7.0BETA4 desktop system also periodically freezes

J.R. Oldroyd fbsd at opal.com
Wed Jan 9 11:29:13 PST 2008

I believe this same problem may also be present on 7.0, at least on
the BETA releases; BETA4 is the latest I have here.

I have the same problem on two systems here: periodically the systems
will stop dead (no mouse action, no ping responses from other systems,
processes with windows on the screen also freeze); the hangs can be
anything from a few seconds to several MINUTES; then it all comes back
"as if nothing happened" except that keyboard input during the freeze
is lost.  Most of my freezes are a few seconds long, some are in the
15-60 second range, but (fortunately, rarely) I have seen some that
lasted 10-15 MINUTES!

The only obvious indication after the return is that the system load
average monitor peaks up, typically from the 0-0.5 range before the
hang to 1.5-2 after the hang, then immediately decays back down.  Just
as if some real-time prio process had grabbed the processor exclusively
for a while.  Except I have no rtprio processes that I know of.

It is not swap related.  One of the systems here has 4GB ram and is
not swapping, even after one of these freezes.  It doesn't even swap
while running X, with the mailer open, several xterms and firefox and
a make running.

I had not reported this because I figured this was yet another problem
with xorg-7.3.  I am unable to make it happen on demand.  As yet it
seems random.  I am able to do CPU-intensive stuff (e.g., port builds)
without problems: it doesn't trigger the freeze and I don't even see
the jerky mouse problem that folk also talk of.  I am running a make
right now in fact, just to see if it'll do it.  Of course, it's fine.

But the phone might ring, so I'll stop doing things, the system will
become pretty-much idle, then I'll go to move the mouse and it might be
frozen.  When it comes back, the small load peak shows, but top and ps
show nothing unusual.

As I said, I have two systems here which exhibit this.  Both systems
here are 7.0BETA4.  Different i386 hardware; both are UP systems; one is
a fast 3200Ghz processor with 4GB ram, the other is a very slow
processor with not much ram at all; the scheduler is SCHED_ULE on both;
and the app mix includes basic servers:
	/usr/local/bin/xdm (on the fast system only)
and various end-user clients such as a WM and its children (including
load graph and a clock), firefox, xterms, ical, nvi, etc.

Because it is unpredictable, I don't have any profiling of this for
you.  But I wanted to throw this out there since I am not sure the
problem is 6.x-related.

Oh, both systems ran 6.2-stable with xorg-6.9 and didn't have this
problem.  Also, there doesn't seem to be any indication of hardware
issues on either.


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