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Old 01-07-2011, 04:40 AM   #1
Registered: Mar 2010
Distribution: Arch Linux
Posts: 45
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Unhappy Quasi-random system failure/hardlock/freeze with compiz-fusion and Intel video

My desktop environment, and everything else under it locks up completely about twice a week for no apparent reason. To resolve it I have to do a hard-halt by holding down the power button.

There have been times when the computer simply cuts power (short circuit?? :O) and then turns itself back on again. This has not happened in a while though.

*) Completely unresponsive to mouse/keyboard input
*) Screen does not update, including mouse cursor
*) Can not switch to virtual console. Nightmare.

Low volume high pitched noise from some component on motherboard
(GPU? CPU? RAM?) is always present, i.e. even when desktop is not
frozen. I just realized this.

Relevant hardware:
*GPU* 00:02.0 VGA compatible controller: Intel Corporation Mobile 4
Series Chipset Integrated Graphics Controller (rev 07) (prog-if 00 [VGA
Subsystem: Toshiba America Info Systems Device ffe1
Flags: bus master, fast devsel, latency 0, IRQ 28
Memory at f0000000 (64-bit, non-prefetchable) [size=4M]
Memory at d0000000 (64-bit, prefetchable) [size=256M]
I/O ports at 1800 [size=8]
Expansion ROM at <unassigned> [disabled]
Capabilities: [90] MSI: Enable+ Count=1/1 Maskable- 64bit-
Capabilities: [d0] Power Management version 3
>>>>>>> Kernel driver in use: i915
Kernel modules: i915

*CPU* Intel U2700 "Atom" @ 1.30GHz

Relevant software: (all packages built for x86_64)
compiz-core 0.8.6-2
compiz-fusion-plugins-main 0.8.6-1
compiz-fusion-plugins-extra 0.8.6-1
xf86-video-intel 2.13.0-4


Typical sensors output:

Adapter: Virtual device
temp1: +43.0C (crit = +104.0C)

Additional notes:

1) temp1 is always between 20C and 60C
2) Hard-locks are more frequent with heavy load such as combination of
vlc, flash-plugin and compiz plugins.
3) I have not yet tried to isolate the problem to a specific compiz
plugin, but the most problematic ones seem to be "expo" and "wobbly
4) Compiz is my only window manager, and replacing it is not an option
right now.
5) Log files ~/.xsession-errors, /var/log/messages.log,
/var/log/error.log say nothing. Compiz crash report is never written (built-in plugin enabled) (All this suggests hardware problem?)
6) I think RAM is OK! Did a 4 hour mem-test with just 13 errors... No,
seriously, there were *no* errors. Maybe I should run it longer. Also, I never run out of my 2GB.
7) My SSD drive could be worn out by now. But the problem has existed
since it was almost new (by the time I switched WM)
8) I have a CAPS-LOCK LED and I've noticed it is not blinking during freeze, which would suggest there is not a kernel panic (if this sign is not affected by my disabling CAPS-LOCK functionality in xorg.conf?)

I know the problem is not unique. But people rarely seem to give many details about their hardware setup along with the description of the compiz-random-freeze problem. Is it a problem with the Intel integrated controller, or the xorg Intel drivers perhaps?

I don't know what to do! Logs show nothing.

Please help. Even if you know for a fact that I'll have to live with this, feel free to tell me.

Thank you!

Last edited by kopatops; 01-07-2011 at 04:44 AM.


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