Nasty machine freeze-up - kernal panic ?

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Nasty machine freeze-up - kernal panic ?

Postby mudpie on Fri Jan 14, 2011 8:14 pm

I've had LMDE istalled for a day or two now, and all seems to be running well. I've only installed a few additional things, but this problem started before installing them (I'll still list what's been installed if it matters though.)

It may or may not have begun after installing the Nvidia drivers.

It began before any updates.

The machine just freezes up, hard. It's completely unresponsive and I have to pull the power and pop the battery out to power it down, to restart. On my laptop display (not the screen) the "caps lock" and "scroll" indicators flash - no idea what that means, if anything. Three times it's happened on return from a screensaver, once while just reading a message boards (no idle time) and twice while rebooting.

I *did* get an error while booting, and took a pic. It says (starting near the end):
Code: Select all
Starting system message bus: dbus.
Starting deferred execution scheduler: atd.
Starting periodic command scheduler: cron.
Starting ACPI services....
Loading cpufreq kernal modules....done (acpi-cpufreq).
Starting network connection manager: NetworkManager
Starting Hardware abstraction layer: hald[    23.309406] Kernal panic - not syncing: <3>assertion "(read_phy_reg(pi, 0xc0) & 0xc000) == 0" failed: file "wlc_phy_n.c", line 24364
[    23.309410]



Computer: Alienware (Dell) laptop, "M15X" (I can dig up specs if needed)
OS: LMDE, 64
Nvidia drivers: 195.36.31 , and they seem to be working (3D screensavers, World of Warcraft, etc, all running fine)
uname -arv: Linux red 2.6.32-5-amd64 #1 SMP Thu Nov 25 18:02:11 UTC 2010 x86_64 GNU/Linux
I have compiz installed (there by default, yeah?) but nothing is enabled.

And because I actually read the "Read this before you post", post... :lol:
my lspci
Code: Select all
laura@red ~ $ lspci
00:00.0 Host bridge: Intel Corporation Core Processor DRAM Controller (rev 12)
00:01.0 PCI bridge: Intel Corporation Core Processor PCI Express x16 Root Port (rev 12)
00:19.0 Ethernet controller: Intel Corporation 82577LC Gigabit Network Connection (rev 06)
00:1a.0 USB Controller: Intel Corporation 5 Series/3400 Series Chipset USB2 Enhanced Host Controller (rev 06)
00:1b.0 Audio device: Intel Corporation 5 Series/3400 Series Chipset High Definition Audio (rev 06)
00:1c.0 PCI bridge: Intel Corporation 5 Series/3400 Series Chipset PCI Express Root Port 1 (rev 06)
00:1c.2 PCI bridge: Intel Corporation 5 Series/3400 Series Chipset PCI Express Root Port 3 (rev 06)
00:1c.3 PCI bridge: Intel Corporation 5 Series/3400 Series Chipset PCI Express Root Port 4 (rev 06)
00:1d.0 USB Controller: Intel Corporation 5 Series/3400 Series Chipset USB2 Enhanced Host Controller (rev 06)
00:1e.0 PCI bridge: Intel Corporation 82801 Mobile PCI Bridge (rev a6)
00:1f.0 ISA bridge: Intel Corporation Mobile 5 Series Chipset LPC Interface Controller (rev 06)
00:1f.2 SATA controller: Intel Corporation 5 Series/3400 Series Chipset 6 port SATA AHCI Controller (rev 06)
00:1f.3 SMBus: Intel Corporation 5 Series/3400 Series Chipset SMBus Controller (rev 06)
00:1f.6 Signal processing controller: Intel Corporation 5 Series/3400 Series Chipset Thermal Subsystem (rev 06)
02:00.0 VGA compatible controller: nVidia Corporation G92 [GeForce GTX 260M] (rev a2)
07:00.0 Network controller: Broadcom Corporation BCM43224 802.11a/b/g/n (rev 01)
09:07.0 FireWire (IEEE 1394): Ricoh Co Ltd R5C832 IEEE 1394 Controller (rev 05)
09:07.1 SD Host controller: Ricoh Co Ltd R5C822 SD/SDIO/MMC/MS/MSPro Host Adapter (rev 22)
09:07.2 System peripheral: Ricoh Co Ltd R5C843 MMC Host Controller (rev 12)
09:07.3 System peripheral: Ricoh Co Ltd R5C592 Memory Stick Bus Host Adapter (rev 12)
09:07.4 System peripheral: Ricoh Co Ltd xD-Picture Card Controller (rev ff)
ff:00.0 Host bridge: Intel Corporation Core Processor QuickPath Architecture Generic Non-core Registers (rev 02)
ff:00.1 Host bridge: Intel Corporation Core Processor QuickPath Architecture System Address Decoder (rev 02)
ff:02.0 Host bridge: Intel Corporation Core Processor QPI Link 0 (rev 02)
ff:02.1 Host bridge: Intel Corporation Core Processor QPI Physical 0 (rev 02)
ff:02.2 Host bridge: Intel Corporation Core Processor Reserved (rev 02)
ff:02.3 Host bridge: Intel Corporation Core Processor Reserved (rev 02)


Where do I begin??
What the heck is "Hardware abstraction layer: hald[ 23.309406] Kernal panic.... "?

Thanks for any help!

-Laura
Last edited by mudpie on Sat Jan 15, 2011 12:17 pm, edited 1 time in total.
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Re: Nasty machine freeze-up.

