Author Topic: PixInsight 1.8.6 Error - CreateSpinBox(): Low-level API function error (0x0001)  (Read 1054 times)

Offline discardedastro

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Just to confirm, this bug is still present in the latest version (1.8.6.1457).

Getting it frequently enough to really be quite annoying now!

Offline rottielover

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I'm also getting this when trying to save images.

Offline cedric_r

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I can confirm I also regularly get that error, usually when saving to xisf format (saving to fits often works when this happens). I'm using the latest version and I never had the problem with the previous 1.8.5.

Offline Juan Conejero

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As noted before, this is not reproducible under normal working conditions. This is probably being caused by a defective OpenGL implementation in your graphics driver.
Juan Conejero
PixInsight Development Team
http://pixinsight.com/

Offline wadeh237

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Juan,

Is there anything that we can do in PixInsight to mitigate this issue (and others that you have suggested are video driver dependent).  In my case, I am running the version of the driver on my machines running with Intel video, but problems persist.

None of my machines has ever encountered a runtime error or exception in PixInsight with version 1.8.5 or earlier, but I encounter problems on a fairly frequent basis  on them, starting with 1.8.6.  Most of the errors, like the one referenced in this thread are annoyances.  When I encounter them, I can save my project and exit/restart PixInsight to get going again.  I have had a couple of data loss crashes where the PixInsight process exited with an unhandled exception.

As it stands now, there is nothing actionable that I can do (short of rolling back PixInsight, which I don't want to do because I want the new features).  I can't go to Intel and get them to fix a bug because I cannot accurately describe it.  Even if all affected PixInsight users contacted them, it would barely be a blip on their radar (a bug report would carry more weight from a developer who could provide the specific APIs and conditions leading to failure).  And frankly, I cannot reproduce any problems in any other software that I use - and I run my machines pretty hard with a wide variety of workloads.

For example, is there a way to configure PixInsight to not use OpenGL?  I have seen this option in other software (but never needed to use it).

Offline Juan Conejero

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Hi Wade,

You can disable the use of OpenGL by running it from a command line as follows:

C:\Program Files\PixInsight\bin\PixInsight.exe --opengl=raster

See the announcement of version 1.8.6.1457 for more information on these command-line options. Hopefully this may help to solve the problems you are experiencing.

PixInsight 1.8.6 is the most stable version released ever, on all supported platforms, in all aspects. It is much better than 1.8.5 in everything (especially in all that is not visible on the surface), and is ready for the next generation of tools on which I am working now. The next version, which I have now completed and subject to heavy testing, works remarkably well on Linux, macOS and Windows 10. It should be ready for release in a few days, and comes with very important improvements in the astrometry and plate-solving fields, among many new features, in preparation for a new set of mosaic generation tools that will be released soon.

Please keep in mind that I am alone to develop the PixInsight core application, its JavaScript and C++ development platforms, and almost all tools included in the standard distribution. Among other things, this means that I don't have the necessary resources to solve complex platform-specific, hardware-dependent and/or system-dependent issues, such as the problems that you are describing on Windows. All I can do is testing the application hard on a number of clean Windows machines. By 'clean' I mean machines running original copies of Windows 10 (i.e., downloaded directly from Microsoft servers), enterprise-level malware protection software (currently McAfee), with minimal clean software configurations (no bloatware at all), and up-to-date operating systems and hardware drivers. On all of these machines, PixInsight 1.8.6 works without flaws.

Besides some rare machine-specific misconfiguration and incompatibility issues, which have nothing to do with PixInsight and are easily identifiable, no problem similar to what you are describing is being reported on Linux and macOS. Unfortunately, Windows is a problematic operating system, especially for complex multiplatform applications like PixInsight, for a variety of reasons that we have already described in other posts here. There is basically nothing I can do to improve this significantly, since most of these things are far beyond my control.
Juan Conejero
PixInsight Development Team
http://pixinsight.com/

Offline wadeh237

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Thanks for the response and the suggestion.  I will try running without OpenGL for a while and see if it changes my experience.

For what it's worth, I understand your constraints and approach to developing and supporting PixInsight.

The only thing that I would throw out there is that, while you clearly believe that 1.8.6 is the most stable version of PixInsight, for some of us it is objectively not.  There are some people out there (and I have met a few in person that don't participate on the forum as well) who are seeing some fairly frequent problems that have never happened on previous versions.

