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Author Topic: [SOLVED] PC Freezes In Theater View (Only) - CPU Utilization?  (Read 3749 times)

Zhillsguy

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My friend is running the latest JRiver 20 on his back lanai in an HP dc5700, small desktop Core2 Duo E8400/3 Gig Ram/Radeon 5450 video card machine, set up with Local library, accessing flac and mp3 music files via network share, wireless N. The file shares are located on a 2 year old laptop hard wired to network in the house, Windows 8.1 on all machines.

The HP can play music or video (plays uncompressed blu-ray on local USB drive at <5% CPU utilization) flawlessly all day long, until Theater View is selected. Then the PC hard freezes, usually almost immediately. The only cure is a hard power button re-boot.

I thought the wireless could be a data bottleneck causing the issue, so I disconnected the external USB wireless and connected a network power adapter temporarily and was getting a solid 3 meg/second file transfer over the power lines (not great, cheaper unit). That didn't help, immediate hard freeze.

Using Task Manager on my home machine (Athlon X2 631/8 gig/ Radeon 7750) all views other than Theater View use <2% CPU. When entering Theater View CPU jumps up to about 25% (Desktop Window Manager). I have never had issues running Theater View here, even using wireless file access.

1. What is it about Theater View that consumes so much CPU power? Are there any settings to remedy?
2. Any suggestions for curing the HP's issue? As a side note, it does have a small stock power supply and the passive 5450 video card may be pushing it, but it plays all video files, including uncompressed blu-ray flawlessly using display view. Could it be the CPU pulling the extra power pushing it over the edge?

My next test would be to run a network cable into the house to the router, but I'm not convinced it is a data bottleneck issue. I may need to bring the machine here to test on my network.
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Ryzen 5 W11 x64 MC 29 HTPC/Server and HP G2 Mini Elitedesk W11 MC 29 (music only zone), various Android Phones and Tablets for control of both, powering two lanai surround systems, 5.1 and 4.1 respectively.

glynor

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Re: PC Freezes In Theater View (Only) - CPU Utilization?
« Reply #1 on: May 23, 2015, 10:22:32 pm »

My friend is running the latest JRiver 20 on his back lanai in an HP dc5700, small desktop Core2 Duo E8400/3 Gig Ram/Radeon 5450 video card machine, set up with Local library, accessing flac and mp3 music files via network share, wireless N. The file shares are located on a 2 year old laptop hard wired to network in the house, Windows 8.1 on all machines.

The HP can play music or video (plays uncompressed blu-ray on local USB drive at >5% CPU utilization) flawlessly all day long, until Theater View is selected. Then the PC hard freezes, usually almost immediately. The only cure is a hard power button re-boot.

This almost certainly does not have anything to do with the network, and certainly isn't a data bottleneck issue.

Hard freezing or blue screens can only be caused by one of four things on modern versions of Windows (anything with an NT kernel):
* Hardware failure (including overheating)
* Driver problem
* OS problem
* Malware running in the kernel space

That's it.  Theater View cannot "cause" this condition. Theater View can, however, tell the drivers to do things (which they should be able to do, or fail gracefully) that create the condition.  That's what you're seeing here.

The most likely culprit, since the condition occurs when entering Theater View (which is a full-screen Direct3D application, like a game), is the GPU driver. It is possible, I suppose, that it is a network interface driver, but that would be pretty far down on my list of possible culprits (especially since this would apply any time data is accessed over the network, not just in Theater View).

Laptops have particularly troublesome video card drivers.  In most cases, you cannot run the driver directly from AMD or Nvidia on them, and must use the driver from the OEM.  There are a few exceptions to this, but that's the typical case for laptops.  I'd recommend:
1. Obtaining the most up-to-date video card driver for his computer from HP's support web site.
2. Fully uninstalling the GPU driver, and any additional video card related utilities that might be installed.
3. Reboot. Do not skip this step because you are lazy.
4. Install the driver you obtained from HP.

If that doesn't help, it could be an indicator that there is something physically wrong with the machine, and there are additional troubleshooting steps you can take.
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Zhillsguy

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Re: PC Freezes In Theater View (Only) - CPU Utilization?
« Reply #2 on: May 23, 2015, 10:49:55 pm »

Thanks for the reply glynor...... the after-market video card is new and has the latest driver. I will try uninstalling/reinstalling (and possibly installing an older driver, or the Microsoft driver) to see if it helps.

The card installed is here: http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E16814131338

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Ryzen 5 W11 x64 MC 29 HTPC/Server and HP G2 Mini Elitedesk W11 MC 29 (music only zone), various Android Phones and Tablets for control of both, powering two lanai surround systems, 5.1 and 4.1 respectively.

glynor

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Re: PC Freezes In Theater View (Only) - CPU Utilization?
« Reply #3 on: May 23, 2015, 10:53:13 pm »

Thanks for the reply glynor...... the after-market video card is new and has the latest driver. I will try uninstalling/reinstalling (and possibly installing an older driver, or the Microsoft driver) to see if it helps.

The card installed is here: http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E16814131338

Sorry, my bad. I thought it was a laptop. Either way, freezing is an indicator of a hardware fault.  Network is very unlikely.

I'd look at:
* Video card
* Ram
* CPU overheating

You can probably recreate the crash in another application by running a Direct3D benchmark like 3DMark.  Might be worth doing memtest86+ on it too.  And, it is possible, of course, that you got a bad card.

These guides may also be helpful:
http://wiki.jriver.com/index.php/Troubleshooting_Drivers
http://wiki.jriver.com/index.php/Troubleshooting_Disks
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JimH

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Re: PC Freezes In Theater View (Only) - CPU Utilization?
« Reply #4 on: May 24, 2015, 06:56:51 am »

It's not a data problem.   It's almost certainly a video driver problem.  Theater View uses 3D drawing and no other part of the program does.

The only other possibility I can think of is that there is an error message but it's not visible because of a focus problem in MC.  You could use ALT Tab to see what windows are in use.
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Zhillsguy

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[SOLVED] Re: PC Freezes In Theater View (Only) - CPU Utilization?
« Reply #5 on: May 31, 2015, 12:04:29 am »

As a follow up, it was indeed a driver issue. I first tested the memory with Memtest, all was good. In Win 8.1 I tried installing the latest Beta driver, and all I got then was black screen (pc still running properly and playing music). I couldn't get into Safe Mode so I installed Win 7 Ultimate with the same version AMD driver and it works flawlessly now.

It's possible I botched the Win 8 driver install since, well, we were taste-testing various brews during that time. Beverages, music, JRiver..... a great night 'twas.

Thanks to all.....
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Ryzen 5 W11 x64 MC 29 HTPC/Server and HP G2 Mini Elitedesk W11 MC 29 (music only zone), various Android Phones and Tablets for control of both, powering two lanai surround systems, 5.1 and 4.1 respectively.

glynor

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Re: [SOLVED] PC Freezes In Theater View (Only) - CPU Utilization?
« Reply #6 on: May 31, 2015, 01:49:00 am »

Thanks for the follow up!
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