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Please help! Adobe Flash Emergency  freezes in Asus Eeee Box PC

Posted on 2009-12-18
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Last Modified: 2013-11-17
We have an Adobe Flash 10 app running on a number of ASUS Eeee Box PCs (see specs below) connected to 42" flat touch-screens. Flash app size is 15Mb laoding text from very small XML files (2Kb) and images (max 800Kb each) from a folder.

The app runs great for about an hour (sometimes 15 minutes, sometimes 8 hours) and then just freezes (not the PC!). We have tried most everything: we lowered the winXP resolution, re-wrote the Flash script, took out a Shockwave object call (it's now an embedded video), etc to no avail. Because of size constraints we want to stick to the Eeee Box. We think maybe it's a memory problem (On Board graphics sharing RAM with CPU, for example, and fighting over it)

Can you suggest a solution?

PS: If you run the attached App note that the cursor is invisible (touch screen!) but you can use the TAB to select.

Eeee Box PC specs:
Model: B202
CPU: Atom N270
RAM: 1 Gb
HDD: 160 Gb
Chipset: Intel
Graphics: On Board
OS: WinXP

FlashApp.zip
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Question by:MiguelRa
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Expert Comment

by:quizengine
ID: 26086198
I don't know the answer to your problem, but I can suggest to you how I would go about trying to isolate the *cause* of the problem.

Firstly I would run the app on another computer - not the Eee - maybe a regular laptop or desktop. I realise that this seems to defeat your goal of using the Eee, but you have to try and establish whether it's the app or the computer that's causing this.

Ok. Let's assume that it *fails* also on the other computer.that suggests then that the Eee is not the cause, but either your browser, the browser plug in, or the app is to blame. In that case what I would do is create a very simple Flash app - one that doesn't really do muc, and run that on the new PC. If that *fails* then it's probably the browser or the browser plug in that's at fault.

Have I said enough ? Do you get the idea that you have to find the cause ?And the only way to do that is to do repeated experiments changing *one thing* at a time until you get a set of circumstances that succeed. Once you've narrowed down what the problem is, you can then try different ways to address that, but you have to find the part that's broken first.

Let me know how your testing goes.
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Author Comment

by:MiguelRa
ID: 26091136
quizengine
Thanks for your comments. Yes it makes sense and in fact we have done that already. The app does work elsewhere but our space constraints are such that we really need it to work in the Atom based machine. I'll keep you informed about how it goes.
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LVL 19

Accepted Solution

by:
quizengine earned 375 total points
ID: 26091363
I was about to start asking about browser / plugin issues and could you use different ones, but I see after downloading your zip, that your app is a .exe so the browser / plugin doesn't come into it.

That really leaves your app, the hardware and the operating system being the only variables. Here are a few suggestions...

Is the memory of the Eee enough ? The fact that the problem occurs over time is suggestive of a 'memory leak' in your application. If this is true, rewriting the app to be more memory efficient would be a big challenge. Can you add more memory to one Eee and see if it improves things ?

How about the virtual memory settings in Windows ? Can these be set higher ? Does that help ?

How about 'hacking' the version of windows so that windows itself doesn't fully load - eg, replace 'explorer.exe' with your app ?

If you can't resolve the problem, is there a way to live with it ? For example, have another app in the background that restarts the computer every so many minutes or hours ? (I assume these are kiosk machines that will be unattended ?)

Will another (more efficient) OS like Linux be a better choice for a low performance computer like the Eee ?

That's about all of the suggestions I have. Good luck.
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LVL 37

Assisted Solution

by:CyanBlue
CyanBlue earned 375 total points
ID: 26092856
My first thought is that there is some endless loop in your code that is consuming memory little by little...  The amount it consumes is not that big, so it can run on regular laptop, but it makes some difference on Eeee because it has smaller amount of RAM to work with...  Would it be the case???  If so, make sure you are deleting all the unnecessary variables and movieClip holders and such...  That'd be the first one I'll look at...

CyanBlue
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Author Closing Comment

by:MiguelRa
ID: 31667916
Thanks guys. I have to continue tweaking this. I'll try adding memory (2Gb is the max I can put) and I'll try the explorer.exe tip as well. I'll tell you how it went after New Year's.
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