Gentoo Forums
Gentoo Forums
Gentoo Forums
Quick Search: in
intermittant slow graphics, high CPU usage problem
View unanswered posts
View posts from last 24 hours

 
Reply to topic    Gentoo Forums Forum Index Desktop Environments
View previous topic :: View next topic  
Author Message
dcljr
Tux's lil' helper
Tux's lil' helper


Joined: 20 Aug 2005
Posts: 92
Location: Austin, TX

PostPosted: Wed Jul 22, 2009 8:31 am    Post subject: intermittant slow graphics, high CPU usage problem Reply with quote

OK, I've tried to solve this by searching the forums, but no one seems to have the exact same problem I do, AFAICT, so I can't figure out what will fix this for me.

Quick background on my system (details later): running almost entirely latest stable versions on Gnome desktop with gentoo-sources-2.6.25-r9. Mostly default setup for everything, as I still don't know enough about Linux to do much tweaking. Been running this particular installation of Gentoo for 2.5 years, and a different install for 6 months before that (didn't feel like I got it right the first time).

First, the symptoms:

Everything seems fine when I first boot up and log in. Then after some apparently random amount of time (anywhere from mere minutes to several hours, although somtimes I log off without it ever happening), apparently regardless of what I've been running (Firefox, Thunderbird, Gnumeric... even just a Gnome Terminal), and for no apparent reason, certain "graphics intensive" things get really slow and CPU usage "goes to 11" (i.e., goes to 100%) for all of the following:
  1. The video portions of streaming videos in Firefox (Adobe Flash plugin) get very "stuttery" (i.e., 1–2 seconds, or more, between frame updates — or the video freezes completely), while audio is much less affected (but not completely unaffected, since CPU usage goes through the roof).
  2. Scrolling in any desktop application (as varied as those mentioned above) is slow and stuttery. This includes scrolling with the mouse wheel, clicking and dragging window scroll bars, and scrolling with up/down-arrow keys or page-up/down keys.
  3. In terminals, automatic scrolling caused by large amounts of output (say, ls -l /usr/bin or lshal -l) can be slow as well (but see interesting caveat below).
  4. Moving and switching between windows on the desktop is slow (i.e., a distinct pause before the screen gets redrawn after an ALT-TAB, and very jerky updating when dragging a window across the desktop).

However, most of these things have counterparts that do not suffer the same slowdown — at least, not to the same extent:
  1. Videos opened in Totem or VLC from local copies are slow coming up initially, and switching between a window and fullscreen, but do not show especially high CPU usage in the course of normal viewing (AFAICT).
  2. Scrolling of all sorts in non-graphical terminals (i.e., on VT16) seems to be completely unaffected — or, if it's slowed down at all, I can't really tell. (By the way, I don't use a framebuffer, if that's important.)
  3. The long-output scrolling issue is actually very strange: when a Gnome Terminal is first opened (while I'm having this "slowdown" problem), an ls -l /usr/bin might actually be fast, but if the command is issued repeatedly it will eventually slow down and be stuttery, and never be fast again — until I hit SHIFT-HOME, SHIFT-END to jump to the top of the buffer and back. Then the output is fast again... until it slows down after one or two more invocations, just like before. This behavior is completely reproduceable; it happens every time (only when I'm already having the problem — it doesn't actually cause it to start happening). It's almost as if it's slowing down when the scrollback buffer gets filled up, but that can't be it, because the number of invocations of the command required to cause the slowdown varies, and besides, jumping to the top and back to the bottom doesn't clear the buffer, or anything... so why would that speed it up again, if only briefly? Weird.

Closing a program and reopening it doesn't help at all (last item about ls -l notwithstanding). For example, reopening Firefox or Gnumeric doesn't make their scrolling problems go away. Logging off and logging back into Gnome (and thus restarting X in the process) does fix the problem, at least temporarily (it behaves just like the first time I log on after booting up, so the problem may or may not reappear during that session) — but that's not an acceptable fix when I'm watching streaming video online!

In fact, streaming video is, I believe, the context in which I first encountered the problem, and I originally thought it was a Firefox issue, since I had recently upgraded to 3.0.10 on May 9 and then downgraded back to 2.0.0.19 on May 10, then went back to 3.0.10 on May 14. (Why I did this is not worth going into.)

Other important upgrades around this time include:
  • gcc from 4.1.2 to 4.3.2-r3 on Apr 11 (compiled only, didn't switch to)
  • xorg-server from 1.3.0.0-r6 to 1.5.3-r5 on May 8 (then 1.5.3-r6 on May 22)
  • gnome from 2.22.3 to 2.24.1 on May 9

This problem has been going on for so long now, I can't actually remember when it first started happening, but based on my emerge history it's possible that I first encountered the problem on May 22, because on that day I re-merged adobe-flash-10.0.22.87 for some reason that I can no longer remember. (That version was first merged on Apr 30, after the package name was changed from netscape-flash.)

Then the next day (May 23) I re-merged xf86-input-evdev and xf86-video-nv. As I recall, since I was having scrolling problems, I thought maybe it was caused by the switch to evdev "forced" upon folks by xorg-server 1.5.3-r3.

Around this time I went on vacation for a week and when I got back, decided to get "radical" in my attempts to fix the problems:
  • switched to actually use gcc-4.3.2-r3 on Jun 2, following upgrade guide by recompiling libtool, then doing emerge -e system followed by emerge -e world (that way the entire world was recompiled with a gcc-4.3.2-r3 that itself was compiled with gcc-4.3.2-r3)

That didn't fix the problem... but then I realized I hadn't actually recompiled my kernel with the new gcc, only reinstalled the source code. So I...
  • upgraded gentoo-sources from 2.6.25-r7 to 2.6.25-r9 (latest stable release of the same version so I could reuse my .config) and compiled the new kernel on Jun 11.

Still didn't fix the problem. So in desperation, reasoning that some programs actually care what kernel you have (or, at least what kernel options you've enabled), I unmerged the latest stable kernel sources (2.6.29-r5), which I had never used (waiting till I had time to configure a completely new kernel), so no programs could possibly be confused as to what I had, and did...
  • emerge -e world again on Jun 20

Of course, that didn't fix the problem, either. In fact, it was becoming so annoying, I started doing a lot of stuff (as much as possible) on the console (VT1), so I didn't have to log into my desktop environment!

After I first started typing up this post about a month ago, I tried switching Gnome themes:
  • changed from Glider theme to Mist theme/engine around Jul 3rd

Note that I had been using the Glider theme ever since I reinstalled Gentoo 2.5 years ago. I don't really like the Mist theme, but it seems to be the fastest of the ones I can chose under System » Preferences » Appearance » Theme (gnome-appearance-properties). (Read more about my experiences with themes in this other thread of mine.)

For a while, I thought that had fixed the problem, but it's only attenuated it. It still happens, just not nearly as often — maybe 1 or 2 times a week now. (That's why I've gone for another 3 weeks without posting this!)

I've also tried creating a new user and logging in as "him" so my home directory wouldn't have any old configuration files lying about. I spent a couple of hours playing around with the configuration of the mouse, Gnome Terminal, and Firefox, and didn't encounter the problem, but I wouldn't say that's conclusive, since I thought just switching themes had solved the problem. Since then, I haven't used the other user any more.

