Unusual Kernel 4.13 issue

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JamesKB
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Unusual Kernel 4.13 issue

Post by JamesKB » Fri Jan 12, 2018 8:09 pm

LM 18.2
Cinnamon 3.4.6

I've updated to kernel 4.13.0-26-generic. The update seemed to work with no issues. I re-started the computer and all was well (I have a dual boot box *Windows and Linux)), I got the menu asking me which OS I wanted to load. I choose Linux Mint 18.2. The system loaded and worked well.

Now the issue. I left the computer alone for several hours and when I came back the following screen was what I was presented with.

Image

Before updating the kernel all I had to do was press the space bar and I would be presented with the logon screen. But after the kernel update when I press the space bar nothing happens at all. The computer is frozen. I have to hold the power button down until it tuns off. Then when I press the power button again the computer boots up normally.

Any ideas???

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Re: Unusual Kernel 4.13 issue

Post by Flemur » Fri Jan 12, 2018 8:29 pm

JamesKB wrote:I have to hold the power button down until it tuns off. Then when I press the power button again the computer boots up normally.
Don't do that!
According to Lifehacker a frozen Linux system that's not responding to the Ctrl-Alt-Delete three-finger-salute can be restarted more safely than by pushing the power button, which is usually the next step.

Holding down Alt and SysRq (which is the Print Screen key) while slowly typing REISUB will get you safely restarted. REISUO will do a shutdown rather than a restart.
http://blog.kember.net/articles/reisub- ... x-restart/
Any ideas???
Nope!
Please edit your original post title to include [SOLVED] if/when it is solved!
Your data and OS are backed up....right?
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Re: Unusual Kernel 4.13 issue

Post by Cosmo. » Sat Jan 13, 2018 6:35 am

I cannot hardly enough confirm the warning and the advice by Flemur; you are going to corrupt your file system by hard powering off.

What you see is the screensaver aka screen lock display. Is it really frozen? Does the clock changes it's value every minute? Does the clock display jump around after some time?

If the new kernel does not give you other problems you can disable the screensaver. Open the screensaver settings -> settings and select to lock after inactivity -> never.

Did you try other keys than space?

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Re: Unusual Kernel 4.13 issue

Post by JamesKB » Sat Jan 13, 2018 11:50 am

@ Flemur - Thanks for the tip. Being a newbie I was unaware of that key stroke combination. :oops:

@ Cosmo - Yes, the screensaver/lock screen/computer was indeed frozen. The clock did not change. When I took that screen shot it was 18:00. I have followed your advice and disabled the screen lock. See the 2 images below. These settings should fix the issue. Am I correct then?? :?:

Image

Image

Thanks for your time.

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Re: Unusual Kernel 4.13 issue

Post by Cosmo. » Sat Jan 13, 2018 4:04 pm

Yes it will do it for now. With those settings the monitor will possibly blank after 15 minutes, but I am not quite sure about this, because it might be, that blanking will not happen without the screensaver. In any case a key press (any key) will show you the desktop again. BTW: I recommend the ctrl-key for this case, as this will surely do nothing at all. Other keys might do something (e. g add a space on the place in a text window, which has possibly the focus).

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Re: Unusual Kernel 4.13 issue

Post by JamesKB » Sun Jan 14, 2018 12:32 pm

:( SIgh... The issue has returned. I left the computer at about 20:00 hrs Jan 13, and when I came back to it this morning the screen was blank (this was to be expected), I pressed the Ctrl key as suggested by Cosmo, the screen came to life. However the date and time shown in the lower right hand corner was January 13, 23:59.

Image

Yep... Linux had frozen again. I did the REISUB Linux restart as suggested by Flemur... the computer rebooted and I am now using it.. It appears that if there is no activity for 3 or 4 hours the computer/Linux freezes.

Anyone have any ideas how to resolve this issue?

Thanks for your time.

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Re: Unusual Kernel 4.13 issue

Post by Superannuated » Sun Jan 14, 2018 2:36 pm

In the absence of other more sophisticated fixes, you could try to roll back the kernel to the newest in the 4.4 series (4.4.0-109?) and see if everything works (not just the screensaver problem). The 4.4 kernel series, like the 4.13 series, has the Meltdown patch.

On startup your computer will default to the newest kernel, so if you have any kernel newer than 4.4 installed you will have to select 4.4 from the grub menu, "Advanced Options for Linux Mint". In your case you may have 4.10 and 4.13 installed at this time. If in the end you decide to run off 4.4 then you can uninstall the kernels above it.

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Re: Unusual Kernel 4.13 issue

Post by JamesKB » Sun Jan 14, 2018 7:25 pm

Thanks for the information Superannuated. Before I updated the kernel to 4.13.0-26 I was running 4.8.0-53. Does 4.8.0-53 have the Meltdown patch then??

