Panic Mode On (98) Server Problems?

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Profile Brent Norman Crowdfunding Project Donor*Special Project $75 donorSpecial Project $250 donor
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Message 1699609 - Posted: 8 Jul 2015, 20:20:14 UTC - in response to Message 1699595.  

I'm in the same boat ... with 350.12 I suddenly stopped downloading AP GPU tasks.

So I reverted to 347.88 and reinstalled Lunatics (AP worked fine then), now it's hard to find a single std_err for ANY MB GPU task that is not empty. DAMN

I was thinking the same, did a Windows update change my HD cache settings some where along the line? Is it the driver? although many other people use it!

Maybe I should move my BOINC folder to my SSD.

IDK, I'm confuzzled as to why shit happens.
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Message 1699647 - Posted: 8 Jul 2015, 22:15:38 UTC - in response to Message 1699609.  
Last modified: 8 Jul 2015, 22:16:55 UTC

Interesting to see some of your SETI MB get hit by the blank stderr.txt bug. I've only experienced it on MilkyWay tasks that complete in under 50 seconds. I thought the short runtimes of those task might have some bearing on the problem. Interesting to see the problem on a standard MB GPU task that completes in the normal 20 minute range. You would have to run the beta 7.6.2 BoincManager and set some debug flags to help Richard out with the analyzing of this problem. I'm doing that now and have caught one invalid MW blank stderr.txt task already and still looking for more in the logs.

Good luck.

Keith

[Edit} I am running SSD's so doesn't seem to help the problem.
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Message 1699656 - Posted: 8 Jul 2015, 22:46:23 UTC - in response to Message 1699647.  

Interesting to see some of your SETI MB get hit by the blank stderr.txt bug. I've only experienced it on MilkyWay tasks that complete in under 50 seconds. I thought the short runtimes of those task might have some bearing on the problem. Interesting to see the problem on a standard MB GPU task that completes in the normal 20 minute range. You would have to run the beta 7.6.2 BoincManager and set some debug flags to help Richard out with the analyzing of this problem. I'm doing that now and have caught one invalid MW blank stderr.txt task already and still looking for more in the logs.

Good luck.

Keith

[Edit} I am running SSD's so doesn't seem to help the problem.

You have another PM, but it's bedtime on this side of the pond. I'll look to see if you've caught another one in the morning.
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Message 1699673 - Posted: 9 Jul 2015, 0:10:30 UTC

Just picked up a few APs!!! :-) I hope I get more. :-)
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Message 1699718 - Posted: 9 Jul 2015, 3:12:08 UTC - in response to Message 1699595.  

I attribute it to BOINC 7.2.33 which seems to be the best version I've come across.

Well, take a look at my active hosts and see which BOINC version I'm running....on all of them. :^) I still average a couple of truncations a day, I think, though as I mentioned, only(!) about 5 a month end up Invalid.

I gave it some more thought and realized sometime between using the Commode version and the regular version I had moved the BOINC Data folder to a 2nd hard drive. Maybe having the Data folder on a different HD than the OS makes a difference? I dunno, just trying to guess why I don't seem to be having the problem anymore...

Do you have a different setting for "write caching" on the 2nd drive? I remember speculating that write caching might be a factor, back when we were initially trying to diagnose the problem. Unfortunately, after trying it with the setting both enabled (my default) and disabled, I didn't find any difference in behavior so I pretty much discarded that theory. Maybe there's another drive setting that could be in play.

Same write caching on both drives. The OS is on an old SATA drive, the Data folder is on an older PATA drive with just other data on it. I did revert back to the first driver that works with Win 8.1 a few weeks ago, seems to work better with my GTS250 than the 337.88 version I was using earlier. I wasn't having the problem with 337.88 either though.
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Message 1699724 - Posted: 9 Jul 2015, 3:39:37 UTC - in response to Message 1699582.  
Last modified: 9 Jul 2015, 3:41:23 UTC

