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Old 01-30-03, 11:51 PM   #1
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Default v4l module causes instability

I recently posted the thread "GeForce2 w/NVIDIA driver & bttv (video4linux) = mess" and learned that I needed the v4l driver loaded when using the NVIDIA drivers (unlike the nv or banshee drivers). Software is RedHat 8.0 with a clean, home-built kernel (from kernel.org), and the newest drivers from NVIDIA (1.0-4191).

After adding the v4l module to the X config, I'm experiencing theX lockups many people have mentioned, as well as the console/tty corruption after to having to kill X remotely (while locked up, it takes 100% of the CPU).

Running strace against X returns the following repeatedly:

sigreturn() = ? (mask now [])
--- SIGALRM (Alarm clock) ---

WindowMaker is my preferred window-manager, not sure if it matters. The lockups occur mostly when moving windows around, especially if I'm using v4l (bt878 card displaying TV). They also occur at random, like when loading a web page in Mozilla (1.2.1, built on this machine), for example.

Before I configured XF86Config to load the "v4l" module, it was quite stable, even with this card and the NVIDIA driver.

Thanks.
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Old 01-31-03, 08:24 AM   #2
captnmark
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Default

I had similiar problem.

I fixed it by loading all modules for devices that share the same interrupt (see /proc/interruprs) before the nvidia driver.

Apparently nvidia driver is buggy.

Platform=AMD Athlon XP, VIA KT-266A, geforce4

Mark

NVidia: please release interface specs or open the driver source for your hardware.
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Old 02-01-03, 12:55 PM   #3
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Default Still locking up....

I'm not so sure that it's the interrupts... here's my list:

[root@buthus root]# cat /proc/interrupts
CPU0 CPU1
0: 1998275 1948459 IO-APIC-edge timer
1: 515 549 IO-APIC-edge keyboard
2: 0 0 XT-PIC cascade
4: 55221 56496 IO-APIC-edge serial
5: 0 0 IO-APIC-level CMI8738
8: 0 1 IO-APIC-edge rtc
9: 1250924 1317892 IO-APIC-level acpi, nvidia, bttv, btaudio
10: 2756 2826 IO-APIC-level eth0
11: 38538 38685 IO-APIC-level aic7xxx, aic7xxx, usb-uhci, ohci1394
12: 17040 16976 IO-APIC-edge PS/2 Mouse
NMI: 0 0
LOC: 3946469 3946455
ERR: 0
MIS: 0

As you can see... only the ACPI and v4l drivers are sharing interrupt 9 with the nvidia driver. Neither was being used during this lockup... I had just gone online and was not using the capture card. It locked the instant it drew a new window (kppp's online status), but before it could fill in the window.

I loaded the new driver on my friend's box and added the v4l line, and his locked up as well.

I already tried removing the v4l module from XF86Config and it still locks VERY repeatedly in KDE... all you have to do is launch a "terminal" from the menu. Gnome locks pretty quickly as well. Looks like WindowMaker is the most stable, takes a few hours usually.

This is without question the most unstable I've ever seen any Linux system, and I've been using it heavily for nearly 11 years! (since 0.96xxx)

Time to downgrade to an older driver?
(or time to buy a Radeon?)
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Old 02-01-03, 02:24 PM   #4
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Default Not shared interrupts...

I moved my cards around and here's the new interrupt assignment list:

[root@buthus root]# cat /proc/interrupts
CPU0 CPU1
0: 38541 40121 IO-APIC-edge timer
1: 374 175 IO-APIC-edge keyboard
2: 0 0 XT-PIC cascade
4: 4288 4270 IO-APIC-edge serial
5: 1 1 IO-APIC-level CMI8738, bttv, btaudio
8: 1 0 IO-APIC-edge rtc
9: 10233 9785 IO-APIC-level acpi, nvidia
10: 1443 1669 IO-APIC-level eth0
11: 5100 5142 IO-APIC-level aic7xxx, aic7xxx, usb-uhci, ohci1394
12: 1788 2052 IO-APIC-edge PS/2 Mouse
NMI: 0 0
LOC: 78557 78543
ERR: 0
MIS: 0


Unless an inactive ACPI is causing the problem, I'd say the problem lies elsewhere. I was able to lock up X seconds after logging in - no change.
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Old 02-03-03, 11:16 PM   #5
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Default Isolated further...

