Ticket #4022 (closed defect: fixed)
Windows XP application freezes - continued
|Reported by:||langf||Owned by:|
I have re-checked the occurrenct of Windows XP (guest) freezes reported previously (ticket # 2823 ), on both 32 and 64 bit Linux host installations, using vbox version 2.2.2: they continue to occur on both systems. As a general rule, the faster the computer, the less freezes. In the same sense, switching off services under Windows translates into faster execution of its applications and less freezes, as does Windows optimizations (registry and hard disk optimization), and not mounting USB disks under Windows but instead accessing them via Linux. I have not seen that switching off any specific service stops windows freezes altogether. Under high load with more than one Windows application open, and frequent disk access, any application may get stuck with the 'xxx not responding' message. In practically all cases, clicking through the file system in a separate window will unblock the application, although it might take several rounds of clicking to permit regular work again. To test if caching might be involved, I tried specific caching software under windows, as well as switching of bidirectional cut and past under vbox/Linux: no significant change was observed.
When looking at vbox log files, I noticed in both installations the same two types of potential errors: one that I do not understand, that comes in blocks of repeats like:
00:00:03.998 Guest Log: BIOS: int13_harddisk: function 02, parameters out of range 0000/0000/0001! 00:00:03.998 Guest Log: BIOS: int13_harddisk: function 02, parameters out of range 0000/0000/0001! 00:00:03.999 Guest Log: BIOS: int13_harddisk: function 02, parameters out of range 0000/0000/0001! 00:00:03.999 Guest Log: BIOS: int13_harddisk: function 02, parameters out of range 0000/0000/0001!
and another one relating to networking when the machine is not connected to the Internet
00:00:18.813 UDP: sendto fails (Network is unreachable) 00:00:19.564 UDP: sendto fails (Network is unreachable) 00:00:20.315 UDP: sendto fails (Network is unreachable) 00:00:21.066 UDP: sendto fails (Network is unreachable) 00:00:21.816 UDP: sendto fails (Network is unreachable)
Imagining that network access failure might be somehow involved in the observed freezes, I switched the network service off under vbox settings and tested again: this results only in less frequent freezes. When checking vbox log files for correlation of above error messages with any freezing event: none observed. It seems that Windows simply looses track of information of the connected file systems (hard disk, external USB drives etc) and that applications then report 'not responding'. As soon as the disk is accessed by any Windows service with file management (such as clicking 'My Computer, a symbolic link to a file system and than clicking through the file system...), it somehow refreshes information and unblocks the application. Windows application with heavy, repeated access to the file system seem to freeze more frequently.
I suspect that tweaking file system timeout parameters at the vbox/Linux level might lead to a solution; so would be probably a more direct use of the Linux file system (e.g., as implemented in Win4Lin). I doubt that changing windows-internal parameters might help, as this type of error is quite specific to vbox emulation, but I will try out any suggestions.