Ubuntu

Unreadable messages displayed during Lucid -> Precise upgrade

Reported by Erick Brunzell on 2012-08-19
34
This bug affects 5 people
Affects Status Importance Assigned to Milestone
Pango
New
Undecided
Unassigned
pango1.0 (Ubuntu)
High
Mathieu Trudel-Lapierre
Precise
High
Mathieu Trudel-Lapierre

Bug Description

I'm just testing 10.04.4 -> 12.04.1 upgrades and the upgrade did complete successfully but twice during the upgrade I was presented with a dialog box that's totally unreadable, and the upgrade process does not proceed until I click on the unreadable widget in the lower right hand corner of the box. I'm attaching a screenshot.

ProblemType: Bug
DistroRelease: Ubuntu 12.04
Package: update-manager 1:0.156.14.9
ProcVersionSignature: Ubuntu 3.2.0-29.46-generic 3.2.24
Uname: Linux 3.2.0-29-generic i686
ApportVersion: 2.0.1-0ubuntu12
Architecture: i386
Date: Sun Aug 19 00:30:02 2012
GsettingsChanges:
 com.ubuntu.update-manager first-run false
 com.ubuntu.update-manager launch-time 1345345338
InstallationMedia: Ubuntu 10.04.4 LTS "Lucid Lynx" - Release i386 (20120214.2)
PackageArchitecture: all
ProcEnviron:
 TERM=xterm
 PATH=(custom, no user)
 LANG=en_US.UTF-8
 SHELL=/bin/bash
SourcePackage: update-manager
UpgradeStatus: Upgraded to precise on 2012-08-19 (0 days ago)
VarLogDistupgradeAptclonesystemstate.tar.gz: Error: [Errno 13] Permission denied: '/var/log/dist-upgrade/apt-clone_system_state.tar.gz'

Erick Brunzell (lbsolost) wrote :
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:
http://iso.qa.ubuntu.com/qatracker/reports/bugs/1038573

tags: added: iso-testing
Erick Brunzell (lbsolost) wrote :

I did a repeat test this AM. I installed and updated 10.04.4, then I started the dist-upgrade with "update-manager -d -c". This time I actually got 3 borked debconf windows. I hope the attached screenshots will help.

Changed in update-manager (Ubuntu):
status: New → Confirmed
Erick Brunzell (lbsolost) wrote :

I don't see how we could deal with this in the release notes. I fear that those presented with unreadable debconf windows will just right click on the title bar and select close. I'm guessing we need to add some gtk patches ;^)

Guy Stone (stoneguy3) wrote :

I hit this one too, but I didn't do anything to clear it, and everything finally played out OK. See #1038128 attachment updatemgr-d-c for my experience.

Jean-Baptiste Lallement (jibel) wrote :

It seems to be a regression of bug 965686. The message in the pop-up is the same.

affects: update-manager (Ubuntu) → evolution (Ubuntu)
Changed in evolution (Ubuntu):
status: Confirmed → Triaged
importance: Undecided → High
Changed in evolution (Ubuntu Precise):
status: New → Triaged
importance: Undecided → High
todaioan (alan-ar06) on 2012-08-21
Changed in evolution (Ubuntu):
status: Triaged → Incomplete
status: Incomplete → Confirmed
Changed in evolution (Ubuntu):
status: Confirmed → Triaged
tags: added: rls-q-incoming
tags: removed: rls-q-incoming
Changed in evolution (Ubuntu Precise):
assignee: nobody → Ubuntu Desktop (ubuntu-desktop)
Changed in evolution (Ubuntu Precise):
assignee: Ubuntu Desktop (ubuntu-desktop) → Mathieu Trudel-Lapierre (mathieu-tl)
Erick Brunzell (lbsolost) wrote :

@ Kate Stewart,

I notice just a couple of security updates this AM, along with some 'cups' updates, so I'm wondering what the plan is? I honestly don't see how we can just release note this :^(

With less than 48 hours to go I'll certainly get a fresh 10.04.4 prepped for an upgrade test. This is truly the only serious bug I encountered during 12.04.1 testing :^)

This would not be specific to 12.04.1; it would also have been present in 12.04, it's just a little hard to reproduce -- needs just the right environment to be noticeable.

Erick; mind confirming if at the time you see the dialog from Evolution, you also see the same kind of behavior (boxes for text) in the nm-applet indicator, or in the bluetooth indicator? Thanks.

