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Old 07-24-2008, 01:07 PM   #1
BCarey
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system freeze with Slackware 12.0


Hi,

My mom is running Slack 12.0, all packages up to date, on an AMD Turion X2 machine which has recently developed a tendency to freeze rather frequency. It is a full lockup and requires pushing the button to reboot. I have done quite a bit of surfing about similar problems, and have ruled out quite a few things. I'm starting to think it is a hardware problem, which would be a shame since it's pretty new. So here are some details of some problems I've eliminated :

1. cpu temperature is stable at 40 C, so it's not overheating

2. This happens both with NVIDIA's driver and with nv

3. It has happened with Firefox not running (although that freeze did involve internet traffic with a non-Gecko browser)

4. CPU power control modules were removed with no change

5. It has happened with Flashplayer not running

6. I ran Slax on it a while (>1 hour) without a freeze (certainly not definitive, I'll try to get her to use it for an extended period of time)

Does anyone have any ideas for me? Could it be the MB? Or the HD? Would it help to upgrade her to 12.1?

Thanks,
Brian
 
Old 07-24-2008, 02:33 PM   #2
samac
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The first time I had a problem with similar symptoms, it appeared to be caused by a flaky memory chip. The second time I burnt out the CPU.

However yours may be caused by something completely different.

I would however suggest a memtest86 check.

samac
 
Old 07-24-2008, 06:17 PM   #3
BCarey
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Originally Posted by samac View Post
I would however suggest a memtest86 check.

samac
It seems there are two softwares, memtest86 and memtest86+. Is one better than the other? Is usage pretty self-explanatory?

Also, the computer has now frozen with only openoffice running (while saving a document).

Thanks,
Brian

Last edited by BCarey; 07-24-2008 at 06:17 PM. Reason: clarity and accuracy
 
Old 07-25-2008, 03:31 PM   #4
BCarey
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memtest86 passed with no errors. Any other ideas?

Brian
 
Old 07-26-2008, 04:52 PM   #5
lstamm
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Are you sure the system is frozen, and not the display?

I've been experiencing seemingly random freezes of the display with Slack 12.0, using both the nv and Nvidia drivers. It even seems unresponsive to Alt-SysRq combinations. But I can log in remotely, and everything seems to be running as it should. The logs even show that the Alt-SysRq key commands were received and followed, but the screen is still frozen.

I can kill X remotely, but still cannot use the local display consoles. If I start X again remotely on another local TTY, then I get a usable X display locally, without the use of the local TTYs.

I'm not sure if this is a hardware problem, or software, or merely an X configuration problem. But it only seems to happen when I have X running. Very strange....
 
Old 07-26-2008, 05:01 PM   #6
onebuck
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Hi,
Quote:
Originally Posted by BCarey View Post
memtest86 passed with no errors. Any other ideas?

Brian
How long did you run memtest86? You should check your PSU for proper voltage levels.
 
Old 07-26-2008, 07:43 PM   #7
Ilgar
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It could be a faulty driver as well. In 12.0 and 12.1, the stock kernels seem to freeze my laptop (HP Pavilion dv6400) every now and then unless I use the "noapic" option at boot. I couldn't find a definite pattern except that they tend to occur more frequently when there's high disk+cpu activity (like running installpkg on a large package or extracting a big tar file). But I don't have this problem with my custom compiled, slimmed down kernels. So probably some buggy kernel feature (or faulty hardware triggered by an extra kernel feature) is causing this. I suggest that you try booting with the "noapic" and/or "nolapic" kernel options first.
 
Old 07-26-2008, 08:14 PM   #8
alpha_hack
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Hey,

Are you sure that your hard drive is ok ?
I had similar problems - when I turned on my pc everything was going really slow. Then my RAM burned out. Few years later the same thing only that my hard drive went for a launch break and never came back


Ilgar:
I was having big problems with 12.1. I was thinking that the release is bad but it turns out that the kernel is the main problem. After I compiled the kernel to 2.6.26 ( the newest then ) everything was running so slow you could go to Mars and back. I tried everything but no result. So I downgraded to a release of the kernel that I'm sure it was working - 2.6.21.7. Everything is running perfect and with the usual speed - fast.
So if you are having problems you could try downgrading the kernel to a version that worked for you before.

Best wishes,
tftd
 
Old 07-26-2008, 10:58 PM   #9
BCarey
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Quote:
Originally Posted by lstamm View Post
Are you sure the system is frozen, and not the display?

