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Thread: 11.1 too unstable so going back to 10.3

  1. #1
    sandfly357 NNTP User

    Default 11.1 too unstable so going back to 10.3

    ...unless anyone can help?
    Ever since I upgraded from 10.3 (rock solid, stable as anything) to 11.0, then 11.1, I am plagued with hard locks that basically make my system unusable. I've searched the net for clues and advice, but so much is either contradictory or not relevant to me that I despair of finding a solution. (When I say "upgraded", I mean "clean install onto new disk", BTW. A process I've repeated several times)

    Basic info: Sempron 3000+ with Nvidia chipsets. 1Gb RAM. Desktop PC, not a laptop. No wireless of any description. Suse 11.1 Kernel 2.6.27.21-0.1-pae, KDE4.2. All patched up to date. (Tried with KDE3.5, Gnome and fvwm as well, no change, so it's not a KDE thing...)

    Symptoms: sudden total system lock. Everything stops. No ping, no ssh, no connection to the world, nothing. No longer visible on the network. No mouse cursor, no keyboard response (not even magic keys, SysReq etc etc. Even the NumLock lights are frozen) I've kept background processes echoing all system activity to logs - they show no unusual behaviours. Nothing in any system log. We are not experiencing 100%CPU, and it does not come back to life after a short while (or even 12 hours) Only cure is the on/off switch. No overheating shown in logs. No heavy use at the time of lockup.

    I can usually guarantee a lock after simply doing a few scrolls in a browser (any one - I use Firefox 3 for preference, but Konqueror, Opera, whatever, they all lock up) I can often run for hours - as long as I don't use a browser or anything else that needs scrolling. Yet I can VNC to my Server (Suse 10.0) and run Firefox in the VNC window as long as I like.

    So basically, something (that might be X Windows apps being scrolled but then again might not, as I get lockups on other activity too - scrolling is simply the most common thing I'm doing when it locks) gives me total lockup. I have the latest kernel, drivers, everything. With 10.3, never a glitch, but the move to 11 has been a nightmare. Does anyone have any suggestions or bright ideas, please?

  2. #2

    Default Re: 11.1 too unstable so going back to 10.3

    If the different software indicates the same symptoms you need to check if it is not a hardware issue. I would first check the memory with memtest.

    I had a while ago (3 years ago to be exact ) problem with the memory (BIOS set too low voltage for the memory) and no matter what OS i used it would lock up.
    How does a linux geek make love??

    - rtfm; unzip; strip; touch; finger; mount; fsck; more; yes; umount; zip; sleep;

  3. #3
    sandfly357 NNTP User

    Default Re: 11.1 too unstable so going back to 10.3

    Fair enough, and I'll run a test as you suggest. But it doesn't explain why 10.3 was solid but as soon as I moved up to 11.0 my system became unstable. At the time the indications were that 11.1 would be better, but the subsequent upgrade disproved that one pretty quickly!

    Will run memtest overnight and come back with results. Thanks,

  4. #4

    Default Re: 11.1 too unstable so going back to 10.3

    After reading that again, it may be some BUG with a mouse driver? If you scroll on the desktop without the browser does it also lock up?

    If yes then you should file a BUG (but don't scroll )
    How does a linux geek make love??

    - rtfm; unzip; strip; touch; finger; mount; fsck; more; yes; umount; zip; sleep;

  5. #5

    Default Re: 11.1 too unstable so going back to 10.3

    Well KDE 4.22 is still not quite there. I am getting lockups occaisionally, which I can accept because I find the new direction worthwhile and necessary. Why bother with KDE 4.22 when you can use 11.1 with KDE 3.5x which is stable as can be and has a number of advantages over 10.3. Going all the way back seems to be overdoing it a little..

  6. #6

    Default Re: 11.1 too unstable so going back to 10.3

    Yeh i get lock outs too, whole system freaks out for no reason...
    But it might indeed be KDE 4 related, would not be surprised.

  7. #7

    Default Re: 11.1 too unstable so going back to 10.3

    Quote Originally Posted by BenderBendingRodriguez View Post
    If the different software indicates the same symptoms you need to check if it is not a hardware issue. I would first check the memory with memtest.

    I had a while ago (3 years ago to be exact ) problem with the memory (BIOS set too low voltage for the memory) and no matter what OS i used it would lock up.
    This week I installed 11.1 64 on a brand new machine with a MSI board and 8 GB RAM. I had exactly the same random lockups. A memtest86+ showed RAM errors when using all 4 banks. 2 RAM banks in any combination were ok. When I switched from automatic setting to 2.0 V DRAM voltage in BIOS, the system became stable. Friends told me that they had similar issues with boards of various brands (Asus, MSI). I think that especially RAM-consuming applications are likely to trigger instabilities with a higher probability. After setting to 2.0 V, the memtest was successful, too.

    Kind regards
    Volker

  8. #8
    sandfly357 NNTP User

    Default Re: 11.1 too unstable so going back to 10.3

    OK, as a further update, I took the advice and ran memtest86 for a few hours. No errors reported, so I have to remove memory from the list of possible causes.

    I'm not too sure where else I can look now. I am surprised that something can take out the whole system, including network interfaces, so fast and so completely, without there being any trace or record in any logs I can find.

    I am a bit suspicious of the Nvidia element here - there seems to be some history of problems with Nvidia graphics, from what I've been able to find on the Web. I did try using the open source driver, but that just gave me a black screen so I went back to the installed default. Maybe I should try that again?

    Thanks for the responses so far - all advice gratefully received.

  9. #9
    Andy Sipowicz NNTP User

    Default Re: 11.1 too unstable so going back to 10.3

    > all advice gratefully received.

    is there a function, capability offered by 11.x that you actually need?

    if you can't honestly answer yes to that then why bother?
    my answer is no, and i'm still on 10.3 and hope 11.2 is usable..
    if not i might give SLED 11 a try..

    (could that be Novell's secret marketing strategy?? [keeping openSUSE
    perpetually broken--that is, after all how the folks in Redmond got
    filthy rich!!])

    --
    Andy Sipowicz

  10. #10
    Chris Maaskant NNTP User

    Default Re: 11.1 too unstable so going back to 10.3

    sandfly357 wrote:

    > Basic info: Sempron 3000+ with Nvidia chipsets. 1Gb RAM. Desktop PC,
    > not a laptop. No wireless of any description. Suse 11.1 Kernel
    > 2.6.27.21-0.1-pae


    Can't help you with your stability problems, but i do have one question.
    Why do you have a pae kernel if you only have 1GB of ram?

    I thought that the pae kernel is only for 32 bit systems to make use of 4GB
    ram and more.

    --
    Chris Maaskant

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