Window flashing

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restamp
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Window flashing

Post by restamp »

System: 64-bit Linux Mint 14 Nadia, nvidia driver 304.88, Cinnamon desktop.

I'm running the above system, and very sporadically I'm seeing the random flashing of a window on the desktop, or the desktop itself. By "flashing", I mean a seemingly random window (or the desktop) turns completely black for maybe 300-500ms and then restores its previous content. It's unclear what provokes this. It may be related to a video stream (vlc or flash) being active at the time. It's also unclear if it is a Mint problem or a driver problem.

Has anyone else seen this, or experienced something similar? Any ideas? It's rare enough that it's more of an annoyance than a show stopper, but still, I'd like to get to the bottom of it.
Fuzzy Penquin
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Re: Window flashing

Post by Fuzzy Penquin »

I experience something similar. The flashing I see is more of a strobe light effect, in that the window flashes many times very rapidly for a split second upon opening a program window (web browser, repositories, Cinnamon settings, Home file system, etc). Most days my computer will do it all day long, and a few days it behaves itself and works as intended. Chosen theme (stock Mint X, or third party) doesn't seem to matter. Currently using 32-bit, Cinnamon, Mint 14. No idea what causes this issue. I figured it's a bug that will be fixed in a future update.
Intel i7-3770k 3.5GHz, 16GB 1600MHz RAM, 2x 1TB HDD, MSI Z77A-G45 Thunderbolt motherboard, Nvidia GTX1080, Mint 19.1 64-bit w/Cinnamon.

I am a n00b! Please assume zero knowledge on my part. Sorry for any dumb questions, I am still learning.
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catweazel
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Re: Window flashing

Post by catweazel »

restamp wrote:Has anyone else seen this, or experienced something similar? Any ideas? It's rare enough that it's more of an annoyance than a show stopper, but still, I'd like to get to the bottom of it.
As a general rule, it's caused by a badly written program where the window is set to invisible after it is displayed instead of before. The trick to finding the culprit is to selectively disable startup applications and reboot, reboot, reboot, reboot... until it stops. If it's not happening until some time after boot then I'd be looking at what batch jobs are being started at that time. Failing that, keep an eye on the application's you're using. A plan, patience and determination will eventually coax the delinquent application to pop out its cloven hoof and reveal itself.
"There is, ultimately, only one truth -- cogito, ergo sum -- everything else is an assumption." - Me, my swansong.
restamp
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Re: Window flashing

Post by restamp »

Thanks, catweazel. Yes, I would not be surprised at all if the problem occurs because of some program running on the box. Or some applet, or the nvidia driver, etc. It is much too infrequent and random to try to provoke after a reboot, though. It affects any window -- gnome-termial (I see these flash the most often because I run a lot of them), firefox, or even the desktop background). As far as I can recall, I have never observed it directly in a window I was working in -- i.e., one that has the focus. I also have a Mint 13 box and don't recall ever seeing the flashing there, but I will pay closer attention the next time I am on it. Actually, I was hoping someone would chime in and say "yeah, I see this, too", but apparently that is not the case.
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tdockery97
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Re: Window flashing

Post by tdockery97 »

I've also had the same problem with the Cinnamon desktop, but only with the proprietary ATI driver installed. Using the open source Gallium driver it behaves itself.
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sjmcc
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Re: Window flashing

Post by sjmcc »

@tdockery97

I just purchase a new hp laptop with ati graphics and noticed this same problem. When I use the open source drivers my computer seems to run much hotter. Just curious if you have experienced that at all?
ergosys
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Re: Window flashing

Post by ergosys »

I've seen this with the Nouveau driver as well as the Nvidia driver, on LMDE with cinnamon, and it's been happening for quite some time, perhaps at least a year. Sometimes it just happens randomly, sometimes actions in one window (scrolling a PDF) cause another window (e.g. gnome-terminal) to flash, or some strange rectangle of the desktop can be affected.
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