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Thread: Vixen Software Crashing Show!!!

  1. #1
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    Default Vixen Software Crashing Show!!!

    I haven't had a solid week of a fully automated show this year and it seems the software (Vixen 2.1.4) keeps crashing. Though it seems its only crashing when it's running a scheduled program. One of my tracks it crashed on while running the scheduled program works just fine if I play it by itself. I kept thinking it was the computer at fault, but I've switched to a different computer 3 times this year and still having the software crash. When it crashes, I stop the program playback, close and restart vixen software (not the PC) and restart the current timers. Then it seems to run for sometimes the rest of the night, other times it won't fully run the 12 minute program before crashing again. Not sure what else I can try, all my lights are connected via an E1.31 interface over IP to the computer and I have a USB extension running to the VAST USB FM Transmitter on the roof. I can hear in the audio a squeal when I've been in the office and I've witnessed it crashing and it stops when I stop the running program. The vixen computer and E1.31 interface runs on its own completely separate VLAN on my network, no other devices are running E1.31 output while the show is running, I have it setup for Multicast but I don't think this has any effect on the software crashing.

    Any ideas? Right now I'm just manually running the couple sequences tonight. Is it time to upgrade to a newer version of the Vixen software? Can I upgrade to Xixen 3 easily with my vixen 2 sequences? Is it something else causing the crash?

  2. #2
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    Default Re: Vixen Software Crashing Show!!!

    I would check your audio files. Open them up in Audacity and re-export them.

  3. #3
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    Default Re: Vixen Software Crashing Show!!!

    when vixen crashes, does it give you an error message? I've seen different messages, so that info could help point to the problem. I may be lucky, but the only crashes I have run into have been related to 2 things -
    1. out of memory - i have an old PC running Windows XP for my show computer... no connection to the internet, etc, just the show network. Up until last year it had only 500MB Memory, but I've now upgraded to 4GB - even with that I still every once in a while get a memory crash. For example, If i don't exit out of vixen prior to each new show day, i will get an out of memory crash, guaranteed. So, I make sure that vixen restarts every day before the show.
    2. can't remember the exact wording, but com ports locked up, conflicts, or something like that. However, this occurs only if there is still a Vixen instance running when I start a sequence or a schedule... ie, if Vixen doesn't close out properly there may still be a vixen process running that needs to be killed from the task manager prior to starting vixen again.
    Since my show computer is completely separate from anything else, the best way for me to work around the above is to schedule reboot of computer everyday and new restart of vixen prior to scheduled kick-off time. Note that my setup is fairly complex - i have 3 com Ports in use (one connected to a series of RenSS, one connected to a RenC for Olsen 595, one connected to an Enttec DMX dongle ), as well as a e1.31 interface (to a little ethernet hub tied to 2 e682s, multicast). I've also used a USB sound card from time to time, and it hasn't caused me any grief. I don't use the VAST USB FM transmitter, so no experience with that.
    Although I haven't run into this specific issue, I think i remember reading that you need to make sure you have all channels empty at the end of your sequences, as that could potentially cause some channel conflicts when program moves from one sequence to the next - you might want to check that.

  4. #4
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    Default Re: Vixen Software Crashing Show!!!

    You should consider running your show FPP. I used Vixen the first couple of years and now I'm extremely happy running FPP on 2 Pi's. Don't even need the computer on.

    Sent from my SM-T710 using Tapatalk

  5. #5
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    Default Re: Vixen Software Crashing Show!!!

    One thing to be aware of is that Vixen 2.1x does not like multiple USB dongles, one FDTI and one Prolific are it's max, you will get screens full of errors with more than one of of the same brand. That being so, I had five serials running my show for 7 years up until this year with no issues at all, but a re-boot of the PC prior to each nights start ensured that the PC was clean before the show!!

