Author Topic: Attract Mode Freeze / Win XP / 32 Bit  (Read 613 times)

bobby_magee

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Attract Mode Freeze / Win XP / 32 Bit
« on: September 20, 2016, 01:12:39 AM »
Hi,

Attract Mode freezes anywhere between 1 hour - 2 hours, ALT tabbing to the console window shows no info other than the initial load up and once task manager is run, attract mode can be forced to exit. The system itself is still stable and attract mode can then be re launched.

I have tried this on 5 different PC's, 4 with XP SP3 32Bit, one with Win 7 32Bit.

All fresh installs, with SP3, drivers, Mame and Attract Mode.

Originally Mame was running on it's own and is stable for weeks at a time, and I do mean that the machines are left on solid for weeks at a time.

I wanted to introduce a nice front end / menu instead of just having a single game launch on startup, hence my use of attract mode.

Other than downloading 2.1.0 and extracting it, mame paths are setup, 20 roms are scanned along with their marquees and snaps, all show, games play and games exit perfectly.

The problem arises when the PC's are idle. At some stage atract mode front end freezes.

I have tried the basic theme, cools and reflect, they all freeze within a couple of hours. (usually close to 2 hours)

Initially I thought it was the video screensaver so I disabled the screensaver (set timeout to 0)  but it didn't make a difference.

Then, I thought it might be video (the video snaps) in general so I swapped all the video snaps for png images and re-enabled the screensaver, even with just images attract mode still freezes.

I then disabled the screensaver and again attract mode froze several hours later.

I've tried different layouts in Virtual PC's too just to get a better spread of results and they too all freeze within 2 or so hours.

Any idea's what can be tried please to try and track this down?

Many Thanks.

Update:

I have installed AM 1.6.2 over the top and left two machines running. One machine with no screen saver but video snap playing in the BASIC theme. The second machine is identical but I have enabled the screensaver which cycles though all of the 20 video snaps.

Both machines still froze at around 2 hours, however... a single press of any key and AM responds normally.
Machine one which is just playing snaps in the BASIC them just starts playing the snap video again after a key press.
Machine two, closes the frozen video screensaver and returns to the AM - BASIC theme menu.

Temporarily, I will have an AHK script run in the background sending a keypress "UP" if the machine is idle for longer than say 60 minutes and report back if they freeze again.

Any ideas or suggestions in the meantime would be greatly appreciated!

« Last Edit: September 20, 2016, 06:39:39 AM by bobby_magee »

bobby_magee

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Re: Attract Mode Freeze / Win XP / 32 Bit
« Reply #1 on: September 28, 2016, 03:00:39 PM »
Ok, no suggestions on a fix, but I have a few updates.

On different hardware both physical and virtual....

Attract Mode 2.1.0 - 32 bit freezes / locks up somewhere within 2 hours on xp SP3. Regardless of video snapshot, image snapshot or no snapshots! I have to CTRL - ALT - DEL

Attract Mode 1.6.2 - 32 bit stalls / pauses somewhere within 2 hours on xp SP3. Regardless of video snapshot, image snapshot or no snapshots! Press any key and all is well, either the screensaver resumes or the main menu resumes, depending where it froze.
This allows a simple Auto Hot Key Script to keep the machine alive, at worst it will show a "paused / frozen" image for no more than 5 minutes before springing back to life.

Attract Mode 2.1.0 - 64 bit. (Not what I was planning to use, but just for problem solving) With Windows 7 64 Bit. Works flawlessly, been on for over 5 days solid.

Purely for shelling purposes, it would be great to have the 32bit version working properly with XP, but the AHK script is a more than useful workaround. In fact, the AHK script has been modified to scroll down one on the list of games changing the on screen game every so often too, kind of an extra attract mode for attract mode!

I hope somebody finds the AHK script useful as an addition to Attract Mode 32 bit on XP which is great software and an awesome skinnable frontend!

Sends a left mouse click to wake attract mode 1.6.2 32bit if it has frozen. click sent every 10 minutes, but only if the system has had no user input for 10 minutes, ie it is idle. I'd suggest setting the Attract Mode screen saver to 300 (5 minutes). You still get the odd freeze but it is auto remedied within 5 minutes max or by any user input!

; =============
; Attract Mode Keep Alive
#Persistent

SetTimer, CarryOn, 600000
Return

CarryOn:
IfGreater, A_TimeIdle, 600000
MouseClick, left
sleep, 1000
Send Input {Down}
Return
; ========================
« Last Edit: September 28, 2016, 03:02:53 PM by bobby_magee »

erzak

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Re: Attract Mode Freeze / Win XP / 32 Bit
« Reply #2 on: November 24, 2017, 10:21:57 AM »
I'm encountering the same issue.  Did you ever find a different solution?  I'm assuming that AHK = Auto Hot Key?
Thanks,
Eric

nevincho

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Re: Attract Mode Freeze / Win XP / 32 Bit
« Reply #3 on: November 24, 2017, 11:02:29 AM »
My solution is Random game after period of time: http://forum.attractmode.org/index.php?topic=941.0

erzak

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Re: Attract Mode Freeze / Win XP / 32 Bit
« Reply #4 on: November 26, 2017, 10:38:51 AM »
My solution is Random game after period of time: http://forum.attractmode.org/index.php?topic=941.0

Hmm, I tried this, and AM still freezes up on me after some amount of time.  Will have to experiment more.  Will try the AHK trick next.

erzak

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Re: Attract Mode Freeze / Win XP / 32 Bit
« Reply #5 on: December 04, 2017, 02:29:08 PM »
My solution is Random game after period of time: http://forum.attractmode.org/index.php?topic=941.0

Hmm, I tried this, and AM still freezes up on me after some amount of time.  Will have to experiment more.  Will try the AHK trick next.

Tried the AHK trick and still having problems.  It seems that AM itself is freezing up or something.  I was playing one game for quite a while (>1 hour) and when I exited the emulator, AM was unresponsive.  I had to kill it via task manager and then re-start it.  Don't know if it's because I'm running on an old Win32 XP system or ?  I might try turning off the AM screensaver, turn the Windows screensaver back on, and see if it still freezes up.

Any other thoughts?

erzak

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Re: Attract Mode Freeze / Win XP / 32 Bit
« Reply #6 on: December 05, 2017, 08:53:37 AM »
No dice.  I shut off the screensaver in AM, and I have no plugins running.  I turned the default WinXP screensaver on, set it for 10 minutes.  Started up AM, and went to make dinner, etc.  Came back maybe an hour later and the screen woke up fine when I wiggled the mouse, but AM was frozen up, and had to kill it via task manager.

I did not have the AHK script running at this time.  My experience with that before was that it did fine and keeping the WinXP screensaver from kicking in, but didn't help with keeping AM from freezing.

Seems to only be affecting 32-bit systems, so I suppose if there's no other fix I can upgrade the PC at some point, as I don't think a 10 year old P4 will run Windows 7 64-bit very well, if at all.