I downgraded to the 1.0-3123 release and my system has been up for over 24 hours without a lockup. (record with 4191 was 6 hours)

NVIDIA: Please look into this! The newest release has some NASTY BUGS!

(Does Nvidia actually monitor this site?)
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Old 02-04-03, 09:33 AM   #6
captnmark
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I just realized that I didn't have v4l loaded.

When I load it, there is no lockup, but xawtv works much worse than before.

I have the latest drivers (4191)
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Old 02-07-03, 10:06 PM   #7
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Default 3123 locks too...

Well, it took almost 5 days, but 3123 locked up too. Same scenario as above.

NVIDIA, are you looking into the lockup problem?

I'm getting tired of this fast... it's almost as bad as having a MS-Windows machine.
(this system was ROCK SOLID with the Banshee)
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Old 03-28-03, 03:55 AM   #8
energyman76b
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Default do not put v4l in XF86Config!

Hi,

you DO NOT need to put v4l in XF86Config. In fact, it will make it worse.

Load the v4l-modules (modprobe bttv is afaik enough) and let xawtv or your tv-app do the rest!

If you have constant lockups, try to disable dga and select 'grabdisplay' in the xawtv 'capture' menu.

Glück Auf
Volker
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Old 03-28-03, 10:38 AM   #9
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Default um, wrong....

You DO have to put v4l in XF86Config if you want to use a bttv based capture card to watch TV... check my other thread about the problems titled GeForce + bttv = garbage (or something like that). This is where I found out that you had to have the module loaded for this card (which was not the case with my Banshee).

Adding the module fixed the display garbage problem and finally made vl4 usable on this machine.
Using grabdisplay is a horrible hack, and not something I would even consider an option due to the load it adds to the system (you see, I tend to do more than one thing at a time, which is why I run Linux in the first place).

Oh, and it turns out that the v4l module may not even be a factor, as I've now seen these lockups on _3_ systems, one of which does not have any v4l devices at all (and that machine is single-processor, so SMP isn't an issue either). My friend is trying to convince his wife to switch to Linux, and she doesn't like it so far because it locks up more than MS-Windows! She didn't understand that it's the display driver causing the problems, and that the computer itself is not locked up... from her perspective, the machine appears to have crashed.

It's been 4-1/2 months since a release, and considering that the current driver is the most unstable I've seen on ANY system (including MS-Windows), it appears as though they may have abandoned Linux as a platform (the releases used to be much more frequent).

As I said before, my next card will be a Radeon... due to it's open-sourced drivers.
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Old 03-28-03, 08:43 PM   #10
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I don't think I can help you much, I still don't own any nvidia hardware.
However I am looking into buying a ti4200 soon.

One of my friend got a Radeon 9700Pro and the drivers are very unstable, dual head works badly and the Linux configuration tool is bad and does not provide the desired results.

However I do plan on buying by ti4200 some time this week and I need the v4l functionality.
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Old 03-28-03, 10:44 PM   #11
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Default Radeons...

I don't doubt it... that's a brand new model, isn't it?

My GeForce is a 2GTS-64MB, an old, well established model that *should* have stable drivers (around the age of a Radeon 7500, isn't it?).

Seems I read the drivers for the Radeon are good to about 9100, your friend's card is probably too new.
I'm thinking about a 9000, since they're only $60 delivered (cheaper than an 8500 model) via pricewatch.
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Old 03-28-03, 10:53 PM   #12
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Yes it's one of their newest cards.
The graphics are nice, but too pricey and the drivers are crap.

Did you try removing the acpi from the kernel ?
I found it to be a cause of a lot of problems on my motherboard.
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