And finally, I tried...
  • keywording gtk+, gtk-engines, gnome-themes, and metacity, and upgrading to the latest unstable versions of them (Jul 10)

...but that was a complete failure (I can't remember exactly what happened, but it wasn't pretty), so I quickly...
  • went back to the stable versions (Jul 11)


OK, so here's the usual output (from a month ago):

# emerge --info
Code:
Portage 2.1.6.13 (default/linux/x86/2008.0/desktop, gcc-4.3.2, glibc-2.8_p20080602-r1, 2.6.25-gentoo-r9himem i686)
=================================================================
System uname: Linux-2.6.25-gentoo-r9himem-i686-AMD_Sempron-tm-_2500+-with-glibc2.0
Timestamp of tree: Sat, 20 Jun 2009 08:20:01 +0000
app-shells/bash:     3.2_p39
dev-lang/python:     2.5.4-r2
sys-apps/baselayout: 1.12.11.1
sys-apps/sandbox:    1.6-r2
sys-devel/autoconf:  2.13, 2.63
sys-devel/automake:  1.5, 1.7.9-r1, 1.9.6-r2, 1.10.2
sys-devel/binutils:  2.18-r3
sys-devel/gcc-config: 1.4.1
sys-devel/libtool:   1.5.26
virtual/os-headers:  2.6.27-r2
ACCEPT_KEYWORDS="x86"
CBUILD="i686-pc-linux-gnu"
CFLAGS="-O2 -march=athlon-xp -pipe"
CHOST="i686-pc-linux-gnu"
CONFIG_PROTECT="/etc"
CONFIG_PROTECT_MASK="/etc/ca-certificates.conf /etc/env.d /etc/fonts/fonts.conf /etc/gconf /etc/revdep-rebuild /etc/sandbox.d /etc/terminfo /etc/texmf/language.dat.d /etc/texmf/language.def.d /etc/texmf/updmap.d /etc/texmf/web2c /etc/udev/rules.d"
CXXFLAGS="-O2 -march=athlon-xp -pipe"
DISTDIR="/usr/portage/distfiles"
FEATURES="distlocks fixpackages parallel-fetch protect-owned sandbox sfperms strict unmerge-orphans userfetch"
GENTOO_MIRRORS="http://gentoo.mirrors.pair.com/ ftp://gentoo.chem.wisc.edu/gentoo/ http://gentoo.mirrors.hoobly.com/ http://gentoo.in.th/"
LANG="en_US.UTF-8"
LDFLAGS="-Wl,-O1"
LINGUAS="en"
MAKEOPTS="-j2"
PKGDIR="/usr/portage/packages"
PORTAGE_CONFIGROOT="/"
PORTAGE_RSYNC_OPTS="--recursive --links --safe-links --perms --times --compress --force --whole-file --delete --stats --timeout=180 --exclude=/distfiles --exclude=/local --exclude=/packages"
PORTAGE_TMPDIR="/var/tmp"
PORTDIR="/usr/portage"
SYNC="rsync://rsync.namerica.gentoo.org/gentoo-portage"
USE="3dnow 3dnowext X acl acpi alsa anthy avahi berkdb branding bzip2 cairo cdr cjk cli cracklib crypt cups dbus dri dvd dvdr dvdread eds emboss encode esd evo fam firefox fortran gdbm gif gnome gpm gstreamer gtk hal iconv ipv6 isdnlog jpeg ldap libnotify mad midi mikmod mmx mmxext mp3 mpeg mudflap nautilus ncurses nls nptl nptlonly ogg opengl openmp pam pcre pdf perl png ppds pppd python quicktime readline reflection scim sdl session spell spl sse ssl startup-notification svg sysfs tcpd tiff truetype uim unicode usb vorbis win32codecs x86 xml xorg xulrunner xv zlib" ALSA_CARDS="via82xx" ALSA_PCM_PLUGINS="adpcm alaw asym copy dmix dshare dsnoop empty extplug file hooks iec958 ioplug ladspa lfloat linear meter mmap_emul mulaw multi null plug rate route share shm softvol" APACHE2_MODULES="actions alias auth_basic authn_alias authn_anon authn_dbm authn_default authn_file authz_dbm authz_default authz_groupfile authz_host authz_owner authz_user autoindex cache dav dav_fs dav_lock deflate dir disk_cache env expires ext_filter file_cache filter headers include info log_config logio mem_cache mime mime_magic negotiation rewrite setenvif speling status unique_id userdir usertrack vhost_alias" ELIBC="glibc" INPUT_DEVICES="evdev" KERNEL="linux" LCD_DEVICES="bayrad cfontz cfontz633 glk hd44780 lb216 lcdm001 mtxorb ncurses text" LINGUAS="en" USERLAND="GNU" VIDEO_CARDS="nv"
Unset:  CPPFLAGS, CTARGET, EMERGE_DEFAULT_OPTS, FFLAGS, INSTALL_MASK, LC_ALL, PORTAGE_COMPRESS, PORTAGE_COMPRESS_FLAGS, PORTAGE_RSYNC_EXTRA_OPTS, PORTDIR_OVERLAY


# cat /etc/X11/xorg.conf
Code:
Section "Files"
   FontPath   "/usr/share/fonts/misc:unscaled"
   FontPath   "/usr/share/fonts/Type1"
   FontPath   "/usr/share/fonts/corefonts"
   FontPath   "/usr/share/fonts/freefonts"
   FontPath   "/usr/share/fonts/ttf-bitstream-vera"
   FontPath   "/usr/share/fonts/dejavu"
   FontPath   "/usr/share/fonts/default/ghostscript"
   FontPath   "/usr/local/share/fonts/TTF"
   FontPath   "/usr/share/fonts/aquafont"
   FontPath   "/usr/share/fonts/aquapfont"
   FontPath   "/usr/share/fonts/arphicfonts"
   FontPath   "/usr/share/fonts/baekmuk-fonts"
   FontPath   "/usr/share/fonts/free-bangla-font"
   FontPath   "/usr/share/fonts/kochi-substitute"
   FontPath   "/usr/share/fonts/nepali-fonts"
   FontPath   "/usr/share/fonts/terminus:unscaled"
   FontPath   "/usr/share/fonts/unifont:unscaled"
   FontPath   "/usr/share/fonts/intlfonts:unscaled"
   FontPath   "/usr/share/fonts/100dpi:unscaled"
   FontPath   "/usr/share/fonts/75dpi:unscaled"
EndSection
Section "ServerFlags"
EndSection
Section "Module"
    SubSection  "extmod"
      Option    "omit xfree86-dga"
    EndSubSection
EndSection
Section "Device"
    Identifier  "eGeForce 6200 LE"
    Driver      "nv"
EndSection
Section "Monitor"
    Identifier  "Samsung SyncMaster 204B"
    HorizSync   30-81
    VertRefresh 60, 75
EndSection
Section "Screen"
    Identifier  "Screen 1"
    Device      "eGeForce 6200 LE"
    Monitor     "Samsung SyncMaster 204B"
    DefaultDepth 24
    Subsection "Display"
        Depth       24
        Modes       "1600x1200" "1024x768" "800x600"
        ViewPort    0 0
    EndSubsection
EndSection
Section "ServerLayout"
    Identifier  "Simple Layout"
    Screen "Screen 1"
EndSection


In the following output, my edits are denoted by "{{...}}".

