cygwin crashes after every ~ 10th command and starts up only every ~ 4th try...

D. Bollmann dbollmann001@web.de
Thu Jun 23 07:12:00 GMT 2005


Hi Dave, thanks for your long and detailed reply :)

 > > Since a couple of hours cygwin crashes all the time on my windows nt
 > > computer. In order to restart cygwin I have to execute the xserver 
batch
 > > file several times until finally an xterm shows up. The same xterm than
 > > crashes after only a couple of commands - for example 10 executions of
 > > 'ls'. I updated cygwin and also tried to reboot my computer, but the
 > > problem remains...
 >
 >   What happens if you switch your computer off and let it cool down for a
 > few hours?  Odd behaviour like this is very common when a PC is 
overheating,
 > and sometimes a PC can be OK in the winter and spring and then start to
 > experience overheating problems when the hot summer weather arrives.  
Which
 > it just has, here in England, and I'd guess over there in Deutschland 
too?

I switched off the computer yesterday in the most intense mood of 
frustration and went home....only to find it (producing some ugly 
hovercraft like sound when starting up) working this morning as if 
nothing ever had happened...

I am working in Tokyo and thanks to the rainy season the weather changes 
all the time - plain sun & hot humid air  / less hot & rainy / hot 
weather & sun again... It would be impossible to work if the 
air-conditioner wouldn't run all the time. Still - sometimes it is quite 
hot even with the air-conditioner running...

 > > I had a somehow similar problem a couple of months ago when I tried to
 > > copy files recursively or used the find command. Also since a couple of
 > > months emacs crashes on a regular basis complaining not to be able to
 > > connect to the xserver.
 > >
 > > But never the problem has been as bad as now. I am unable to use cygwin
 > > at all
 >
 >   This really does sound like an intermittent hardware problem.  Copying
 > files and searching directories are among the simplest jobs a 
computer does.
 > Do you experience problems with other software, or is it just cygwin that
 > crashes, or do you not know because cygwin apps are almost all you run on
 > the machine?

I had no problems when using the windows explorer, shifting directory 
icons from one explorer window to the next. Copying files made problems 
only when using emacs or 'cp' in a cygwin xterm. Unfortunately I do not 
remember the error message...

 > > Could it be that the crashes are related to a mapped windows drive I am
 > > linking to from my home directory?
 >
 >   Pretty unlikely.

I thought it could be caused by some network problem / mapped drive 
because normally the ls command produces output immediately. Before 
crashing on the other hand, there would be a short delay (~ half a 
second) without anything happening before the xterm finally blows up.
Also emacs would normally crash only when loading some new file or 
opening a new frame.

 >   Apart from hardware troubles, the only other kinds of things that might
 > cause such problems would be (very) faulty device drivers, firewall or AV
 > software, but I'm still guessing it's a real hardware problem.  It might
 > help if you open up your PC and make sure all the PCI cards are firmly
 > seated down in their slots and all the other cables and connections are
 > tight and well-made.  Sometimes things work loose with repeated cycles of
 > expansion and contraction caused by heating and cooling; that's another
 > reason why PCs sometimes suddenly begin to fail in peculiar ways in hot
 > weather.

The strange thing is that today the computer is working normally again. 
Also, during the last weeks I had the impression that emacs and xterms 
would crash more often in the afternoon (everybody is there at this time 
- and probably it is the period of the most intense concentration and 
work). In the morning and late afternoon I normally wouldn't have too 
many problems.

Anyway, for the moment I am happy again - waiting for the next period of 
frustration...

Is there some function (network / processor data etc.) I could protocol 
somehow in order to provide some more helpful information if the problem 
repeats?

Thanks again for your detailed reply!!! I am most grateful for the time 
and effort you dedicated to your answer in order to help somebody you 
never ever have met. I don't know how I would survive my computer life 
without people like you!

Cheers & greetings from a Tokyo, gray, coolish and rainy again 
(...aha?...) - Dietrich


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