08/07/2015 19:14:55 | SETI@home | Finished upload of 19ja15ab.29055.20324.438086664197.12.199_1_0
08/07/2015 19:19:52 | SETI@home | Sending scheduler request: To report completed tasks.
08/07/2015 19:19:52 | SETI@home | Reporting 1 completed tasks
08/07/2015 19:19:52 | SETI@home | Requesting new tasks for CPU
08/07/2015 19:19:55 | SETI@home | Scheduler request completed: got 0 new tasks
08/07/2015 19:19:55 | SETI@home | No tasks sent
08/07/2015 19:19:55 | SETI@home | No tasks are available for AstroPulse v7
08/07/2015 19:25:15 | Milkyway@Home | Computation for task de_80_DR8_Rev_8_5_00004_1434551187_10506855_0 finished
08/07/2015 19:25:15 | Milkyway@Home | Sending scheduler request: To report completed tasks.
Look at this, i have selected to download other WUs, if AP is not available, which obviously works for the GPU but *NOT* for the CPU. This is server side related, *NOT* on my end!

If I check all (CPU, Intel iGPU, ATI GPU and NV GPU (although no ATI GPU installed)) and in my app_info.xml file are AP and SETI entries for all 3 devices, my PC (CPU and GPUs) get AP and SETI WUs if I uncheck SETI, check AP and check 'If no work for selected applications is available, accept work from other applications'.
Resource share 1000000 for SETI, 0 for Milkyway.

It looks like your PC got now AP WUs for the CPU...
Do you changed something in app_info.xml file, there is still a fine SETI entry for CPU?
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Message 1699753 - Posted: 9 Jul 2015, 5:26:51 UTC - in response to Message 1699718.  
Last modified: 9 Jul 2015, 5:36:24 UTC

I attribute it to BOINC 7.2.33 which seems to be the best version I've come across.

Well, take a look at my active hosts and see which BOINC version I'm running....on all of them. :^) I still average a couple of truncations a day, I think, though as I mentioned, only(!) about 5 a month end up Invalid.

I gave it some more thought and realized sometime between using the Commode version and the regular version I had moved the BOINC Data folder to a 2nd hard drive. Maybe having the Data folder on a different HD than the OS makes a difference? I dunno, just trying to guess why I don't seem to be having the problem anymore...

Do you have a different setting for "write caching" on the 2nd drive? I remember speculating that write caching might be a factor, back when we were initially trying to diagnose the problem. Unfortunately, after trying it with the setting both enabled (my default) and disabled, I didn't find any difference in behavior so I pretty much discarded that theory. Maybe there's another drive setting that could be in play.

Same write caching on both drives. The OS is on an old SATA drive, the Data folder is on an older PATA drive with just other data on it. I did revert back to the first driver that works with Win 8.1 a few weeks ago, seems to work better with my GTS250 than the 337.88 version I was using earlier. I wasn't having the problem with 337.88 either though.

Nevermind. Seems now that I'm looking I'm finding a few truncated stderr.txt. Time to go back to the Commode build. No problem, the .exe is still in my setiathome.berkeley.edu folder, I'll just change the names in my app_info file back before I get any of those Instant Invalids.
Oh, well...
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Message 1699756 - Posted: 9 Jul 2015, 5:55:41 UTC - in response to Message 1699724.  

(...)
It looks like your PC got now AP WUs for the CPU...
Do you changed something in app_info.xml file, there is still a fine SETI entry for CPU?

It seems it sorted out. The only thing i did was, to select all apps and submit the changes. Then i waited a few minutes and selected AP7 only and other apps yes, if AP7 is not available.
It is like sometimes in Windows: An option is selected, but doesn't work. So you unselect it and hit "ok". Then you select the option again and hit "ok" and "magically" now the option works...
Aloha, Uli

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Message 1699862 - Posted: 9 Jul 2015, 16:27:34 UTC - in response to Message 1699753.  

I gave it some more thought and realized sometime between using the Commode version and the regular version I had moved the BOINC Data folder to a 2nd hard drive. Maybe having the Data folder on a different HD than the OS makes a difference? I dunno, just trying to guess why I don't seem to be having the problem anymore...

