Mysterious freezes after 2.6.35, no NMI

From: Nicos Gollan
Date: Tue Apr 12 2011 - 13:47:26 EST


For quite some time now I have serious trouble with any kernel after 2.6.35. I
am experiencing frequent hard freezes. The system will simply stop responding
to input and is not reachable via network, which leads to data loss because
the file system does not get to write back all data (the classical "all my KDE
config is gone!" symptom).

A quick recap and a bunch of info (dmesg, lspci, other hardware info) can be
found here:

Note that the crashes from static electricity are most likely not related,
since those lead to a very recognizably different failure mode, the ports are
not even connected anymore, and the real problem occurs without anything
touching the case, and I have not experienced the problem with old kernels or
Windows 7.

At first I suspected the HPET "fixes" in 2.6.36 to be responsible, but the
instability occurs with HPET disabled by kernel parameter (the BIOS setup does
not allow to disable it).

To add insult to injury, at least in the 2.6.38 series, the NMI watchdog is
broken. The counters in /proc/interrupts always show 0, but will count up
quite happily on 2.6.35.

I'm rather tired of guessing what it might be, the whole thing is very hard to
diagnose since it can take days until a freeze happens, and I don't really
want to push my luck so far that I lose important data, but being stuck at
2.6.35 is not satisfactory in the long run.

I am not subscribed to the list, but I am subscribed to the bug report.

Nicos Gollan
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