[Sidefx-houdini-list] houdini crashes...

Mark Alexander malexander at sidefx.com
Tue Jan 10 11:02:52 EST 2006

> The only common demoninator is that we're using non quadro cards - but is that really going to alter the stability that much? 

I wouldn't think so. I don't think Nvidia even creates separate drivers 
for Quadro and GEForce cards on Linux - at least choosing Graphics 
Driver / Quadro or GEForce / Linux IA32 gives me the same link on the 
Nvidia driver site. There are some hardware differences between the 
GEForce and the Quadro cards, but this doesn't seem to be the culprit 
(as my QuadroFX card also exhibits the problem).

The information from users I have so far seems to indicate that a Linux 
/ AMD / Nvidia combo may be part of the X freezing issue. So, does 
anyone out there experience this problem:

- with a Pentium CPU? or,
- with a PCI-Express card?

I am currently testing the 8178 drivers with an AMD / Linux / QuadroFX 
AGP card by continually running:

mplay Mandril.pic ; sleep 4 ; killall -2 mplay

in a loop. From previous experience, it should lockup after 50 or so 
iterations (I've never actually counted). This doesn't use a fragment 
shader at all, but does use a 256x256 RGB texture to display the image.

> Also, sesi could help by recommending a hardware setup that works(tm).  (and isn't three years old).

I will certainly try to recommend a hardware setup once I determine if 
it is indeed a hardware issue. If it is a driver issue, hopefully Nvidia 
will fix it or we can find a workaround (again). If it is a software 
issue, hopefully we can fix it :)

For now, try Peter B's suggestion of disabling Fragment Shaders. I would 
have thought that using well-supported and optimized textured mapped 
quads instead of the old, poorly supported 2D pixel pipeline would have 
improved stability for mplay, but I suppose that would have made my work 
too easy.


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