# cat /var/log/Xorg.0.log
Code:
X.Org X Server 1.5.3
Release Date: 5 November 2008
X Protocol Version 11, Revision 0
Build Operating System: Linux 2.6.25-gentoo-r9himem i686
Current Operating System: Linux san 2.6.25-gentoo-r9himem #1 Thu Jun 11 23:30:00 CDT 2009 i686
Build Date: 20 June 2009  08:49:27PM
 
   Before reporting problems, check http://wiki.x.org
   to make sure that you have the latest version.
Markers: (--) probed, (**) from config file, (==) default setting,
   (++) from command line, (!!) notice, (II) informational,
   (WW) warning, (EE) error, (NI) not implemented, (??) unknown.
(==) Log file: "/var/log/Xorg.0.log", Time: Mon Jun 22 02:37:52 2009
(==) Using config file: "/etc/X11/xorg.conf"
(==) ServerLayout "Simple Layout"
(**) |-->Screen "Screen 1" (0)
(**) |   |-->Monitor "Samsung SyncMaster 204B"
(**) |   |-->Device "eGeForce 6200 LE"
(==) Automatically adding devices
(==) Automatically enabling devices
(WW) The directory "/usr/share/fonts/TTF/" does not exist.
   Entry deleted from font path.
(WW) The directory "/usr/share/fonts/OTF" does not exist.
   Entry deleted from font path.
(**) FontPath set to:
   /usr/share/fonts/misc:unscaled,
   /usr/share/fonts/Type1,
   /usr/share/fonts/corefonts,
   /usr/share/fonts/freefonts,
   /usr/share/fonts/ttf-bitstream-vera,
   /usr/share/fonts/dejavu,
   /usr/share/fonts/default/ghostscript,
   /usr/local/share/fonts/TTF,
   /usr/share/fonts/aquafont,
   /usr/share/fonts/aquapfont,
   /usr/share/fonts/arphicfonts,
   /usr/share/fonts/baekmuk-fonts,
   /usr/share/fonts/free-bangla-font,
   /usr/share/fonts/kochi-substitute,
   /usr/share/fonts/nepali-fonts,
   /usr/share/fonts/terminus:unscaled,
   /usr/share/fonts/unifont:unscaled,
   /usr/share/fonts/intlfonts:unscaled,
   /usr/share/fonts/100dpi:unscaled,
   /usr/share/fonts/75dpi:unscaled,
   /usr/share/fonts/misc/,
   /usr/share/fonts/Type1/,
   /usr/share/fonts/100dpi/,
   /usr/share/fonts/75dpi/,
   built-ins
(==) ModulePath set to "/usr/lib/xorg/modules"
(II) Cannot locate a core pointer device.
(II) Cannot locate a core keyboard device.
(II) The server relies on HAL to provide the list of input devices.
   If no devices become available, reconfigure HAL or disable AllowEmptyInput.
(WW) Open ACPI failed (/var/run/acpid.socket) (No such file or directory)
(II) No APM support in BIOS or kernel
(II) Loader magic: 0x9a0
(II) Module ABI versions:
   X.Org ANSI C Emulation: 0.4
   X.Org Video Driver: 4.1
   X.Org XInput driver : 2.1
   X.Org Server Extension : 1.1
(II) Loader running on linux
(++) using VT number 8

(--) PCI:*(0@1:0:0) nVidia Corporation GeForce 6200 A-LE rev 161, Mem @ 0xe8000000/0, 0xd0000000/0, 0xe9000000/0, BIOS @ 0x????????/131072
(II) System resource ranges:
   [0] -1   0   0xffffffff - 0xffffffff (0x1) MX[B]
   [1] -1   0   0x000f0000 - 0x000fffff (0x10000) MX[B]
   [2] -1   0   0x000c0000 - 0x000effff (0x30000) MX[B]
   [3] -1   0   0x00000000 - 0x0009ffff (0xa0000) MX[B]
   [4] -1   0   0x0000ffff - 0x0000ffff (0x1) IX[B]
   [5] -1   0   0x00000000 - 0x00000000 (0x1) IX[B]
(II) "extmod" will be loaded. This was enabled by default and also specified in the config file.
(II) "dbe" will be loaded by default.
(II) "glx" will be loaded by default.
(II) "record" will be loaded by default.
(II) "dri" will be loaded by default.
(II) LoadModule: "extmod"

(II) Loading /usr/lib/xorg/modules/extensions//libextmod.so
(II) Module extmod: vendor="X.Org Foundation"
   compiled for 1.5.3, module version = 1.0.0
   Module class: X.Org Server Extension
   ABI class: X.Org Server Extension, version 1.1
(II) Loading extension SHAPE
(II) Loading extension MIT-SUNDRY-NONSTANDARD
(II) Loading extension BIG-REQUESTS
(II) Loading extension SYNC
(II) Loading extension MIT-SCREEN-SAVER
(II) Loading extension XC-MISC
(II) Loading extension XFree86-VidModeExtension
(II) Loading extension XFree86-Misc
(II) Loading extension DPMS
(II) Loading extension TOG-CUP
(II) Loading extension Extended-Visual-Information
(II) Loading extension XVideo
(II) Loading extension XVideo-MotionCompensation
(II) Loading extension X-Resource
(II) LoadModule: "dbe"

(II) Loading /usr/lib/xorg/modules/extensions//libdbe.so
(II) Module dbe: vendor="X.Org Foundation"
   compiled for 1.5.3, module version = 1.0.0
   Module class: X.Org Server Extension
   ABI class: X.Org Server Extension, version 1.1
(II) Loading extension DOUBLE-BUFFER
(II) LoadModule: "glx"

(II) Loading /usr/lib/xorg/modules/extensions//libglx.so
(II) Module glx: vendor="X.Org Foundation"
   compiled for 1.5.3, module version = 1.0.0
   ABI class: X.Org Server Extension, version 1.1
(==) AIGLX enabled
(==) Exporting typical set of GLX visuals
(II) Loading extension GLX
(II) LoadModule: "record"

(II) Loading /usr/lib/xorg/modules/extensions//librecord.so
(II) Module record: vendor="X.Org Foundation"
   compiled for 1.5.3, module version = 1.13.0
   Module class: X.Org Server Extension
   ABI class: X.Org Server Extension, version 1.1
(II) Loading extension RECORD
(II) LoadModule: "dri"

(II) Loading /usr/lib/xorg/modules/extensions//libdri.so
(II) Module dri: vendor="X.Org Foundation"
   compiled for 1.5.3, module version = 1.0.0
   ABI class: X.Org Server Extension, version 1.1
(II) Loading extension XFree86-DRI
(II) LoadModule: "nv"

(II) Loading /usr/lib/xorg/modules/drivers//nv_drv.so
(II) Module nv: vendor="X.Org Foundation"
   compiled for 1.5.3, module version = 2.1.12
   Module class: X.Org Video Driver
   ABI class: X.Org Video Driver, version 4.1
(II) NV: driver for NVIDIA chipsets: RIVA 128, RIVA TNT, RIVA TNT2,
{{...}}
   Quadro FX 540, GeForce 6200, GeForce 6500,
   GeForce 6200 TurboCache(TM), GeForce 6200SE TurboCache(TM),
   GeForce 6200 LE, GeForce Go 6200, Quadro NVS 285, GeForce Go 6400,
   GeForce Go 6200, GeForce Go 6400, GeForce 6250, GeForce 6800,
   GeForce 6800 LE, GeForce 6800 GT, GeForce 6800 XT, GeForce 6200,
   GeForce 6200 A-LE, GeForce 7800 GTX, GeForce 7800 GTX,
   GeForce 7800 GT, GeForce 7800 GS, GeForce 7800 SLI, GeForce Go 7800,
{{...}}
   GeForce 9200M GS, GeForce 9300M GS, Quadro NVS 150M, Quadro NVS 160M
(II) Primary Device is: PCI 01@00:00:0
(--) NV: Found NVIDIA GeForce 6200 A-LE at 01@00:00:0
(II) resource ranges after probing:
   [0] -1   0   0xffffffff - 0xffffffff (0x1) MX[B]
   [1] -1   0   0x000f0000 - 0x000fffff (0x10000) MX[B]
   [2] -1   0   0x000c0000 - 0x000effff (0x30000) MX[B]
   [3] -1   0   0x00000000 - 0x0009ffff (0xa0000) MX[B]
   [4] -1   0   0x0000ffff - 0x0000ffff (0x1) IX[B]
   [5] -1   0   0x00000000 - 0x00000000 (0x1) IX[B]
(II) Loading sub module "int10"
(II) LoadModule: "int10"

(II) Loading /usr/lib/xorg/modules//libint10.so
(II) Module int10: vendor="X.Org Foundation"
   compiled for 1.5.3, module version = 1.0.0
   ABI class: X.Org Video Driver, version 4.1
(II) NV(0): Initializing int10
(II) NV(0): Primary V_BIOS segment is: 0xc000
(--) NV(0): Chipset: "GeForce 6200 A-LE"
(**) NV(0): Depth 24, (--) framebuffer bpp 32
(==) NV(0): RGB weight 888
(==) NV(0): Default visual is TrueColor
(II) Loading sub module "vgahw"
(II) LoadModule: "vgahw"

