I haven't seen this behavior myself, but lets see what we can do to hunt it down. If the OS freezes enough to require a reboot, I suspect there's something in the mix that is operating at the driver level.
My first thought regarding the corrupted loose reference file was a driver getting in between Character Animator and the filesystem like a virus scanner or search indexer, but lock ups and crashes or hangs could also be related to another driver (like the one for your webcam). Probably the best thing to do is enumerate the software that might be involved and start running experiments to eliminate candidates.
Do you see instabilities with other apps? If not, we're looking for something that Character Animator in particular is exacerbating. Our project format does require us fairly frequent access to the files that make up our project. The other is interfacing to the webcam and microphone.
For the file system aspect, I'd be curious to know the following:
- is your project in a folder that is synchronized over the network (Dropbox, Google Drive, Microsoft OneDrive, etc)
- is the project on your internal hard drive or someplace else?
- do you have a virus scanner and if so which one?
- does turning off the virus scanner (or disabling it for the folder where your project resides at least) make any difference to stability issues?
The next piece is to isolate is whether the web cam is contributing to the problem:
- which webcam do you have and what software have you installed to support it?
- if you turn it off in Character Animator and use the app do do other kinds of tasks (not involving face tracking or camera input), do you still hit the issues you're describing?
This post has another technique that has proved useful for tracking down entanglements with other software (using one of the tools to provide a list of all DLLs that are loaded into the Character Animator process while it is running):
Finally, if you could zip up your project and send it to me, I'd like to inspect it and see how it is damaged. It might even be possible to fix it, though I haven't done a lot of project surgery, I'm willing to give it a shot based on knowledge of the format.
It might also help to get a crash dump. I can post more info on how to locate or gather one shortly.
Here's hoping with some sleuthing we can track this down.
> I can post more info on how to locate or gather one shortly.
Just as a start, if you can run Event Viewer (it should come up if you use the search box in the task bar). In the left hand panel, expand Windows Logs and choose Application under that.
Since this happened recently, there should be an item toward the top of the list with a red exclamation icon and the text Application Hang or Application Error. If you can find one of those whose details reference Character Animator and paste the results from choosing the option to copy the event details as text from the right click menu, it may provide some clues I can use to home in on the kind of failure that occurred and what might have caused it.
Thanks -- DT
I'll just post what i can now. I haven't noticed a pattern with the webcam being on and off, as I'm usually alternating between the two.
The webcam i have is a new Microsoft LifeCam HD-3000, but as you mentioned, it may be something that Character Animator is exacerbating or Adobe programs in general. I have had previously a few freezing events occur with Photoshop (before i updated) usually when drawing with the shape tool. But I'm usually in AI so i haven't extensively tested that it is resolved, which is also difficult due to its intermittent nature.
So chances are, my issue is unique to me, but it would be great to figure out why Adobe sets it off. Here is the error that clutters my error log viewer. Hopefully it's relevant..
Okay, so over the past 24 hours, filtering for Application Errors / Crashes, I see a lot of OneDrive Errors, reportedly crashing 38 times in that time. Strangely enough i only have one Application Error from Character Animator. I've attached the imagery below. Also i don't explicit access any files using OneDrive, it must be having it's own 'fun' in the background.
Yikes, those Database Page Cache errors sound bad. Checksums failing in database pages suggest some kind of serious bug or (disk) hardware failure (as noted in the detailed part of that message). Googling around for ESENT, SRUDB.dat, and some of the phrasing in that message turns up a lot of different threads discussing such issues and it sounds like you probably want to make sure all of your stuff on your disk is backed up (ideally separately from backups that precede these errors in case other files that do not use checksums extensively have also been silently corrupted).
I'd have to do some further research to understand, but it definitely sounds like a problem you'll want to try to get sorted out. I do see some threads mentioning this error correlating with system responsiveness issues.
One reason Ch might be particularly sensitive is that our project format uses checksums for all the pieces of data it writes, so it is quick to notice corrupt data by virtue of the data not matching the checksum it expected. Which is to say that we may be more of a canary in a coal mine that a causal factor here. It's also possible that writing lots of small files as our project contains makes whatever hardware or lower level software issue is going on here.
I may also try to see if I can get the crash dump corresponding to that report id to see if it suggests a failure mode to which we could be more robust, though.
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Yeah, those both seem like regular ol' bugs. I'll translate those codes and see what I can figure out.
You can probably work around the first one by holding shift as the project opens (that resets transient UI state data). The second is less clear until I decode that identifier. In both cases, I'd be interested to take a look at the project to try to corner the bug, but might be able to guess a bit based on what you've posted.
Thanks -- DT
It looks like the both of these error codes match a couple of bugs we have/had opened internally (one is still open to be fixed).
One of the bugs for the second error was closed because we could not reproduce the error, so if you are willing to share the project I'd be interested in trying to corner the bug (and possibly fix the project).
Yeah, sure. What's the best way to get this to you? There isn't an option to send an attachment in PM.
"You can probably work around the first one by holding shift as the project opens"
Just as a confirmation, I was able to get around both errors by holding shift as the project opens. I found open bugs regarding some similar errors, but will probably want to try again with this project once those are fixed to make sure it was really the same problem and not merely one with similar symptoms.
The project opened really fast so when i pressed shift nothing happened?
After replacing RAM, changing install location for Character Animator, scanning drives for corruption, reinstalling graphic driver etc, none of it fixed the issue with the random freezing.
However, I eventually found it was an issue with my BIOS, a setting in there started causing the ESENT errors (database checksum mismatch error). After i reset it to defaults, i stopped getting the error in the error log and after my testing today, it has been running great. It seemed Adobe programs seem to be the only ones that were affected by it. But at least it's resolved now. No more canary needed.
Other bugs i came across, i have taken screenshots of below, which may be of use:
Thanks for your help DanTull.
The same thing happens to me (same error codes) if I have a shareable puppet inside another puppet in beta 6. I've tried everything, and the only thing that worked was downgrading to beta5.