I've been experiencing seemingly random freezes of the display with Slack 12.0, using both the nv and Nvidia drivers. It even seems unresponsive to Alt-SysRq combinations. But I can log in remotely, and everything seems to be running as it should. The logs even show that the Alt-SysRq key commands were received and followed, but the screen is still frozen.

I can kill X remotely, but still cannot use the local display consoles. If I start X again remotely on another local TTY, then I get a usable X display locally, without the use of the local TTYs.

I'm not sure if this is a hardware problem, or software, or merely an X configuration problem. But it only seems to happen when I have X running. Very strange....
I haven't tried to log in remotely, but will tomorrow.

Brian
 
Old 07-26-2008, 10:59 PM   #10
BCarey
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Originally Posted by onebuck View Post
Hi,


How long did you run memtest86? You should check your PSU for proper voltage levels.
It ran for about 1 1/2 hours. Should I let it go longer? Also, I don't know how to check the power supply, could you advise?

Thanks,
Brian
 
Old 07-26-2008, 11:00 PM   #11
BCarey
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Ilgar View Post
It could be a faulty driver as well. In 12.0 and 12.1, the stock kernels seem to freeze my laptop (HP Pavilion dv6400) every now and then unless I use the "noapic" option at boot. I couldn't find a definite pattern except that they tend to occur more frequently when there's high disk+cpu activity (like running installpkg on a large package or extracting a big tar file). But I don't have this problem with my custom compiled, slimmed down kernels. So probably some buggy kernel feature (or faulty hardware triggered by an extra kernel feature) is causing this. I suggest that you try booting with the "noapic" and/or "nolapic" kernel options first.
I'll try this as well tomorrow, thanks. BTW there were no problems until the past few weeks or a little more.

Brian
 
Old 07-26-2008, 11:02 PM   #12
BCarey
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Originally Posted by alpha_hack View Post
Hey,

Are you sure that your hard drive is ok ?
I had similar problems - when I turned on my pc everything was going really slow. Then my RAM burned out. Few years later the same thing only that my hard drive went for a launch break and never came back
No, I'm not sure. However when the system runs it is as fast and responsive as normal.

Brian
 
Old 07-27-2008, 04:31 AM   #13
Ilgar
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Quote:
Originally Posted by BCarey View Post
I'll try this as well tomorrow, thanks. BTW there were no problems until the past few weeks or a little more.

Brian
Good luck. Of course, if you really didn't change anything before the problems started occurring then it's likely that some hardware started malfunctioning.


@alpha_hack:
Since I had these freezes with Slack 12.0 the "good" kernels for me must be pre-2.6.21 but that would be quite out-of-date really. As I said, I don't need downgrading anyway since I use custom compiled kernels and they run fine (or I can simply use "noapic" with the default kernel when needed). I'm now running a custom 2.6.26 and it works great.
 
Old 07-28-2008, 01:23 AM   #14
onebuck
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Hi,

Quote:
Originally Posted by BCarey View Post
It ran for about 1 1/2 hours. Should I let it go longer? Also, I don't know how to check the power supply, could you advise?

Thanks,
Brian
I like to run the test for at least overnight. I make sure to place all panels and close the unit up as if for operation. That way conditions will be at the working state.

As for the voltage checks, easy if you have a DVM(Digital Volt Meter) or VOM (Volt Ohm Meter) that you can measure the DC voltage rails with.

You can search for the pin out for your PSU on google or LQ. Sometimes the pinout is on the side of the PSU but not always. You will be measuring between the PSU ground and the supply rails. The measured voltage should be within the tolerance posted on the side of your PSU(that should be there).
 
Old 07-28-2008, 09:32 AM   #15
BCarey
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Originally Posted by onebuck View Post
Hi,



I like to run the test for at least overnight. I make sure to place all panels and close the unit up as if for operation. That way conditions will be at the working state.

As for the voltage checks, easy if you have a DVM(Digital Volt Meter) or VOM (Volt Ohm Meter) that you can measure the DC voltage rails with.

You can search for the pin out for your PSU on google or LQ. Sometimes the pinout is on the side of the PSU but not always. You will be measuring between the PSU ground and the supply rails. The measured voltage should be within the tolerance posted on the side of your PSU(that should be there).
Thanks a lot. I don't have a DVM, but I'll consider getting one. I'll also have her run memtest86 longer. I actually haven't been able to get to the computer for a couple of days. On the other hand, she says that since she has been running the Slax live CD (last couple of days) it has not crashed, which suggests either something wrong in the installation or the HD. I'm going over there today, and will try upgrading her to Slack 12.1.

Brian
 
  


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