(II) Loading /usr/lib/xorg/modules//libvgahw.so
(II) Module vgahw: vendor="X.Org Foundation"
   compiled for 1.5.3, module version = 0.1.0
   ABI class: X.Org Video Driver, version 4.1
(==) NV(0): Using HW cursor
(--) NV(0): Linear framebuffer at 0xD0000000
(--) NV(0): MMIO registers at 0xE8000000
(II) Loading sub module "i2c"
(II) LoadModule: "i2c"
(II) Module "i2c" already built-in
(II) Loading sub module "ddc"
(II) LoadModule: "ddc"
(II) Module "ddc" already built-in
(II) NV(0): I2C bus "DDC" initialized.
(II) NV(0): Probing for analog device on output A...
(--) NV(0):   ...found one
(II) NV(0): Probing for analog device on output B...
(--) NV(0):   ...can't find one
(II) NV(0): Probing for EDID on I2C bus A...
(II) NV(0): I2C device "DDC:ddc2" registered at address 0xA0.
(II) NV(0): I2C device "DDC:ddc2" removed.
(II) NV(0):   ... none found
(II) NV(0): Probing for EDID on I2C bus B...
(II) NV(0): I2C device "DDC:ddc2" registered at address 0xA0.
(--) NV(0): DDC detected a CRT:
(II) NV(0): Manufacturer: SAM  Model: 1ad  Serial#: 1112683056
(II) NV(0): Year: 2006  Week: 21
(II) NV(0): EDID Version: 1.3
(II) NV(0): Analog Display Input,  Input Voltage Level: 0.700/0.300 V
(II) NV(0): Sync:  Separate  Composite  SyncOnGreen
(II) NV(0): Max Image Size [cm]: horiz.: 41  vert.: 31
(II) NV(0): Gamma: 2.20
(II) NV(0): DPMS capabilities: Off; RGB/Color Display
(II) NV(0): First detailed timing is preferred mode
(II) NV(0): redX: 0.640 redY: 0.330   greenX: 0.300 greenY: 0.600
(II) NV(0): blueX: 0.150 blueY: 0.060   whiteX: 0.313 whiteY: 0.329
(II) NV(0): Supported VESA Video Modes:
(II) NV(0): 720x400@70Hz
{{...}}
(II) NV(0): 1152x870@75Hz
(II) NV(0): Manufacturer's mask: 0
(II) NV(0): Supported Future Video Modes:
(II) NV(0): #0: hsize: 1600  vsize 1200  refresh: 60  vid: 16553
(II) NV(0): #1: hsize: 1280  vsize 1024  refresh: 60  vid: 32897
(II) NV(0): #2: hsize: 1280  vsize 960  refresh: 60  vid: 16513
(II) NV(0): #3: hsize: 1152  vsize 864  refresh: 75  vid: 20337
(II) NV(0): Supported additional Video Mode:
(II) NV(0): clock: 162.0 MHz   Image Size:  408 x 306 mm
(II) NV(0): h_active: 1600  h_sync: 1664  h_sync_end 1856 h_blank_end 2160 h_border: 0
(II) NV(0): v_active: 1200  v_sync: 1201  v_sync_end 1204 v_blanking: 1250 v_border: 0
(II) NV(0): Ranges: V min: 56 V max: 75 Hz, H min: 30 H max: 81 kHz, PixClock max 170 MHz
(II) NV(0): Monitor name: SyncMaster
(II) NV(0): Serial No: HVYL503120
(II) NV(0): EDID (in hex):
(II) NV(0):    00ffffffffffff004c2dad0130325242
(II) NV(0):    151001030e291f782aee95a3544c9926
(II) NV(0):    0f5054bfef80a94081808140714f0101
(II) NV(0):    010101010101483f403062b0324040c0
(II) NV(0):    130098321100001e000000fd00384b1e
(II) NV(0):    5111000a202020202020000000fc0053
(II) NV(0):    796e634d61737465720a2020000000ff
(II) NV(0):    004856594c3530333132300a20200098
(--) NV(0): CRTC 0 appears to have a CRT attached
(II) NV(0): Using CRT on CRTC 0
(II) NV(0): EDID vendor "SAM", prod id 429
(II) NV(0): Using hsync ranges from config file
(II) NV(0): Using vrefresh ranges from config file
(II) NV(0): Printing DDC gathered Modelines:
(II) NV(0): Modeline "1600x1200"x0.0  162.00  1600 1664 1856 2160  1200 1201 1204 1250 +hsync +vsync (75.0 kHz)
{{...}}
(II) NV(0): Modeline "1152x864"x75.0  104.99  1152 1224 1352 1552  864 865 868 902 -hsync +vsync (67.7 kHz)
(--) NV(0): VideoRAM: 262144 kBytes
(==) NV(0): Using gamma correction (1.0, 1.0, 1.0)
(II) NV(0): Samsung SyncMaster 204B: Using hsync range of 30.00-81.00 kHz
(II) NV(0): Samsung SyncMaster 204B: Using vrefresh value of 60.00 Hz
(II) NV(0): Samsung SyncMaster 204B: Using vrefresh value of 75.00 Hz
(II) NV(0): Samsung SyncMaster 204B: Using maximum pixel clock of 170.00 MHz
(II) NV(0): Clock range:  12.00 to 400.00 MHz
(II) NV(0): Not using default mode "640x350" (vrefresh out of range)
{{...}}
(II) NV(0): Not using driver mode "800x600" (vrefresh out of range)
(--) NV(0): Virtual size is 1600x1200 (pitch 1600)
(**) NV(0): *Driver mode "1600x1200": 162.0 MHz, 75.0 kHz, 60.0 Hz
(II) NV(0): Modeline "1600x1200"x60.0  162.00  1600 1664 1856 2160  1200 1201 1204 1250 +hsync +vsync (75.0 kHz)
{{...}}
(**) NV(0):  Default mode "320x240": 12.6 MHz, 31.5 kHz, 60.1 Hz (D)
(II) NV(0): Modeline "320x240"x60.1   12.59  320 328 376 400  240 245 246 262 doublescan -hsync -vsync (31.5 kHz)
(**) NV(0): Display dimensions: (410, 310) mm
(**) NV(0): DPI set to (99, 98)
(II) Loading sub module "fb"
(II) LoadModule: "fb"

(II) Loading /usr/lib/xorg/modules//libfb.so
(II) Module fb: vendor="X.Org Foundation"
   compiled for 1.5.3, module version = 1.0.0
   ABI class: X.Org ANSI C Emulation, version 0.4
(II) Loading sub module "xaa"
(II) LoadModule: "xaa"

