xscreensaver is choppy on lubuntu 20.04 daily qa-test (flurry)

Bug #1855220 reported by Chris Guiver
This bug affects 2 people
Affects Status Importance Assigned to Milestone
lubuntu-default-settings (Ubuntu)
Fix Released
Aaron Rainbolt
xserver-xorg-video-nouveau (Ubuntu)

Bug Description

Lubuntu 20.04 daily QA-test on
hp dc7700 (c2d-e6320, 5gb, nvidia quadro nvs 290)

Displays have been adjusted to my setup (one above the other) but I doubt this is an issue

I suspended system, waited, pressed ESC to wake & it resumed to xscreensaver, but 'flurry' was chopped and showing white/black patches on display as if glitching... I touched mouse & my session removed.

opened xscreensaver & preview - yep glitch there too... changed to 'fliptext' & no issues, but flurry is very jerky with image switching to almost-blocky-bad-signal (I think it's alternating between showing something else, text; it seems to vary on what I've had on screen before screensaver is loaded & continuing to show xscreensaver..)

attempts to screengrab with delay have failed (just capturing black screen)..

`lshw -C video` reports I'm using nouveau.

This issue may not relate to 'xserver-xorg-video-nouveau', but I suspect it's there. I've performed this test a number of times on various boxes without issue (will do so again once I shutdown this).

ProblemType: Bug
DistroRelease: Ubuntu 20.04
Package: xserver-xorg-video-nouveau 1:1.0.16-1
ProcVersionSignature: Ubuntu 5.3.0-18.19-generic 5.3.1
Uname: Linux 5.3.0-18-generic x86_64
ApportVersion: 2.20.11-0ubuntu9
Architecture: amd64
BootLog: Error: [Errno 13] Permission denied: '/var/log/boot.log'
CasperVersion: 1.432
CompositorRunning: None
CurrentDesktop: LXQt
Date: Thu Dec 5 04:04:51 2019
DistUpgraded: Fresh install
DistroCodename: focal
DistroVariant: ubuntu
ExtraDebuggingInterest: Yes
 NVIDIA Corporation G86 [Quadro NVS 290] [10de:042f] (rev a1) (prog-if 00 [VGA controller])
   Subsystem: NVIDIA Corporation G86 [Quadro NVS 290] [10de:0492]
LiveMediaBuild: Lubuntu 20.04 LTS "Focal Fossa" - Alpha amd64 (20191204)
MachineType: Hewlett-Packard HP Compaq dc7700 Small Form Factor
ProcKernelCmdLine: file=/cdrom/preseed/username.seed initrd=/casper/initrd quiet splash ---
SourcePackage: xserver-xorg-video-nouveau
UpgradeStatus: No upgrade log present (probably fresh install)
dmi.bios.date: 08/30/2006
dmi.bios.vendor: Hewlett-Packard
dmi.bios.version: 786E1 v01.05
dmi.board.name: 0A54h
dmi.board.vendor: Hewlett-Packard
dmi.chassis.type: 4
dmi.chassis.vendor: Hewlett-Packard
dmi.modalias: dmi:bvnHewlett-Packard:bvr786E1v01.05:bd08/30/2006:svnHewlett-Packard:pnHPCompaqdc7700SmallFormFactor:pvr:rvnHewlett-Packard:rn0A54h:rvr:cvnHewlett-Packard:ct4:cvr:
dmi.product.family: 103C_53307F
dmi.product.name: HP Compaq dc7700 Small Form Factor
dmi.product.sku: ET090AV
dmi.sys.vendor: Hewlett-Packard
version.compiz: compiz N/A
version.libdrm2: libdrm2 2.4.100-4
version.libgl1-mesa-dri: libgl1-mesa-dri 19.2.4-1ubuntu1
version.libgl1-mesa-glx: libgl1-mesa-glx N/A
version.xserver-xorg-core: xserver-xorg-core 2:1.20.5+git20191008-0ubuntu1
version.xserver-xorg-input-evdev: xserver-xorg-input-evdev N/A
version.xserver-xorg-video-ati: xserver-xorg-video-ati 1:19.1.0-1
version.xserver-xorg-video-intel: xserver-xorg-video-intel 2:2.99.917+git20190815-1
version.xserver-xorg-video-nouveau: xserver-xorg-video-nouveau 1:1.0.16-1

