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Report on severe crashing caused by using Kona LHe with Leopard

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Mark Palmos
Report on severe crashing caused by using Kona LHe with Leopard
on Dec 14, 2007 at 10:21:22 pm

After two days trying to figure out what is causing my newly installed FCPS2/Leopard to crash all the time, I have boiled it down to the Aja Kona LHe card or the Aja drivers themselves.

Here are the steps I took over the last two days:
1/ Reformat drive, do a fresh Leopard install
2/ FCP Studio 2 install
3/ Download and install updates of OS and FCPS2
4/ Run FCP, save, close
5/ Install Kona Drivers v5, restart.

I had issues with permissions on the Media drive, so I used Get Info to change the drive so the permissions are ignored. I could then open the projects I had previously been working on in Tiger.

6/ Loading the main project, I got an immediate crash as FCP was about 50% done loading Motion graphics etc. The choices, as usual, were to Report the crash to apple, Restart the application or Cancel. I tried to restart several times and could not without the same crash.
7/ Restarted the computer
8/ Loaded a different project, got all the way to FCP and it seemed ok though I did not test that for long
9/ Loaded the main project again, got the same crash immediately
10/ Loaded from the Autosave Vault another earlier version of the main project, this worked, but upon playback, FCP froze, beach-balled and had to be Force Quit
11/ Loaded that same Autosave main project, but this time got the same crash I had when loading the first main project
12/ Repeated this process perhaps a dozen or more times, sometimes being able to open a project and sometimes getting FCP to crash before the project loaded, but if it did load, I ALWAYS managed to crash FCP in a matter of seconds when playing back Motion animations.


13/ I uninstalled the Aja drivers, control panel, presets in FCP, pretty much everything that said

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Mark Palmos
Re: Report on severe crashing caused by using Kona LHe with Leopard
on Dec 14, 2007 at 11:02:14 pm

I just spoke to Steve at AJA and he was very helpful and friendly... thanks steve
I will be sending my system report on monday, hopefully he will spot something.
They have an 8 core like mine running there, and have had NO issues - "seamless" - so there is NO reason why my system should be behaving like it is - so hopefully there will be a solution.

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Re: Report on severe crashing caused by using Kona LHe with Leopard
on Dec 15, 2007 at 4:29:03 pm

What if you create a completely new project ? Maybe it has trouble reading something from the old project ?


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Mark Palmos
Re: Report on severe crashing caused by using Kona LHe with Leopard
on Dec 15, 2007 at 4:52:18 pm

hi crispy,
i will be able to do more testing when i get to work on monday, and will try that - but in any event, will have to work with THAT project... so may have to go back to tiger if the guys at aja cant figure out the problem with leopard.

another thing i will do is to remove all the plugins i have installed after fresh-installing leopard. There could be some issue there.
till later

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Christopher Tay
Re: Report on severe crashing caused by using Kona LHe with Leopard
on Dec 16, 2007 at 5:49:13 am

Removing the plugins is a good idea...there have been instances in the past where plugins have caused FCP to go funky.


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Mark Palmos
Re: Report on severe crashing caused by using Kona LHe with Leopard
on Dec 17, 2007 at 2:54:23 pm

I did more testing today, and am sure the Kona has SOMETHING to do with it, or at least makes an existing issue worse... here is what I sent to Aja support:

Monday 17th testing
First off, I should say I have a macbook pro which has the exact same software, same versions etc as my desktop, but does not have the Kona card. I have no crashes whatsoever using the laptop.

Secondly, its an issue that only exists having upgraded to Leopard.

1/ From testing last week, the Kona drivers had not yet been re-installed, so I left them uninstalled for the initial testing.
2/ removed all plugins
3/ opened project "most recent", crashed when "preparing video for display" (which means either it was corrupted when crashing last week, or the crashes are not completely caused by the Kona card.)
4/ opened project "loads fine no aja" and it loaded fine - played for 2 mins no crash.

5/ installed Aja again - "loads fine no aja" loaded fine but after 40 secs of playback, fcp froze (Perhaps 2 mins of good playback without Kona was too short to really ascertain whether the crashes using Kona were related.
6/ loaded "most recent" again and it worked for 1 min. I then closed fcp and reopened it with "loads fine no aja" and it froze while opening a motion animation.
7/ I tried this again, several times, crashed each time.
8/ rebooted computer, tried same project again and it worked this time! Played back for less than a minute and it froze playing a motion animation.

9/ uninstalled Aja with uninstaller, and loaded "loads fine no aja" and have been loop playing it back for 15 mins, NO CRASHES!
10/ closed FCP and loaded again, bizarrely FCP crashed "preparing video for display". This was the exact same project which worked fine for 15 mins of playback.
11/ force killed FCP and repeatedly tried to open any of the copies of the projects known to have opened, and FCP crashed out every time.
12/ rebooted mac. This resulted in the projects being playable again!

So it seems clear so far that when FCP has crashed once it will not open properly again unless the computer is restarted. This is regardless of Kona.

The question now is whether the system with the Kona drivers installed will allow motion animations to loop for 15 minutes.

13/ To try work with as clean a project as possible, I created a new project, drag and dropped the bins and timeilnes and media from the project I had been looping to the new project and then closed the original project. I looped the new one for 15 mins.

14/ installed Kona drivers again, restart, open project which had been looping fine for 15 mins. Opens fine but crashes after 20 seconds.
15/ restart computer, open that project again, same crash after less than a minute.

16/ uninstall the kona drivers, playback for 10 minutes - no problem.

The conclusion I come to is not 100% black and white. It is clear that the crashes are FAR more frequent and consistent with the Kona drivers. With Kona drivers installed, I had never been able to play a timeline with many Motion animations for more than a minute. Conversely, with the Aja drivers uninstalled, the system would regularly play back without crashing - and I did this several times for 10-15 minutes.

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Jeremy Garchow
Re: Report on severe crashing caused by using Kona LHe with Leopard
on Dec 16, 2007 at 8:13:28 am

Chrispy's point is spot on.

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mark palmos
New testing...
on Dec 18, 2007 at 11:27:43 am

Hello all again.
Today I reinstalled Kona drivers, created new 8bit to DV kona project, saved closed.
Reopened and loaded the project I was working on using Tiger, opened fine.
Copied all assets to the new project, then closed the Tiger project leaving just the new one.
Saved and closed. Reopened fine (i was getting really excited!!!) and it loop played for about 3 mins then beach ball froze.
I will have to go back to Tiger. This is incredibly irritating as its a top computer, new card, new os, everything updated, and all plugins removed... and yet it fails to work. Sigh...
What to do?

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