(II) Loading /usr/lib/xorg/modules//libxaa.so
(II) Module xaa: vendor="X.Org Foundation"
   compiled for 1.5.3, module version = 1.2.1
   ABI class: X.Org Video Driver, version 4.1
(II) Loading sub module "ramdac"
(II) LoadModule: "ramdac"
(II) Module "ramdac" already built-in
(--) Depth 24 pixmap format is 32 bpp
(II) do I need RAC?  No, I don't.
(II) resource ranges after preInit:
   [0] -1   0   0xffffffff - 0xffffffff (0x1) MX[B]
   [1] -1   0   0x000f0000 - 0x000fffff (0x10000) MX[B]
   [2] -1   0   0x000c0000 - 0x000effff (0x30000) MX[B]
   [3] -1   0   0x00000000 - 0x0009ffff (0xa0000) MX[B]
   [4] -1   0   0x0000ffff - 0x0000ffff (0x1) IX[B]
   [5] -1   0   0x00000000 - 0x00000000 (0x1) IX[B]
(II) NV(0): Using XFree86 Acceleration Architecture (XAA)
   Screen to screen bit blits
   Solid filled rectangles
   8x8 mono pattern filled rectangles
   Indirect CPU to Screen color expansion
   Solid Lines
   Scanline Image Writes
   Setting up tile and stipple cache:
      32 128x128 slots
      32 256x256 slots
      16 512x512 slots
(==) NV(0): Backing store disabled
(==) NV(0): Silken mouse enabled
(II) NV(0): DPMS enabled
(==) RandR enabled
(II) Initializing built-in extension MIT-SHM
(II) Initializing built-in extension XInputExtension
(II) Initializing built-in extension XTEST
(II) Initializing built-in extension XKEYBOARD
(II) Initializing built-in extension XINERAMA
(II) Initializing built-in extension XFIXES
(II) Initializing built-in extension RENDER
(II) Initializing built-in extension RANDR
(II) Initializing built-in extension COMPOSITE
(II) Initializing built-in extension DAMAGE
(II) Initializing built-in extension XEVIE
(II) AIGLX: Screen 0 is not DRI capable
(II) AIGLX: Loaded and initialized /usr/lib/dri/swrast_dri.so
(II) GLX: Initialized DRISWRAST GL provider for screen 0
(II) config/hal: Adding input device ImExPS/2 Generic Explorer Mouse
(II) LoadModule: "evdev"

(II) Loading /usr/lib/xorg/modules/input//evdev_drv.so
(II) Module evdev: vendor="X.Org Foundation"
   compiled for 1.5.3, module version = 2.1.3
   Module class: X.Org XInput Driver
   ABI class: X.Org XInput driver, version 2.1
(**) ImExPS/2 Generic Explorer Mouse: always reports core events
(**) ImExPS/2 Generic Explorer Mouse: Device: "/dev/input/event3"
(II) ImExPS/2 Generic Explorer Mouse: Found 5 mouse buttons
(II) ImExPS/2 Generic Explorer Mouse: Found x and y relative axes
(II) ImExPS/2 Generic Explorer Mouse: Configuring as mouse
(**) ImExPS/2 Generic Explorer Mouse: YAxisMapping: buttons 4 and 5
(**) ImExPS/2 Generic Explorer Mouse: EmulateWheelButton: 4, EmulateWheelInertia: 10, EmulateWheelTimeout: 200
(II) XINPUT: Adding extended input device "ImExPS/2 Generic Explorer Mouse" (type: MOUSE)
(II) config/hal: Adding input device AT Translated Set 2 keyboard
(**) AT Translated Set 2 keyboard: always reports core events
(**) AT Translated Set 2 keyboard: Device: "/dev/input/event2"
(II) AT Translated Set 2 keyboard: Found keys
(II) AT Translated Set 2 keyboard: Configuring as keyboard
(II) XINPUT: Adding extended input device "AT Translated Set 2 keyboard" (type: KEYBOARD)
(**) Option "xkb_rules" "evdev"
(**) Option "xkb_model" "evdev"
(**) Option "xkb_layout" "us"
(WW) Open ACPI failed (/var/run/acpid.socket) (No such file or directory)
(II) No APM support in BIOS or kernel
(II) ImExPS/2 Generic Explorer Mouse: Device reopened after 1 attempts.
(II) AT Translated Set 2 keyboard: Device reopened after 1 attempts.


Notice how X started on VT8? That's another weird thing that just started happening "recently" (like, spring of this year): sometimes X starts on VT7 (as it always did before), sometimes VT8. I can't tell what makes it prefer one over the other, but when it starts on VT8, VT7 just shows a blinking cursor at the top of a blank screen (and vice-versa).

Some more info about the graphics card and driver:

# lspci -v
Code:
{{...}}
01:00.0 VGA compatible controller: nVidia Corporation GeForce 6200 A-LE (rev a1) (prog-if 00 [VGA controller])
   Subsystem: eVga.com. Corp. Device a295
   Flags: bus master, 66MHz, medium devsel, latency 32, IRQ 5
   Memory at e8000000 (32-bit, non-prefetchable) [size=16M]
   Memory at d0000000 (32-bit, prefetchable) [size=256M]
   Memory at e9000000 (32-bit, non-prefetchable) [size=16M]
   [virtual] Expansion ROM at ea000000 [disabled] [size=128K]
   Capabilities: [60] Power Management version 2
   Capabilities: [44] AGP version 3.0


Lest this be a video driver issue, note the following.

# man nv
Code:
NV(4)                                                                    NV(4)
{{...}}

SUPPORTED HARDWARE
       The nv driver supports PCI, PCI-Express and AGP video  cards based on
       the following NVIDIA chips:
{{...}}
       GeForce 6XXX          NV40, NV41, NV43, NV44, NV45, C51
{{...}}
       GeForce 8XXX, GeForce 9XXX
                             G80, G84, G86, G92, G94, G96, G98
{{...}}
       The following driver Options are available for G80 and higher:
{{...}}
       Option "AccelMethod" "string"
              Choose acceleration architecture, either "XAA" or "EXA".  XAA is
              the old but stable architecture.   EXA  is  newer  and  supports
              resizing  the desktop larger than it started out with RandR 1.2.
              If you choose to use EXA, you might also consider setting Option
              "MigrationHeuristic"  "greedy" to improve performance.  Default:
              XAA.
{{...}}
X Version 11                 xf86-video-nv 2.1.12                        NV(4)


So, apparently I can't choose anything but XAA for acceleration since I don't have a G80 or later card...

And now some GTK benchmarks (done while the problem was happening and while it wasn't, respectively, both done with the Glider theme), and some additional info that might be useful, based on what I've read in other threads around here:

# gtkperf -a
Code:
GtkPerf 0.40 - Starting testing: Tue Jun 23 01:55:00 2009

GtkEntry - time:  0.00
GtkComboBox - time:  3.14
GtkComboBoxEntry - time:  2.42
GtkSpinButton - time:  0.53
GtkProgressBar - time:  0.24
GtkToggleButton - time:  0.40
GtkCheckButton - time:  0.37
GtkRadioButton - time:  0.73
GtkTextView - Add text - time:  1.37
GtkTextView - Scroll - time:  1.25
GtkDrawingArea - Lines - time:  2.85
GtkDrawingArea - Circles - time:  1.66
GtkDrawingArea - Text - time: 31.88
GtkDrawingArea - Pixbufs - time:  3.98
 ---
Total time: 50.89

Quitting..


# gtkperf -a
Code:
GtkPerf 0.40 - Starting testing: Tue Jun 23 01:56:30 2009

GtkEntry - time:  0.00
GtkComboBox - time:  2.08
GtkComboBoxEntry - time:  1.73
GtkSpinButton - time:  0.28
GtkProgressBar - time:  0.18
GtkToggleButton - time:  0.23
GtkCheckButton - time:  0.19
GtkRadioButton - time:  0.45
GtkTextView - Add text - time:  1.03
GtkTextView - Scroll - time:  0.56
GtkDrawingArea - Lines - time:  0.49
GtkDrawingArea - Circles - time:  0.94
GtkDrawingArea - Text - time: 11.63
GtkDrawingArea - Pixbufs - time:  1.03
 ---
Total time: 20.82

Quitting..


(Note that all other "interesting" output in this post was collected while I was actually having the problem.)