Postby wayne128 on Fri Jan 14, 2011 8:43 pm

Taken from wiki
A kernel panic is an action taken by an operating system upon detecting an internal fatal error from which it cannot safely recover. The term is largely specific to Unix and Unix-like systems; for Microsoft Windows operating systems the equivalent term is "Bug check" (or, colloquially, "Blue Screen of Death").

The machine just freezes up, hard. It's completely unresponsive and I have to pull the power and pop the battery out to power it down, to restart. On my laptop display (not the screen) the "caps lock" and "scroll" indicators flash - no idea what that means, if anything. Three times it's happened on return from a screensaver, once while just reading a message boards (no idle time) and twice while rebooting.


When you have those lights flashing, it is usually kernel panic.

twice while rebooting

This sounds bad enough,, reboot should have it working all the time. perhaps you should consider a reinstallation.
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Re: Nasty machine freeze-up.

Postby mudpie on Fri Jan 14, 2011 9:36 pm

Boooo, that's not what I wanted to read!

But it was a very informative post, thank you wayne128.

I don't think I'll reinstall just yet, but I'll keep it in mind as a potential future need.

-Laura
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Re: Nasty machine freeze-up - kernal panic ?

Postby mudpie on Sat Jan 15, 2011 12:18 pm

ACK!

It's happened about 10 times in the last 5 minutes. I'm not even bothering to pop the battery back into my laptop now.

Is there anyway to fix this, other than a reinstall?

OR, if I do reinstall, is there anything I have done to cause this, that I can avoid in the future?

I don't want to get stuck in a nasty loop of reinstalling.

-Laura
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Re: Nasty machine freeze-up - kernal panic ?

Postby mudpie on Sat Jan 15, 2011 12:32 pm

I believe I formatted my partition as Ext4. I've always used Ext2 in the past (Ubuntu installs).

Could this be the cause?

Yes, I'm sort of grasping at straws here. I've never dealt with a Linux problem that I didn't feel was totally my fault (unless it was Plymouth related!!) so I really don't know where to begin.

Google searches bring up 101 kernal panic - not syncing suggestions.

From updating my BIOS, to pulling out my RAM sticks one by one (not even sure how to access them on this laptop - yikes). It just all seems rather random.

-Laura
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Re: Nasty machine freeze-up - kernal panic ?

Postby mudpie on Sat Jan 15, 2011 12:57 pm

My last post was posted from my other computer, as this one wouldn't even get through booting.

I went into BIOS and reset to default, then went through and disabled anything "fancy". (Yes, that's my technical term!) The accelerated boot-up options, and anything with the word "enhanced" or "speed" in it, and all the USB and other boot options I'm not currently needing.

Who knows when or if it will lock up again, but I went from about eight failed boots, to booting and running for 20 minutes. Fingers crossed!

-Laura

PS I hope no one minds my posting this little saga? I'm hoping someone will have insights. Or, if I successfully fix anything, someone else might benefit from my trial and error in the future. I can just keep updating a single post if I'm over-posting though. No offense taken... I'm new to these forums, so I'm just not sure what the etiquette is.

Thanks!

-Laura
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Re: Nasty machine freeze-up - kernal panic ?

Postby CiaW on Sat Jan 15, 2011 7:38 pm

Laura, judging by the last output on your message right after the kernel panic, it looks to me like it might be related to wireless, the output showing wl and phy are both indicators of something to do with wireless. I'm not sure what driver it's using for your wireless (the broadcom line in lspci output), but that might have some bearing on it. You might want to check out here: http://www.linuxwireless.org/en/users and perhaps they have a different driver than the one you're using.

Then again, there could be video (driver) issues too, though did you say it was happening before you updated the Nvidia? Also, do you use bluetooth? For some reason it's always enabled and I don't know if it would play into this issue or not, but if you don't use it you might want to disable that service (under admin > services). It might also just be a flaky kernel for you hardware, have you updated after the install? The easiest thing to try if you can is to do an update including level 4 and 5.

Sorry, all my guesses probably aren't all that helpful, but I'd start with the wireless. Or do an update including a kernel and reboot and see what happens or a new install may be in order.
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Re: Nasty machine freeze-up - kernal panic ?

Postby mudpie on Sat Jan 15, 2011 10:49 pm

Thanks Cia, that was actually very helpful. Really this is something I didn't even have an idea where to *start* addressing problems.

Two things have happened since my last post, and before I read your post.

I tried reinstalling LMDE, over it's old partition. Which was a bust, with "boot sector" errors by the thousands. Confusingly, to me, I was getting those errors while the LMDE cd was still loading - and it's a Live CD so it wouldn't be writing/reading the hard drive at that point anyhow, right? Or am I misunderstanding how LiveCDs work? Do they actually make use of the hard drive? Maybe the CD was dirty... I don't know, it looked fine, and it worked two days ago, and it worked later this evening.

So I got out my old gParted disk, and had more mysterious problems, with not being able to format existing partitions - I had to delete them.

On the plus side, for the first time I tried a "/" and a separate "/home" partition! :D (And a swap of course.) This time I've gone with ext3, as well.

Everything's gone fine since then... Smooth install, smooth round of updates, no crashes.

I'm hoping this doesn't return, but I'll try to keep track of if it happens before/after wireless and Nvidia updates.

Anyhow, I appreciate all the input, and you've given me info to use if this comes up again. And I'm going to disable bluetooth - I never do use it!

Now I'm off to google about Linux disk checks... I feel all antsy from all those boot sector and partitioning mysteries!

-Laura
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Re: Nasty machine freeze-up - kernal panic ?

Postby wayne128 on Sun Jan 16, 2011 4:06 am

You can use Disk Utility which is already installed on LMDE, do SMART check to see how healthy is the hard disk
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