531 pulseaudio[2120]: [alsa-sink] alsa-util.c: period_step : 1
Sep 24 16:24:18 winston-Inspiron-531 pulseaudio[2120]: [alsa-sink] alsa-util.c: avail_min : 4736
Sep 24 16:24:18 winston-Inspiron-531 pulseaudio[2120]: [alsa-sink] alsa-util.c: period_event : 0
Sep 24 16:24:18 winston-Inspiron-531 pulseaudio[2120]: [alsa-sink] alsa-util.c: start_threshold : -1
Sep 24 16:24:18 winston-Inspiron-531 pulseaudio[2120]: [alsa-sink] alsa-util.c: stop_threshold : 1426063360
Sep 24 16:24:18 winston-Inspiron-531 pulseaudio[2120]: [alsa-sink] alsa-util.c: silence_threshold: 0
Sep 24 16:24:18 winston-Inspiron-531 pulseaudio[2120]: [alsa-sink] alsa-util.c: silence_size : 0
Sep 24 16:24:18 winston-Inspiron-531 pulseaudio[2120]: [alsa-sink] alsa-util.c: boundary : 1426063360
Sep 24 16:24:18 winston-Inspiron-531 pulseaudio[2120]: [alsa-sink] alsa-util.c: appl_ptr : 70582548
Sep 24 16:24:18 winston-Inspiron-531 pulseaudio[2120]: [alsa-sink] alsa-util.c: hw_ptr : 70708000
Sep 24 16:24:57 winston-Inspiron-531 kernel: [29323.824011] [sched_delayed] sched: RT throttling activated
Sep 24 16:25:42 winston-Inspiron-531 kernel: [29368.904021] nouveau E[ 1699] failed to idle channel 0xcccc0000
Sep 24 16:25:42 winston-Inspiron-531 gnome-session[1995]: WARNING: Detected that screensaver has left the bus
Sep 24 16:25:42 winston-Inspiron-531 gnome-session[1995]: CRITICAL: gsm_manager_set_phase: assertion `GSM_IS_MANAGER (manager)' failed
Sep 24 16:25:42 winston-Inspiron-531 colord: device removed: xrandr-Dell-DELL E228WFP-DT8677BG10BM
Sep 24 16:25:42 winston-Inspiron-531 colord: Profile removed: icc-5380496d3377920d81b72d2049d94413
Sep 24 16:25:42 winston-Inspiron-531 mdm[1694]: WARNING: mdm_slave_xioerror_handler: Fatal X error - Restarting :0
Sep 24 16:25:43 winston-Inspiron-531 pulseaudio[8901]: [pulseaudio] client-conf-x11.c: xcb_connection_has_error() returned true
Sep 24 16:25:43 winston-Inspiron-531 pulseaudio[8901]: [autospawn] core-util.c: Failed to create secure directory (/run/user/winston/pulse): No such file or directory
Sep 24 16:25:43 winston-Inspiron-531 pulseaudio[8901]: [autospawn] lock-autospawn.c: Cannot access autospawn lock.
Sep 24 16:25:43 winston-Inspiron-531 pulseaudio[8901]: [pulseaudio] main.c: Failed to acquire autospawn lock
Sep 24 16:25:44 winston-Inspiron-531 acpid: client 1699[0:0] has disconnected
Sep 24 16:25:44 winston-Inspiron-531 acpid: client connected from 8924[0:0]
Sep 24 16:25:44 winston-Inspiron-531 acpid: 1 client rule loaded
Sep 24 16:25:45 winston-Inspiron-531 mdm[8912]: WARNING: failed to get file info for accountService pic file: Error when getting information for file '/var/lib/AccountsService/icons/winston': No such file or directory
Sep 24 16:25:45 winston-Inspiron-531 mdm[8912]: WARNING: failed to get file info for accountService pic file: Error when getting information for file '/home/winston/.face': No such file or directory
Sep 24 16:25:45 winston-Inspiron-531 mdm[8912]: GLib-GIO-CRITICAL: g_file_info_get_attribute_uint64: assertion `G_IS_FILE_INFO (info)' failed
Sep 24 16:25:45 winston-Inspiron-531 mdm[8912]: GLib-GIO-CRITICAL: g_file_info_get_attribute_uint64: assertion `G_IS_FILE_INFO (info)' failed
Sep 24 16:26:18 winston-Inspiron-531 rtkit-daemon[2122]: Successfully made thread 9092 of process 9092 (n/a) owned by '1000' high priority at nice level -11.
Sep 24 16:26:18 winston-Inspiron-531 rtkit-daemon[2122]: Supervising 1 threads of 1 processes of 1 users.
Sep 24 16:26:18 winston-Inspiron-531 pulseaudio[9092]: [pulseaudio] source.c: Default and alternate sample rates are the same.
Sep 24 16:26:18 winston-Inspiron-531 rtkit-daemon[2122]: Successfully made thread 9096 of process 9092 (n/a) owned by '1000' RT at priority 5.
Sep 24 16:26:18 winston-Inspiron-531 rtkit-daemon[2122]: Supervising 2 threads of 1 processes of 1 users.
Sep 24 16:26:18 winston-Inspiron-531 dbus[1129]: [system] Activating service name='org.freedesktop.systemd1' (using servicehelper)
Sep 24 16:26:18 winston-Inspiron-531 dbus[1129]: [system] Successfully activated service 'org.freedesktop.systemd1'
Sep 24 16:26:18 winston-Inspiron-531 rtkit-daemon[2122]: Successfully made thread 9114 of process 9092 (n/a) owned by '1000' RT at priority 5.
Sep 24 16:26:18 winston-Inspiron-531 rtkit-daemon[2122]: Supervising 3 threads of 1 processes of 1 users.
Sep 24 16:26:18 winston-Inspiron-531 rtkit-daemon[2122]: Successfully made thread 9115 of process 9092 (n/a) owned by '1000' RT at priority 5.
Sep 24 16:26:18 winston-Inspiron-531 rtkit-daemon[2122]: Supervising 4 threads of 1 processes of 1 users.
Sep 24 16:26:19 winston-Inspiron-531 colord: Device added: xrandr-Dell-DELL E228WFP-DT8677BG10BM
Sep 24 16:26:19 winston-Inspiron-531 colord: Profile added: icc-5380496d3377920d81b72d2049d94413
Maxim Karvonen
Ranch Hand