BTW, ironically (?), the following error messages are printed when gtkperf is invoked:

Code:
(gtkperf:13811): Gtk-WARNING **: GtkSpinButton: setting an adjustment with non-zero page size is deprecated

(gtkperf:13811): Gtk-WARNING **: GtkSpinButton: setting an adjustment with non-zero page size is deprecated


# cat /proc/mtrr
Code:
reg00: base=0x00000000 (   0MB), size=1024MB: write-back, count=1
reg01: base=0x40000000 (1024MB), size= 512MB: write-back, count=1
reg02: base=0xe0000000 (3584MB), size= 128MB: write-combining, count=1
reg03: base=0xe0000000 (3584MB), size= 128MB: write-combining, count=1
reg04: base=0xd0000000 (3328MB), size= 256MB: write-combining, count=1


# cat /proc/meminfo
Code:
MemTotal:      1554524 kB
MemFree:        797504 kB
Buffers:        115112 kB
Cached:         498744 kB
SwapCached:          0 kB
Active:         407328 kB
Inactive:       291660 kB
HighTotal:      655296 kB
HighFree:        68324 kB
LowTotal:       899228 kB
LowFree:        729180 kB
SwapTotal:      749944 kB
SwapFree:       749944 kB
Dirty:               8 kB
Writeback:           0 kB
AnonPages:       85144 kB
Mapped:          31368 kB
Slab:            50472 kB
SReclaimable:    43080 kB
SUnreclaim:       7392 kB
PageTables:       1896 kB
NFS_Unstable:        0 kB
Bounce:              0 kB
CommitLimit:   1527204 kB
Committed_AS:   213648 kB
VmallocTotal:   114680 kB
VmallocUsed:       980 kB
VmallocChunk:   113696 kB


# glxinfo
Code:
name of display: :0.0
display: :0  screen: 0
direct rendering: Yes
server glx vendor string: SGI
server glx version string: 1.2
server glx extensions:
    GLX_ARB_multisample, GLX_EXT_visual_info, GLX_EXT_visual_rating,
    GLX_EXT_import_context, GLX_EXT_texture_from_pixmap, GLX_OML_swap_method,
    GLX_SGI_make_current_read, GLX_SGIS_multisample, GLX_SGIX_hyperpipe,
    GLX_SGIX_swap_barrier, GLX_SGIX_fbconfig, GLX_MESA_copy_sub_buffer
client glx vendor string: SGI
client glx version string: 1.4
client glx extensions:
    GLX_ARB_get_proc_address, GLX_ARB_multisample, GLX_EXT_import_context,
    GLX_EXT_visual_info, GLX_EXT_visual_rating, GLX_MESA_allocate_memory,
    GLX_MESA_copy_sub_buffer, GLX_MESA_swap_control,
    GLX_MESA_swap_frame_usage, GLX_OML_swap_method, GLX_OML_sync_control,
    GLX_SGI_make_current_read, GLX_SGI_swap_control, GLX_SGI_video_sync,
    GLX_SGIS_multisample, GLX_SGIX_fbconfig, GLX_SGIX_pbuffer,
    GLX_SGIX_visual_select_group, GLX_EXT_texture_from_pixmap
GLX version: 1.2
GLX extensions:
    GLX_ARB_get_proc_address, GLX_ARB_multisample, GLX_EXT_import_context,
    GLX_EXT_visual_info, GLX_EXT_visual_rating, GLX_OML_swap_method,
    GLX_SGIS_multisample, GLX_SGIX_fbconfig
OpenGL vendor string: Mesa Project
OpenGL renderer string: Software Rasterizer
OpenGL version string: 2.1 Mesa 7.4
OpenGL shading language version string: 1.20
OpenGL extensions:
    GL_ARB_depth_texture, GL_ARB_draw_buffers, GL_ARB_fragment_program,
    GL_ARB_fragment_program_shadow, GL_ARB_fragment_shader,
    GL_ARB_half_float_pixel, GL_ARB_imaging, GL_ARB_multisample,
    GL_ARB_multitexture, GL_ARB_occlusion_query, GL_ARB_pixel_buffer_object,
    GL_ARB_point_parameters, GL_ARB_point_sprite, GL_ARB_shader_objects,
    GL_ARB_shading_language_100, GL_ARB_shading_language_120, GL_ARB_shadow,
    GL_ARB_shadow_ambient, GL_ARB_texture_border_clamp,
    GL_ARB_texture_compression, GL_ARB_texture_cube_map,
    GL_ARB_texture_env_add, GL_ARB_texture_env_combine,
    GL_ARB_texture_env_crossbar, GL_ARB_texture_env_dot3,
    GL_ARB_texture_mirrored_repeat, GL_ARB_texture_non_power_of_two,
    GL_ARB_texture_rectangle, GL_ARB_transpose_matrix,
    GL_ARB_vertex_buffer_object, GL_ARB_vertex_program, GL_ARB_vertex_shader,
    GL_ARB_window_pos, GL_EXT_abgr, GL_EXT_bgra, GL_EXT_blend_color,
    GL_EXT_blend_equation_separate, GL_EXT_blend_func_separate,
    GL_EXT_blend_logic_op, GL_EXT_blend_minmax, GL_EXT_blend_subtract,
    GL_EXT_clip_volume_hint, GL_EXT_compiled_vertex_array, GL_EXT_convolution,
    GL_EXT_copy_texture, GL_EXT_depth_bounds_test, GL_EXT_draw_range_elements,
    GL_EXT_framebuffer_object, GL_EXT_framebuffer_blit, GL_EXT_fog_coord,
    GL_EXT_gpu_program_parameters, GL_EXT_histogram, GL_EXT_multi_draw_arrays,
    GL_EXT_packed_depth_stencil, GL_EXT_packed_pixels,
    GL_EXT_paletted_texture, GL_EXT_pixel_buffer_object,
    GL_EXT_point_parameters, GL_EXT_polygon_offset, GL_EXT_rescale_normal,
    GL_EXT_secondary_color, GL_EXT_separate_specular_color,
    GL_EXT_shadow_funcs, GL_EXT_shared_texture_palette, GL_EXT_stencil_wrap,
    GL_EXT_subtexture, GL_EXT_texture, GL_EXT_texture3D,
    GL_EXT_texture_edge_clamp, GL_EXT_texture_env_add,
    GL_EXT_texture_env_combine, GL_EXT_texture_env_dot3,
    GL_EXT_texture_lod_bias, GL_EXT_texture_mirror_clamp,
    GL_EXT_texture_object, GL_EXT_texture_rectangle, GL_EXT_texture_sRGB,
    GL_EXT_vertex_array, GL_3DFX_texture_compression_FXT1,
    GL_APPLE_packed_pixels, GL_APPLE_vertex_array_object,
    GL_ATI_blend_equation_separate, GL_ATI_texture_env_combine3,
    GL_ATI_texture_mirror_once, GL_ATI_fragment_shader,
    GL_ATI_separate_stencil, GL_IBM_multimode_draw_arrays,
    GL_IBM_rasterpos_clip, GL_IBM_texture_mirrored_repeat,
    GL_INGR_blend_func_separate, GL_MESA_pack_invert, GL_MESA_program_debug,
    GL_MESA_resize_buffers, GL_MESA_texture_array, GL_MESA_ycbcr_texture,
    GL_MESA_window_pos, GL_NV_blend_square, GL_NV_fragment_program,
    GL_NV_light_max_exponent, GL_NV_point_sprite, GL_NV_texture_rectangle,
    GL_NV_texgen_reflection, GL_NV_vertex_program, GL_NV_vertex_program1_1,
    GL_OES_read_format, GL_SGI_color_matrix, GL_SGI_color_table,
    GL_SGI_texture_color_table, GL_SGIS_generate_mipmap,
    GL_SGIS_texture_border_clamp, GL_SGIS_texture_edge_clamp,
    GL_SGIS_texture_lod, GL_SGIX_depth_texture, GL_SGIX_shadow,
    GL_SGIX_shadow_ambient, GL_SUN_multi_draw_arrays

3 GLX Visuals
   visual  x  bf lv rg d st colorbuffer ax dp st accumbuffer  ms  cav
 id dep cl sp sz l  ci b ro  r  g  b  a bf th cl  r  g  b  a ns b eat
----------------------------------------------------------------------
0x21 24 tc  0 32  0 r  y  .  8  8  8  8  0 24  8  0  0  0  0  0 0 None
0x22 24 dc  0 32  0 r  y  .  8  8  8  8  0 24  8  0  0  0  0  0 0 None
0x5b 32 tc  0 32  0 r  .  .  8  8  8  8  0  0  0  0  0  0  0  0 0 None

