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System freezes but cursor still moves, no X-kill

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Toasted-Bagel
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System freezes but cursor still moves, no X-kill

#1

Post by Toasted-Bagel » Sun Jun 02, 2019 9:50 am

I have had the system freeze up when loading too many tabs or sometimes when opening VLC but the mouse pointer arrow still moves around but if i click on anything it wont respond. I have a keyboard shortcut mapped to xkill but when the system is in the frozen state the xkill "X" does not come up so I am unable to force close the offending app

Is there any other way that I can invoke Xkill in this situation to allow me to close the offending app without having to reboot? I have 8 GB of ram and i3 Intell cpu

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manyroads
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Re: System freezes but cursor still moves, no X-kill

#2

Post by manyroads » Sun Jun 02, 2019 10:14 am

Sounds like you have run out of memory and are encountering what old people, like me, call thrashing.

I recommend you unplug the machine or otherwise deprive it of electrons (hold the start button for about 5 secs, watch your machine crash) and then restart.

You should consider placing a Conky on your desktop to report memory use. It's not a really good idea to use up all you rmemory and rely on a PCs memory manager to sort it out, when it has no space to perform the analysis.

Don't worry... when your my age, this will be but a faded memory.
"Don't believe everything you think."
Pax vobiscum,
Mark Rabideau - http://many-roads.com - Reg. Linux User #449130
MX-18.3 kernel: 5.1.11-antix.1-amd64-smp
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Coding since 1974

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ChrisUK
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Re: System freezes but cursor still moves, no X-kill

#3

Post by ChrisUK » Sun Jun 02, 2019 11:58 am

I'd try REISUB before a hard shutdown - that way you mitigate the risk of any data loss or filesystem/drive damage
Chris

MX 18 - Manjaro

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Laurentius
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Re: System freezes but cursor still moves, no X-kill

#4

Post by Laurentius » Sun Jun 02, 2019 12:13 pm

I don't know what may be the cause of your problem. Sound like memory, like manyroads say, but it is strange as 8 Gb is a lot of RAM (at least for common usage).
But when something like that (like a freeze or a black screen) happens to me, and the Xkill shortcut (Ctrl+Alt+Esc is the default on MX) does not help, I try opening a tty (Ctrl+Alt+F1) and log in there. You can then do some things through command line like use the kiillall command: $killall application-name, (e.g. killall firefox) and then go back to GUI with Ctl+Alt+F7.
Or, other thing that sometimes works for me is the Logout shortcut (Ctrl+Alt+Backspace). It closes session and therefore, all regular applications, and then you can log in again.

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komer
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Re: System freezes but cursor still moves, no X-kill

#5

Post by komer » Mon Jun 03, 2019 12:48 pm

Toasted-Bagel wrote:
Sun Jun 02, 2019 9:50 am
Is there any other way that I can invoke Xkill in this situation to allow me to close the offending app without having to reboot? I have 8 GB of ram and i3 Intell cpu
Recently I had a similar problem. I was messing around with compton settings. Everything froze, but mouse was able to move around normally. THat's the sign taht you're still not out of memory completely. I think.

What I did was i went to TTY terminal (ctrl+alt+F1 or ctrl+alt+F2 or...) and logged in to my account. Found the problematic process. And killed it. If you can guess process's name, the better. In my case, it was something with compton. So I tried something like this:

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┌─[komer@KOMERLAND]─[~]────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────[18:16:14]
└─> ps -ef |grep compton
komer    12843 12803  0 18:14 ?        00:00:00 /bin/bash /home/komer/bin/compton_antitear.sh
komer    12858 12843  3 18:14 ?        00:00:03 compton --backend glx --paint-on-overlay --vsync opengl-swc
komer    14378 13808  0 18:16 pts/0    00:00:00 grep compton
legend:
user process_ID (PID) process_parent_ID (PPID) ...something something.... command_line

About "something something", you should consult manual

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$ man ps
or

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$ ps --help
and also

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man grep
or

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grep --help
That's old school. Or maybe just Google it :-)

You see, I had two processes with "compton" in it's name. Process 12858 with a parent process 12843. Then I killed them both. Sometimes it's enough to kill parent process and all it's children should also die. Sometimes you have to know which one is problematic (chrome?). in my case 12858 was problematic so I killed it with:

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┌─[komer@KOMERLAND]─[~]────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────[18:16:21]
└─> kill 12858
┌─[komer@KOMERLAND]─[~]────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────[18:16:43]
└─> ps -ef |grep compton
komer    14667 13808  0 18:16 pts/0    00:00:00 grep compton
(... note: there's not compton here anymore ...)
If process is stubborn and it wont die, you can send him -9 signal, then he doesn't have any choice than to die :-)

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kill -9 PID
Same rule applies here: visit manual for more info.

You can at any time switch between your graphical session, that's probably located at ctrp+alt+F7, and TTY terminal session at ctrl+alt+F1. That way you can see if you killed the right process.

Hm, now that I wrote all of that I found maybe a better explanation. But what's fun with that?! :D

May the Linux be with you! :-D
--komer
--komer

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Toasted-Bagel
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Re: System freezes but cursor still moves, no X-kill

#6

Post by Toasted-Bagel » Tue Jun 04, 2019 4:33 pm

Thank you I made a note of these suggestions on paper so if it happens again I will have it ready.

I also changed from "no compositor" to xfce compositor and we will see how that goes

EDIT: Ended up switching to compton. I was getting tearing with the xfce compositor. I mean if I was on a webpage and used the mouse wheel to scroll it would not be smooth

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