Friday, September 28, 2012

Ubuntu 12.10 Beta 2 Freakshow

Look, my computer never fared well with Ubuntu's development releases, but this is getting silly. Can someone explain me how images of my windows desktop leak into the live cd environment of the latest Ubuntu Beta 2? Are they stuck in the video memory? Or RAM? Or what? Do forgive the crappy quality, my camera batteries decided they don't want to witness such horrors. :D Everytime I tried to open a window, different parts of my previous Windowsing session appeared instead. And mind you, they were not even the last things on screen when I rebooted, no, no, some of those windows happened hours before. What the actual F?


  1. Ubuntu development release:

    A long time ago (~2008 IIRC) I used to see a similar effect on both an Intel i845 desktop and a Radeon R300 laptop where upon initially starting X (ie. by the display manager) random parts of a previous session - not even the latest parts indeed as you noted - would be shown somewhat corrupted on the screen. There were also certain Compiz configurations that would make similar things appear briefly when opening menus or windows.

    At some point those things stopped happening, I don't remember what changed. More recently (early-ish 2010) I had a problem with the same R300 laptop where after using the computer for seemingly random, non-reproducible amounts of time or intensity - or with some rather odd but very safe triggers such as opening AbiWord (only AbiWord) as root (only as root) - any menus or windows you opened afterwards would be initially displayed correctly, but then as you moved your mouse through their contents they would be replaced with random chunks of previously displayed things.

    I eventually did track down that problem to an option of the Radeon driver, I don't remember which one, and disabled it on my xorg.conf and forgot about it. In late 2011 I started a fresh installation and found the option wasn't needed anymore.

    I guess the images come from the VRAM and they seem to last longer than you'd expect, even after the machine has been powered off for 10 seconds you get to see chunks of the previous session.

    Bugs like these are scary, I did see porn on them. I didn't mind because I knew it was my own porn and nobody else uses my computers but I can see how that would be annoying on multiuser computers. Well I guess it would be more of a business computing concern because multiuser computers in families are getting rare, nowadays everyone just has their own laptop.

    By the way you still have a global readership - six readers worldwide to be exact - and we still feel entitled to blog updates. Update more!

    1. O yes, I haven't really thought about private stuff showing like that on a multi-user machine. Could get ugly.

      Thanks for the lengthy comment and hey!, it's not easy coming up with posts that will please 6 continents! O, dear, it's really been 4 months since my last post, eh? Then I deserve getting trololled.

  2. This comment has been removed by the author.