High load freezes ubuntu completely everytime (have to reboot)

Bug #1555351 reported by Cossio
58
This bug affects 9 people
Affects Status Importance Assigned to Milestone
linux (Ubuntu)
Incomplete
Low
Unassigned

Bug Description

Whenever an intensive application runs which consumes lots of memory or hard drive i/o, Ubuntu freezes completely. It is even impossible to kill the offending task. Only "solution" is then to wait for the application to finish, or restart PC.

Windows doesn't have this issue as bad as Ubuntu, in that Windows is always somewhat responsive, and you can attempt to kill the intensive application to recover the system.

ProblemType: Bug
DistroRelease: Ubuntu 15.10
Package: linux-image-4.2.0-32-generic 4.2.0-32.37
ProcVersionSignature: Ubuntu 4.2.0-32.37-generic 4.2.8-ckt4
Uname: Linux 4.2.0-32-generic x86_64
ApportVersion: 2.19.1-0ubuntu5
Architecture: amd64
AudioDevicesInUse:
 Cannot stat file /proc/18210/fd/20: Input/output error
                      USER PID ACCESS COMMAND
 /dev/snd/controlC0: cossio 2082 F.... pulseaudio
 /dev/snd/controlC1: cossio 2082 F.... pulseaudio
CurrentDesktop: XFCE
Date: Wed Mar 9 22:28:53 2016
HibernationDevice: RESUME=UUID=37d586ee-f517-4977-b9cd-189c200b0bac
InstallationDate: Installed on 2015-08-03 (219 days ago)
InstallationMedia: Xubuntu 15.04 "Vivid Vervet" - Release amd64 (20150422.1)
MachineType: ASUSTeK COMPUTER INC. X550LA
ProcFB: 0 inteldrmfb
ProcKernelCmdLine: BOOT_IMAGE=/boot/vmlinuz-4.2.0-32-generic.efi.signed root=UUID=52be177f-a0ea-4053-be39-bbeaff1a22df ro quiet splash vt.handoff=7
RelatedPackageVersions:
 linux-restricted-modules-4.2.0-32-generic N/A
 linux-backports-modules-4.2.0-32-generic N/A
 linux-firmware 1.149.3
SourcePackage: linux
UdevLog: Error: [Errno 2] No such file or directory: '/var/log/udev'
UpgradeStatus: Upgraded to wily on 2016-01-31 (38 days ago)
dmi.bios.date: 04/01/2014
dmi.bios.vendor: American Megatrends Inc.
dmi.bios.version: X550LA.505
dmi.board.asset.tag: ATN12345678901234567
dmi.board.name: X550LA
dmi.board.vendor: ASUSTeK COMPUTER INC.
dmi.board.version: 1.0
dmi.chassis.asset.tag: ATN12345678901234567
dmi.chassis.type: 10
dmi.chassis.vendor: ASUSTeK COMPUTER INC.
dmi.chassis.version: 1.0
dmi.modalias: dmi:bvnAmericanMegatrendsInc.:bvrX550LA.505:bd04/01/2014:svnASUSTeKCOMPUTERINC.:pnX550LA:pvr1.0:rvnASUSTeKCOMPUTERINC.:rnX550LA:rvr1.0:cvnASUSTeKCOMPUTERINC.:ct10:cvr1.0:
dmi.product.name: X550LA
dmi.product.version: 1.0
dmi.sys.vendor: ASUSTeK COMPUTER INC.

Revision history for this message
Cossio (j-cossio-diaz) wrote :
Revision history for this message
Cossio (j-cossio-diaz) wrote :
Revision history for this message
Brad Figg (brad-figg) wrote : Status changed to Confirmed

This change was made by a bot.

Changed in linux (Ubuntu):
status: New → Confirmed
Revision history for this message
Christopher M. Peñalver (penalvch) wrote :

Cossio, thank you for reporting this and helping make Ubuntu better.

As per https://www.asus.com/Notebooks/X550LA/HelpDesk_Download/ an update to your computer's buggy, insecure, and outdated BIOS is available (509). If you update to this following https://help.ubuntu.com/community/BIOSUpdate does it change anything?

For more on BIOS updates and linux, please see https://help.ubuntu.com/community/ReportingBugs#Bug_reporting_etiquette .

Please note your current BIOS is already in the Bug Description, so posting this on the old BIOS would not be helpful.

Also, you don't have to create a new bug report.

Once the BIOS is updated, if the problem is still reproducible:
1) Please provide the output of the following terminal command (not perform an apport-collect):
sudo dmidecode -s bios-version && sudo dmidecode -s bios-release-date
2) Please make a comment specifically advising on if there was an improvement or not.
3) Please mark this report Status Confirmed.

If it's not reproducible, please mark this as Invalid.

Thank you for your understanding.

tags: added: bios-outdated-509
description: updated
Changed in linux (Ubuntu):
importance: Undecided → Low
status: Confirmed → Incomplete
Revision history for this message
Cossio (j-cossio-diaz) wrote :

Hi, this is an off question, but is there a more systematic way of keeping my drivers up to date? How do I learn that there is a new version of my BIOS (or maybe something else) without checking on the website?