Do you have a different setting for "write caching" on the 2nd drive? I remember speculating that write caching might be a factor, back when we were initially trying to diagnose the problem. Unfortunately, after trying it with the setting both enabled (my default) and disabled, I didn't find any difference in behavior so I pretty much discarded that theory. Maybe there's another drive setting that could be in play.

Same write caching on both drives. The OS is on an old SATA drive, the Data folder is on an older PATA drive with just other data on it. I did revert back to the first driver that works with Win 8.1 a few weeks ago, seems to work better with my GTS250 than the 337.88 version I was using earlier. I wasn't having the problem with 337.88 either though.

Nevermind. Seems now that I'm looking I'm finding a few truncated stderr.txt. Time to go back to the Commode build. No problem, the .exe is still in my setiathome.berkeley.edu folder, I'll just change the names in my app_info file back before I get any of those Instant Invalids.
Oh, well...

Heh, I thought "truncation immunity by HDD" just seemed too easy. ;^) At least Jason's commode build appears to eliminate them for the NVIDIA GPUs, but that still doesn't help with CPU tasks or the ATI GPUs. We still need the validator fix to actually eliminate the Invalid problem. I haven't had any Invalids so far this month, but did pick up 3 truncations overnight: 4250582637, 4250582741, 4250665618.
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Message 1699865 - Posted: 9 Jul 2015, 16:36:37 UTC - in response to Message 1699862.  

I gave it some more thought and realized sometime between using the Commode version and the regular version I had moved the BOINC Data folder to a 2nd hard drive. Maybe having the Data folder on a different HD than the OS makes a difference? I dunno, just trying to guess why I don't seem to be having the problem anymore...

Do you have a different setting for "write caching" on the 2nd drive? I remember speculating that write caching might be a factor, back when we were initially trying to diagnose the problem. Unfortunately, after trying it with the setting both enabled (my default) and disabled, I didn't find any difference in behavior so I pretty much discarded that theory. Maybe there's another drive setting that could be in play.

Same write caching on both drives. The OS is on an old SATA drive, the Data folder is on an older PATA drive with just other data on it. I did revert back to the first driver that works with Win 8.1 a few weeks ago, seems to work better with my GTS250 than the 337.88 version I was using earlier. I wasn't having the problem with 337.88 either though.

Nevermind. Seems now that I'm looking I'm finding a few truncated stderr.txt. Time to go back to the Commode build. No problem, the .exe is still in my setiathome.berkeley.edu folder, I'll just change the names in my app_info file back before I get any of those Instant Invalids.
Oh, well...

Heh, I thought "truncation immunity by HDD" just seemed too easy. ;^) At least Jason's commode build appears to eliminate them for the NVIDIA GPUs, but that still doesn't help with CPU tasks or the ATI GPUs. We still need the validator fix to actually eliminate the Invalid problem. I haven't had any Invalids so far this month, but did pick up 3 truncations overnight: 4250582637, 4250582741, 4250665618.

Do you reckon http://lists.ssl.berkeley.edu/pipermail/boinc_dev/2015-July/021827.html gets any closer to the mark?
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Message 1699871 - Posted: 9 Jul 2015, 16:56:56 UTC - in response to Message 1699865.  
Last modified: 9 Jul 2015, 17:00:16 UTC

Do you reckon http://lists.ssl.berkeley.edu/pipermail/boinc_dev/2015-July/021827.html gets any closer to the mark?


Race condition is of course the correct technical term for "Boincapi doesn't use threadsafe process termination practices, which therefore compromises any use of standard multithreaded runtime libraries in applications, which have been mandatory in Windows since visual studio 2005, and an effective method of user experience optimisation not unique to Windows [C-runtime] libraries [but in widespread adoption anywhere non-blocking IO is desirable]"
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Message 1699883 - Posted: 9 Jul 2015, 17:32:58 UTC - in response to Message 1699865.  

Do you reckon http://lists.ssl.berkeley.edu/pipermail/boinc_dev/2015-July/021827.html gets any closer to the mark?

Hmmm...that's very interesting. Perhaps we could get some of that same log info over here at S@h. Is the <slot_debug> option only available starting with BOINC v7.6.2? (I've been clinging to 7.2.33.)