Erick Brunzell (lbsolost) wrote :

The best info I can provide is in those screenshots in the tar.gz in comment #3. That upgrade still exists so I can use it to pull any logs that might be helpful. The same is true of the original upgrade - still exists so I can acquire logs. I'm really clueless :^/

Erick Brunzell (lbsolost) wrote :

I see "upgrade Ubuntu" is now marked as ready in the QA tracker, but I see no mention in the release notes:

https://wiki.ubuntu.com/PrecisePangolin/ReleaseNotes/UbuntuDesktop#PrecisePangolin.2BAC8-ReleaseNotes.2BAC8-CommonInfrastructure-1.Upgrades

What are our plans?

I'd remind everyone that we say, "It is generally recommended that users of Ubuntu 10.04 LTS wait until the first point release, due in August, before upgrading."

I can't personally think how to intelligibly release note this, but I know Kate Stewart is much better with words than I am ;^)

I'm honestly not just being a jerk. I love Ubuntu and just want everyone's experience to be as pleasant as mine.

Nicholas Skaggs (nskaggs) wrote :

Just upgraded, got a similar dialog

Plan is; I'm looking at this bug but it's still not obvious to me what the source of the issue is. The end result is that some applications will display broken text for a part of the upgrade procedure; but the exact package causing this I'm not sure of yet.

We can certainly release note that such an issue can happen. Erick; would you mind clarifying exactly which button you press on the dialog so that we can figure out how it affects the upgrade procedure? It should be the bottom one, right?

As for release note text; what does this look like (until the issue can be fixed):

"""
Users upgrading from previous releases may notice that newly started applications during the upgrade procedure may display broken text, observable as "squares" instead of the text meant to be displayed. A dialog may popup interrupting the upgrade procedure; it should read "[insert actual dialog text]". Users wishing to continue the upgrade should press the [bottom/top] button. This issue is only affecting the current session while the upgrade is being executed; and should no longer appear after rebooting the system once the upgrade is completed. This is being investigated as bug 1038573.
"""

Erick Brunzell (lbsolost) wrote :

I always just click on the unreadable "button" in the lower right hand corner of the pop-up window, assuming that it says either Continue or OK. I'm not sure what would happen if someone right-clicked the top panel and then selected close?

I agree that we can't just assume they're always evolution related. I'm just unsure how to better troubleshoot the issue - that is I'm just an end user/tester with no real technical know how.

I stepped through the entire upgrade process in a VM without reproducing this bug. I wonder if it's somehow specific to running upgrades on metal; that is, if compiz is running at the time?

The error message in question is indeed showing up from evolution-alarm-notify (as per bug 965686); but I'm not sure what more can be done than stopping evolution during the upgrade process to try and avoid this showing up (as is already being done, and appears to work properly). Users can still open it back up like I did and most likely trigger evolution-alarm-notify showing up again until the point in the upgrade when it breaks.

The error reads:
"""
An error occurred while loading or saving configuration information for evolution-alarm-notify. Some of your configuration settings may not work properly. [Details] [ OK ]
"""

It seems to happen because gconf gets restarted; or in any case things change (possibly the changes in GConf policy semantics?) and the notifier can't call method GetIOR on org.gnome.GConf (doesn't exist with signature "")

If a meeting notification happens during that time and isn't clicked; clicking it after upgrade will fail finding the glade XML file, as expected because it's been migrated to gtkbuilder since Natty or so.

This remains an unrelated problem to the actual font rendering issue that is reported here; and the rendering needs further investigation. I'll move on to testing the upgrade on actual hardware, with and without desktop effects enabled.

Revised release notes paragraph:

"""
Users upgrading from previous releases may notice that newly started applications during the upgrade procedure may display broken text, observable as "squares" instead of the text meant to be displayed. This is observable as a dialog that may popup during the upgrade procedure; it should read "An error occurred while loading or saving configuration information for evolution-alarm-notify. Some of your configuration settings may not work properly." and does not block the upgrade process. Users wishing to close that dialog should press the bottom button. This issue is only affecting the current session while the upgrade is being executed; and should no longer appear after rebooting the system once the upgrade is completed. This is being investigated as bug 1038573.
"""

Guy Stone (stoneguy3) wrote :

Calling attention to this important. Too bad you couldn't get this warnng out without expecting the user to read the release notes. I suspect many upgraders will think "I've been playing with 12.04 - I know what to expect." Some kind of a Don't Panic scren at the start of the upgrade would've been nice. Particularly since the fix will have to wait for 12.04.2 (I think).