Revision history for this message
Cossio (j-cossio-diaz) wrote :

I did not know my BIOS was not up to date. Thank you for noticing

Revision history for this message
KelleyMcChes (kmcchesney1) wrote :

I would like to add, this is probably a problem with the Linux kernel as I have seen this on other systems. I have observed it so far on: Ubuntu Live USB, ArchLinux, and Gentoo. This problem seems to only occur when it is being compiled with the X server running. The freezes tend to be a solid color, purple on Ubuntu and gray on Gentoo with Cinnamon.

Revision history for this message
Christopher M. Peñalver (penalvch) wrote :

KelleyMcChes, to advise, you seeing potentially the same symptom on different machines, different OSes, and/or with X server running doesn't make it any more or less a kernel issue (although it would be suspected as a root cause given the symptoms themselves).

Despite this, it will help immensely if you filed a new report with the Ubuntu repository kernel (not mainline/upstream) via a terminal:
ubuntu-bug linux

Please feel free to subscribe me to it.

For more on why this is helpful, please see https://wiki.ubuntu.com/ReportingBugs.

Revision history for this message
marco (nazgul17) wrote :

This has annoyed me through the years on different machines and on different distributions ((K)Ubuntu and Debian).
I am here because I experienced it, once more, a few minutes ago. Hard-drive (SSDs are silent, but I could tell from the led) usage skyrocketed even though I do not have any swap partition. Mouse cursor lagged, and even Ctrl+Alt+F1 (take me to a console) or Ctrl+Alt+Backspace (terminate X) did not work. I had to hit the power button.

If I can be of any help, I will do my best. This bug is the single worst thing in the Linux experience that I have ever had.

Revision history for this message
Christopher M. Peñalver (penalvch) wrote :

marco, it will help immensely if you filed a new report with the Ubuntu repository kernel (not mainline/upstream) via a terminal:
ubuntu-bug linux

Please feel free to subscribe me to it.

For more on why this is helpful, please see https://wiki.ubuntu.com/ReportingBugs.

Revision history for this message
marco (nazgul17) wrote :

Hi Christopher, I am ashamed to say, I am using Debian; I am not sure why I posted this here... Even though in the past I experienced this multiple times on Ubuntu as well as Mint. If you think it may be of some help, I can still post my settings, but you will have to tell me how to produce them since "ubuntu-bug" is not available on Debian.

Revision history for this message
Christopher M. Peñalver (penalvch) wrote :

marco, you could boot into a live environment of Ubuntu via http://releases.ubuntu.com/xenial/ and then run the command.

Revision history for this message
jion (el-manu) wrote :

I experience this bug all the time from at least 2 years. The issue started for me when I switch to 64bits ubuntu version. I'm a web developer and chrome is the main cause of this issue. Ubuntu starts to swap and all freezes until the application that is causing this stops or turn idle. CTRL+ALT+Fx and force kill works, but it is a sloooow proccess because the system turn very very very slow and the ctrl+alt+fx change + login + write the kill command takes a frustating long time that most of times I prefer to reboot hardly the PC.

I've experienced this issue in many laptops (HP, Asus, dell) and in a desktop dell machine.

Revision history for this message
jion (el-manu) wrote :

Oh, and an important comment.. this bug happens to me in Ubuntu 14.04, 16.04, with unity and with kde (with unity the issue comes faster than with kde)

Revision history for this message
Christopher M. Peñalver (penalvch) wrote :

jion, it will help immensely if you filed a new report with the Ubuntu repository kernel (not mainline/upstream) via a terminal:
ubuntu-bug linux

Please feel free to subscribe me to it.

For more on why this is helpful, please see https://wiki.ubuntu.com/ReportingBugs.

Revision history for this message
Lancillotto (antonio-petricca) wrote :
Revision history for this message
Igor Buess (igorbuess) wrote :

Here I am on year 2019 using Ubuntu 19.04 and this issue is still present until this day.

As others have mentioned, other distros that I used also have this issue: Debian, Manjaro, Mint, Arch.

I remember recently while I was using Kali linux to perform some pentests that everytime I tried to copy/paste any dictionary files used in brute force attacks to some other directory the system would just freeze and even the mouse cursor did not work. I had to turn off the laptop and restart on the power button.

Something tells me that this is a kernel problem that no one addressed yet...

Revision history for this message
Christopher M. Peñalver (penalvch) wrote :

Igor Buess, unfortunately, your comment is too vague, and lacking details to be actionable in any way.

However, if you would like your issue addressed, it will help immensely if you use Ubuntu with the computer the problem is reproducible with and file a new report via a terminal to provide necessary debugging logs:
ubuntu-bug linux

Please feel free to subscribe me to it.

Brad Figg (brad-figg)
tags: added: cscc
Revision history for this message
connor (kahnor) wrote :

This is a very well know issue (and frequently reported in all distros) in the way Linux handles i/o. One possible solution is to switch to the BFQ scheduler, e.g. seee https://old.reddit.com/r/Fedora/comments/ay7dkh/linux_large_transfers_freeze_system_high_io/

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