    Terry
    [B]"Tory Street Lights", Nelson, NZ[/B]
    [B]2013 - "Honourable Mention"[/B] - 2013 Local Christmas Lighting Competition
    [B]2013 :-[/B] 11 x Ren 64XC's - 650 Channels, 45,000+ lights. 7,000 or so LED's this year:-)
    ----------------------------------------------
    [B]"Lucky Home" [/B]- 2012 Local Christmas Lighting Competition
    [B]2012 :-[/B] 11 x Ren 64XC's - 550 Channels, 40,000+ lights. 2,500 or so LED's for the first time :-)
    -----------------------------------------------
    [B]2011:-[/B] 7 x Ren 64XC's - 384 Channels, 30,000+ lights - all incandescents! 2 x Commercial LED Panels (72x7)!
    ------------------------------------------------
    [B]"Supreme Winner for 2010" [/B]Local Christmas Lighting Competition, 4 x Ren 64's - 256 Channels Controlled by Vixen - "Brilliant" :-)
    18,000 to 20,000 Lights - all incandescents! 2 x LedTricks Panels with "Pix C" interface's
    [B]2009:- [/B]128 Channels of "Hill 320", 4,000 Lights

  6. #6
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    Default Re: Vixen Software Crashing Show!!!

    Ok, I've been a little busy since I posted my message. I don't actually get an error screen with Vixen when it crashes, all I see on the screen is the scheduler running the program and it's just stuck on the first sequence. When I stop all running programs, close Vixen, and restart Vixen, restart currently running programs and it's fine for most nights. But I need to do this at least once a night and sometimes more than once. I have the VAST FM transmitter is one of my USB connections and I just recently plugged in a USB Mic cable that allows me to plug in an XLR mic and talk to the people out in front. Set it up for when the show crashes I can let them know it will take a few seconds to reboot.

    All my show interfaces are running through an E1.31 interface via the network, it has it's own VLAN on my router (1 of 4 separate vlans in my house) and no other vixen instances running on the network. No com ports in use on the computer and no USB to serial interfaces.

    I have not tried the audacity thing with the audio files, I'll look into that and see if it changes anything.

    What is FPP? I might have to look into that, can I convert vixen sequence files to FPP?

  7. #7
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    Default Re: Vixen Software Crashing Show!!!

    Is it always during the same sequence? If so, try removing that sequence out of the program.

    Is it always at the beginning of the program? You might try creating a new program with the default settings.
    Are there any other programs scheduled? Is it possible that 2 are running at the same time?

    Is crossfade in the program set up turn off?
    Chris
    [URL="http://www.maloneylights.com"]http://www.maloneylights.com[/URL]
    [URL="http://halloween.maloneylights.com"]http://halloween.maloneylights.com[/URL]
    [URL="http://ctm.maloneylights.com"]http://ctm.maloneylights.com[/URL]

  8. #8
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    Default Re: Vixen Software Crashing Show!!!

    Quote Originally Posted by theatretch85 View Post
    Ok, I've been a little busy since I posted my message. I don't actually get an error screen with Vixen when it crashes, all I see on the screen is the scheduler running the program and it's just stuck on the first sequence. When I stop all running programs, close Vixen, and restart Vixen, restart currently running programs and it's fine for most nights. But I need to do this at least once a night and sometimes more than once. I have the VAST FM transmitter is one of my USB connections and I just recently plugged in a USB Mic cable that allows me to plug in an XLR mic and talk to the people out in front. Set it up for when the show crashes I can let them know it will take a few seconds to reboot.

    All my show interfaces are running through an E1.31 interface via the network, it has it's own VLAN on my router (1 of 4 separate vlans in my house) and no other vixen instances running on the network. No com ports in use on the computer and no USB to serial interfaces.

    I have not tried the audacity thing with the audio files, I'll look into that and see if it changes anything.

    What is FPP? I might have to look into that, can I convert vixen sequence files to FPP?
    FPP is software loaded onto a Raspberry Pi and it runs Fseq files exported from Vixen. You can run one Pi as a master and use more Pi's as remotes. I run a Pi3 as a master and a Pi3 as a remote that runs my P10 panels. Love FPP. Check out Falconchristmas.com. You can access Falcon Christmas using Tapatalk also. Pretty easy to set up.

    Sent from my SM-T710 using Tapatalk

  9. #9
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    Default Re: Vixen Software Crashing Show!!!

    The item at the top is the Raspberry Pi3. Below it is a EDM transmitter.


    Sent from my SM-T710 using Tapatalk

  10. #10
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    Default Re: Vixen Software Crashing Show!!!

    I have been running vixen 2.5.0.9 for several years with an e1.31 bridge controlling all of my Renard and Lynx LE controllers and have never had this issues.

    Is there anything in the event logs showing as failures for other systems?
    What version of OS are you running.
    [SIGPIC][/SIGPIC]

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