Revision history for this message
Chris Guiver (guiverc) wrote :
Revision history for this message
Chris Guiver (guiverc) wrote :

I tried to re-create this issue on
dell [optiplex] 780 (c2q-q9400, 8gb, amd/ati cedar radeon hd 5000/6000/7350/8350)
Very different card with two displays, flurry was nice and smooth and I could not rec-reate

I then tried hp 8200 elite sff (i5-2400, 8gb, nvidia quadro 600), but I had a different issue (xscreensaver was nice and smooth, no glitches or jerky behavior; it just happened to cover on a single display)

following are notes from QA-test on hp 8200 :-
chosen as this box shares same displays as hp77700 thus identical setup. it also has nvidia though different card

adjust displays to match setup, make 'my-lower' display default & apply & save as i did before
suspend system, wait (what feels like 15 secs but would be far shorter if timed I bet..), this box wakes on ESC key as hp7700, however xscreensaver is smooth, but hiding only TOP display??? grrr.. https://bugs.launchpad.net/ubuntu/+source/xscreensaver/+bug/1814490
wake, load xscreensaver and preview - alas only top screen is hidden (nice smooth flurry) and bottom isn't covered at all..

Revision history for this message
Ubuntu QA Website (ubuntuqa) wrote :

This bug has been reported on the Ubuntu ISO testing tracker.

A list of all reports related to this bug can be found here:

tags: added: iso-testing
Revision history for this message
Chris Guiver (guiverc) wrote :

I downloading & booted Xubuntu 20.04 daily and played there.
same hp dc7700 (c2d-e6320, 5gb, nvidia quadro nvs 290)
on same box. adding xscreensaver & using 'flurry', I got the same jerky/choppy response here once packages added & running.

I could see the xscreensaver dialog box where I click 'preview' (approx correct position on screen but on wrong display??!!) when it jerked (or I described as black-white-blocky-bad-signal in original post; I'd not use those words now). Yes it's somewhat like a bad signal on tv, but I do get the same response here on Xubuntu 20.04 daily.

Revision history for this message
Chris Guiver (guiverc) wrote :

I noticed this effect today on qa-test of lubuntu 20.04 daily on

hp 8200 elite sff (i5-2400, 8gb, nvidia quadro 600)

This is a different box, however on the dc7700 the choppy behavior occurs much of the time (still occurs as I tested on dc7700 earlier today), today on this 8200 box the choppy behavior is far less, and only occasional.

Blank & Cycle are still 10 mins, yet choppy behavior is occurring 3-15 secs (little point counting time on dc7700) so it's less evident, but once you notice it - it sort of stands out here too.

Revision history for this message
Chris Guiver (guiverc) wrote :

lubuntu 20.04 daily test (groovy) on
hp dc7700 (c2d-e6320, 5gb, nvidia quadro nvs 290)

today I'm using box all day; it's annoying and looks wrong when the image jerks.. this really is an issue with the video card, however i fear Lubuntu won't look professional with this choice given it misbehaves with this screensaver, and a simple fix could be just using another one...

tags: added: groovy
Chris Guiver (guiverc)
tags: added: hirsute impish
Revision history for this message
Aaron Rainbolt (arraybolt3) wrote (last edit ):

I've noticed this problem also on slower systems of mine (an Acer Chromebook C720 for instance). This leads me to believe that system speed (or perhaps graphics subsystem speed?) is the culprit here, as other systems work with flurry just fine.

Revision history for this message
Chris Guiver (guiverc) wrote :


I filed against the package I did, as I don't experience it on other boxes that include much slower CPUs than those listed here, but instead use i915 or AMD gpu.

