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Sequence Editor Intermittently Freezing Up (resolved)

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Now I am not sure why people would have more of a problem with hesitation now vs last year. The software has not changed....

One thing to make sure is that the Hardware Utility is not running and shows are not enabled while you are running the Sequence Editor.

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I will need to call Dan.

I tried converting the mp3 file with Audicty with no luck.

Man, this is real bad...

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John Pidliskey wrote:

I will need to call Dan.

I tried converting the mp3 file with Audicty with no luck.

Man, this is real bad...


There is not much I will be able to say to you on the phone. I am not at the office just now. My only suggestion is that you turn hardware acceleration off on your display.

As mentioned there is very little difference between the demo version and the production version.

I do not think this has anything to do with the audio file. I actually am not sure what it is at this point.

If you still have the demo version on your machine, does it continue to run Okay without hesitation?

If you bring up the task manager while this is going on, does the CPU go to 100%, is memory usage jumping up?

I know that someone had a problem with Windows Media Player... It kept sucking up more and more memory. They removed WMP and re-installed it and it fixed their problem. If this is happening you will see memory usage jumping up.

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greenmeanie wrote:

I am running mine on a P4 2.2 GHZ laptop 512MEG RAM. I did 4 songs and on the last song i get slow down.

EX when I start the sequence the song plays fine but the lights on the screen don't match up to the song. Then if you stop the show and just play viewable area it all Syncs up.
I have yet to try the final version with the lor boards hooked up thou.

This type of behaviour is generally due to the MP3 file being used. Use Audacity to re-encode the file to 128mb constant bit rate or convert it to a wav file.

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Dan,



I'll give those sugestions a try this afternoon.

I really need to fiond out what caused this, as not one of my songs will play correctly.

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Thanks Dan -- I'm not sure what's going on either. Last year I'd get slight hesitation, but this year it's enough to make me pull out my hair! Not much changed on that machine, either.

I'll have to do more playing around. Hardware acceleration (tried every setting) didn't help.

-Tim

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LightORama wrote:

dgiordano wrote:
Just out of curiosity, have you saved the file as an animation sequence and tried playing it? I would assume that the sequence should play smooth since it doesn't have to process the audio. Well that is what I am guessing anyhow. Are these mp3 or wav format?


Playing the audio generally does not affect the smoothness of play in the Sequence Editor. Any jerkeyness to the play back is due to interaction with the display drivers.... Sometimes things like adjusting hardware acceleration will help (usually turning off hardware acceleration is best)....


I was just wondering, since so many; people including Tim, are having the problem if something in the WMP has changed. Maybe something in one of the security updates or patches Microsoft put out this past year maybe causing some resource issues?

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I was wondering the same thing if it may have something to do with the MS updates.

My PC had automatic updates enabled and just went through one of those.

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Ok, This is what I found so far.

The only Apps running on the PC is MSwindows XP Professional.

Windows Media Player

LOR

Thats it. Nothing else is loaded on the PC.

When I run the sequence editor and watch the task manager like Dan offered, at the time the sequence freezes, the CPU is at 100%

As the sequence runs normal, the CPU is avg 50%

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I have another PC I raan the demo version on, and the songs run normal. I think im going to load up the Licenced version to see what happens.

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John Pidliskey wrote:

Ok, This is what I found so far.

The only Apps running on the PC is MSwindows XP Professional.

Windows Media Player

LOR

Thats it. Nothing else is loaded on the PC.

When I run the sequence editor and watch the task manager like Dan offered, at the time the sequence freezes, the CPU is at 100%

As the sequence runs normal, the CPU is avg 50%


I also have found that LOR is unresponsive during this time. If you attempt to click the stop button, nothing happens-- the music keeps playing. But when it gets out of the 'freeze zone' the stop finally takes effect.

Something is causing LOR to be unresponsive to GUI events during these hang-times. I wish I could narrow it down further...

-Tim

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I have experienced this also. I will also favor in conclusion that Media player is the problem. I have had other freezing issues when using the latest version of WMP with other uses. Dan's recommendation of verifying that the audio file is NOT using a variable bit rate helps tremendously. Some files I used last year I reprocessed this year to make sure that it was 128k fixed, and solved many issues for me. If the file is variable, then it really fouls things up when playing the visible screen, and the total time on the sequence. I did not have this problem, that I was aware of, last year. I'm glad someone brought this up, as I thought it was because I was using the old 1.4.0 version of sequence editor (lost the newest version with a HDD crash, and I havn't received the new version from tech support yet). Another Microsoft "opportunity" :) Sorry Dan, looks like you are going to be handling alot of support issues on this!


Also, Dan has a very good description of this issue, and how to do this with his support page. Read the information on ripping CD's and preparing MP3 files. The above information is covered in those documents. Only, I wish I read it first before I went about it to figure it out for myself. This may not be the fix-all, but it helps!


>> Bill

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I just ran the demo-version on a separate PC. It runs fine and uses less than 10% CPU.


Maybe I'll try Dan's sugestion and run the Demo-version on the problem PC.

If anyone else is running into this problem, please let us know. It could help in isolating the problem and make it much easier for Dan to resolve.

