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Old 11-18-2010, 08:57 PM   #1
abh
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Linux crashing for no reason


I run Debian squeeze on a Toshiba A200 notebook.

I came home today and the computer had shut itself down.
It did this a few weeks ago while I was using it too.

Here's the log from today:


Code:
Nov 19 12:39:13 icebreaker avahi-daemon[2514]: Withdrawing workstation service for ppp0.
Nov 19 12:39:13 icebreaker postfix/master[2898]: reload -- version 2.7.1, configuration /etc/postfix
Nov 19 12:39:13 icebreaker pppd[3590]: Script /etc/ppp/ip-down finished (pid 3760), status = 0x0
Nov 19 12:39:13 icebreaker pppd[3590]: Exit.
Nov 19 12:57:04 icebreaker -- MARK --
Nov 19 13:29:19 icebreaker syslogd 1.5.0#6: restart.
Nov 19 13:29:19 icebreaker acpid: starting up with proc fs

As you can see, no clues about what caused the crash. That's not surprising as it crashes instantly, no chance to write anything.

How can I diagnose this problem? It doesn't happen very often, but it hardly makes Linux look more stable than Microsoft!

Any ideas welcome.

Thanks,
Andrew

Last edited by abh; 11-18-2010 at 09:06 PM.
 
Old 11-18-2010, 09:52 PM   #2
tiredofbilkyyaforallican
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Just a wild guess here but have you checked the power management settings?looked like the comp was idle for a while and then shut down instead of going to hibernate/suspend.
 
Old 11-18-2010, 10:08 PM   #3
TobiSGD
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At first, I don't think that there is a crash without reason, and comparing two OSes without knowing the reason for the crashes is straight unfair. May be that both OSes would run fine on your machine, but you have an hardware issue?

To your problem: Sudden shutdowns can have more than one reason. Check your temperatures, the A200 is a little bit older, mab you have to clean your cooling system. It also can be a power failure, did the shutdown happen on battery or on AC power? We need more infos to help you.
 
Old 11-18-2010, 10:42 PM   #4
frankbell
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What TobiSGD said. Overheating is the single biggest cause of unexpected shutdowns, all other things being equal.

It may be enough to turn off the computer and point the vacuum cleaner hose at the cooling vents.

You could try running GKrellM (it's in the Debian repos). It has a temperature sensor; it's not on by default but it's easy to turn on in the configuration. If your CPU has a temperature sensor, GkrellM will display the temperature.

My laptop commonly runs in the low 100s Fahrenheits.
 
Old 11-18-2010, 11:41 PM   #5
joec@home
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You will also want to check the /var/log/dmesg to see if any hardware information got stored there.
 
Old 11-18-2010, 11:51 PM   #6
Tinkster
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Quote:
Originally Posted by joec@home View Post
You will also want to check the /var/log/dmesg to see if any hardware information got stored there.
That gets overwritten on boot. It's just a highly volatile
on disk excerpt of the kernel ring buffer.



Cheers,
Tink
 
Old 11-20-2010, 12:21 AM   #7
abh
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Must be overheating

I was just annoyed when I made that comparison with Microsoft. Because Linux has always been so stable, this problem threw me.

Code:
cat /proc/acpi/thermal_zone/TZ00/temperature /proc/acpi/thermal_zone/TZ01/temperature
(I have a function called therm in ~/.bash_aliases so I don't have to keep typing these out.)

typically gives me temperatures of 52 and 46 centrigade. That's up to 125 Farenheit. Is that too warm? Maybe I need to research that.

Will the vacuum cleaner clean the cooling system enough or will I have to get that done professionally? I know that's a vague question.

Thanks all for the help so far.
 
Old 11-20-2010, 01:43 AM   #8
catkin
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Quote:
Originally Posted by abh View Post
typically gives me temperatures of 52 and 46 centrigade. That's up to 125 Farenheit. Is that too warm? Maybe I need to research that.

Will the vacuum cleaner clean the cooling system enough or will I have to get that done professionally?
It's on the warm side, depending on your ambient temperature but not disastrously so. Laptop/netbooks typcally run a little higher than that and full size computers lower.

No need for professional cleaning but be gentle. You may need a soft brush to clean between heat sink fins. Some people use tins of compressed air. While you are in there you could re-seat the memory chips (the in and out movement will clean the contacts). Any air filters in the case can be washed and dried.
 
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Old 11-26-2010, 05:59 AM   #9
abh
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Thanks

Thanks for that. Awesome advice!
 
  


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