Examples where I've not experienced this include (some slower boxes)

- lenovo thinkpad sl510 (c2d-t6570, 2gb ram, i915)
- motion computing j3400 (c2d-u9400, 4gb, intel mobile 4 series) (I believe too)
- dell [optiplex] 745 (c2d-6600, 6gb, amd/ati radeon rv516/x1300/x1550)
- dell [optiplex] 755 (c2d-e6850, 5gb, amd/ati radeon rv516/x1300/x1550)
- dell [optiplex] 755 (c2d-e8300, 8gb, amd/ati radeon rv610/radeon hd2400 pro/xt)

I mention looking for this on another d780 and not experiencing it (comment 2) and don't recall it occurring on the d960 which was my primary box (though as flurry isn't my personal choice; it was only likely used when box was used for live testing), and those boxes would have to be seen as slower than

- hp 8200 elite sff (i5-2400, 8gb, nvidia quadro 600)

where this is experienced. I suspect it's very video card related; and as I also note in comment #2; seems to only occur when two displays are connected & used.

Also, IF only a single display is active; even the HP 8200 (comment 2) didn't have an issue with 'flurry' I report (my vertical alignment can trigger a condition an issue when openbox is used where xscreensaver only covers a single screen which is I suspect maybe the 'choppy' behavior wasn't noticed on a card usually impacted; ie. the GPU is slowed enough when it handles two screens & issue is visible my theory).

This issue is minor, and I pretty much ignore it. Users can always just switch to a different screensaver (I do!); it's not great for users who have boxes/setups where they experience this on a 'new' or 'live' system in my opinion.

Revision history for this message
Aaron Rainbolt (arraybolt3) wrote (last edit ):

Interesting. For me, the problem is easily reproducible on an Acer Chromebook C720 with a 2nd gen Intel Celeron with an Intel iGPU. And I *think* (though can't remember for sure) that this happens on a Compaq laptop around here with an AMD iGPU. All of these with single screens. So I don't think it can be NVIDIA-specific.

Revision history for this message
Launchpad Janitor (janitor) wrote :

Status changed to 'Confirmed' because the bug affects multiple users.

Changed in xserver-xorg-video-nouveau (Ubuntu):
status: New → Confirmed
Changed in lubuntu-default-settings (Ubuntu):
assignee: nobody → Aaron Rainbolt (arraybolt3)
importance: Undecided → Low
status: New → In Progress
tags: added: lunar
no longer affects: lubuntu-default-settings (Ubuntu Kinetic)
no longer affects: xserver-xorg-video-nouveau (Ubuntu Kinetic)
no longer affects: xserver-xorg-video-nouveau (Ubuntu Lunar)
no longer affects: lubuntu-default-settings (Ubuntu Lunar)
Revision history for this message
Aaron Rainbolt (arraybolt3) wrote (last edit ):

(all those "no longer affects" is me figuring out what I'm doing with Launchpad bug management and changing my mind about pressing a button, please disregard)

Revision history for this message
Launchpad Janitor (janitor) wrote :

This bug was fixed in the package lubuntu-default-settings - 23.04.2

lubuntu-default-settings (23.04.2) lunar; urgency=medium

  * Overhauled default XScreenSaver configuration file for compatibility with
    the current version of XScreenSaver in Lunar. (LP: #1989163)
  * Changed the default screensaver to GL Matrix to avoid using the sometimes
    glitchy-looking Flurry screensaver. (LP: #1855220)
  * Changed the URL pointed to by the Help button on the XScrenSaver splash
    screen so that it points to the man page for xscreensaver on Ubuntu's

 -- Aaron Rainbolt <email address hidden> Tue, 27 Dec 2022 13:22:02 -0600

Changed in lubuntu-default-settings (Ubuntu):
status: In Progress → Fix Released
Revision history for this message
Chris Guiver (guiverc) wrote (last edit ):

I noticed this today on a QA-test install of Lubuntu (jammy) daily on
- hp dc7700 (c2d-e6320, 8gb amd/ati rv610/radeon hd2400 pro/xt)

this box & old & slow, and during install xscreensaver kicks in (more than once!) & choppy/strange video was evidenced with xscreensaver/flurry

of little/no importance though (in my opinion; only impacts a few video cards; and if it was me; I'd just select another screensaver post-install (I do usually anyway)...

not sure if even worth mentioning on 22.04.2 release notes

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