32 GLXFBConfigs:
   visual  x  bf lv rg d st colorbuffer ax dp st accumbuffer  ms  cav
 id dep cl sp sz l  ci b ro  r  g  b  a bf th cl  r  g  b  a ns b eat
----------------------------------------------------------------------
0x5c  0 tc  0 32  0 r  .  .  8  8  8  8  0  0  0  0  0  0  0  0 0 None
0x5d  0 tc  0 32  0 r  .  .  8  8  8  8  0  0  0 16 16 16 16  0 0 Slow
0x5e  0 tc  0 32  0 r  y  .  8  8  8  8  0  0  0  0  0  0  0  0 0 None
0x5f  0 tc  0 32  0 r  y  .  8  8  8  8  0  0  0 16 16 16 16  0 0 Slow
0x60  0 tc  0 32  0 r  .  .  8  8  8  8  0  0  8  0  0  0  0  0 0 None
0x61  0 tc  0 32  0 r  .  .  8  8  8  8  0  0  8 16 16 16 16  0 0 Slow
0x62  0 tc  0 32  0 r  y  .  8  8  8  8  0  0  8  0  0  0  0  0 0 None
0x63  0 tc  0 32  0 r  y  .  8  8  8  8  0  0  8 16 16 16 16  0 0 Slow
0x64  0 tc  0 32  0 r  .  .  8  8  8  8  0 24  0  0  0  0  0  0 0 None
0x65  0 tc  0 32  0 r  .  .  8  8  8  8  0 24  0 16 16 16 16  0 0 Slow
0x66  0 tc  0 32  0 r  y  .  8  8  8  8  0 24  0  0  0  0  0  0 0 None
0x67  0 tc  0 32  0 r  y  .  8  8  8  8  0 24  0 16 16 16 16  0 0 Slow
0x68  0 tc  0 32  0 r  .  .  8  8  8  8  0 24  8  0  0  0  0  0 0 None
0x69  0 tc  0 32  0 r  .  .  8  8  8  8  0 24  8 16 16 16 16  0 0 Slow
0x6a  0 tc  0 32  0 r  y  .  8  8  8  8  0 24  8  0  0  0  0  0 0 None
0x6b  0 tc  0 32  0 r  y  .  8  8  8  8  0 24  8 16 16 16 16  0 0 Slow
0x6c  0 dc  0 32  0 r  .  .  8  8  8  8  0  0  0  0  0  0  0  0 0 None
0x6d  0 dc  0 32  0 r  .  .  8  8  8  8  0  0  0 16 16 16 16  0 0 Slow
0x6e  0 dc  0 32  0 r  y  .  8  8  8  8  0  0  0  0  0  0  0  0 0 None
0x6f  0 dc  0 32  0 r  y  .  8  8  8  8  0  0  0 16 16 16 16  0 0 Slow
0x70  0 dc  0 32  0 r  .  .  8  8  8  8  0  0  8  0  0  0  0  0 0 None
0x71  0 dc  0 32  0 r  .  .  8  8  8  8  0  0  8 16 16 16 16  0 0 Slow
0x72  0 dc  0 32  0 r  y  .  8  8  8  8  0  0  8  0  0  0  0  0 0 None
0x73  0 dc  0 32  0 r  y  .  8  8  8  8  0  0  8 16 16 16 16  0 0 Slow
0x74  0 dc  0 32  0 r  .  .  8  8  8  8  0 24  0  0  0  0  0  0 0 None
0x75  0 dc  0 32  0 r  .  .  8  8  8  8  0 24  0 16 16 16 16  0 0 Slow
0x76  0 dc  0 32  0 r  y  .  8  8  8  8  0 24  0  0  0  0  0  0 0 None
0x77  0 dc  0 32  0 r  y  .  8  8  8  8  0 24  0 16 16 16 16  0 0 Slow
0x78  0 dc  0 32  0 r  .  .  8  8  8  8  0 24  8  0  0  0  0  0 0 None
0x79  0 dc  0 32  0 r  .  .  8  8  8  8  0 24  8 16 16 16 16  0 0 Slow
0x7a  0 dc  0 32  0 r  y  .  8  8  8  8  0 24  8  0  0  0  0  0 0 None
0x7b  0 dc  0 32  0 r  y  .  8  8  8  8  0 24  8 16 16 16 16  0 0 Slow


And finally...

# cat /etc/portage/package.keywords
Code:
media-video/vlc ~x86
app-portage/gentoolkit ~x86
app-benchmarks/gtkperf ~x86


# cat /etc/portage/package.mask
Code:
>sys-kernel/gentoo-sources-2.6.25-r9
>sys-devel/gcc-4.3.2-r3


# cat /etc/portage/package.use
Code:
www-client/links -X -directfb -fbcon -gpm -javascript -jpeg -livecd -png -sdl -svga -tiff
sys-apps/grep pcre
app-text/evince djvu dvi t1lib
media-gfx/gimp mng wmf
media-gfx/imagemagick jbig jpeg2k wmf
media-plugins/gst-plugins-meta a52 ffmpeg flac theora
media-video/ffmpeg aac amr schroedinger theora xvid
x11-libs/gtk+ jpeg2k
media-video/totem nsplugin -bluetooth
mail-client/mozilla-thunderbird replytolist
app-text/texlive dvipdfm
app-admin/eselect bash-completion
app-i18n/uim anthy
media-video/vlc a52 aac bidi cdda cdio dts flac gnutls httpd id3tag kate libass live matroska qt4 rtsp schroedinger stream svga theora vcd vcdinfo vcdx vlm zvbi
net-dns/avahi mdnsresponder-compat


Okay, I'm finished.

- dcljr
Back to top
View user's profile Send private message
audiodef
Watchman
Watchman


Joined: 06 Jul 2005
Posts: 5191

PostPosted: Thu Jul 23, 2009 8:24 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Well, the first thing I would want to know is after what single event things slowed down. You mentioned a bunch of different things. Did you do something that used flash in Firefox and then everything else was slow? Did you play something in Totem or VLC and thereafter the CPU load went up and stayed there?

There's usually a single culprit behind anything.

I haven't had problems with xf86-video-nv, but with xf86-video-intel, some versions just do not work very well (the latest ~arch version was so wonky I masked it in favour of 2.7.1). Did you recently update the nv driver? If so, see what an older version does.
_________________
Gentoo Studio: http://gentoostudio.org
Facebook: http://www.facebook.com/gentoostudio
G+: https://plus.google.com/113947758237122861689/posts
Pappy's Kernel Seeds: http://kernel-seeds.gentoostudio.org
Back to top
View user's profile Send private message
dcljr
Tux's lil' helper
Tux's lil' helper


Joined: 20 Aug 2005
Posts: 92
Location: Austin, TX

PostPosted: Fri Jul 31, 2009 7:41 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

audiodef wrote:
Well, the first thing I would want to know is after what single event things slowed down. You mentioned a bunch of different things.

There is no single thing that causes the problem. As I said, it doesn't seem to matter what I'm currently running, nor what I have been running since I logged in. I even tried looking through all the open files (lsof) when it's happening vs. when it's not happening; I didn't see any significant differences. This has been going on for so long, you'd think that I would have picked up on a pattern by now. I don't see any pattern.

audiodef wrote:
Did you recently update the nv driver? If so, see what an older version does.

Easier said than done, unfortunately. I tried to do just that, but apparently the previous stable version, xf86-video-nv-2.1.9, won't work with xorg-server-1.5.3-r5.