Joined: Jun 14, 2013
Posts: 102
    
  10
Hi, Winston. Your log is interesting.

Key points to look for:

Maybe you should look up messages for several seconds or minutes before 16:24:18.

Most serious sign is "RT throttling". Some process gone crazy and starts to consume all CPU. It's hard to debug, but "ps -eo '%n %p %a'" may give you some candidates. Look for process with low (negative) first column. Usually they are system (or even kernel) processes. And according to a log there are two candidates. Is there something like nouveau? Most likely a nouveau video driver causes this freeze. It have bug "failed to idle channel" in it's bugtracker. And this is why this bug happens only when you run firefox. Driver may be very sensitive to what and how is rendered on the screen. First thing to try is proprietary nvidia drivers. There are plenty manuals how to do that. But be warned that they may create additional problems

Second possible cause is pulseaudio/alsa drivers. I believe pulse is running almost all time (it is a sound daemon). But pulse itself usually runs somewhere between real-time and normal priority (so it's unlikely that it is a cause of throttling) and it's hard to find any relation with firefox. Tthis problem may be caused by other (nonsound) drivers or heavy CPU usage (which later caused the throttling).
Winston Gutkowski
Bartender

Joined: Mar 17, 2011
Posts: 7716
    
  20

Maxim Karvonen wrote:Hi, Winston. Your log is interesting.
Key points to look for:
Sep 24 16:24:18 winston-Inspiron-531 pulseaudio[2120]: [alsa-sink] alsa-util.c: snd_pcm_avail() returned a value that is exceptionally large: 1707708 bytes (3226 ms).
Sep 24 16:24:57 winston-Inspiron-531 kernel: [29323.824011] [sched_delayed] sched: RT throttling activated
Sep 24 16:25:42 winston-Inspiron-531 kernel: [29368.904021] nouveau E[ 1699] failed to idle channel 0xcccc0000

Maybe you should look up messages for several seconds or minutes before 16:24:18.

