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Thread: Need help debugging possible graphics-related crash

  1. #1
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    Question Need help debugging possible graphics-related crash

    Recently my system becomes more and more unstable.
    I more or less frequently update mesa from git and apart from my soundcard, my video driver is the only possible offender I can think of.

    Symptoms:
    Occasionally, the system just locks up hard. I get a black screen, the monitor turns off, no more hard disc or sound activity.
    Reboot is the only option.

    When does this happen:
    Randomly, but it seems to happen more often when I do more extended graphic commands, like xrandr or 3D.
    Just once it may have happened in Windows 7 as well, but I am not sure about that.

    Yesterday, I found a sure way to reproduce this error: I use a fairly recent wine and try to start Gothic 1.

    I tried to get a message by monitoring system messages via RS232 on my laptop, but once the hangup occurs, I do not get any messages.

    I would like to debug this further to make a proper bug report, but I need suggestions.
    The mesa git is just two days old, I compiled it with gallium enabled. I use kernel 2.6.36 on a debian system. My graphics card is a Radeon 4350.

    Thanks!

  2. #2
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    the 2.6.36 kernel is to old... use the lastest 2.6.38rc5 this one does have some galium3D KMS fixes...

  3. #3
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    I upgraded to 2.6.38-rc6.
    It still crashes reliably, still without any messages.

  4. #4
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    Quote Originally Posted by Dard View Post
    I upgraded to 2.6.38-rc6.
    It still crashes reliably, still without any messages.
    "debian system. " please retest it with an k/ubuntu 11.04+xorg-edgers.

    right now this combination is stable for me with the lastest stuff.

  5. #5
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    I will not install a new system because it would take over a week to do properly and apart from some crashes now and then my current Debian system works just fine.

    Also, if the crashes would stop that way, I could no longer provide a bug report. That way the bug (if there is one) would be corrected and not ignored.
    I was glad to be able to reproduce it reliably but sadly have no idea where that bug could be located or how to reproduce it under more clearly defined conditions.

  6. #6
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    Quote Originally Posted by Dard View Post
    I upgraded to 2.6.38-rc6.
    It still crashes reliably, still without any messages.
    I'm on 2.6.38-rc6 and runs fine.
    I send some test to phoronix Global today.
    My rig is Core2DUO E6850@3.6ghz 4gb DDR 1066 , and RV770(Ati HD4870 512mb old model) with Gallium 0.4 OGL 2.1 Mesa 7.11 devel

    No crash , no black screens.
    Only few games doe's not run(etqw and ut2004 and some Unigine tests)

  7. #7
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    Most games run fine here, too.
    Sauerbraten once caused a crash, but not repeatable.
    Neverball, Chromium, Kobo Deluxe and several others ran too.
    Gothic 1 in Wine is the only one that crashes the system every time.

  8. #8
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    I have made some progress, but not enough
    As it turned out, the computer wasn't completely dead once the crash appens.
    When connected from another computer by ssh, I got an NMI-error. So I enabled the NMI-Watchdog. Maybe it is the watchdog that keeps things running, I don't know.
    But now can still access the computer by ssh after crash. However, it is so slow that I can only get one command executed every 2 minutes. top shows varying tasks running at several hundred percent CPU time, among them the watchdogs.

    By now the crashes are quite frequent, if I can't debug this further, I have to try go get back to a stable old version.
    I have also another reliable crasher: Mincraft crashes within usually five minutes after start.

    Now that I know I can still access the computer after the crash, I could debug, but I don't know how.
    I can compile Mesa with debug options, but I don't know how to start it with gdb. After all, I only know how to start X by startx->xinit->X. And that isn't even Mesa.
    Besides that, I have no idea how to debug a live-lock like this.

    Any ideas?

    BTW, after seeing the NMI-message, I thought about a hardware problem, which seems to be the most likely explanation. But I don't think I have experienced a Windows crash so far.

  9. #9
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    Quote Originally Posted by Dard View Post
    I will not install a new system because it would take over a week to do properly and apart from some crashes now and then my current Debian system works just fine.

    Also, if the crashes would stop that way, I could no longer provide a bug report. That way the bug (if there is one) would be corrected and not ignored.
    I was glad to be able to reproduce it reliably but sadly have no idea where that bug could be located or how to reproduce it under more clearly defined conditions.
    in general there are only 2 main systems for testing the newest stuff ubuntu/fedora. (or gentoo if you wana compile all by your own.)
    you can check this without installing an new system you can use an pre ubuntu 11.04 live-cd to check this ok its mesa 7.10 and xorg-edgers use 7.11dev but this should be a nice check to make sure your system is right or not.

    in my experience the most problems with the radeon driver comes from old versions means old mesa old kernel old xorg and so one and so one.

    for my 5670 you really wana use ubuntu 11.04 debian 6 for example is nearly the same as 10.04LTS and this old versions runs like shit on my card. compared to 11.04!

    its just my feeling but if you really wana use the radeon driver step away from any stable/old distro.

    debian stable is fine but only for old(but gold) hardware.

    i report all show stopping bugs but right now my system runs like a star'''' no bug report is needet right now.

    means you are just on old versions update!!

  10. #10
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    I am using Debian testing.
    I hoped this is a new enough system.
    xserver-xorg 1:7.5+8
    xserver-xorg-core 2:1.7.7-11

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