# echo ">=x11-drivers/xf86-video-nv-2.1.12" >> /etc/portage/package.mask; emerge -vp xf86-video-nv xorg-server
Code:
These are the packages that would be merged, in order:

Calculating dependencies... done!
[ebuild   R   ] x11-base/xorg-server-1.5.3-r6  USE="hal ipv6 nptl sdl xorg -3dfx -debug -dmx -kdrive -minimal -tslib" INPUT_DEVICES="evdev -acecad -aiptek -citron -elographics -fpit -hyperpen -joystick -keyboard -mouse -mutouch -penmount -synaptics -tslib -virtualbox -vmmouse -void -wacom" VIDEO_CARDS="nv -apm -ark -ast -chips -cirrus -dummy -epson -fbdev -fglrx -geode -glint -i128 -i740 (-impact) -imstt -intel -mach64 -mga -neomagic (-newport) -nvidia -r128 -radeon -radeonhd -rendition -s3 -s3virge -savage -siliconmotion -sis -sisusb (-sunbw2) (-suncg14) (-suncg3) (-suncg6) (-sunffb) (-sunleo) (-suntcx) -tdfx -tga -trident -tseng -v4l -vermilion -vesa -via -virtualbox -vmware -voodoo -xgi" 0 kB
[ebuild     UD] x11-drivers/xf86-video-nv-2.1.9 [2.1.14] USE="-debug" 0 kB

Total: 2 packages (1 downgrade, 1 reinstall), Size of downloads: 0 kB

!!! Multiple package instances within a single package slot have been pulled
!!! into the dependency graph, resulting in a slot conflict:

x11-drivers/xf86-video-nv:0

  ('installed', '/', 'x11-drivers/xf86-video-nv-2.1.14', 'nomerge') pulled in by
    >=x11-drivers/xf86-video-nv-2.1.12 required by ('ebuild', '/', 'x11-base/xorg-server-1.5.3-r6', 'merge')
    (and 1 more)

  ('ebuild', '/', 'x11-drivers/xf86-video-nv-2.1.9', 'merge') pulled in by
    xf86-video-nv


It may be possible to solve this problem by using package.mask to
prevent one of those packages from being selected. However, it is also
possible that conflicting dependencies exist such that they are
impossible to satisfy simultaneously. If such a conflict exists in the
dependencies of two different packages, then those packages can not be
installed simultaneously.

(I got a similar message when I actually downgraded xf86-video-nv first, followed by an emerge --depclean.)

So, apparently I'll have to downgrade to xorg-server-1.3.0.0-r6 at the same time. Which means I'll also have to mask libXrender-0.9.4, and, well, hope that nothing else breaks because of the major downgrade of xorg-server. I haven't had the will (and time, lately) to try that. Maybe this weekend....

- dcljr
Back to top
View user's profile Send private message
energyman76b
Advocate
Advocate


Joined: 26 Mar 2003
Posts: 2025
Location: Germany

PostPosted: Fri Jul 31, 2009 9:41 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

you are using nv. That means NO acceleration at all. Everything has to be done by the cpu.

Now add to that bad start gnome, which is slow, firefox, which is extremely slow and flash, which has a surprisingly high cpu load - and your desaster is complete.

Either start using a driver that has at least basic 2d acceleration or use something less slow.
_________________
AidanJT wrote:

Libertardian denial of reality is wholly unimpressive and unconvincing, and simply serves to demonstrate what a bunch of delusional fools they all are.

Satan's got perfectly toned abs and rocks a c-cup.
Back to top
View user's profile Send private message
dcljr
Tux's lil' helper
Tux's lil' helper


Joined: 20 Aug 2005
Posts: 92
Location: Austin, TX

PostPosted: Mon Aug 03, 2009 7:03 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

energyman76b wrote:
you are using nv. That means NO acceleration at all. Everything has to be done by the cpu.

I have read that about 3-D acceleration. Wasn't clear whether 2-D was accelerated at all.

energyman76b wrote:
Now add to that bad start gnome, which is slow, firefox, which is extremely slow and flash, which has a surprisingly high cpu load - and your desaster is complete.

Except that everything was working fine for 2.5 years. Curious, that.

energyman76b wrote:
Either start using a driver that has at least basic 2d acceleration or use something less slow.

Yeah. My question wasn't whether you could stand to use my system, it was what could have gone wrong to suddenly change how it had been behaving up to this point.

- dcljr
Back to top
View user's profile Send private message
dcljr
Tux's lil' helper
Tux's lil' helper


Joined: 20 Aug 2005
Posts: 92
Location: Austin, TX

PostPosted: Tue Aug 25, 2009 10:11 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Well, I've now switched themes again. Since August 7th I've been using the ClearlooksClassic theme from gnome-themes (which uses the clearlooks engine) with the Metacity theme Clearlooks2-Squared (found in metacity-themes).

And even though gtkperf reveals that the current setup is significantly (about 20%) slower than when I was using Mist, AFAIR I have not had the scrolling/etc.-slowdown problem since making the change.

I'm not marking this as SOLVED, however, since this is merely a workaround, not a true solution to the problem.

- dcljr
Back to top
View user's profile Send private message
energyman76b
Advocate
Advocate


Joined: 26 Mar 2003
Posts: 2025
Location: Germany

PostPosted: Wed Aug 26, 2009 3:29 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

when the problems start - do you see a spike in memory/cpu load caused by X (try htop or top to check that) - and if yes, are you using composite (I don't know if you can with nv). Another thing - are you sure that no flash/nspluginwrapper is still active? I have seen it a lot of times - all browser windows are closed, but flash/wrapper are still infesting the process list, using up precious ressources.
_________________
AidanJT wrote:

Libertardian denial of reality is wholly unimpressive and unconvincing, and simply serves to demonstrate what a bunch of delusional fools they all are.

Satan's got perfectly toned abs and rocks a c-cup.
Back to top
View user's profile Send private message
dcljr
Tux's lil' helper
Tux's lil' helper


Joined: 20 Aug 2005
Posts: 92
Location: Austin, TX

PostPosted: Wed Aug 26, 2009 10:12 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

energyman76b wrote:
when the problems start - do you see a spike in memory/cpu load caused by X

Yes, a spike in CPU usage; I've never made a note of normal memory usage by X to compare it to usage during the problem.

energyman76b wrote:
and if yes, are you using composite (I don't know if you can with nv).

If you mean /usr/lib/libXcomposite.so.1.0.0, then yes, that file is (/was) open and used by several processes (presumably all running graphical applications). However, I do not intentionally make use of any compositing features that I know of (e.g., window transparency), unless it's something that's enabled by default by some application/theme I'm using and I haven't noticed it. (As you might have gathered from my choice of themes, I prefer a simple, conservative desktop look.)

energyman76b wrote:
Another thing - are you sure that no flash/nspluginwrapper is still active?

No, according to both ps and lsof, no adobe/flash/nsplugin processes or files are still active. (Note: I'm basing this on information I collected about 6 weeks ago while having the problem under the Mist theme/engine.)

- dcljr
Back to top
View user's profile Send private message
energyman76b
Advocate
Advocate


Joined: 26 Mar 2003
Posts: 2025
Location: Germany

PostPosted: Wed Aug 26, 2009 5:01 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

well, if mist used transparency or something like that - in my experience when effects are used X sometimes 'goes mad'.

There are two ways to deal with it. Deactivate effects (and switchting to a theme which does not use composite stuff should have a similar effect) or restart the window manager.

In my experience of course.
_________________
AidanJT wrote:

Libertardian denial of reality is wholly unimpressive and unconvincing, and simply serves to demonstrate what a bunch of delusional fools they all are.

Satan's got perfectly toned abs and rocks a c-cup.
Back to top
View user's profile Send private message
Display posts from previous:   
Reply to topic    Gentoo Forums Forum Index Desktop Environments All times are GMT
Page 1 of 1

 
Jump to:  
You cannot post new topics in this forum
You cannot reply to topics in this forum
You cannot edit your posts in this forum
You cannot delete your posts in this forum
You cannot vote in polls in this forum