The last message previous to that was several minutes earlier (and I think it was just a CRON notification).

Most serious sign is "RT throttling". Some process gone crazy and starts to consume all CPU. It's hard to debug, but "ps -eo '%n %p %a'" may give you some candidates. Look for process with low (negative) first column. Usually they are system (or even kernel) processes. And according to a log there are two candidates. Is there something like nouveau? Most likely a nouveau video driver causes this freeze. It have bug "failed to idle channel" in it's bugtracker. And this is why this bug happens only when you run firefox. Driver may be very sensitive to what and how is rendered on the screen. First thing to try is proprietary nvidia drivers. There are plenty manuals how to do that. But be warned that they may create additional problems

Yup. Sounds like we're getting close to it. I've definitely seen references to "nouveau" (in fact, I think there's one in the logs I posted); and I definitely have nvidia drivers.

Second possible cause is pulseaudio/alsa drivers. I believe pulse is running almost all time (it is a sound daemon). But pulse itself usually runs somewhere between real-time and normal priority (so it's unlikely that it is a cause of throttling) and it's hard to find any relation with firefox. Tthis problem may be caused by other (nonsound) drivers or heavy CPU usage (which later caused the throttling).

This seems less likely to me; but thanks for the info. I think I may turn on the system monitor for a while, but I suspect that this problem is more related to a sudden "spike" than to a general issue. I've got 3 Gig of memory so it would seem odd if it's a memory issue. It might give me an clue though.

Even given that it's a hardware/driver issue; I find it very odd that it's so targeted on JavaRanch. When I had Vista, it used to freeze whenever it felt like it (or so it seemed) and, like I say, I use lots of other sites (including ones that run oodles of Flash software) that have given me much more problems before now.

However, your help is MUCH appreciated! Especially as I've got something (nouveau) to go on. I'll give the Mint forums a good seeing-to tomorrow.

Thanks again.

Winston
Jaikiran Pai
Marshal

Joined: Jul 20, 2005
Posts: 10069
    
163

Maxim, thank you for the detailed and informative post. It's earned you a cow and also given us some ideas on what to possibly look into

Maxim Karvonen wrote:
Most serious sign is "RT throttling". Some process gone crazy and starts to consume all CPU.
....
Tthis problem may be caused by other (nonsound) drivers or heavy CPU usage (which later caused the throttling).


Now that you mention CPU, I remember certain instances where the syntax highlighter that our site uses would on some occasions trigger heavy CPU activity (on the client system, of course, since it's JavaScript). So I went back to the post that Winston mentioned he had reproduced this once with:

Winston Gutkowski wrote:And it happened again @ 16:29 (my time; see above), accessing this post.


to see if that thread has any formatted code (perhaps a long one) and it indeed does have formatted code.

So perhaps, that's what's triggering this on some occasions? Maybe if I formatted Winston's post in this very thread where he's posted those logs, perhaps he would start seeing the freeze in this thread too?


Winston Gutkowski
Bartender

Joined: Mar 17, 2011
Posts: 7716
    
  20

Jaikiran Pai wrote:Maxim, thank you for the detailed and informative post. It's earned you a cow and also given us some ideas on what to possibly look into

And many thanks (and a cow) from me too. I don't think I've ever seen a 2-cow post before.

Jaikiran, I was planning on posting a thread on the Mint blog. Is it OK if I mention this site by name, since the problem is so specific to it?

Winston
Jaikiran Pai
Marshal

Joined: Jul 20, 2005
Posts: 10069
    
163

Winston Gutkowski wrote:

Jaikiran, I was planning on posting a thread on the Mint blog. Is it OK if I mention this site by name, since the problem is so specific to it?


That should be fine.
 
Consider Paul's rocket mass heater.
 
subject: Firefox freezes