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Re: Unusual Kernel 4.13 issue

Post by Sir Charles » Sun Jan 14, 2018 7:34 pm

JamesKB wrote: Does 4.8.0-53 have the Meltdown patch then??
No, but the most recent among 4.4-series is patched for Meltdown: that is 4.4.0-109. What's more, it is a LTS.
I suppose that's one of the ironies of life, doing the wrong thing at the right moment -C.C.

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Re: Unusual Kernel 4.13 issue

Post by JBB217 » Sun Jan 14, 2018 9:47 pm

The issue of losing reliability after 1-2 hours of idle is severe and needs to be addressed on the highest level of mint echelon.

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Re: Unusual Kernel 4.13 issue

Post by JamesKB » Mon Jan 15, 2018 8:21 am

Came to the computer this morning, just now, and sure enough it is frozen again. I see a pattern here, for 2 nights in a row the computer/Linux froze at exactly 23:59 hrs. Is this a clue to anyone about what is going on??

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Re: Unusual Kernel 4.13 issue

Post by Cosmo. » Mon Jan 15, 2018 9:50 am

A clue: yes; it seems, that the switch of the day causes the problem. A clue regarding the package / software, which is causing this: no, but my first suspicion goes against the kernel. Boot the system, before you go to bed with the previous kernel and see in the next morning, if this has changed anything.

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Re: Unusual Kernel 4.13 issue

Post by JamesKB » Mon Jan 15, 2018 9:44 pm

@ Cosmo... The computer was idle from 07:00 - 16:00 today with no freeze. I have now rebooted with kernel 4.8.0-53. That was my kernel version before I updated to 4.13.0-26. Now we'll if the comuter/Linix freezes at 11:59 tonight. If it does not then we can be rather sure that it was/is the 4.13.0-26 kernel to blame.

Am I correct that 4.8.0-53 has not been patched for Meltdown?? If there is no freeze up tonight would it be prudent to install and use kernel 4.4.0-109 which as I understand does have the Meltdown patch?

Thanks for your time.

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Re: Unusual Kernel 4.13 issue

Post by Dave B » Mon Jan 15, 2018 11:25 pm

Hi JamesKB,

Out of interest, is this PC using an older NVIDIA graphics card? If yes, try switching from a NVIDIA's propriety driver to the open source nouveau driver, restart the computer, then check if a freeze occurs.

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Re: Unusual Kernel 4.13 issue

Post by JamesKB » Mon Jan 15, 2018 11:32 pm

HiYa Dave B...

The vid card is NVIDA GK208 GeForce GT 730 which is about 3 or 4 months old.

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Re: Unusual Kernel 4.13 issue

Post by Dave B » Mon Jan 15, 2018 11:52 pm

:)
Which driver are you using? Copy & paste the following into a Terminal window (Tip: if you type the command, it has to be a capital G).

Code: Select all

inxi -G

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Re: Unusual Kernel 4.13 issue

Post by Cosmo. » Tue Jan 16, 2018 6:32 am

For now it is the best to wait, what happens / happened at midnight by using the old kernel. If the system stays alive with it, it will be time to look into further options, but at the moment doing other things at the same time will only create confusion and will prevent a clear result.

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Re: Unusual Kernel 4.13 issue

Post by JamesKB » Tue Jan 16, 2018 12:35 pm

@ Dave B

Image

Ideas??

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Re: Unusual Kernel 4.13 issue

Post by JamesKB » Tue Jan 16, 2018 12:46 pm

@ Cosmo

The computer/Linux did not freeze last night at 11:59, so it would appear that the 4.13 kernel was the blame. You mention that I should wait before making any other adjustments and look into further options...???

Just for information these are the drivers being used:

Image

Should I change the setting to the recommend ones?? And if I make those changes will they affect anything when I boot my dual boot systems to Windows 10??

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Re: Unusual Kernel 4.13 issue

Post by Dave B » Tue Jan 16, 2018 2:57 pm

@JamesKB

Thanks for the screen captures. Until Cosmo replies, here's my follow-up to your most recent replies.

- Firstly
You should install the intel-microcode

- In connection with the NVIDIA GT 730 graphics card
Since you didn't get a freeze with kernel 4.8 (or maybe you were using 4.4.0-109?) you have two options, stick with kernel 4.4.0-109 and the default nouveau driver
or
install the NVIDIA 384.111 driver (should also provide better performance) and try another test with kernel 4.13.0-26

If in doubt, all of the above can be undone if necessary, and will let you troubleshoot if its the kernel or nouveau driver causing a freeze issue.
In connection with your last concern, doing the above shouldn't affect your Windows 10 install, Windows and Mint are installed in their own partitions and use their own drivers.

Best wait for Cosmo's reply before proceeding... :)

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