openSUSE 11.4 freezes randomly

Dear all,
My pc freezes when firefox is running not only to open a new tab but also to browse some pictures and flash video. The screen freezes, no Keyboard response. Only mouse pointer can be moved but it can not excute any program. That means I can see the mouse pointer moves but it can not click on any icon.
I have to ssh from my laptop to my PC and kill firefox process but can’t get any improvement. The screen is still freezing. Then I have no choice but to use root right to restart the pc. This system freezing has happens many times since the PC system was updated from openSUSE 11.3 to 11.4 one month ago. It’s really random and I don’t know when it will happen next time. But when it happens then I have no choice but to restart computer again.
I notice that every time when PC freezes, the Xorg occupies 100% cpu resouce and as long as keeping this status.
Even when the PC dose not freeze, I feel the mouse point does not moves so smoothly. It could stop for a very very short time in its moving. I did not find this moving problem when I was using openSUSE 11.3.
I guess it may caused by the video card driver which may not installed appropriately on my openSUSE 11.4. But I don’t know how to check and fix it. Can somebody help me? Thank you very much.
Using “lspci |grep VGA” I get the following video card information:

01:00.0 VGA compatible controller: nVidia Corporation GT218 [GeForce 210] (rev a2)


Can you post the result of this command :

hwinfo --gfxcard | grep -i -e device -e driver

output is:
SysFS ID: /devices/pci0000:00/0000:00:03.0/0000:01:00.0
Device: pci 0x0a65 “GT200 [GeForce 210]”
SubDevice: pci 0x1401
Driver: “nouveau”
Driver Modules: “drm”
Driver Info #0:
Driver Status: nvidiafb is not active
Driver Activation Cmd: “modprobe nvidiafb”
Driver Info #1:
Driver Status: nouveau is active
Driver Activation Cmd: “modprobe nouveau”


You are using the nouveau driver.

Can you now install the proprietary driver of your card to see if you have those symptoms. here how to install it : SDB:NVIDIA drivers - openSUSE

Hi Daax,
I open SDB:NVIDIA drivers - openSUSE
and found there are three options for Use 1-Click-Install. Which one is sutable for my PC? Is it the third one :For all NVIDIA legacy cards (Geforce 4 and older, TNT), ?

I do not believe that any of the procedures recommended in the Wiki should be followed… The first section describes an installation that isn’t self updating. The later “repository” sections describe installing specific drivers.

IMO much better is to follow the nVidia instructions which is to add the repository, then invoke openSUSE Update to auto select and install the latest current driver.

To do this “The nVidia openSUSE way” follow the steps and info in my post #323 in the following thread
NVIDIA 260.19 Issues

Substitute and insert the correct directory path that corresponds with your OS. This should work for <all> nVidia graphics cards.


Hi tsu2,
I read your post #323 just now. But I am a newer to Linux. So I have to ask a simple, maybe, question. How to add the nVidia repository "nVidia Repository Server:
Diirectory: /opensuse/11.4 " to my OS? Can you tell me step by step? Thank you.

I have edited the openSUSE nVidia wiki to suggest what I believe should be the recommended way (Section: Update: The repository way from nVidia install notes )


Thanks to Tony and Daax. I have installed nvidia driver to my PC. Now mouse pointer is moving smoothly. I think the system freezing problem is resolved as well although I restarted my PC and keep it running for only one hour till now. But I will come back here later (maybe several days later) to report whether improvement comes or not.
Before I come back, I would like to summerize here what I have done in the past hours. Hope this will benifit someone else.

  1. add the nVidia repository, see SDB:NVIDIA drivers - openSUSE , follows the instuctions in "Update: The repository way from nVidia install notes "
  2. invoke openSUSE Update to auto select and install the latest current driver
  3. reboot system
  4. configure nvidia driver by root typing “nvidia-xconfig” (not including "), check /etc/X11/xorg.conf to see whether the “Driver” of the “Device” section in the xorg.conf file is “nvidia” or not.
  5. reboot system again

Dear all,
The problem has been removed. Because no freeze occurred in the past several days since I installed nvidia driver. I want to add [resolved] into the title of this thread but unfortunately I didn’t find how to do that.

I have the same problems with my computer - it randomly freezes. When this happens I am able to move the mouse cursor, but it does not respond to mouse clicks or input from the keyboard.

My computer is quite new, and I understand that its motherboard has Sandy Bridge architecture and a quad core Intel i5 processor and an integrated graphic chip (my knowledge to hardware is nothing I’m proud of…). I have installed the 64 bit version of OpenSUSE 11.4 on it.

# lspci | grep VGA
00:02.0 VGA compatible controller: Intel Corporation 2nd Generation Core Processor Family Integrated Graphics Controller (rev 09)

# hwinfo --gfxcard | grep -i -e device -e driver
  SysFS ID: /devices/pci0000:00/0000:00:02.0
  Device: pci 0x0102 
  SubDevice: pci 0x0102 
  Driver: "i915"
  Driver Modules: "drm"
  Driver Info #0:
    Driver Status: i915 is active
    Driver Activation Cmd: "modprobe i915"

I suppose my problems are also related to my current graphics driver, and from what I have found from other forum posts and blogs, I may have to wait for a more recent Linux core (I am currently using 2.6.37) until my hardware is properly supported and this problem can be solved.

Is this correct, or is a working solution available already?

Thanks in advance.

After having searched several forums and wikis, I don’t believe that my problems are related to Gnome, but to the X windows system. There are similar reports from KDE and Xfce-users too. Yesterday evening my desktop froze again during a backup session to an external harddisk, and while my system stopped responding to input from the mouse and keyboard, I noticed that the harddisks kept on working. When I checked this morning the backup was 100% complete, so my problem is most likely limited to the graphics processing unit. I came across this Wiki which I think is spot on:

I still don’t know how to fix my problem, but now I have a better idea where to look.

I had the same problem, with KDE 4 and Gnome 3 freezing. I was just going to return to 11.2, and thought that I will just check if the NVIDIA driver really installed. With the command:

hwinfo --gfxcard | grep -i -e device -e driver

I saw that the NVIDIA driver was there, but not active. So I looked it up in the internet and came across this thread.


it is rather cumbersome to do what you suggest, and works as you say. I also looked at what Tony did in the wiki, also a slight work around; but it also seems to work.

I just added the “Community Repositories” in the “Software Repositories” of YaST’s “Software” section, which includes the NVIDIA repo as one of the many listed there. Everything you both described manually are done here automatically, and also works. With the next update it automatically installed the right driver. At the next system start it was loaded successfully!

I had the same problem, i.e. more or less regular freezes of my Gnome 3 Desktop in OpenSuse 11.4 using the i915 driver.

Installed Gnome 3 just two weeks ago. Looked and felt nice but those freezes left a very bad impression of course.

However, I “stumbled” over a solution that I must admit seems most absurd, but at least it reproducably works for me.

Ok, hold your breath!

When ssh’ing into the “frozen” machine to see whether there might be something I could do to fix things I found that trying to add a software repo using zypper unfreezes the desktop.

I.e. “zypper ar <url>” as root does the trick for me. Sounds most unlikely, right?

I suppose some desktop applet etc. may be the reason to freeze the desktop in the first place (no idea how and which) and using Zypper releases something it waits for or whatever.

In case you are really desperate, this may work for you as well.