Also, we've noticed that truncation appears primarily in two flavors. One is the completely empty Stderr, such as the one TBar posted, what Keith is getting on MW, and what I usually see on my daily driver (and also used to see on my Win 8.1 box when it was active). The other is the truncation like the 3 that I posted this morning, after the line that reads "Thread call stack limit is: 1k", which is what usually happens on that box. On rare occasions, there have been other truncation locations spotted, too. Do you think the race condition could account for those non-empty truncations, as well?
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Message 1699889 - Posted: 9 Jul 2015, 17:47:55 UTC - in response to Message 1699883.  
Last modified: 9 Jul 2015, 17:50:57 UTC

... Do you think the race condition could account for those non-empty truncations, as well?


Yes it does, bearing in mind as soon as you invoke the term 'race condition', the result is more or less chance.

[Edit:] note that it's far more a software engineering problem, than a code-bug one. The code is most likely perfectly fine for single core machines using single threaded libraries, circa 2003
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Message 1699891 - Posted: 9 Jul 2015, 17:51:02 UTC - in response to Message 1699883.  

Do you reckon http://lists.ssl.berkeley.edu/pipermail/boinc_dev/2015-July/021827.html gets any closer to the mark?

Hmmm...that's very interesting. Perhaps we could get some of that same log info over here at S@h. Is the <slot_debug> option only available starting with BOINC v7.6.2? (I've been clinging to 7.2.33.)

The basic structure is there, but you have to invoke it manually. v7.4 has a nice GUI to turn things on and off, and v7.6.2 (specifically) has a little more detail which helped with the previous bug.
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Message 1699895 - Posted: 9 Jul 2015, 18:00:32 UTC - in response to Message 1699883.  

Do you reckon http://lists.ssl.berkeley.edu/pipermail/boinc_dev/2015-July/021827.html gets any closer to the mark?

Hmmm...that's very interesting. Perhaps we could get some of that same log info over here at S@h. Is the <slot_debug> option only available starting with BOINC v7.6.2? (I've been clinging to 7.2.33.)

Also, we've noticed that truncation appears primarily in two flavors. One is the completely empty Stderr, such as the one TBar posted, what Keith is getting on MW, and what I usually see on my daily driver (and also used to see on my Win 8.1 box when it was active). The other is the truncation like the 3 that I posted this morning, after the line that reads "Thread call stack limit is: 1k", which is what usually happens on that box. On rare occasions, there have been other truncation locations spotted, too. Do you think the race condition could account for those non-empty truncations, as well?

Something which Keith said, but which I left out of my final report as unconfirmed and possibly a distraction, is that at Milkyway he sees most problems with the very short tasks (Modified Fit) which run for less than a minute on his machine. The longer tasks run, the greater the chance that the first section of the file has made it to disk before it's read back into the report.

There's probably a difference depending whether the sequence is "open file - write a bit - close file" or "open file - add a bit - add a bit - add a bit - add a bit - close app and file together". I don't even know whether that is down to the individual programmer (in which case, it might vary between projects, or even between applications in a single project), or whether it's determined by the BOINC API. Jason should be able to answer that.
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Message 1699896 - Posted: 9 Jul 2015, 18:02:45 UTC - in response to Message 1699889.  

... Do you think the race condition could account for those non-empty truncations, as well?


Yes it does, bearing in mind as soon as you invoke the term 'race condition', the result is more or less chance.

[Edit:] note that it's far more a software engineering problem, than a code-bug one. The code is most likely perfectly fine for single core machines using single threaded libraries, circa 2003

Which is partly why I suggested the "test before proceeding" solution, rather than any form of "predict when it'll be ready".
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Message 1699900 - Posted: 9 Jul 2015, 18:14:49 UTC - in response to Message 1699895.  
Last modified: 9 Jul 2015, 18:17:43 UTC

... I don't even know whether that is down to the individual programmer (in which case, it might vary between projects, or even between applications in a single project), or whether it's determined by the BOINC API. Jason should be able to answer that.