I also realize that you don't know me from any other random Windows user.  I'm speaking out a little bit here because I feel like I am a bit more qualified than a typical user.  I have 20+ years of commercial software development experience on Windows - specifically writing high performance, low level code that is expected to run for extended periods of time (potentially months without a restart) and in hostile environments.  I understand all of the things that you mention that make Windows a problematic environment.  You'll just have to take my word for it that my systems are running Windows sourced directly from Microsoft, are up to date, and are without "bloatware".

I am not asking you to change the way that you are doing anything, and certainly don't expect you to make any fixes without a way to understand the root problem.  My only request is that you keep an open mind to the fact that there might be some bugs in PixInsight that are exposed outside of a sanitized test environment.

Thanks,
-Wade

Offline rdryfoos

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Multiple individuals have the same issue(s)--and this is just on this thread.  The default position of "we can't reproduce the problem, so it can't be PI's fault" is not very becoming.  Clearly a issue(s) exists.  Perhaps it would be beneficial for PI to issue recommended hardware so that folks can use the same Equipment so that you Can reproduce conditions that generate errors.  I still get read errors when using DBE at least half the time--but I have stopped asking about it because I keep getting same answer  "it can't be caused by PI"--which is not very helpful, since it happens on every computer I use. 

If we can't ask you....who?  the Geek Squad (commercial computer company in USA, maybe the world)?  They have no clue how your software works and would not be any help at all. I know, because I asked them.  They looked at my computers and told me they were working perfectly.  So, again, who should we ask?  Trash the computer and buy a new one?  I tried that (not purposely, but the same result) and it did not work.  So......round and round we go
Rodd

Offline Juan Conejero

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Rodd,

Yes, a small number of users are reporting these or similar problems on Windows. Trust me that I am working seriously to understand and solve these issues, even if I can't reproduce them. From all of the information I have gathered so far, currently the relevant problems with version 1.8.6 of PixInsight can be classified as follows:

- Windows: System configuration problems, mainly as a result of missing or corrupted system components, wrong/outdated graphics drivers, conflicts caused by other applications, and defective Windows updates. This usually happens on Windows 7 and 8.1, but also on Windows 10 to a much lesser extent. These issues are completely out of my control and usually require a system reinstall.

- Windows: Problems with Intel HD graphics drivers. This mainly includes laptops with Intel processors. These problems are causing rendering errors and most memory access violation errors on Windows. Hopefully, the next version of PixInsight includes a solution to most of these problems. Basically, I am going to force the use of the dedicated AMD or Nvidia graphics card instead of the integrated Intel HD graphics card, by exporting specific symbols from the PixInsight core executable. I have tested this solution on two laptops with dual graphics and it works well. Note that this will only work for machines with dual graphics (which fortunately includes most of the problem reports) and unless the user has created a profile for the application to use the integrated graphics. As for the root cause of these problems, it is unclear. Intel HD drivers have a history of buggy OpenGL implementations on Windows. Qt should solve these problems, probably by detecting and blacklisting these drivers internally, just as Chrome does, for example. While this happens (unlikely in the short-medium term), I hope the solution I have implemented will fix at least many of these issues. The next version of PixInsight will be released next week.

- Linux: Incompatibility of PixInsight 1.8.6 with the Nouveau open-source graphics driver. The Nouveau driver has a long history of instability and bugs, to the point that the Chromium developers (Google) have blacklisted it. These problems can be fixed easily by disabling Nouveau and installing the proprietary Nvidia driver for Linux (strongly recommended), or by disabling the use of OpenGL acceleration through command-line options.

- All platforms: Hardware errors, including faulty RAM and disks, and a weird thermal dissipation issue consistently reproducible on some 2018 MacBook Pro laptop models. These cases form a marginal subset, which is obviously out of scope for PixInsight.
« Last Edit: 2019 April 18 02:41:43 by Juan Conejero »
Juan Conejero
PixInsight Development Team
http://pixinsight.com/

Offline rdryfoos

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The forced graphics card sound promising--recommended hardware--But please, for those of us (me) that are not computer aficionados, it would be most helpful to have this translated to " use this computer, or that computer, but not THAT computer".  Unfortunately, PI will outlast most laptops (certainly mine)-so purchasing a new computer in the near future will be a necessity.  At hat time I will most definitely want to choose one that is considered as compatible as possible.   
Rodd