At this point, there is no use even running my show until this gets resolved.

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John Pidliskey wrote:

At this point, there is no use even running my show until this gets resolved.

Are you saying that this is happening when running shows scheduled via the schedule editor?

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I didn't try that. I'll give it a try.

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tfischer wrote:

I also have found that LOR is unresponsive during this time. If you attempt to click the stop button, nothing happens-- the music keeps playing. But when it gets out of the 'freeze zone' the stop finally takes effect.

Something is causing LOR to be unresponsive to GUI events during these hang-times. I wish I could narrow it down further...

-Tim


We are having a problem getting some resource... Does the CPU peg during this time and is it LOR pegging it or is something else pegging it?

In the task manager you can sort processes by cpu utilization.

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Dan,

maybe I can buzz you.

Yes, for some reason the LOR is pegging the CPU's resource. When that happens, the screen freezes, but the song continues.

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LightORama wrote:

tfischer wrote:
I also have found that LOR is unresponsive during this time. If you attempt to click the stop button, nothing happens-- the music keeps playing. But when it gets out of the 'freeze zone' the stop finally takes effect.

Something is causing LOR to be unresponsive to GUI events during these hang-times. I wish I could narrow it down further...

-Tim


We are having a problem getting some resource... Does the CPU peg during this time and is it LOR pegging it or is something else pegging it?

In the task manager you can sort processes by cpu utilization.

I just checked. During the sequence, LOR normally would take anywhere from 20-50% of the CPU. During the "hang time" it would take as much as 75-80%. But "System Idle Task" was still the #2 task with most of the remaining CPU, so it doesn't appear to be a "processor is too slow" issue.

-Tim

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Tim,

Thanks for helping out on this investigation. I think any input for Dan will help resolve this much more quicker.

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OK, I figured out my issue. And it probably isn't the same as yours, but here goes. And I feel kind of dumb for not realizing this sooner.

"Control Lights" was turned on on my laptop I was using, and I didn't intend it to be. In fact, that machine has another app (PalmPilot Hotsync) that normally has control of the serial port, so LOR must have been trying to grab it (unsuccessfully) and control the lights at various places. In any case, turning off "control lights" let me get back to sequencing.

Obviously, if you actually want to control lights that won't work well! But I suspect that if I disable the Hotsync Manager and actually connect up some LOR boxes my problem would go away.

-Tim

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Tim,

I completly reformatted the drive, reloaded windows XP and LOR. That's all I have on the PC. It's a spare so I don't use it for anything else.

Once I did that, the CPU time dropped down to about 4%. I ran the song, and the CPU jumped back up, but towrds the end of the song, pegged the CPU again.

I tried your trick, tuned off 'control lights', and guess what the cpu usage went down to 1%.

I ran three songs so far, most of the time the cpu is at about 30-40%, with some pegs at 60%.

Out of three songs, so far only one song pegged the CPU just once at 100% for what seemed only about 1 second. Hardley noticable when running the sequence editor.

I can deal with that, but still would like to know why the dang thing still wants to peg at 100%. I know the PC i'm using is a few years old, Pentuim III with 768MB of ram, but I don't think that should be an issue.

Anyhow, maybe there could be a future version of LOR that does not try to use as much as CPU time.

I'm wondering if I should use an updated version of Windows Media Player. When I reloaded the PC, I did not allow it to get the Updates at MS website. Seems when I had it update with all the security crap, that's when the PC was really running slow.

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John Pidliskey wrote:

[...]

I can deal with that, but still would like to know why the dang thing still wants to peg at 100%. I know the PC i'm using is a few years old, Pentuim III with 768MB of ram, but I don't think that should be an issue.

Anyhow, maybe there could be a future version of LOR that does not try to use as much as CPU time.

I'm wondering if I should use an updated version of Windows Media Player. When I reloaded the PC, I did not allow it to get the Updates at MS website. Seems when I had it update with all the security crap, that's when the PC was really running slow.


As I mentioned in the second post of this thread ... this is to be expected in the current version of LOR. ('expected' being what you are seeing now, after control lights is turned off.)

Again, Dan has said that this is corrected in LOR2. If I recall correctly, the sequence editor uses a 1/10th of the CPU time of the current version.

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Don,

The version of LOR I have is: 1.5.0

Is that the latest?

I thought Dan said that LOR uses Windows Media Player, should I get the latest version of WMP?

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John Pidliskey wrote:

Don,

The version of LOR I have is: 1.5.0

Is that the latest?

I thought Dan said that LOR uses Windows Media Player, should I get the latest version of WMP?



That is the latest. The sequencer does use the WMP engine. I'm using WMP10 at the house, and 1.5.0 on some AMD 2+ Ghz processor with 2GB ram. I still get glitches now and then.

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Thanks, Don.

One last question...

I can bring up the harware utility to test the LOR boards which works ok.

When I run the sequence editor, the LED's start to flash like they lost communication with LOR and the lights will not work.

I checked under 'edit,preferences,network preferences' and it is setup for Comm 3.

Dasher and X10 are set to None.

What am I missing?

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