Largely system dependant on many levels, of which there are many buffers floating between the app code and disk. Top level is the app code, which is being sumarily terminated, hopefully having completed its writes. If it did, it goes into the standard C libraries, which reside in user space in buffers. Once in those buffers it can be asked by app code or OS schedulers to commit to disk, anywhere from immediately to minutes or longer (this amounts to delayed writes, write back caching at the application level, which the commode object file disables, *nix equivalent I believe opening the file in commit mode in the first place). After that you are down into kernel & driver internals. In most cases you'd get incomplete or missing contents if the calling application was killed.

The problem here is that there is no fundamental control of this underlying mechanism (other than to bypass/disable it, so the old methods of forcing things simply do not work. You ask, wait/sleep patiently, then check, and follow up. That's non-blocking multithreaded programming, which works just as well as managing real live people/workers (As opposed to killing them, burning down the factory, the instant a report is overdue, after obstructing the fire exit with a broken piano).
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Message 1699901 - Posted: 9 Jul 2015, 18:17:48 UTC - in response to Message 1699891.  

Do you reckon http://lists.ssl.berkeley.edu/pipermail/boinc_dev/2015-July/021827.html gets any closer to the mark?

Hmmm...that's very interesting. Perhaps we could get some of that same log info over here at S@h. Is the <slot_debug> option only available starting with BOINC v7.6.2? (I've been clinging to 7.2.33.)

The basic structure is there, but you have to invoke it manually. v7.4 has a nice GUI to turn things on and off, and v7.6.2 (specifically) has a little more detail which helped with the previous bug.

Well, initially I'll try just adding <slot_debug> to cc_config under 7.2.33 and see if anything interesting pops. I might be upgrading that xw9400 from XP to Win 7 this weekend and, if it doesn't go as smoothly as I'd like, I might have to reinstall everything else, too, in which case perhaps I'll go ahead and try v7.6.2.

Something which Keith said, but which I left out of my final report as unconfirmed and possibly a distraction, is that at Milkyway he sees most problems with the very short tasks (Modified Fit) which run for less than a minute on his machine. The longer tasks run, the greater the chance that the first section of the file has made it to disk before it's read back into the report.

I don't know that we're seeing that here at S@h. True, it's only the -9 overflows that are at risk for being invalidated if they get truncated, but even those aren't necessarily quickies unless the overflow is entirely due to 30 Spikes. The speediest of the 3 truncations I reported this morning took over 11 minutes (and was probably not an overflow.) The last one I had here on my daily driver, on July 4, ran for over an hour and a half (on a GT 630).
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Message 1699904 - Posted: 9 Jul 2015, 18:27:27 UTC - in response to Message 1699901.  
Last modified: 9 Jul 2015, 18:31:44 UTC

I should add that terminating a process cancels or completes IO writes depending on which level they are at, which is fairly arbitrary, but will tend to be in chunks. [And that Boincapi's MFILE/MIOFILE implementation expressly uses memory mapped files for buffer based performance features, so extra buffer levels and delays there... and more threads]
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Message 1699910 - Posted: 9 Jul 2015, 19:02:59 UTC - in response to Message 1699895.  


Something which Keith said, but which I left out of my final report as unconfirmed and possibly a distraction, is that at Milkyway he sees most problems with the very short tasks (Modified Fit) which run for less than a minute on his machine. The longer tasks run, the greater the chance that the first section of the file has made it to disk before it's read back into the report.




Richard, to add a little more information to the discussion, I have also seen the race condition show up at MilkyWay on the longer 1.02 app. Those task typically run for 2-2:30 minutes on my machines. I discovered this case at the time that SETI was down and no work was available so I was heavily processing MW tasks on each card. I had also stopped accepting work for the 1.36 troublesome short tasks in an endeavor to try and figure out what was causing the truncated stderr.txt results. In that experiment, I discovered I could also produce truncated stderr.txt for the longer 1.02 app. I surmise that this was because of the heavily stressed file system that exposed the race condition. Just some more info to chew on. Thanks for the boinc-dev report submission.

Cheers, Keith
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