Erick Brunzell (lbsolost) wrote :

It may be too late to make any changes ATM but I decided to try a repeat this AM. This time I simply updated 10.04.4 and then opened System Monitor, clicked on the processes tab, and "stopped" evolution-alarm-notify.

The upgrade process then completed successfully with no unreadable debconf windows.

Yes, that's the expected "resolution", and what we try to do via evolution --force-shutdown but perhaps unsuccessfully.

I re-ran the upgrade on metal and managed to get the error that is the most likely cause of the unreadable text (in any application, since any already-running application runs the risk of showing unreadable dialogs):

(evolution-alarm-notify:1708): Pango-CRITICAL **: No modules found:
No builtin or dynamically loaded modules were found.
PangoFc will not work correctly.
This probably means there was an error in the creation of:
  '/etc/pango/pango.modules'
You should create this file by running:
  pango-querymodules > '/etc/pango/pango.modules'

(evolution-alarm-notify:1708): Pango-WARNING **: failed to choose a font, expect ugly output. engine-type='PangoRenderFc', script='latin'

(evolution-alarm-notify:1708): Pango-WARNING **: failed to choose a font, expect ugly output. engine-type='PangoRenderFc', script='common'

Indeed, libpango1.0-common happily removes /etc/pango/pango.modules after the upgrade:

libpango1.0-common.postinst:# until version 1.14.5-1, we generated a /etc/pango/pango.modules
libpango1.0-common.postinst: echo "I: Purging /etc/pango/pango.modules" >&2
libpango1.0-common.postinst: rm -f /etc/pango/pango.modules

affects: evolution (Ubuntu) → pango1.0 (Ubuntu)
Changed in pango1.0 (Ubuntu):
assignee: nobody → Mathieu Trudel-Lapierre (mathieu-tl)

So I misread this; libpango1.0-common.postinst was already removing /etc/pango/pango.modules in Lucid; so it's a little more complicated an issue than that.

Guy Stone (stoneguy3) wrote :

I hope one of the lessons learned from this episode is to have the upgrade function available for testing earlier in the release cycle. Hate to have to go thru something lke this again for 14.04.1

Erick Brunzell (lbsolost) wrote :

An example of the confusion this causes:

http://ubuntuforums.org/showthread.php?t=2048355

TodayI performed an in-place update from 10.04 to 12.04. During the course of the install i noted the appearance of several dialogs (presumably errors) as described by the original report. I am still unsure about what to do in a lot of cases, so I clicked on the default (highlighted) button to continue. (I am new with Linux, but my overall computer experience goes back to the dark ages of TRS-DOS, CP/M, and integer BASIC on a teletype machine.)

AFTER this installation fully completed I noticed that the issue also affect a number of text-type items. I observed the effect (characters replaced by empty rectangles) in text email messages in Evolution, and in text files on the desktop. I had to try a number of workarounds. the results are illustrated in the attachments.

Screenshot-01-<application>: Text email message as viewed in Evolution, gedit and writer. (It is readable only in writer.)
Screenshot-02-<application>: Another text email bessage as viewed in Evolution and writer.
Screenshot-03-<application>: A text (html) file stored on the desktop as viewed there, in gedit, and with notebook in wine. (It is only readable in notebook.)

This is my first time reporting in this system, so any helpful feedback will be appreciated.

What this needs is basically a workaround to keep the non-multiarch path for pango available through the installation, although it's definitely not needed at any point after the system is upgraded and rebooted.

Perhaps just providing that symlink which we can remove in later upgrades of pango1.0.

Erick Brunzell (lbsolost) wrote :

Still occurs during upgrade testing on 20130212 so I'm reporting it on the QA Tracker.

I wonder if it shouldn't be mentioned in the release notes since Lucid will be reaching EOL in April?

Colin Watson (cjwatson) on 2013-02-14
Changed in pango1.0 (Ubuntu Precise):
milestone: none → ubuntu-12.04.3
Mathias Kresin (mkresin) on 2014-02-17
Changed in pango1.0 (Ubuntu):
status: Triaged → Incomplete
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